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Old February 15th, 2018, 07:58 AM   #3
Its not a 250,its a Ninja
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Name: Shaun
Location: Hot Springs(ish), AR
Join Date: Jun 2012

Motorcycle(s): 03 Ninja Kaw

Posts: 208
Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
Manufacturers keep on coming out with exotic high-end electric sportbikes that have a global market potential of, frankly, three figures given the price point and current tech limitations. Look, I'm never EVER going to buy a $40k Energica, ya feel me?

Here's where I see the fail happening: They're all reinventing the wheel by building a bike from the ground up, for no particularly good reason.

I mean, look at this thing. It's basically a garden-variety sportbike with an electric drivetrain, right?

The basic aluminum perimeter frame/I-4 layout has been around for decades. The Big Four are all very similar to one another. Take the mechanical guts out and what's left is a big hole that you can fill with whatever you like.

So why not a new business model? Sportbike conversions.

Take a bike that's had a very stable design over the years (so there are lots of donor bikes), and come up with a kit that replaces the engine, cooling and fuel systems. Or design a standard driveline package and engineer model-specific installation kits. The reality is that there isn't all that much difference, size and layout-wise, between one I-4 bike engine and another.

Frame, suspension, wheels, tires, brakes, running gear... it all stays the same. E-bike makers aren't adding value with that stuff. Their value-add is in the drivetrain and energy storage. So focus on that and the packaging needed to fit it into an existing frame, and stop trying to out-Kawasaki Kawasaki.

I could see paying several thousand to convert a high-mileage 08-16 R6, for example. Give me comparable (or better) performance with less maintenance for about the price of a new midrange commuter... not a bad deal IMHO.

Distribution costs are lower. Non-driveline parts availability is a no-brainer, because inventory and retail outlets already exist everywhere. Without the need to source any of the rolling chassis or running gear, the supply chain is simpler, inventory costs go down and cash flow isn't as much of a problem. Set up a franchise network of approved installers, or offer DIY bolt-in kits. Take it up a notch and license select "dealers" who would go out, find and retrofit clean bikes, and sell 'em whole.

Get REALLY clever and make the battery swappable in a few minutes (e.g. by designing it to fit where the current tank does and using quick-disconnects), and you've got a viable track bike. Charge one battery while you ride with the other one, rinse and repeat. Or use that as a commuting strategy: three batteries, one on the bike, one on the charger at home and one on the charger at work.
I seriously doubt anyone can put it better.

I can't understand why the electric bike gimmmick doesn't just die the quick death it already died. No one will buy a $40k bike that will need batteries purchased again within 5 years. Oh, wait, you can't, because the company will be out of business within 3.

This is just politics driving a dead segment that will never have life again, unless technology is finally invented that can allow the cost to be competetive to those evil oil-burning demons. LOL.

I will give them that the bike looks cool though. Retrofit the fairings and leds to a 2006 ninjette?
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