Brammo recently revealed pricing and production plans for the Empulse R, which they claim is the world’s fastest electric motorcycle in production. With a range of 160km on one full charge and a top speed of 160km/h, the battery-powered Empulse R certainly seems interesting, though at US$18,995 it’s certainly not cheap. The base model Empulse, at US$16,995 is a bit cheaper, though it will only be available in 2013.
The Brammo Empulse R has plastic bodywork, tubular steel chassis, fully adjustable suspension (43mm Marzocchi fork, Sachs monoshock), Brembo brakes, some carbonfibre bits (headlight shroud, front and rear fenders and the rear light housing) and is powered by a 40kW (54bhp) electric motor that produces 63Nm of torque. Chain final drive is used and power is transmitted to the rear wheel via a 6-speed gearbox. The bike rolls on 17-inch Marchesini alloy wheels, shod with 120/70 (front) and 180/55 (rear) Avon tyres.
The Empulse R’s electric motor is fed by a lithium-ion battery pack that has a maximum capacity of 10.2kWh. Charging time is 8 hours and the batteries are good for 1,500 charging cycles. Depending on the type of usage, range on a full charge can vary between 90-195km.
The Empulse R even has two operating modes – normal and sport. ‘Normal’ mode limits acceleration by reducing maximum current delivered to the motor in order to maximize driving range. ‘Sport’ mode delivers all the juice and provides maximum performance in both acceleration and top speed. The bike weighs 213 kilos and has a load carrying capacity of 165kg.
We quite like the Brammo Empulse R though we suppose the price would be a deterrent for most potential buyers. But with petrol prices going through the roof, someone, somewhere, has to start working on the future of motorcycling. And if the Empulse R is that future, it’s not too bad to begin with.