HOW DOES IT FEEL TO RIDE AN ELECTRIC MOTORCYCLE?
An experienced off-road biker test-rides the MECR-X electric T&D-powered dirt bike, and shares their thoughts and the tech and ride feel.
Anyone who rides motorcycles will tell you one shared comment: it’s exciting. There are, of course, many benefits to motorcycling, from the convenience of filtering through heavy traffic to reduced commuting times, but the pure exhilaration often outweighs everything else.
If you’re concerned that the fun will be diminished by riding an electric-powered motorcycle, worry not. It’s there in abundance, as confirmed by T&D’s test riders! They took to the track on an MECR-X off-road bike, which is fitted with a Storm powertrain featuring components that make up the FE01 complete system. Light and compact, it’s designed to easily handle the demands of track riding, where riders regularly need to change position and reliability of the motorcycle is crucial. Our test team put the MECR-X through its paces and told us all about it following the test session. Read on to find out what they had to say!
T&D: Does the acceleration seem noticeably faster?
Test rider: The 0-60km/h acceleration is similar to a 200cc / 250cc ICE motorcycle. However, there is no power decline as it reaches the 85km/h speed limit, and this makes it very exciting. Not having to change gear is a factor, and also simplifies the riding experience. You can concentrate on body posture and controlling the throttle more precisely.
T&D: Does your left hand keep reaching for a clutch?
Test rider: Not having a clutch feels a little unfamiliar at first, as the left hand has been used to operating this since starting to ride motorcycles. However, moving the rear brake to a hand-operated position makes it overall far easier to control the front and rear brakes. Also, not having to make a gear shift or operate a foot brake makes for better posture and gripping the motorcycle with your legs when in the saddle or standing up.
T&D: How does cornering compare to your experience on traditional motorcycles?
Test rider: Cornering remains the same, but because of the immense torque capacity, it can take some time to get used to the throttle control when entering and exiting a corner. Turning at slow speeds is easy due to the lightweight body, and there is immediate energy and acceleration as soon as the throttle is applied to get you back on the right path. There’s none of the drag that you get from an ICE motorcycle.
T&D: Does the bike feel any different when you take off and land from a jump?
Test rider: The motorcycle feels lighter and more explosive without a fuel engine, weighing about as much as a 125cc motorcycle. The front and rear weight feels far more coordinated, making it more controllable and easier to land.
T&D: How about vibrations – do you notice any difference through the frame and saddle?
Test rider: There are fewer vibrations coming through the saddle of an electric motorcycle, but the vibration of the tires reminds you that you are on the road! At first, it seems less exciting as there isn’t the usual engine noise, but the joy of a lighter motorcycle with better torque and faster speeds soon makes you forget about that.
T&D: Any final thoughts on the test riding session, and electric motorcycles in general?
Test rider: Riding the MECR-X, with its FE01 drive system, is a lot of fun. Because the motorcycle is light, easier to handle, and with better power delivery, it is also less tiring.
There is definitely growing recognition on the road from ICE motorcycle riders, and many are becoming curious to try an electric powertrain!
The expanding electric evolution
Drive systems for electric off-road motorcycles is just one part of the T&D offering. Complete powertrains for city, touring, sports and entertainment categories have also been developed, enabling motorcycle brands and product developers to seamlessly integrate all the components that deliver the power and excitement that riders demand.
View footage from the test ride here.