Electric motorcycles are rapidly shaping the future of personal mobility all over the world. This is especially true in Asia, where both big and small moto brands are rolling out electric models designed with practicality, utility, and affordability in mind. In India, for example, the government has been actively incentivizing the manufacturing of electric vehicles — motorcycles and scooters included.
If we fix our gaze on Indonesia, we’ll also see a bustling motorcycle industry. Indeed, it’s considered the third-largest motorcycle market in the entire world, and is home to more than 127 million motorcycles, according to a report by Nikkei Asia. This means that there’s undoubtedly a growing demand for more sustainable mobility, and with just 59,000 electric motorcycles in Indonesia, it’s obvious that this number will soon rapidly increase. Indonesia is home to a lot of nickel resources, and current president Joko Widodo has big plans of leveraging these resources when it comes to EV batteries.
This brings us to Maka Motors, a home-grown electric motorcycle company that hopes to make it big in Indonesia. The company was founded in 2021 by Wibowo and Arief Fadillah, two former executives at Gojek, a popular ride-sharing company in Indonesia. The two have shifted their focus from ride-hailing to developing and manufacturing electric two-wheelers that cater to the specific needs of Indonesian commuters.
For the most part, the electric motorcycles present in the Indonesian market come from various Chinese companies. According to Maka Motors, these models don’t cover the needs of most Indonesians, who require robust and powerful motorcycles to haul not just themselves, but cargo and passengers, too. Indeed, Indonesia’s reliance on motorcycles is such that a lot of people use them to transport their families, as owning a car is beyond the reach of a lot of Indonesians.
Maka Motors seeks to set up shop in Cikarang, which is located about 25 miles east of Jakarta. The company hopes to begin production in the second half of 2024, and is eyeing the employment of about 200 people. Previously, the company raised $37 million following a fundraising campaign, wherein key investors consisted of South Korean and Singaporean companies. The investment is said to be channeled towards the construction of the new facility.
As for the bikes themselves, Maka Motors plans to develop and produce electric motorcycles with longer lasting batteries than those of their Chinese counterparts. On top of that, we can expect a much more utilitarian platform for these models — presumably scooters with cargo capacity and passenger capabilities. Maka Motors also stated that it’s open to expansion, so chances are we’ll soon be seeing and hearing a lot more from them.