Browsing the "Lightning Motorcycles" Tag

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Long Term Test | Lithium Ion Motorcycle Batteries

Well, the Skyrich is in that special battery home in the sky now, ready to become fertilizer (for real) thanks to the lack of any battery management system (BMS). I ran this battery on my 2009 Yamaha R1 since May 2011, (first reported here) putting about 12,500 miles of mostly city riding on it. So while Skyrich advertises that the battery lasts 2,000 cycles, as opposed to the 3-500 lead acid batteries can take, I only found it to last about 2.5 times as long as the lead acid my bike came with. I didn’t count the cycles, I counted the years. The stock battery lasted 1 year. The Skyrich was starting to get weak this winter, but I didn’t do the research until after it died. It turns out that with liIon batteries, when it’s cold you actually heat it up by turning the key and letting it power the lights for a minute. I did find that although it wouldn’t crank on the first try in the cold, it would eventually crank. Unlike lead acid, lithium batteries get stronger as you use them, they “warm up”.

February 5th

Interview with FIM's Charles Hennekam on Electric Motorcycle Racing

Charles’s job involves taking care of the technical rules for all the disciplines- 50 different championships covering everything from road racing to cross-country rally racing. He is also the Operations Manager for ePower, the FIM’s electric motorcycle racing series. I sat down with him at the Laguna Seca round to find out more about FIM’s interest in electric racing. I saved it until now, because it’s nice to have some racing news in the off-season.

December 27th

Using Solar Power, Lightning Motorcycles Sets Another Speed Record

The entrepreneurs of the new electric vehicle movement are hell bent on showing the world that the technology is here, it’s real, and it works. At the forefront of electric motorcycle motorsports is Lightning Motorcycles, who recently set a new land speed record for production motorcycles at El Mirage…and they did it using the power of the sun.

November 16th

Video: Lightning Motors Reveals Still Crazy Street Legal Model

Last year, the appropriately-named Lightning Motorcycles set a new land speed record for electric motorcycles at an astounding 216 MPH. Since then, Lightning has offered to hand-build these super-electric motorbikes for anyone willing to shell out at least $38,000, and now we have the first renderings of what these monster motorcycles might look like.

Even better, gave one of its writer/riders a chance to take the Lightning for a spin. His review can be summed up in six words; “Oh my god that is so fast!”

August 28th

ePower/TTXGP Race Report | Laguna Seca

Michael Barnes led the charge with a drag-race worthy start. Bostrom then Atlas weren’t far behind, although Barnes opened the gap throughout the race. The leading bikes from Barracuda Lightning and Icon Brammo kept fairly consistent times and top speeds at the start/finish line while the Superstock bikes became noticeably slower throughout the race.

July 29th

ePower/TTXGP Qualifying Practice | Laguna Seca

Today’s practice gave Eric Bostrom a chance to show what he could do on the Icon Brammo TTX, but it wasn’t enough to beat TTXGP veteran Michael Barnes on the Barracuda Lightning. Bostrom’s fastest lap was 3.3 seconds shy of Michael Barnes’ 1:33.86 on the Barracuda Lightning. Lightning’s second racer, Tom Montano, also an electric […]

July 28th

ePower/TTXGP Free Practice Report | Laguna Seca

Due to my inability to patiently read through every line of a fine-print schedule for the weekend’s events, I almost missed today’s Free Practice for the ePower/TTXGP race. Luckily I had to run back to the media center for my sweater, and along the way I spotted one of the Barracuda Lightning bikes heading to the track entrance. So I walked over to pit lane to see what was up.

July 27th

A Walk Through the ePower/TTXGP Paddock

It’s Friday morning and some ePower/TTXGP teams are still not here. All of the entries listed but Münch are from the TTXGP US series, Münch races with ePower. This race is a collaboration between the two serie, as last year. Exciting news to race fans are some well-known names joining the lineup this year. AMA veteran pro racer Eric Bostrom will be piloting the Brammo Empulse, and former MotoGP 250GP racer Katja Poengson will join teammate (and team owner) Matthias Himmelmann in piloting the Münch bikes.

July 27th

Brammo Shatters Lap Record at the 2011 A123 Systems TTXGP

However, the 2011 season began with a whimper this past weekend at Infineon Raceway, as only 4 bikes made it to the grid. The top two bikes came from the top two electric motorcycle manufacturers- Brammo and Zero. To me, this shows the clear advantage that can be gained with actual production. Although these companies are not selling anywhere near the volume of the major OEM’s, they each have experience in building bikes that can meet consumer demands, as well as income to help support their racing efforts. This sets them far ahead of the competition, many of whom are developing all-new bikes on limited funds.

May 17th

Amarok P1: Mavizen Killer or Yet Another Fantasy Concept?

The Amarok comes to the TTXGP 2011 paddock with a fine pedigree- designed by veteran motorcycle designer Michael Uhlarik, whose work has touched many top brands. Uhlarik and his partner/fabricator Kevin O’Neil drew their inspiration from aircraft. Yet most TTXGP teams have opted for as much direct air-cooling as possible, even the eCRP with their in-house wind tunnel. So it will be interesting to see how the Amarok fares under race conditions.

April 28th