December 2, 2015 at 4:02 pm #10578
Rank: 1200cc Rider
- Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
A Marlborough man has stripped his motorcycle bare and rebuilt it to run on electricity.
Sytse Tacoma, 25, spent countless late nights in his garage crafting the electric-powered speedster.
Tacoma said he came up with the idea of making the bike while studying mechanical engineering at the University of Canterbury.
No fuel required
“I just thought there had to be a better way of doing things, and there was a lot of movement at the time about people getting into electric vehicles.
“The technology was available, but nobody was doing it in New Zealand. So I thought, what better way to show New Zealanders that this technology works than to build a performance electric bike.”
Tacoma stripped bare an old Chassis Aprilia SR250 motorbike and replaced the engine with a 65 horsepower AC induction motor and a lithium ion battery pack.
Sytse Tacoma’s electric motorbike
“It’s got a charger. You plug it into the wall and it costs $1.50 to charge and that will get you 120 kilometres,” Tacoma said.
“It’s very cheap to run. The beauty of that, and this is the thing that most people oversee, is that there are four moving parts in this whole thing. There are no pistons, no oils, no lubricants. There is a bunch of batteries and a motor, there’s no maintenance.”
Using batteries did not affect the power of the bike.
Looking to a greener future in transport
It could go from zero to 100kmh in four seconds, he said.
“Basically, you can rely on a tenth of the price compared to petrol, roughly.”
Tacoma attended this year’s Evolocity event, putting his new bike up against his petrol-using rivals.
0-100kmh in 4 seconds
“I saw the other guys putting in petrol, checking oil, checking all these things. They had a big array of all these fluids for the bikes and I’ve got a charger and a plug, and that’s it.”
The ultimate goal was to show New Zealanders that electric vehicles could be part of the country’s transport future.
“These days, nobody bats an eye about putting their infant child above 80 litres of petrol in the back of the car, it’s just the done thing. Electrics have their own risks, but they’re just as safe as any other car on the road.”
Tacoma hopes to find investors to support his growing business Motosync, and said people needed to be aware that electric vehicles were virtually maintenance-free and environmentally-friendly.
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