[RANKING] The best electric motorcycles in 2020

Zero Motorcycle SR/F

Today, we often talk about electric cars, especially with their strong growth in sales, but not so much about electric motorcycles. And that's a shame.

What are the best electric motorcycles available in 2020?

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Public authorities are gradually attempting to reduce the impact of transport on pollutant emissions, in particular by promoting electric engines. While the adoption of electric motors is still limited due to the relative youth of the segment, particularly in the two-wheeler segment, the technology is making great strides, both in terms of pure performance andrange.

If electric motorizations are very different from internal combustion engines in terms of how they work, they also offer far superior performance, with maximum torque available immediately. So much so, in fact, that we wonder just how far electric motorcycles will go when the technology reaches maturity.

Today, many machines are no longer ashamed of the comparison with their gasoline-powered equivalents, and we're not talking about prototypes specially designed for competition or speed records, but of motorcycles that have been or are being produced in series, even limited series.

In terms of sales, it's not just cars and bicycles that are doing well. Market figures for electric motorcycles and scooters also bear witness to a dynamic trend. According to ACEMthe two sectors combined registered 34,389 units in the first half of 2019, a large proportion of them electric scooters (28,577 units). With 5,812 units sold, the electric motorcycle segment also recorded strong growth: +82.7% compared with the first half of 2018.

However, we note that electric motorcycles and scooters are gaining market share, and that at this rate, their sales will soon no longer be considered "confidential".

The difference between scooters and motorcycles

Between a motorcycle and a scooterWith the exception of maxi-scooters, scooters are mainly used in urban environments, whereas motorcycles are more at home in extra-urban areas.

However, the differences between a motorcycle and a scooter are mainly mechanical, affecting the way they are ridden:

Gears : a scooter is equipped with an automatic gear system based on a variator, and a motorcycle with a mechanical gearbox.

Wheels: The wheels of a scooter are generally smaller in diameter than those of a motorcycle, so the scooter's center of gravity is automatically lower. It's this feature that gives scooters their legendary maneuverability, to the detriment of poorer handling than motorcycles at higher speeds.

Variable speed drive: It also offers the scooter rider a smoother ride, but with less control when faced with an unexpected situation. For the same amount of power, a scooter will be less lively than a motorcycle, as an automatic gearbox does not offer the responsiveness of a mechanical gearbox controlled by the rider.

Weight: Generally better streamlined than a motorcycle, and with plenty of storage space, a scooter is heavier and therefore more inertial. On the other hand, the fairing provides better protection for the rider, and is often more comfortable to ride.

Price: The price of a scooter versus a motorcycle is also an important consideration. Motorcycles are more expensive than scooters.

Insurance : visit cost of insurance can also be a decisive criterion when comparing motorcycles and scooters.

  • Compared to motorcycles, scooters are considered more dangerous by insurance companies. Because they have to make their way through city traffic, and are often driven by a young rider, they are frequently the subject of claims. What's more, scooters are more attractive to thieves.insure your scooter accordingly.
  • However, if you travel long distances by motorcycle, you're not immune from an accident, the consequences of which will undoubtedly be more serious than a simple fender-bender on a city scooter. What's more, a motorcycle is harder to steal than a scooter, but its value is also higher. That's why it's all the more important to multiply your coverage.

Application: It all depends on your requirements and how you intend to use your electric drive.

  • Choose a scooter if you appreciate the ease of use and maneuverability of a two-wheeler.
  • Choose a motorcycle if you're looking for good roadholding, comfort in the saddle and riding pleasure.

Electric scooter license 

  • Most of the current range of electric scooters are available without a license: the 50 cm³ equivalents can be driven without a license from the age of 14 (BSR)
  • 125 cm³ equivalent electric scooters can be accessed in a number of ways, such as with an A, A1 or A2 motorcycle license.
  • Electric scooters over 125 cm³ require an A2 motorcycle license

Electric motorcycle license 

  • Electric vehicles of less than 11 kW (125cm³ equivalent) are available from age 16 with an A1 motorcycle license, or from age 20 with a B license and 7 hours' training. For more powerful models, up to 35 kW rated power, an A2 license is required. Electric motorcycles with a power rating of over 35 kW would require an A motorcycle license.

Why buy an electric motorcycle?

First and foremost, it's important to know that electric motorcycles are designed for all urban users, who use motorcycles on a daily basis to get to work, for example.

Electric motorcycles have many advantages, but there are also a few disadvantages to consider if you want one.

