Electric Bikes Motorcycles reviews

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2016 - 2018 SSR Motorsports' Doohan iTank

2016 - 2018 SSR Motorsports’ Doohan iTank

A Funky Electric Scooter Extraordinaire

SSR Motorsports has dipped a toe in the EV market with a handful of products, but the iTank scooter by Doohan takes the cake. Marketed under various names in different markets, the iTank rocks a Delta-trike configuration with a moderate range and plug-and-play, easy to use drivetrain. A leaning front end provides extra traction without sacrificing the sensation of flight, and the factory offers bags and a top case to convert it to a nice little campus commuter.

Continue reading to see our look at the Doohan iTank at SSR Motorsports.

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2017 BMW C Evolution

2017 BMW C Evolution

An EV Scooter With Respectable Performance

The Bayerische Motoren Werke introduced its original C Evolution electric scooter to the great proving ground that is the European scooter market all the way back in 2012 and it’s finally coming to the U.S. market. A boosted battery ampacity gives it the increased range needed to handle a long-distance commute, but it’s the electronics suite that really puts the C Evolution in a class of its own. Traction control, torque control and ABS all make an appearance along with the 35-horsepower motor that, according to the factory, has no problem running right up to the 80 mph governor. I had to remind myself more than once that this is still considered just a scooter though it could certainly embarrass many a low- to mid-range ride. Not just other scooters either, but proper motorcycles. Don’t believe it? Read on and I’ll make my case.

Continue reading to see my review of the BMW C Evolution.

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2018 Energica Eva EsseEsse9

2018 Energica Eva EsseEsse9

Now With Superfast Recharge Times

EV superbike-builder Energica hit the Esposizione Internazionale Ciclo Motociclo e Accessori in Milan this past weekend, and in addition to its existing models, the factory turned us on to its newest effort; the Eva EsseEsse9. Astute readers who are familiar with the brand will recognize the “Eva” moniker as belonging to one of the previously existing models, but this new variant goes in a slightly different temporal direction with its design. It brings 133 pound-feet of torque to the table as soon as you crack the “throttle” — or whatever we’re supposed to call the motor control — and 109 horsepower to move the all-electric ride. Naturally, that ain’t the end of the yummygoodness, so let’s check out what else Energica has done to try and further the EV cause with its latest opus.

Continue reading for my review of the Energica Eva EsseEsse9.

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2017 KTM Freeride E-XC

2017 KTM Freeride E-XC

The Electric Freeride Now Available In The US

KTM is bringing its electric enduro to the States. This fun little ride has been entertaining European riders for a few years now with its 2.6-kWh lithium battery and 21-horsepower electric motor, and now American buyers have an opportunity to see what all the hubbub is about. At least when it comes to the brown; the E-XC doesn’t meet U.S. requirements for street-legal use in spite of its headlight, taillight and turn signals. Still, it’s a glimpse of the possibilities within the sector.

Continue reading for my review of the KTM Freeride E-XC.

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2017 Evoke Urban S

2017 Evoke Urban S

Going Electric Was Never So Affordable

Evoke Motorcycles looks to take on the Zero- and Brammo-based products in the U.S. electric market with its Urban S model that rolls modern, sportbike style and 86 pound-feet of instantly-available torque together with a power pack that delivers a nearly 125-mile range. Best of all, Evoke manages to keep the price tag under the 10K mark, so this keeps the bike available to the low-budget riders and entry-level alike. I gotta say that this will certainly help it move in the gradually-warming domestic market, but the real defining factors will be how well it matches up with the other big EV bikes available today.

Continue reading for my review of the Evoke Urban S.

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2017 Zero Motorcycles FX / FXS

2017 Zero Motorcycles FX / FXS

The EV sector is booming, and as it’s grown it has expanded into more and more genres. Zero Motorcycles is all about the electrics, and has pushed beyond the straight-up street and adventure categories into dual-sport and supermoto territory. The off-road capable FX enters the ’17 MY alongside its urban-jungle sibling, the FXS, for a dynamic duo of EV fun with more torque and more horsepower than previous model years, plus other upgrades to the drivetrain to include a wider final-drive belt and improvements to the power packs.

Electric bikes are still a new technology, and as such is struggling to find mainstream acceptance. By moving into numerous categories on a proven drive and power-storage system, Zero is expanding its footprint while progressing the electrics market to the benefit of all. No other EV manufacturer has such a diverse lineup, and I always love checking out green tech, so without further ado I’m going to take an in-depth look at this pair of electric crusaders.

