One important take-away from the show: models other than internal combustion engines--such as EV, Hybrid, and Fuel Cell--are more obvious than at previous shows, and the interest in them this year's show was very high.

TOKYO--The Tokyo Motorcycle Show 2018 held here at the Tokyo Big Sight Convention Center March 23 - 25 was modestly successful with slightly more attendees but fewer exhibitors. The event drew 146,823 attendees, up slightly (328 persons) from last year's show. However, admission is free for under junior high school students, which helps build attendance. The number of exhibitors dropped to 135 from 155 last year, but the number of exhibitors still is up 11.5% from the years 2015 and 2016, when there were 121 exhibitors. 

Highlights from major motorcycles OEMs:

YAMAHA Motorcycle Sales Japan Co., Ltd. (YMSJ)
Yamaha exhibited 31 bikes along with its Y's Gear. The Yamaha electric trial bike, the "TY-E," drew lots of attention. As a trial bike where compactness is important, Yamaha emphasized miniaturization of the electric motor and featured light weight and high rigidity by using a carbon monocoque integrated frame. To provide the feeling close to the trial motorcycle of the conventional gasoline engine, controllability is improved by adopting the same clutch as the ordinary geared motorcycle while driving the motor. The lithium-ion battery is installed, and the vehicle weight is less than 70 kg.
HONDA Motorcycle Japan, Ltd.
Honda exhibited 23 motorcycles. Hybrid and Electric of PCX were displayed in parallel, attracting attention. Honda reorganized domestic sales network in April and has integrated five channels into two channels, Honda Commuter (Under 250cc) and Honda Dream (Over 250cc), and the booth's organization reflected this new structure.

The new Monkey 125cc was very popular as a photo subject, people gathered to shoot lots of pictures. The flagship model Goldwing had a major redesign for the first time in 17 years and was released April 2 in Japan. It's the sixth generation following its introduction in the United States in 1975. The new model aggressively incorporates new technology, rather than simply increasing size, as has been the strategy for many years.

SUZUKI Motorcycle, Ltd.
Suzuki used marketing innovations to draw large crowds to its booth. Its huge booth used specialty illustrations drawn by popular manga (comic) artists. Suzuki also used a VR head-mounted display to simulate a circuit running.  The Suzuki Fan Shop dealing with Suzuki Official Goods, drew core Suzuki fans, who came to see popular items as soon as they were released.

KAWASAKI Motors Japan, Ltd.
Kawasaki exhibited 16 motorcycles that can actually be ridden. The most popular models were Ninja 400 KRT Edition, Ninja H2 Carbon.

KYMCO Japan Inc.
Taiwan's top OEM, Kymco, marketed aggressively its new  "iONEX," which had its world premiere just before the opening of the season. The iONEX is Kymco's solution to the problems of cruising distance and waiting time for charging facing the EV scooter.

Kymco says the battery station equipped with a replacement battery will be installed at places where numerous scooters stop by, such as public facilities and gas stations. There is also Taiwan government's assistance. If it is realized, just by way of the station, you will not worry about the range. The maximum running distance is 200km with two batteries can install.

The battery itself is about 5 kg, a weight that easy to handle. It can be said that specifications of batteries are made public and that other manufacturers and service providers can participate in this platform. This attempt in Taiwan, where the per-population two-wheelers' penetration rate is the world's best, may create a trend for the next generation EV motorcycle.  PSR