Posts Tagged empulse

Brammo Empulse – It’s Just Right

From an article about the Brammo Empulse (and other) electric motorcycles that appeared in a magazine from the Great White North:

Model: Brammo Empulse
Price: $9,995-$13,995
Top speed: 100 mph (160 kmh)
The Goldilocks model, it’s neither too small nor too big.
The Empulse is a more substantial bike than the Zero S,
(weight varies from 360-420 lbs.) but nowhere near the cost
of The Sora. Brammo offers models with an average range
of 60-100 miles. The styling says Ducati but the noise level
says electric.

 

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Brammofan in HellForLeather

Thanks to Wes Siler, Azhar Hussain, Brian Wismann, Alex Tang, and others for helping me with an article on the subject of the TTXGP and the tantalizing idea of a spec class to help fill the grid.  Pick up a copy of Hell For Leather Magazine at your local news stand, or just read it on their website.  If you don’t subscribe, however, you’ll miss out on the skewering I expect to receive in the comments.  Pony up the cash, as it’s well worth the cost of admission.

TTXGP Spec-ulation: can this grid be saved?

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Brammo Empulse RR Dash

Close up of the Empulse RR dash

Over on the Brammo Owners Forum, the regulars were dissecting the picture, above, of the Empulse RR dashboard taken last weekend during Brammo’s triumphant return to the world of electric motorcycle road racing.  What is the big number “3” for?  Is the “1.58.8” the lap time?  Does the “45” represent miles per hour or perhaps state of charge of the battery?

Thank goodness that Brian Wismann, Brammo Director of Product Development, dropped in to clear things up:

You got it mostly figured out.  The GPS timing is accurate within about 50ft of the start/finish, so the time displayed for the previous lap is +/- .2s.  This photo was obviously either from one of the practices or maybe the first race based on the time displayed there. The 47 is the speed and you can see the motor rev counter above it.  The 72 is just indicating the minutes of data acquisition logging still available before the internal memory runs out.  This system has been instrumental (ha!) in understanding the effects of changes to the system and ultimately bike performance.

RUNLA = Run lap timer.  There are various display modes.  Best sector time, Best lap time, Last Lap Time, etc, etc… . If there were a problem with the motor or battery, you would see a warning displayed here instead.

Here’s another close up, taken during a later lap:

According to a tweet on Monday morning by Wismann, the Brammo bike was intentionally operating at 85% power.  Even at 15% below max, the bike shattered last year’s TTXGP track record, held by the ZeroAgni bike.  Kudos to Steve Atlas, rider for this weekend’s races at the A123 Infineon Round of the TTXGP North American Championship series.  Not only is he pretty handy with a bike, he’s a marksman with a bottle of champagne:

It’s not clear when we’ll see Brammo next.  In about a month, the TTXGP race at the New Hampshire International Speedway at Loudon will be held. A month later, the show returns to the left coast with a race scheduled for Portland International Raceway for July 17, and another the next week at Laguna Seca in Monterey, California.  The historic pairing of TTXGP and FIM e-Power at Laguna is a great thing (we hope) and a real “kum-ba-ya” moment which may end up overshadowing anything that happens the week before at PIR.  I think it’s a safe bet that we’ll see Brammo at the track in July.  Just not clear, yet, which track or tracks it will be.

What is clear is that Brammo’s two wins last weekend ended up winning them 50 points in the race to the championship round, wherever that may end up.  LeMans is another joint race with FIM that will occur on September 23 -24.  Whether that will serve as the World Championship isn’t clear to me, as there is actually another race that occurs the next month in Australia.  This “lack of clarity” is nothing to be alarmed about.  If there is one thing I’ve learned during my extensive (irony intended) experience with the sport, it is early in the electric motorcycle racing season and tracks and dates are bound to change.

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Busy Brammo Weekend

“Divide and Conquer” is a good guess for Brammo’s mantra of the week.  According to Brammo’s Events Calendar, their race teams will be split between two events:

The TTXGP A123 Race at Infineon Raceway, in Sonoma, California, and

The Monster Energy Grand Prix at Glen Helen Raceway in Devore, California.

Link to discounted tickets for the TTXGP are here.

The challenge of having a road racing team and a motocross team (all while continuing to be a leader in the nascent industry of electric motorcycles) is going to be apparent this weekend.  These two tracks are approximately 450 miles apart.  It is likely that Brian Wismann, Director of Product Development at Brammo, will be at the TTXGP event, as he has been a driving force behind the Empulse RR racebike development.  The bike will be ridden by Steve Atlas of Motorcycle-USA.com.

It’s not clear who will be the motocross team manager, although Dave Harvey, a long-time Brammo technician, is likely to be front and center, given his love for the dirt.  The Brammo Engage, announced last week, will be racing with its innovative 6-speed transmission.  Hopefully, the larger track at Glen Helen will allow the bike to show the benefits of a transmission – something that the small track at the MiniMoto event last weekend seemed to limit.

Keep watching this space for news about whether video feeds will be available for either of the events.

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Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

From Motorrad Magazine, the quintessential motorcycle magazine in Germany, comes this beautiful two-page spread of the Brammo Empulse racing down a road in “Southern Oregon.”

