The Rise of the Electric Motorcycle

Electric motorbikes are finally breaking through into the consciousness of motorcyclists, with sales forecast to reach 60 million by 2024. At first sight, silent motorbikes seem a weird idea because, let’s face it, most bike riders like a bit of engine noise. But the quietness isn’t putting off buyers, and manufacturers have piled in with a range of bikes that aren’t exactly demure.

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In fact, in an enthusiastic review of the electric Energica Ego, GQ magazine described it as “a brute of a bike”. Meanwhile, Californian company Lightning have produced the world’s fastest electric production bike – the LS-218, which is capable of 350km/h. Probably best not tested out on the morning commute.

Electric Bikes and Scooters Are Evolving Fast

Meanwhile, scooters have been evolving from style statements for riders nostalgic for the mod era to a seriously modern way to get about. BMW has brought out the C Evolution maxi-scooter with looks and styling more like a chunky bike. It has a top speed of 80 mph. They’re also launching a folding electric scooter for commuters.

The pace of change in this sector is so great that the vice-president of product development at Zero bikes, Brian Wismann, says that only the IT sector is changing as fast.

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Sophisticated Electrical Control Components Provide Greater Torque

Advanced electric powertrains, combined with electrical control systems that regulate the battery’s thermal performance and charge, have revolutionised the performance of these vehicles, adding the surprising torque that an electric motor can now provide.

Of course, these bikes are going to require different maintenance regimes from the ones currently supplied by garages. Companies such as OSM Electrical providers of electrical control components are going to find themselves busier, as garages and other businesses need to stock components for keeping electric bikes, scooters and cars on the road. In addition, self-build motorbike enthusiasts are now starting to buy electrical control components for DIY electric bike projects.

We’re going to see a lot of innovative electric bikes and scooters in the next few years – three-wheelers with twin electric motors and luggage space, for instance, are already under development. The good news for the industry is that the more diverse the vehicles being produced, the greater the number of potential buyers and users to support further development projects.

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