Monday, March 02, 2009

ENV: The hydrogen motorcycle cometh?

The hydrogen fuel-cell-powered ENV has a claimed 80km/h top speed and 160km range. Is this the future of motorcycling? See what James May has to say about it...
Via: The New Cafe Racer Society

Right now, we don’t see hydrogen-powered motorcycles going anywhere much. Well, not for another decade at least. With no hydrogen infrastructure in place, lithium-ion battery-powered bikes – which can be charged at any normal household electricity outlet – seem to be the better bet for now. Still, hydrogen-powered concept bikes like the ENV are reasonably interesting – they provide a somewhat scary glimpse at the future of motorcycling.

Designed by Intelligent Energy, the ENV was first unveiled back in 2005 at the Design Museum in London. The bike is fitted with a removable hydrogen fuel-cell power pack which produces all of 1kW – that’s about 1.34 horsepower. Intelligent Energy claim a top speed of 80km/h for the ENV, though we don’t know how that would be possible with just 1.34bhp. The bike’s range, on one full tank of compressed hydrogen, is 160km/h.

Intelligent Energy claim they’re working on type approval for the ENV in Europe, after which they’ll sell/lease the bike to ‘carefully selected’ customers. If this is the future of motorcycling… we’d really much rather stay in the present!!

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