Später Nachmittag im Süden Oregons, an der Grenze zu Kalifornien. Vögel zwitschern dem Frühling entgegen und sie lassen sich überhaupt nicht stören  als ein rotes Motorrad vorbeikommt.  Es zischt beinahe geräuschlos um die Kurve.  Ein Elektropionier der Firma Brammo führt mit der “Empulse” auschließende Tests durch.  In Kürze sollen die ersten Maschinen ausgeliefert werden, es liegen schon zahlreiche Online-Bestellungen vor. Bis zu 160 Kilometer Reichweite, über 160 km/h und Preise ab 9995 Dollar.  Demnächst auch ab 9900 Euro – in Deutschland.

I haven’t heard back from my favorite German-English translator yet, but I wanted to get this posted.  Here is Google Translate’s version of the text:

Late afternoon in southern Oregon, on the border with California. Birds are chirping, contrary to the spring and they are not bothered at all when a red motorcycle passes by.  It hisses nearly silent around the curve.  A pioneer of the electric company Brammo performs with the “Empulse” Exclude tests.  In brief, the first machines will be delivered, unless there are already numerous online orders. Up to 160 kilometer range, over 160 km/h and Priced from $ 9,995.  Soon, from € 9900 – in Germany.

Until I figured out that this shot was taken in Southern Oregon, I had assumed those were the Swiss Alps in the background and the road was the only road I know by name in Germany: the Autobahn.  I even had my Kraftwerk queued up to run in background while you read this article.   Ah, Kraftwerk, one of my earliest forays into eclectic electronica.  What the heck, here you go, for old time’s sake.

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Brammo Empulse shines in Article

UPDATE:  Article included on CycleWorld’s website, here.

In an article in a leading magazine that covers motorcycles, motorcycling and the world of motor-bikes, (rhymes with “Mike’ll Furled”), is an article featuring the Brammo Empulse on its opening pages.  The article contains much of the same information we’ve seen time and time again from the traditional I.C.E motorcycle press — range and speed and cost are limiting factors.  But if you need something to read on a flight, or in the can, or on the bus, or in the waiting room, it’s visually stunning and mildly entertaining.

More information posted on the Brammo Owners Forum.

While I’m on the subject, it’s time for today’s “things that make you go, hmmm.”  I happen to know that the April issue of CW also has a great piece of writing by Peter Egan about Mark Gardiner’s book, “Riding Man.”  I looked for it on Cycle World’s nightmare of a website and couldn’t find so much as a mention of it.  It became apparent that none of Mr. Egan’s columns appear on the site.  I asked CW about it and they said that Egan’s articles are not posted online.  I know that CW “gots to get paid,” but where is the logic behind not posting this great stuff online?  Other sites have figured out how to charge for “freemium” service or outright paid subscriptions.  Why not CW?

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Brammo Newsletter Clues to Ponder

Brammo just released its latest newsletter, and it contains a couple passages to make you go, “hmmm.”

2011 Models

Brammo says this about its upcoming products:

A huge thank you to the many hundreds of customers who have pre-ordered Brammo motorcycles. As you know we are working to get our US and European assembly facilities up to speed while closing our series B round of financing here in the USA.

We expect to be contacting all those customers who pre-ordered motorcycles very shortly with news regarding production schedules. We truly appreciate your confidence in Brammo and your desire to own a thoroughbred Brammo motorcycle.

(emphasis added). It sounds as if news about the Empulse and the Enertia Plus is on the horizon.  Over on the Brammo Owners Forum, the speculation has been pretty crazy – kind of funny how people will take any random tweet or passage in a press release and run with it. Go figure.  Additionally, the “working to get our US and European assembly facilities up to speed” is a promising bit of news.  After the announcement of the partnership with Flextronics, we hadn’t heard much more than some rumors about one of the assembly facilities being located in Hungary.

The newsletter also promoted a partnership of sorts with a supplier of solar charging stations, Sun Storage:

Brammo Enertia soaking up the rays

Sun Storage is a renewable energy company based at the foot of the Wallowa Mountains in Northeastern Oregon. They are a recognized industry leader in solar photovoltaic frame and racking systems. Sun Storage creates complete solar solutions for owners of Brammo motorcycles. During daylight hours your solar array generates electricity and feeds it into the grid when demand is at its highest. Then overnight you can recharge your Enertia by drawing power from the grid when demand is relatively low. To learn more about Sun Storage and how you can make your Brammo motorcycle solar powered please visit Sun Storage.
To learn more about how you can Go Green with Brammo, please visitGo Green.

The thing I love about this is the possibility of true zero-emissions operation for your Enertia.  When people who scoff at the “zero-emissions” designation because “electricity comes from coal-fired power plants,” I always say, “but at least electric vehicles have the potential for zer0-emissions charging if you can channel your energy from solar or wind sources.  How great would it be to show them the picture, above, and say, “this is how I charge my bike.”

The newsletter also contained some news about financing:

We are very excited about the partnership between Brammo and netLoan funding. Brammo has teamed up with netLoan to offer financing on all available Brammo models and accessories to Brammo customers.

  • Get Pre-Approved For Credit Before You Shop
  • Money As Soon As The Next Business Day For Qualifying Credits
  • Available Loan Products Matched To Your Credit Profile
  • Simple On-Line Applications
  • Competitive Rates

The netLoan online application allows you to fill out a quick, easy funding profile that is used to instantly display all of the financing options available from one or more participating lenders.

Finally, a link to the Brammo Webstore rounded up the newsletter with promises of “Enertia and Enertia Plus parts and accessories.”

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