Electric motorcycle racer Brandon Miller, who is sponsored by Mavice Custom Software Solutions, recently set both the world and American speed records for lightweight electric unfaired motorcycles, at the Bonneville Competition in Utah.
Miller races a Zero motorcycle.
“This competition was by invitation only for gas or electric, any car or motorcycle, to set a record,” said Miller.
When competing for the world record at the event, the racer is required to make two runs and the speeds are averaged.
The finished project is a 1981 Kawasaki KZ440, converted to electric. It is powered by four Optima Yellow Top sealed (AGM) lead-acid batteries, that drive a Briggs & Stratton Etek electric motor. The speed of the motor is controlled by an Alltrax brand “AXE” programmable controller that can run at up to 48 volts and 300 amps. Contrary to popular belief, and electric motorcycle is NOT silent, but is CONSIDERABLY quieter than a typical gas cycle.
The cycle is GEARED to 45 mph, has fairly good acceleration, no clutch or transmission. There’s no oil to change, to mufflers to rust off, no air filter, no carbs to tweak, and no gasoline. I designed it for primarily city riding. The top speed and acceleration could be easily changed by swapping out a $20 stock sprocket.
The cycle recharges from the wall, through a renewable energy program, and if there is a blackout, I can actually run my house off my electric motorcycle! In the future, I hope to expand my system to include charging the cycle with photovoltaic solar panels.
In this Instructable, I’ll walk you through the work required with the motor, batteries, controller, and mounting all components, including showing you some low-tech paper and cardboard “CAD” tricks.
Motorcycle riders appreciate the lure of the open road, the roar of the engine and the torque, acceleration and raw power beneath the saddle. Now, some Seattle-area motorcycle dealers are offering a new, high performance ride that might make you change the way you think about motorcycles.
Lately, 30 percent of the sales at Lynnwood Cycle Barn have been scooters, which are popular with commuters. Now general manager Garrett Johnson has decided to add all-electric ‘Zero’ motorcycles to his inventory of traditional ‘Triumph’ gas-powered cycles.
ASHLAND, Ore. — Brammo, located in Ashland, ORegon, has received approval from the city to build two more buildings to expand its research and development department. Brammo says the expansion will allow them to work more on developing off-road electric vehicles.
Partnering with off-road vehicle maker Polaris industries can help Brammo develop different types of electric vehicles. The buildings may not be up for another year. Brammo says it is still looking into the funding for the construction.
Zero Motorcycles is working on a electric bicycle.
Road CC Broke the News:
Zero Motorcycles from California make motorbikes that look just like motorbikes only they’re electric and in February they’re shipping the first ones to the UK. But they have something in development behind the scenes that looks a lot more like a bicycle and accelerates 0-60mph in 3.6 seconds which we’re sure you’ll know is faster than any petrol driven car except maybe an F1
From Engadget: This year’s Milan International Motorcycle Show is definitely featuring a healthy assortment of battery-powered two wheeled machines, and now Evolve Motorcycles has two more plug-in designs to add to the list. First up is its Xenon, aka the Tron Lightcycle replica, which is a real bike that you can purchase 32-inch hubless rims, OLED light tape and all for $50,000. It’s even claiming a top speed of 100mph with a 100 mile range on its custom lithium ion battery system, so all you have left to do is regret not grabbing one for $35k on eBay last year. The Lithium however, chooses to keep things more conventional as a streetfighter concept built around a 54hp electric motor that is expected to cost around $20,000 when it actually goes on sale. Check after the break for a pic of the Lithium, or head over to our friends at Autoblog Green for a gallery full of eyecandy featuring both bikes.
Spain’s Volta Motorbikes is at the International Motorcycle Exhibition in Milan this week, to debut two varieties of its new Volta electric motorcycle. The Volta BCN is the company’s first two-wheeler and the first to be designed in the Catalan capital of Barcelona, after which it is named. It’s essentially one model offered in two different styles and finishes – the Sport has been designed as an urban motorbike, while the City is headed for the downtown core. These stylish sustainable mobility solutions offer a top speed of 74.5 mph (120 km/h) and a range of 43.4 miles (70 km), and will be released in Europe in Q2 of next year.
Lightning Motorcycles, last week, blew through the land speed record for production electric bikes by a comfortable 30 miles per hour to become the first electric bike maker in the world to exceed 200mph.
In a run at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, Lightning — the 2010 land speed record holder, I should note — clocked in its Lightning Electric Superbike at 206.079mph, topping last year’s record of 176mph.
Race Tech principal Paul Thede rode the bike to the record books with some help from a propulsion electric motor from Remy International.
