Buying an electric motorcycle: what are the options?
Why buy an electric motor?
The appeal of motorcycling is largely in the experience; the sound, the riding wind, the freedom in the saddle. If you take away the roar of the engine, is it still worth it? Yes indeed, because where one factor falls away, the others strengthen. The absence of engine noise means that your senses have more room to enjoy the surroundings. In addition, you do not inconvenience anyone, both in neighborhoods and nature.
A major advantage of electric motors is that you have immediate access to full torque and power. And you feel that. Although the top speed tends to be a bit slower than traditional engines, you shoot out of the starting blocks. At the same time, an electric motor drives smoothly and refined and, because of the lack of a gearbox, you can keep the focus on driving itself.
Also not unimportant: an electric motor has only a fraction of the running and wear and tear of a regular one. This can save quite a bit on maintenance in the long run. For example, you require less from your brake pads and discs thanks to regenerative braking. Do keep an eye out that you don’t slash your tires.
What about the range?
One point to consider with electric motorcycles is range. Whereas an electric car has plenty of room for a large battery pack, motorcycles lack this. Most electric motors have a relatively small battery pack. On top of that, motorcycles are generally less fuel-efficient than cars because of the various protruding parts – not to mention the rider.
This means that, in practice, an electric motor is therefore also less efficient. Most electric motorcycles have a range of between 200 and 300 kilometers. For now, it is fairly rare for an electric motorcycle to travel more than 400 kilometers on a full battery.
Which electric motors are worth considering?
Like the electric car market, we see the range of electric motors growing quite a bit. You’ll encounter familiar names like BMW, as well as newcomers like Energica. The offerings are varied and offer something for everyone.
As is the case with traditional motorcycles, there are several categories to consider. Here are a few examples of electric motors that have been well liked so far.
The Arc Vector is an impressive, futuristic-looking machine. Top speed is limited to 200 km/h, but a lack of top is more than made up for by the 436-kilometer range. Unfortunately, it costs about a ton.
The Damon Hypersport has a sporty yet rather traditional design. It is one of the more economical models in this list, but in terms of technology, it stands its ground. 200 is the magic word: the Hypersport has 200 horsepower, gets 200 miles (320 kilometers) far and has a top speed of 200 km/h.
Energica is known as a brand that produces excellent electric motors. It drives great, the driving range is best-in-class (400+ kilometers) and you can go in multiple directions. The Ego is nice and sporty, while the Experia is adventurous.
LiveWire is the all-electric arm of Harley-Davidson. The brand is committed to creating electric motors with soul, and for now it has succeeded quite well. The One, the first model, is a fat bike with impressive performance figures and a relatively reasonable price tag. The One, meanwhile, is joined by the S2 Del Mar.
If you can’t get there with any of the four models above, fear not: there is more. Several well-known brands such as Kawasaki, KTM and Triumph are busy developing electric motorcycles, while others such as BMW and Yamaha are focusing on electric scooters. And then you have names like Evoke, Verge and Zero trying to enter the fray.