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Electric Bikes Coming in Droves

If you haven’t noticed, MD has been writing about electric motorcycles quite a bit lately, including our recent review of the Zero S. Whether you like it or not, electric-powered motorcycles are a big part of the future, and that future is coming fast. We will have some additional information soon, but you should understand that battery technology is improving rapidly (driven to some extent by the need for greater range, lighter weight, etc. in automobiles), and motorcycles are well suited to the technology. A motorcycle can be relatively light, completely battery powered, have extremely good performance and generous travel range. Stay tuned.

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MD Readers Respond:

  • Electric bikes will never be practical for touring unless all the major motel chains come on board with charging outlets in parking areas.
    Even then, an electric tourer would have to have enough range for a whole day’s traveling.
    For a commuter to be versatile enough for my uses, it would have to have a 300-mile range. That’s about as long a pleasure ride as I take on a Saturday or Sunday. Kevin

  • That bike would be heeaaavvvy!!! Harry
  • Only in urban areas as far as I can tell. With the limited range
    presented so far and egregious recharge times.

    I guess that I’ll stick to the ICE motorcycles I have. Both are elderly
    and politically incorrect. The young one is a sprightly 30 y/o GL1000 and
    the geriatric case is a 72′ T-500. Both give me around 125-160 mile range
    and refuel in less than 15 minutes…depending on if I need to hit the
    restroom or eat. Now I don’t LIKE getting off the road. But an electric has
    YET to meet the standards set by pair of geriatric bikes. One of which is
    mighty two stroke! The lack of range and the too long recharge time is a
    deal breaker and I don’t see electric bike meeting the capability of a
    geriatric bike in this are anytime in the next 10-20 years. Not safely
    anyway…hybrids MAYBE and even then the best apu is going to be a 10-15
    thrust/lb turbine for lowest emissions and lowest maintenance. But what do I
    know…I’ve only been dreaming of electric motorcycles that operate as
    simple as internal combustion for over 35 years. — Keith

  • My Piaggio dealer tells me tht Piaggio is coming out with a hybrid version of the MP3. Haven’t seen anything in the prints about this yet, though. Have you had any news about it? Pete
  • I’ve enjoyed the articles on electric bikes, but Motorcycles would seem to be excellent platfrms for Hybrid vehicles. But I haven’t seen one yet.

    I can imagine a Gold Wing with electric power and carrying a small generator. The engine would run after the bike was parked to fully charge the batteries. Diesel or two stroke would work very well!! Alex