Posts Tagged Iowa
I just heard from a favorite source, Hawkeye, the owner of Brammo Enertia #4, who hails from Greater Iowa City, Iowa. He had mentioned last weekend that, in addition to Brammo informing him of the price drop and promising him that it will be “passing on the saving” to him, Hawkeye also indicated that a technician was going to fly out this week to update his Enertia. True to their word, Brammo sent BrammoJosh out. Here’s Hawkeye’s report:
Josh was out on Thursday (all day) to upgrade my bike. I though he was just going to plug in his laptop and do a quick software update. Instead, he told me that there had been improvements to the firmware/software in several parts of the bike (my bike was #4 off the line, the other bikes already have these). This included updated firmware for the batteries, motor controller, dash etc.
At the end, we tuned the bike while it was on the stand. There are dozens of settings for throttle response, power, coasting, engine braking etc. He set these settings to the new “factory” settings, except for a little tuning, but he said that on their personal engineering test bikes that they have custom settings that they have played with for more power/torque. It sounds like they further refined these settings while on the “Shocking Barack” tour and the result just may be the “performance” update that Brian referred to. Josh tried to get me the “performance” update but it wasn’t quite finalized yet. However I should be able to install this update myself as soon as it’s ready. Even without the performance update the bike has noticeably more power in the 15-45 mph range, the range itself has increased and the range remaining display on the dash is more accurate.
Lots of information to digest in that little update. First, the ability for users to install software updates is something that had been hinted at over the past few months, but had never been acknowledged. It seems pretty important that owners should have this ability – if they’ve already sold 100 bikes, they can’t have BrammoJosh jetting here and there all the time, updating software.
The “dozens of settings for throttle response, power, coasting, engine braking etc” is another acknowledgment that this bike has the potential to be a different bike each time you take it out of the garage. Going on the highway a bit today? Tweak the settings. Going on some errands all over the city? Tweak. Taking it on some dirt roads and and across the pasture? Tweak.
Finally, what can you say about a company that flies a technician to a third world country Central Iowa to update a product’s software?
Thanks again, Hawkeye, for keeping us updated on your Enertia.
Compliments of Hawkeye, some stunning pictures of his bike in the wilds of Iowa.
Other Hawkeye-related posts:
The first (as far as we know) recipient of a Brammo Enertia has stopped by one of my favorite forums, the Electric Motorcycle Forum to share some impressions of the bike:
I’ve had the bike for 10 days now (of course it rained 5 of those days) and it’s a very fun, very easy bike to ride. And it does attract a lot of attention.
Range: I live about 9 miles out of town, so most of my riding is at highway speeds and my range is about 28-35 miles (keep in mind that I’m a little heavy on the throttle). I took a 17 mile ride the other day (mostly highway) and still had 22.8 miles remaining on the gauge. The battery level drops noticeably at 60-65 mph, but as soon as you reduce speed in town or stop for a little bit, the battery level (and your range) goes back up (I’ve seen it go from 30% all the way back up to 57%).
Also I believe that they may have built in some sort of a reserve… I ventured a little too far away from home today on a joy ride and had a stiff headwind on the return trip. Long story short I was on the highway 2 miles from home and I was showing 0.0 miles remaining on my range and 0% battery. I was nervous… however, I still had FULL power and made it home just fine.
Top speed is about 65 mph, and it appears that it may be limited to that speed because you can get to and hold top speed with only about 75-80% throttle. And at top speed it doesn’t seem to let you use more that about 80% battery power but you can give it 100% power at lower speeds.
Highway cruising speed for me is about 62 mph (unless the battery level is getting low then I back it down to 55-57 mph). And just about everywhere I go I tend to speed a little bit, without the noise or vibration you don’t realize how fast you are actually going.
Yeah, I recommend the bike. And I’m looking forward to the wi fi connectivity so I can adjust the power settings. Josh (the Head Tech) said that the bike power is set to the optimum power to distance ratio setting, however I’d love to play with it at full power.
Hope to hear more information and to see more pics from our friend from Iowa.
Finally, a video file, courtesy of KCCI.com or CBS, for which they, of course have all legal right, duty, responsibility, etc.
Hawkeye, my new best friend, has just received his bike:
The “unboxing” will be televised on his local TV station, KCCI, and should appear on their website later tonight. From Hawkeye:
We have Enertia.
Josh (from Brammo), the reporter and camera crew left a little while ago. They interviewed me, they interviewed Josh, they filmed shots of me riding all around the neighborhood… busy day. The story is going to air on the six o’clock news tonight the they said the story should be on their website shortly after that.
I couldn’t grab much video of my own because they had me mic’d and were asking me interview questions throughout the process. I’m sure the cameraman got some good video though.
Now, time to go for a ride.
Lots of excitement, for sure. A slew of pics, below:
Yeah, if Josh is going to deliver more of these, Ms. Brammofan might actually let me order one.
Hawkeye has promised more pics, so stay tuned.
Headline is a quote from this article, which, among other items worthy of attention, addresses a favorite issue of mine: quiet cars. From the article:
“The electric car will account for 10% of the global market in 10 years,” predicts Carlos Ghosn, chief executive of alliance partners Renault and Nissan in a BBC interview. “It is time for zero emission motoring.”
If Mr. Ghosn and those who think like him are right, then the future looks bleak.
At least, that is, if you are a pigeon.
“Normally, when they hear a car they fly away last minute,” says the man from Sixt, the car rental firm that handles the German energy company RWE’s fleet of electric cars, during the Tesla drive in Frankfurt.
“But when this one comes along, they don’t hear it.”
* * *
If pigeons cannot hear electric cars then perhaps people should worry too?Not at all, insists Volkswagen’s Ulrich Hackenberg as he presses a button on the dashboard of the company’s E-Up concept to release a canned sound of a revving engine.
“Electric cars could sound like this in the future,” he says.
It’s been awhile, but we had heard some rumblings earlier on about the Brammo Enertia’s onboard speakers and the ability to produce a sound at low speed levels. I haven’t heard anything very recently about this issue, at least since the Enertia was introduced at Portland, Oregon area Best Buy stores.
Perhaps we’ll learn more about it later today or tomorrow, when one of the first Enertias gets delivered to a lucky Iowan, I’ve dubbed, “Hawkeye.” He’s been emailing me and has confirmed that, absent any calamities, his new bike will be delivered today. Stay tuned to Brammofan.com for updates on the Enertia’s arrival in the Field of Dreams.