Continue reading for my review of the Zero FX and FXS.

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2017 2017 Zero DS / DSR

2017 2017 Zero DS / DSR

While most EV manufacturers push either off-road or streetbike products to the exclusion of everything else, Zero Motorcycles boldly expands on both of those fronts plus something in-between with the improved-for-2017 DS and DSR models. These two are built to fill the dual-sport niche with off-road suspension and dual-surface tires under a sporty chassis that naturally runs the company’s all-electric drive system. This represents a success for both the electric sector as well as the dual-sport/adventure sector, both of which are still burgeoning under increasing public interest and steady technological advancements. Today I’m going to take a look at these bikes made unique by the pairing of electrics with the on/off-road riding style associated with dual-sport machines.

Continue reading for my review of the Zero DS and DSR.

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2017 Zero Motorcycles S / SR

2017 Zero Motorcycles S / SR

Riding the tailwinds of waxing public interest and expanding infrastructure, Zero Motorcycles advances The Cause with new improvements and adjustments to its street-centric “S” and “SR” models. This year sees the addition of a more powerful motor that generates increased torque and horsepower as well as a smaller battery pack for short urban trips; all good stuff for increased fun and flexibility, necessary factors if the company wants to further its push into the mainstream.

While these changes will likely benefit Zero, I submit that at this stage in the game, anything that increases the appeal and feasibility of electric transportation is good for electric vehicles in general with a direct, positive impact on the environment. In other words, a victory for Zero is a victory for all, so join me while I check out what the company is doing to fight for the progression of the electric agenda.

Continue reading for my review of the Zero S and SR.

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2016 Tempus CR-T1

2016 Tempus CR-T1

Tempus Electric Bikes based out of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, really brings the green with its CR-T1 electric-assist bicycle. This ride combines pedal power with a battery-powered electric motor that provides a sweat-free ride on demand. Owned by a couple of ambitious, young entrepreneurs, TEB is a burgeoning company in its infancy, and for all intents and purposes qualifies as a startup. Production is to commence in 2017, but the pre-production model is complete and is interesting to say the least. So without further ado, lets take a look at what these students of engineering and business have come up with, and see what sets it apart from the growing electric-bike field.

Continue reading for my review of the Tempus CR-T1.

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2015 - 2016 LITO Sora

2015 - 2016 LITO Sora

With every new entry into the electric motorcycle sector, the industry gets stronger and more viable as a whole. LITO Green Motion based in Quebec, Canada, jumps head first into the deep end with its own contender for the luxury sub-section of this burgeoning industry.

The Sora is a collection of top-shelf devices and features meant to appeal to the more well-heeled among us with a price tag to match, leaving other companies with products and prices well into the entry-level range to take care of the unwashed masses yearning to ride clean. Though this isn’t the first so-named “luxury” bike — Energica puts out a few bikes that meet the criteria — it does represent a viable competitor for the top slot, and so signals a certain depth and maturity for the electric sector as a whole. All good stuff for those of us rooting for clean transportation, even if most of us will never be able to afford, or at least be willing to pay for, such a luxe machine.

Continue reading for my review of the Sora.

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2016 Energica Eva

2016 Energica Eva

Electric bikes are really coming along nicely and the market is responding in kind, evidenced by sales of Energica’s Ego outstripping production to the point that it reached “sold out” status just over halfway through the model year.

While the Ego and limited-production Ego45 are pure sex on two wheels, Energica designed the Eva as a more pragmatic, naked streetfighter meant to capitalize on the growing interest in minimalist/bare muscle bikes. This is an important move since it advances the cause and fosters the legitimacy of electric bikes in general by showing a selection of styles that smoker-bike riders will readily recognize.

Continue reading for my review of the Energica Eva.

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2016 Ariel Rider C-Class / N-Class / W-Class

2016 Ariel Rider C-Class / N-Class / W-Class

Green is the word nowadays as manufacturers keep trending toward electric bikes. I don’t usually look at bicycles, and one could make the argument that a bicycle — which is by its nature green power — is made less green by adding an electric motor. However, adding that motor increases the usefulness and gives folks an alternative to scooters.

