If you are old enough to remember the original, Swedish Husqvarna motorcycle manufacturer, you know how independent their engineers/designers were. Maybe it was all those months every winter in the arctic region without sun, but those guys always seemed to have something new, and revolutionary to offer motorcycle enthusiasts. It wasn’t a fluke that a super talented American named Malcolm Smith chose to race Husqvarnas decades ago, and even won the Baja 500 aboard one in Mexico. The Swedes didn’t care what anybody else thought. They developed their own engineering solutions and made great bikes.
After Husqvarna was sold to the Italian company Cagiva in the 1980’s, manufacturing was moved south to Italy. Some of those creative Husqvarna engineers were left back in Sweden. Husaberg is one motorcycle company that was born out of that talent pool, but eventually some of them ended up taking another path that has ultimately led to the opening of a 33,000 square foot manufacturing and R&D facility in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 1 of this year.
Not surprisingly, U.S. Highland is a bit different from other motorcycle companies. Expected to produce just a few hundred units a year, Highland is happy to customize each bike to the physical characteristics of the rider, as well as his experience level and intended use of the machine. Both singles and twins will be available, with displacements ranging from 350cc up to 1050cc.
The frames are stainless steel. The fuel injection system is unlike any fuel injection system I have ever heard of or seen… apparently protected by Highland patents. By all accounts, the bikes work very well (but we haven’t ridden any of them, yet).
Earlier today, we received an announcement from U.S. Highland that it was pursuing a joint venture with Millennial Research Corporation, which has resulted in the development of an electric engine based on “patented magnetronic technology”. U.S. Highland says it has the exclusive rights to this engine and technology for “powersports applications”. Follow this link to the U.S. Highland website, as well as this link to the Millennial Research Corporation website. There is no indication when the first motorcycle will roll out of the Oklahoma facility powered by this new technology. Nevertheless, despite all that sun they’re getting during the Oklahoma winters, the Swedes still seem to be creating their own path. Here is the full press release from U.S. Highland:
US Highland Announces Revolutionary New Hub Motor-Electric Engine
GLENPOOL, Okla., July 1, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — US Highland, Inc. (OTCBB:UHLN) a U.S. based designer and manufacturer of high performance, premium quality Motocross, Supermoto, Quad and Enduro motorcycles, announced today that the Company in conjunction with its Joint Venture partner, Millennial Research Corporations, has completed a new revolutionary hub motor (electric engine) based on its patented magnetronic technology. US Highland has the exclusive rights to utilize the engine and technology for powersports applications.
“We are very excited about the possibilities this electric motor technology adds to our company. This puts US Highland at the forefront of the green technology movement within the powersports industry. We have worked with our partner Millennial Research Corporation on the development of this engine for over two years. It is now finally ready for commercial applications, ” commented Mats Malmberg, President of US Highland, Inc.
Dennis Palmer, Founder of Millennial Research Corporation, added, “Our revolutionary magnetronic motor technology is broadly applicable across many industries and markets. This powerful magnetronic motor designed for US Highland will require as much as 70% less battery usage for the same run time and weigh as much as 40% less than the existing competition. This a real game changer for the use of electrical engines in power sports.”