Posts Tagged Wismann

North American TTXGP Champions: Brammo

Congratulations to Brammo for winning the necessary points in the TTXGP North American series to allow it to clinch the title of “Champion.”

As I described in this post, Brammo needed to finish last weekend’s race at Miller Motorsports Park with a 7th or better placement — and this, only to defend against Mission Motors’ attack on the title.

Now we know that:

1. Mission Motors did not show at Miller

2. Brammo finished 3rd, behind first place (and new TTXGP participant) MotoCzysz, and second place Lightning.

3. There was no way for Brammo to finish the race and end up in any worse position than fifth (sixth, if the second Lightning bike had finished the race).

In the graphic, above, the points for Miller have not been posted but Brammo earned an additional 16 points for its third place finish, giving it a total of 57 points.  MotoElectra got another 13 points for its fourth place finish, giving it a total of 46 points and the Second Place North American Championship title.  Lightning received another 20 points, giving it a total of 45 points, and the Third Place title.  Lightning, once again, “missed it by THAT much” and, no doubt sorely regrets not competing in the race at Infineon in June 2011.

Congratulations to the Brammo Racing Team and rider Steve Atlas for putting on a consistent and reliable effort this season!

What does it mean?

The accomplishment represented by Brammo holding the “TTXGP North American Champion” title can be attributed to the spirit behind this comment by Brammo’s Brian Wismann from a post on the Brammo Owners Forum:

It’s been a great season and it was truly a team effort combined with a rock solid reliable race bike that made the championship a possibility.

Wismann would be the first to admit that the Empulse RR was not the fastest bike in the TTXGP paddock.  He and the team changed the gearing to take advantage of the bike’s available power but in the end, it was no match for the faster, one-off bikes of Mission, MotoCzysz and Lightning.  But, as they say, showing up is half the battle.  Here, it was showing up + finishing + staying in the game that gave Brammo the much-deserved title of champion.  As Wismann said,

Rest assured this technology will hit the street with the Empulse production bike and next year’s race bike will move our performance on to the next level!  What an exciting time to be involved with electric motorcycles!

Keep watching this space for more news and amazing developments that Brammo intends to share in the coming weeks.  No laurel-resting here.  There is work to be done.

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Home Power Magazine Loves Electric Motorcycles

Home Power Magazine - Brammofan Approves

UPDATED!!  Five Easy  Four FREE Steps to Electric Enlightenment

Step One: go to http://homepower.com/current/ http://homepower.com/article/?file=HP144_pg48_Berman

Step Two:  Click on “View Complete Issue”  “View Article.”

Step Three: Click on “Become a Digital Subscriber to view issue”

Step Four: Shell out $9.95 for a year’s subscription.

Step Five THREE: Read the article by Brad Berman titled “Kick Started – Electric Motorcycles Gain Traction.”

Step Six FOUR: Read the article by Ted Dillard titled “Personal Electric Vehicles Get More Personal.”

Why should you do this?

Because you want to keep up-to-date with all the happenings and developments in the world of electric motorcycles.  Berman does a great job summarizing the various offerings available today, and there’s some insightful information  about Dillard’s efforts converting worn out gas bikes into like-new electric ones from Dillard about electric two wheelers ranging in size from small (like bicycles and scooters ) to large (motorcycles and Segways).

I’m not sure that’s worth $10. What else?

Here’s the kicker: Berman’s article includes an interview with me.  I don’t want to give away the farm, but here’s some excerpts:

Mallin says that his motorcycle, which was delivered to him in a crate in June 2010, has exceeded his expectations. Not only is it a greener transportation option, but most of all, it’s a daily thrill. “It’s fun to ride, that’s for sure,” Mallin says. “How often do you wake up looking forward to your morning commute?”

* * *

“The only thing I hear when I ride my motorcycle is the wind inside my helmet, a little bit of chain noise, and the tires on the road,” Mallin says. “It’s much more of a visceral experience and closer to nature, compared to the rumble, rumble, rumble of a gas bike. On an electric bike, you can hear the crickets in the summer.”

Berman has also included quotes by Brian Wismann, Director of Product Development at Brammo; John Adamo, editor of Plugbike.com (and co-moderator of the Brammo Owners Forum); Harlan Flagg, owner of Hollywood Electrics; and Azhar Hussain, CEO of the TTXGP electric motorcycle racing series.

And yes, he even includes some pictures and information about bikes other than Brammo, including Zero Motorcycles, Mission Motors, Quantya, and Roehr Motorcycles.  So don’t waste your $10 on ice cream and donuts – spend it wisely on a subscription to Home Power and come away lighter, healthier, and better informed.

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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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Differences between the Enertia and the Enertia Plus

This list of differences just dropped in, authored by BrammoBrian of the Brammo Owners Forum, a/k/a Brian Wismann, Brammo’s Director of Product Development.

The main differences between the Enertia “Basic” and the Enertia Plus are:

1. New Brammo Power battery providing roughly twice the range.  Yes, new chemistry.  There are now 2 large battery modules rather than the six smaller ones in the Enertia Basic.  The chemistry in the Enertia Basic is Lithium Iron Phosphate.  The chemistry in the Enertia Plus is Lithium NCM (Nickel Cobalt Manganese Oxide), sometimes referred to as Lithium “mixed metal oxide”.  Both chemistries are well known for their safety and very good life cycle performance.  The Lithium NCM has the benefit of greater energy density, which is how we achieve more capacity for the same weight.

2. New motor controller allows for greater configuration options and more robust communications with our VCU (vehicle control unit).  This change is mostly transparent to the customer, but may provide more room for growth into “sport” or “economy” driving maps in the future.

3. New forged triple clamp with much improved steering lock and slightly modified geometry and ergonomics.  Reduced trail plus the increased lock makes for a dramatic improvement to low-speed maneuverability without sacrificing stability at speed.  Bar position is roughly 1″ higher and 1″ back towards the rider which was judged to be more comfortable for all variety of rider sizes.

4. New cast aluminum headlamp brackets clean up the aesthetic of the front end AND make servicing to any of the parts in that assembly much easier (i.e. more room for tools).  They also reposition the dash closer to the triple clamp and change the angle slightly. The new brackets were also planned to accept accessories like the windscreen with a simple bolt-on kit.

5. New colors – Aluminium Silver, True Blood Red, Eclipsed Black, and Peacekeeping Blue.  The old colors will not be available on the Plus.   Black is greatly preferred based on pre-orders.

6. Upgraded motor – This is still in final validation testing.  The power level is the same, but the motor features greater efficiency which reduces the heat generated, allowing more performance to be pulled out of the bike before it reaches thermal cutback temperature where current delivery starts to be reduced.

7. Auto-start module integration – The bike now starts with the key switch and does not require the button press.  Button has been replaced with a nice stamped aluminum Brammo bull head badge.  The bike also charges when plugged in to AC power.  No special key position or steps required.   Fork does not need to be locked in order to charge.

8. New mirrors, new grips and bar ends.

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Empulse at Scuderia West

Just got this picture of the Brammo Empulse at Scuderia West, the newest Brammo dealer in the San Francisco area.

Can anyone identify the other bikes in this photo?

Did anyone at Scuderia get a test ride?

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