What the world really needs a Prime motorcycle.

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by The Big Sleaze, Oct 7, 2020.

  1. The Big Sleaze

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    Prime is nice and all, but really doesn't do anything a regular Prius can't do, unless SHTF and no gasoline being sold but you have nice big solar and home battery setup. I LIKE being able to cruise on short trips without firing up engine, and to avoid engine on/off when in bumper-to-bumper traffic, or creeping silently out in nature on quiet back roads, but none of that is really game changing.

    But if there was a commuter/scrambler motorcycle with dimensions, weights and suspension about like Suzuki 650 V-Storm that had smaller engine but maybe just 8 miles worth of Prime type EV mode that might be a game changer. Turn off the engine about 4 miles out from your INDOOR location to let in cool in the breeze and avoid hot engine smell, then since an electric motorcycle can fake being a bicycle, instead of leaving it in crime ridden outdoor parking lot you can sneak it inside like a bicycle, and unlike a bicycle that needs to be awkwardly carried, a bike similar to 650 V-Storm could go up and down flight of stairs. Likewise, when leaving you could sneak out under EV so no one hears (or smells) the engine fire up. With EV mode it would be cheap and easy to include "pedestrian area low speed safe mode" that make it unobjectionable to use in any area that allows bicycles, because AFAIK any place that allows bikes also allows electric boosted bikes.

    They make a few all-electric motorcycles but none have enough range for practical commuting and for many including myself the requirement to be plugging in all the time and leaving it, vs stopping for gas, is a deal breaker for a car and doubly a deal breaker for a motorcycle.

    PS-It still baffles me that 5 out of 5 dealers told me the 25mile range EV feature with plug in charging and the hybrid engine were completely separate systems and didn't know about the "CRG" feature that tells the engine to top up the 25mile range battery. I thought maybe Toyota did that for weird legal reasons and everyone was expected to get Communter Lane stickers and pretend they were in EV mode when in such lanes or something.
     
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  2. mr88cet

    mr88cet Senior Member

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    I was going to say that motorcycles get such good mileage that plug-in hybrid wouldn’t help a lot, but it’s a little more involved than that as the Mythbusters discovered:



    (This is not the best clip from this show, but the best I could find.)

    There’s also the fact that motorcycles have much less space in which to put a battery, MG(s), ICE, gas tank, etc. It may not be realistic...
     
  3. The Big Sleaze

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    IIRC motorcycles don't get all that great MPG because very non-aerodynamic and most engines are tuned for max performance.

    Motorcycles even "vanilla" bikes such as SV 650 I'm using as example are still radically overpowered compared to cars so battery space/weight could be added and engine subtracted and still have enough excess power to keep it nice and dangerous like the other motorcycles, and this would be a decidedly communter and SLOW trail riding bike, without any aspirations of performance one-up manship that dominates the MC industry. Prime has pretty good acceleration due to being able to use power from engine AND electric motor/battery.
    Motorcycles are all on the cutting edge of tech and performance more than cars and you can now buy stock, retail bike able to do over 200mph for $14K but they are losing total numbers of riders every year for something like 30yrs straight.2020 NINJA® ZX™-14R ABS NINJA® Motorcycle by Kawasaki
    I'd suggest they re-direct some of their cutting edge tech into features and capabilities that provide real value to real riders. How about a bike that can "only" do 100mph (and still beat a Ferrari off the line) for $14K but has 8 mile EV plug in Prime type feature.
     
  4. mr88cet

    mr88cet Senior Member

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    Indeed. That Mythbusters episode is very much worth seeing!
     
  5. Salamander_King

    Salamander_King Senior Member

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    Sorry but a motorcycle in a northern climate is a summer recreational vehicle just like a motorboat. Not going to work as a daily driver.
     
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  6. The Big Sleaze

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    Thats true. In CA we don't allow weather but we do allow Lane Splitting where in heavy slow traffic motorcycles are allowed to ride between lanes of cars past them.
     
  7. daveyB9523

    daveyB9523 New Member

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    Good thing I'm from CA.
     
  8. huskers

    huskers Senior Member

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    It might be awkward with the 11 inch screen and it still would not come with a spare.
     
  9. egg_salad

    egg_salad Active Member

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    The standard motorcycle form factor is a dumb design for making into an EV or Hybrid machine. There's no place to put the batteries but up high, significantly raising the Cg.

    A *much* better idea would be something like the Suzuki Burgman 650. All that floor space would be the perfect place for a battery pack, nice and low. Unfortunately, the Burgman and other "maxi-scooters" have a high dork factor in the US and nobody wants to ride them.
     
  10. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    I've been messing around with Honda's IMA system lately and I think it would make a good motorcycle hybrid system. It's smaller, lighter and cheaper than more, umm, traditional hybrid solutions and packages easily. But bikes already have decent fuel economy so why bother? Emissions ultimately I guess.

    A PHEV version IMO would just be too heavy for motorcycling where weight is extremely important to most riders. As an example, a PHEV 600cc sport bike that might weigh 5-7 hundred pounds and be 40% more expensive (no tax incentives) would be a sales flop for sure.

    On a side note: there are tons of scooter ev conversion videos on the youtubes that look pretty easy to do. Gathering ideas...... :coffee:
     
  11. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

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    Honda has employed this strategy with the goldwing design layout for over 45 years.
     
  12. egg_salad

    egg_salad Active Member

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    My other "car" is a 150cc scooter. I wish it was an EV with similar performance. Near as I can tell, no one in the US is selling anything like that. There are EV scooters that emulate 50cc performance, and performance-oriented bikes like the Zero, but nothing in between :(
     
  13. eatriceyo

    eatriceyo Junior Member

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    taipei has these electric scooters/mopeds where you can swap the batteries out with charged ones at the stations.
     
  14. kenmce

    kenmce High Voltage Member

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    I have wondered what would happen if you took an old Prius and broke it all the way down, and built it back up into a motorcycle, what would you get? The traction battery would have to stretch out horizontally between the wheels, and the driver would rest their feet on it.
     
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