The California-based motorcycle engineering firm was founded by Richard Hatfield and a group of Silicon Valley engineers. Aside from the records, their claim to fame is selling the exact configuration of their race-winning bikes to consumers.
Mission Motors, which builds electric motorcycle technology, has raised new funds, and has officially moved away from manufacturing motorcycles on its own. The startup announced on Wednesday that it has raised $9 million led by private equity firm Warburg Pincus. At the same time a company spokesperson confirmed that the company no longer intends to produce a motorcycle, and will focus on making electric vehicle powertrain technology for motorcycle and auto manufacturers
Illinois-based manufacturer Roehr has released an all-new electric motorcycle called the eSuperSport based, in part, on a Hyosung Motors USA GT650R.
The eSuperSport is equipped with a 67 horsepower AC induction motor capable of generating 8o lbs-ft torque, andcan reach top speeds over 100 miles per hour. Powered by a 7.7 kWh LiFePO4 battery, the electric motorcycle has a range of 75 miles on a full charge. The bike is equipped with a 1,500 watt onboard charger, and takes about seven hours to reach full capacity.
Hollywood, CA — Harlan Flagg owns Hollywood Electrics, where he sells a full range of electric motorcycles, bicycles, and scooters and repairs them too. If it’s on 2 wheels and runs an electric motor, it’s for sale at Hollywood Electrics. Even the $17,000 Roehr was recently sold through that store.
Below are a couple of vidoes. In the first , Harlan tells how business is doing, and his thoughts on the current state of the electric motorcycle industry.
What’s really worth noting is that he cites lack of financing as the biggest hurdle to electric motorcycle sales. Because both his shop and the brands he carries are relatively new, banks are wary about offering financing through either of them.
Superbike Planet has an article on electric motorcycles today:
This just in from MIC:
The Motorcycle Industry Council Adopts Protocol For Determining Real-World Range of Electric Motorcycles
Buyers Will Benefit from Accurate, Comparable Miles-Per-Charge Data
IRVINE, Calif., April 29, 2011 – Consumers looking for consistent and accurate information about the real-world riding range of electric on-highway motorcycles may soon find help from a new procedure developed by the Motorcycle Industry Council. The City Riding Range Test Procedure for Electric Motorcycles, created by the MIC’s Electric Vehicle Task Force, establishes a standard method for determining how far an electric bike will travel between full charges.
NEW YORK, NY – January 21, 2011 – (Motor Sports Newswire) – Electric Moto Corporation (PINKSHEETS: EMOT) announced today that the company had reached an “agreement in principle” with a financing firm that would enable EMOT to move swiftly into the development of its various prototype vehicles, and to begin serial production of those vehicles.
While the name of the financing company, and the terms of the deal have not yet been disclosed, Robert Lancellotti, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Electric Moto, did offer the following comment: “We are pleased indeed to have found a funding source that shares our vision of the future. We expect to be able to disclose the full details of this financing package shortly. Suffice it to say that in this difficult economic climate, our ability to finalize this deal will prove immensely valuable to the firm and its shareholders.”
EMOT is a leading technology and lifestyle company dedicated to the development, production and distribution of zero emission vehicles and related products. The 72 Volt Dual Sport electric motorcycle leads the charge of EMOT’s “Green” vehicles including an electric bicycle, ATV and personal watercraft.
The Zero Race will consist of contestants dashing around the globe in 80 days in zero emission, electric powered vehicles… and one of the most distinctive entries is the Zerotracer. The Zerotracer was designed by a group of engineers from Winterthur, Switzerland and is an electric motorcycle that encloses its two occupants in a Kevlar shell. It is capable of a top speed of 155 mph and a range of 217 miles on a single charge.
The vehicle is based on a MonoTracer body but replaces that vehicle’s 4-cylinder in-line BMW K-engine with a battery-powered electric motor that provides 135 kW/183Hp to propel the Zerotracer from 0-100 km/h in 4.5 seconds.
Zero’s electric bikes are currently undergoing a rapid growth across Europe. Zero is therefore expanding by signing a partnership with Swiss distributor emobility. The latter will also be supporting Swiss motorcycle racer Dominique Aegerter, who will compete in various series on Zero electric bikes.
“Zero Motorcycles has experienced exceptional growth throughout Europe, and expanding our sales and distribution channels to Switzerland is an integral part of enhancing Zero’s international reach,” said John Lloyd, VP World Wide Sales for Zero Motorcycles.
Zero’s European headquarters was opened in Amsterdam in mid-2009, joined by Independent Representatives in the UK, Germany, France, Austria, Italy and Spain. Moreover, three European PR agencies were contracted to build localized brand awareness. The expansion is being backed by marketing, sales and service through emobility.