Ariel Rider is a company founded by two brothers to produce a means of transportation that is not only green/sustainable, but also fun. After studying areas with large bicycle cultures, the brothers started to design their electric-assist bicycles with an eye to form as well as function. What they wound up with has a certain sexiness, and looks to be a nice alternative to some of the purely pragmatic rides out there right now. Come check out the current lineup and you will see what I mean.

Continue reading for my look at the Ariel Rider models.

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2016 Zero FX / FXS

2016 Zero FX / FXS

This year, Zero Motorcycles showed that it isn’t resting on its laurels with the addition of two new models, both of which are submodels of existing bikes. Today, I would like to focus on the FX line, and its new-for-2016 member, the FXS Supermoto.

While the base model FX Stealthfighter did get a new powerpack and better ergonomics in the rider triangle, the real story is with the FXS and its attempt to bring supermoto-style street, dirt and flat-track performance to the electric bike sector. I’ve never made a secret of my love for this company and its products, or how much I support green transportation, so I’m stoked about Zero expanding its footprint. Join me while I look at these two multi-surface funbikes.

Continue reading for my review of the Zero FX and FXS.

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2016 Zero DS / DSR

2016 Zero DS / DSR

Zero Motorcycles has been at it for a whole decade now, designing, building and indeed inventing its own distinct brand of electric two wheelers for the burgeoning “green” market. Over the years, that market has grown in proportion to a number of things such as awareness, the ever-increasing number of public charging stations, technological leaps in battery chemistry and electric-bike manufacturer’s willingness to give buyers what they are looking for.

The updated 2016 DS model, and its altogether new-for-2016 sibling, the DSR, benefits from all of the above. Not only does the base DS come with a more efficient motor, but advances in lithium-ion batteries give it more power-storage capacity so it’s even better than last year.

On top of all that, the DS family is built to take advantage of increasing interest in dual-sport bikes meant to serve as an all-in-one ride for folks who enjoy on-and off-road riding, but don’t necessarily want to have a separate, specialized bike for each purpose. I expect this confluence of factors to further Zero’s success as we move forward, but it will take some time before we know if I am being prophetic, or merely hopeful.

Continue reading for my review of the 2016 Zero DS and DSR.

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2016 Zero S / SR

2016 Zero S / SR

The race is on in the electric motorcycle market, and it’s heating up for 2016 with big names such as Harley and Energica enjoined in the fray with U.S. newcomer Victory and of course, Zero Motorcycles.

Some of these are even in their second- and third-generation of development. No longer a novelty, electric bikes are becoming more viable each year, and I expect they will start to put some serious pressure on the smoker bikes as the technology advances and public charging stations become more ubiquitous. That’s one unfortunate consequence of a new technology; infrastructure factors into public acceptance, and we need both product and infrastructure developed concurrently. Zero takes steps to minimize the pain by offering a number of charging and storage options for long ranges and quick recharges. Let’s look at Zero’s 2016 S “Streetfighter” and SR “Max Performance” and see what Zero is doing to push into this new, and increasingly important, category.

Continue reading for my review of the 2016 Zero S and SR.

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2016 Energica Ego

2016 Energica Ego

Welcome to our brave new world, where clean (green?) energy is finally emerging from under the corporate boot heels of big coal and oil interests. Technological leaps come quickly, and the various industries can scarcely keep up with the improvements as they scramble to take advantage of it. Recent advances in battery technology are giving rise to truly functional vehicular designs, and the 2016 Ego from Energica is an excellent example of just how viable electric bikes can be, at least as far as raw performance goes. In fact, this battery-powered adrenaline mill could give many dino-juice sportbikes a run for their money – as long as it was a short race, anyway.

Continue reading for my review of the 2016 Energica Ego.

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2016 Energica Ego45

2016 Energica Ego45

We live in a day and age where technological advancements abound, and it seems that nearly every week sees the release of something bigger-better-faster-smaller than before – by a significant margin. It is through this lens that I view the new, 2016 Ego45 from Energica. While I am unsure if the model name “Ego” means something in Italian, or if it’s a declaration of what the bike is meant to stroke, the end result is the same – this is one heck of a bike, electric or not!

Sure, there are a handful of other manufacturers making electric bikes, but in terms of performance and luxe features the Ego45 stands head and shoulders above the rest (so far). Any ambiguities in the name ends with the number “45,” as this is to be a numbered, limited-production model with only 45 scheduled to be built per special order. This adds an element of exclusivity to an otherwise already remarkable machine, and is sure to be a draw for riders who want that “little something extra.” Let’s take a look at what else you get with the Ego45, other than membership to a rather exclusive only-45-in-the-entire-world club.

