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Old 08-14-2014, 10:12 PM   #1
mhoward1
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Default Electric Motorcycles , ready for prime time?

After reading about the Mission RS, Lightning L218, and the updates in 2014 to the Zero SR and Brammo bikes it made me think of a question. Since we have so many motorcycle riders here, I thought it was a good place to ask the question, Given all the changes this past year, do you think electric motorcycles are ready for the prime time? Do you think Forbes and AMA’s prediction of over ½ of the street bikes sold in 2018 will be electric?
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:18 PM   #2
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Prices will need to drop a bit more. Right now they're on the verge of being reasonable commuter options to keep a new BMW or Ducati company. They aren't really good enough to be an only bike and they aren't cheap enough to replace scooters and basic commuters.

I think they'll be wildly popular in another 5 years, yes.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:18 PM   #3
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I wonder how they'll class them for fwy use. I see dead batteries.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:21 PM   #4
mhoward1
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I think they will be fine for Highway use. The new Zero SR can go 0-60 in 3 seconds (Faster than the New Honda CBR650F), go over 120 MPH, and has a range of 180 miles. It's the price that's the kicker. It is a bit easier to swallow with the $1200 Fed rebate, and no yearly $400-$600 maintenance costs.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:21 PM   #5
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Just buy a scooter. They get like 120mpg.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:22 PM   #6
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don't know about those bikes, but I watched the harley livewire on leno's garage and it's a pretty cool bike....I definitely think they all have a decent shot...
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:22 PM   #7
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I think it's good progress but the most difficult thing to overcome is the range. A lot of people jump on their bikes to ride hours for enjoyment. It's different than a car transportation from A-B while saving some MPG. Bikes already get good MPG.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MF-DIF View Post
I think it's good progress but the most difficult thing to overcome is the range. A lot of people jump on their bikes to ride hours for enjoyment. It's different than a car transportation from A-B while saving some MPG. Bikes already get good MPG.
Very good point. According to the Forbes article, 90% of the "worlds" street bikes are used for commuting. I think the US is a different market though.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:26 PM   #9
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If they can knock about $30k off the price of that Mission, I'd be all in.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meat Supply View Post
don't know about those bikes, but I watched the harley livewire on leno's garage and it's a pretty cool bike....I definitely think they all have a decent shot...
the Empulse (with non-stock clip-ons):



the Zero SR:



Mission RS




Fastest street legal production motorcycle: Lightning LS218

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Old 08-14-2014, 10:27 PM   #11
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They are super expensive and super heavy due to the batteries. The Zero FX is the lightest of them, but only gets 37 mile range. Within 5 years, I think they'll become more affordable with newer tech which will drive more sales.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:29 PM   #12
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I'm not sure if I'd be up for one. Part of the experience I love on my bikes is the feel of the engine, the sounds and actually shifting through gears and an electric bike won't provide any of that.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toadfart View Post
They are super expensive and super heavy due to the batteries. The Zero FX is the lightest of them, but only gets 37 mile range. Within 5 years, I think they'll become more affordable with newer tech which will drive more sales.
For 2014 they have bumped the FX to 70 miles, and the S to 170+. They have newer tech batteries. That's what prompted me to post this. The range doubled for their whole line, and I think they are now reasonable for commuter bikes. The price still needs to come down though.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:58 PM   #14
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I'm quite interested in them. Once the price comes down, of course.
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Old 08-14-2014, 11:33 PM   #15
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I don't think the range is there yet. I often hear that it's the same as a sport bike's range which is true but I fill my bike up at least once when I go for a weekend ride. The only one I've ridden was the Empulse R and I was underwhelmed. It felt like a fast scooter to me but I was limited to city streets. If I could get a Misson R type bike with an honest 300mi I'd consider it.
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Old 08-14-2014, 11:46 PM   #16
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I would definitely miss the 15k rpm sounds and crackling and popping of my old Honda, but an electric super moto with instant torque sounds like a great commuter for me. I'd like to go test ride a Zero, but I don't think I'd buy one until the price came down some more.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:09 AM   #17
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Some company need to take up Tesla's offer and use their battery & supercharger tech. Can probably recharge a bike's battery in under 5 minutes? That would be just like a fill up.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:18 AM   #18
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Too dangerous because no loud pipe.



Really though, isn't that half the fun?
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:19 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bemani View Post
Some company need to take up Tesla's offer and use their battery & supercharger tech. Can probably recharge a bike's battery in under 5 minutes? That would be just like a fill up.
I'd rock that if it was a couple bucks a fill up.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:22 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bemani View Post
Some company need to take up Tesla's offer and use their battery & supercharger tech. Can probably recharge a bike's battery in under 5 minutes? That would be just like a fill up.
Unfortunately not. Big battery pack or small, the actual batteries are the same little AA-sized cells. The time required to charge a Tesla at the Superchargers has more to do with the speed of the chemical process than the available power.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:24 AM   #21
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I wonder what the battery replacement costs will be? That's the biggest reason I'd shy away from one.
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Old 08-15-2014, 12:31 AM   #22
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:38 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benhart21 View Post
I would definitely miss the 15k rpm sounds and crackling and popping of my old Honda, but an electric super moto with instant torque sounds like a great commuter for me. I'd like to go test ride a Zero, but I don't think I'd buy one until the price came down some more.
How much over the gas equivalent is reasonable given no 4k scheduled services and minimal fuel cost vs gas?
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:43 AM   #24
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These would be so great for criminal gang activities.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:51 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calamity Jesus View Post
Unfortunately not. Big battery pack or small, the actual batteries are the same little AA-sized cells. The time required to charge a Tesla at the Superchargers has more to do with the speed of the chemical process than the available power.
I predict at some point people will be able to exchange dead battery packs for charged one's at fuel stations, just like propane canisters. You just have to make the packs light enough and easily accessible, and have a standardized format of course.
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