Here's a little something I wrote in the comments section of the Cyril Huze blog.
Iím a bit fascinated by the progress of these ebikes. In looking at the Zero site I see ranges up to 197 miles. This is far better than what Polaris has with its Empulse ebike (60 miles). Then Zero has modular packs available to double or triple the range.
Range || ZERO MOTORCYCLES
At 600 miles a day between charging we are now looking a bike that can theoretically be used for touring until we see the extra weight of the packs and gear drastically reduces the range. Still, even at say 300 miles, a person could tour on one of these even though it would double the travel days. This range will only improve over time.
The cost of around $6 for around 300 miles isnít bad. For a day ride at less than $2 for up to 200 miles ainít bad either.
I think there should be a mini battery pack, maybe the size of a small motorcycle battery but much lighter in weight, that would act as a fuel reserve of at least 20 miles.
Looking back to first 30-40 years of the last century we saw a lot of action in the motorcycle world with a lot of interesting designs. Some are still used today in custom and production bikes. I view this ebike progress as being similar to that age of progress. While eCars are also being developed; they are much more expensive and not available to the average working person like these ebikes from Zero. Even the Polaris Empulse with a starting price of around $20k is really out of the range for most; especially considering the short range they currently have. It will get better though and Iím sure their prices will come down as production and battery prices come down.
With the low maintenance costs with just the tires, wheel bearings, belt, and eventually battery replacement; I can see these bikes appealing to a lot of people in the future as simple transportation. Even more so in countries throughout Asia where small motorcycles are a necessity and not used as pleasure vehicles. It should help the pollution levels in those cities there as well considering the high numbers of them on the road. Think Beijing where they frequently use filter masks due to the high pollution count. Tires should last longer because the bikes themselves will be lighter. Run Flat tires will make being stranded on the side of the road a thing of the past. Many of us already use RF car tires on the backs of our bikes. (Darksiding)
I can envision solar panels on top of garages and carports charging battery packs while the rider is out riding with other battery packs bringing the cost of energy down to zero after the cost of panels and battery packs are paid for by the savings.
For us older folks; this whole thing is not likely to be our thing but the younger ones will need to embrace it at some point as the push toward moving away from gas burning cars and bikes happen. At the very least; it should be interesting to watch it as history unfolds. Young people today will be telling their grandchildren how loud bikes, cars, and trucks that burned gas and diesel used to roam the roads day and night.