Continue reading for my review of the 2016 Energica Ego45.

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2016 Victory Empulse TT

2016 Victory Empulse TT

Polaris Industries Inc. owns quite a few subsidiaries, and it recently added to them with the acquisition of electric bike manufacturer Brammo in 2015. Since Victory already serves as Polaris’ progressive-cruiser branch (as opposed to the nostalgic Indian designs), it seems a natural pairing to put the two together. Instead of starting from scratch, Victory adopted the Empulse concept from Brammo to give us the 2016 Empulse TT. Folks, this ain’t like the battery-powered toys we had as kids, or the slightly-better electric scooters and minibikes as of late, this is a real-world motorcycle that provides honest, practical service as a sustainable (read: green) form of basic transportation. While the technology hasn’t advanced enough to make electric bikes as practical as internal combustion bikes, its coming along, and the roughly 100-mile range of the Empulse TT ain’t exactly peanuts either – certainly enough for most daily commutes or weekend romps.

Continue reading for my review of the 2016 Victory Empulse TT.

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2015 KTM Freeride E-XC

2015 KTM Freeride E-XC

Limitless possibilities! The KTM FREERIDE E is an almost silent off-road motorcycle that is exceptionally easy to ride. Lightweight, agile and powerful.

No clutch, no shifting, just serious electric- powered fun. With a rated output of 11 kW (homologated) the KTM FREERIDE E-XC also meets all requirements for a READY TO RACE start by the age of 16 (A1 - european driver’s licence).

Continue reading for more information on the KTM Freeride E-XC.

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2015 European Trefecta

2015 European Trefecta

In the always - or maybe somewhat - exciting world of bicycles, there have been a lot of steady improvements made throughout the years that have dramatically changed our perception of this type of transportations. E-bikes, in particular, have dominated the scene recently so it’s no surprise that I’m here to talk about a new entrant into the market that’s made by engineers who are promising to revolutionize how people perceive bicycles.

The bike is called the European Trefecta and according to the people behind its development, this bad boy is the bicycle of the future. Without drowning in the sea of hyperbole and aggrandized rhetoric, I did find myself somewhat intrigued about the Trefecta. It’s hard not to when phrases like “aerospace engineering” and “hybrid propulsion” are being thrown out to describe the inner workings of this e-bike.

The people behind it - a mixture of Dutch, German and Swiss engineers - claim that the Trefecta fully justifies all the claims being made on its behalf. Certainly, the $28,000 price tag given to the Trifecta makes you wonder how in the world did the creators of the Trefecta get to that number.

Click “continue reading” to read more about the European Trefecta.

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2015 Zero FX

2015 Zero FX

Zero is one of the most famous manufacturers that built electric motorcycles. Its products have been constantly upgraded during the latest years and the Zero Fx makes no exception. Built to withstand the tough conditions of off road riding, the Zero FX can attack any terrain with poise.

It weighs only 289 lbs and it is propelled by a Z-Force 75-5 passively air-cooled, high efficiency, radial flux permanent magnet, brushless motor which delivers a maximum torque of 70 Ft-Lb (95 Nm) and 27 Hp (20 KW) at 3,700 rpm. The engine can propel you to a maximum speed of 85 mph with a sustained speed of 70 mph. It is also worthy of being mentioned that the motorcycle can hit the 100 km/h mark in only 4.3 seconds.

The Zero FX can be yours for no less than $9,845.

Hit the jump for more information on the Zero FX.

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2013 BRD Redshift SM

2013 BRD Redshift SM

BRD is a new motorcycle company that currently builds only electric models. Its current lineup of models includes the Redshift model which is available in three versions namely the MX, SM, and PD.

The Redshift SM is a tough city motorcycle that promises to help you deal effortless with the daily traffic. Given the fact that it features a dirt-bike DNA, the Redshift SM is also pretty tough and reliable.

Its electric motor is powered by a 5.2 kWH battery and delivers a maximum power of 40 hp. This power is more than enough to propel you to a maximum speed of 85 mph. It is worth mentioning that the batteries can keep the bike running up to 50 miles.

You also get a pair of 17 inch wheels which are combined with front and rear fully adjustable suspensions.

Hit the jump for more information on the BRD Redshift SM.

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