Zero and Polaris Join Forces for New Off-Road Electric Bikes
That’s right sports fans. This may be the most significant relationship thus far in the race to make electric propulsion a viable alternative to the current internal-combustion engines, specifically within the off-road and non-road sectors. Polaris Inc. and Zero Motorcycles launch a decade-long partnership as a major pillar of the “rEV’d up” campaign, and the first efforts are to produce battery-powered off-road vehicles and snowmobiles.
Polaris Industries announced on February 28th its intentions to begin developing electric bikes under its Indian Motorcycle brand, which begs the question: are we looking at an EV with Indian’s trademark War Bonnet fender ornament?
Continue reading for more on the Indian electric bike announcement.
Polaris Industries’ recent acquisition of Brammo’s EV technology business could have some dividends sooner than we expected, at least if these recent trademark applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office is any indication. According to the filing submitted to the USPTO, Polaris has registered the name “Victory Charger” that it is apparently planning to use with “electric motorcycles and structural parts therefor.”
Could it be that Polaris is in the process of developing an electric cruiser for its Victory brand? It’s not out of the question when you take into account recent developments surrounding Polaris’ acquisition of Brammo’s EV technology.
Put one and one together and what do you get?
Polaris didn’t explicitly say that it’s “Victory Charger” trademark application was made for the specific purpose of building a new electric motorcycle. But it does come with splashes of coincidence, doesn’t it?
The fact is that electric cruisers have a place in today’s world. Harley-Davidson is proving as much when it received a lot of attention for Project Livewire, it’s electric motorcycle program. It wouldn’t be surprising if Polaris is preparing to jump on board that bandwagon, too.
The acquisition of Brammo’s EV tech was the first towards that goal. This trademark filing could be the second step.
Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if we do see an electric cruiser from Victory in the near future.
Click past the jump to read more about Polaris’ trademark of "Victory Charger"
Polaris Industries’ acquisition of “certain electric motorcycle assets” from Brammo made news the previous week, signalling a new opportunity for the former to expand its own lineup of existing models and venture into the the world of EV bikes. The same announcement also included pieces of information on what Brammo’s plans are moving forward. Today, though, we can say with all certainty that Brammo’s future will be dedicated solely on developing world-class electric vehicle drivetrain systems.
That was the announcement made by Brammo founder and CEO Craig Bramscher. According to Bramscher, the Polaris acquisition wasn’t made so that Brammo itself would fall in line with the former’s other bike brands, namely Victory and Indian. Instead, the acquisition fell more in line with the two company’s plans to work side-by-side to develop class-leading electric motorcycles.
Part of that exclusive agreement with Polaris calls for brim to supply its electric powertrains to Polaris, which will then use it for its motorcycles and other on-road and off-road vehicles. The technologies in play here include lithium-ion batteries, electric motors, and associated control electronics, so basically, the set-up would be for Polaris to build the bikes and for Brammo to supply the power trains.
Sounds pretty simple, right?
Click pas the jump to read more about Brammo’s strategy moving forward.
Polaris Industries has given new life to a start-up company with the full acquisition of Brammo Inc. The buyout is great news for the Brammo, which has been struggling to gain any traction as an electric bike maker amidst a segment that seems to be growing in competition as the years pass. Without the funding it needed to compete against the big boys, Brammo found itself in the unenviable position of fending for itself without any financial stability to stand on.
But with Polaris Industries coming into the picture, Brammo will not only live to see another day, but it will have a lot of weight lifted off its shoulders. Instead of building these bikes from the ground-up, Brammo will now be able to focus exclusively on developing and integrating electric vehicle powertrains, leaving the job of bringing these products to market to Polaris, which is in a much better position to do it and more importantly, get the job done.
Part of the buyout includes Polaris’ takeover of Brammo’s production facility in Spirit Lake, Iowa, which it will reportedly use to produce the electric motorcycles beginning in the second half of 2015. The buyout is also a significant step up in the relationship of the two companies that began in 2011 when Polaris invested $28 million in the company.
Now that Polaris has essentially absorbed a significant part of Brammo’s business framework, the two companies can proceed with developing new electric bikes that will fall under the Polaris brand name.
Click past the jump to read more about Polaris Industries’ purchase of Brammo Inc.