Benefits 

  • Financial aspect : lhe most important advantage is undoubtedly the economic aspect: as you've probably noticed, the price of fuel is rising all the time. In the long term, therefore, you'll save on fuel, and you should also know that an electric motorcycle has a low energy cost, with a charge of €2/100 km.
  • Pollution: this is also an issue that needs to be taken very seriously these days, whether it's air pollution or noise pollution! With this in mind, the electric motorcycle offers other advantages, emitting no gases, no atmospheric pollution and limited or non-existent noise, depending on the manufacturer. This is the most important point when thinking about the future.
  • Mechanically : the electric motorcycle also scores a plus point, since there are no beltno engine oil, etc. It's also worth noting that the quest for innovation and technology is becoming ever more advanced, with the aim of offering even higher-performance motorcycles.

Disadvantages 

  • Price:When you list all the advantages of an electric motorcycle, you quickly realize that they are indisputable, especially if you take a long-term view. On the other hand, if you've paid any attention to electric motorcycles at all, you're bound to have noticed the difference in price between an electric motorcycle and a combustion-powered bike. An electric motorcycle is indeed much more expensive to buy, a cost that can be recouped in the long term when you consider the current price of petrol.
  • Battery life: Battery autonomy varies from one motorcycle model to another, and this requires a certain amount of planning before you set off. You'll need to find out how long your battery will last, and be aware that some motorcycles come with a removable batterya very practical feature.
  • A possible danger: Finally, the absence of noise can be present in some electric motorcycles. And this can represent a danger, because without noise it's difficult for a biker to announce his or her presence. Bikers will be silent, so their presence will be much more discreet - perhaps too much so? Nonetheless, some manufacturers have built dummy noise into their bikes, giving riders a better feel for the ride.

How do I recharge an electric motorcycle?

Electric motorcycles can be recharged using a simple 220 V socket for a "slow" charge. There's also a retractable battery that you can take home for scooters and motorcycles weighing between 10 and 20kg, and two-wheelers with an integrated battery. For rapid recharging, depending on the model, you can use a special charger, or connect to certain public charging points. Finally, some electric motorcycles feature removable batteries which can then be recharged at home, without the hassle of having to run wires to the vehicle. On average, it takes 6 to 8 hours to charge the battery from a household socket, and 1 to 4 hours from a supercharger.

Assistance for the purchase of an electric motorcycle in 2022

With a view to accelerating the ecological transitionthe government is renewing the system of aid and bonuses for the purchase of electric vehicles, including rechargeable hybrids.

Up to €2,100 in government aid

  • Buying an electric two-wheelerThe first step is the government's ecological bonus: this amounts to 900 euros for the purchase of a new two-wheeled vehicle (or tricycle or quadricycle) with an electric motor and a maximum net power rating of at least 2 kW or 3 kW, up to a maximum of 27% of the acquisition cost, including VAT, plus the cost of the battery if leased. The calculation is based on 250 euros per whole kWh of on-board battery capacity.
  • Please note if the power of the two-wheeler in question is below the limits indicated, then the ecological bonus drops to 100 euros, without ever exceeding 20% of the purchase cost.
  • And that's not all: if you take advantage of the purchase of a new electric two-wheeler to scrap a diesel vehicle registered before 01/01/2001 or an old petrol car registered before 01/01/1997, then you'll be eligible for the conversion premium. This adds a further 100 euros for the purchase of a two-wheeler (or tricycle and quadricycle) with an electric motor and a maximum net power rating of at least 2 kW (EU regulation 168/2013) or 3 kW (directive 2002/24/CE).
  • One more? if you're not taxable, there's still money in your pocket: 1.100 euros for the purchase of a new two-wheeled vehicle (or tricycle or quadricycle) with an electric motor and a maximum net power rating of at least 2 kW or 3 kW, up to the cost of acquisition and battery rental minus the bonus granted, with possible exceptions if your tax household income is less than or equal to €6,300, or if your home/work commute exceeds 30 kilometers, or if your annual mileage to work exceeds 12,000 kilometers.
  • Local subsidies: electric motorcycles are quite expensive, but some major cities, such as Paris, offer purchase subsidies to reduce the investment.

Top 5 : The best electric motorcycles in 2022

Zero DSR Design Black Forest 2020 

Zero Motorcycles has unveiled its 2020 range of electric motorcycles, and the big news is the addition of the DS sport double model. In its top-of-the-range Black Forest edition, the DSR can take you and much of your gear up to 112 km into the great outdoors. The Zero DSR Design Black Forest is a true adventurer's bike.

  • Range: 262 km (WLTP)
  • Price : 21 880 € (excluding environmental bonus)
  • Slow recharge (0 to 100%): 6h
  • Fast charge (0 to 80%): 2 h 45 
  • Availability: 2020

Energica Eva Ribelle 2020 

Italy is no stranger to electricity, as Energica has demonstrated by becoming the official manufacturer of the first electric world championship FIM MotoE. For the road, the Transalpine brand has a genuine EVA roadster roadster developing 145 hp and 200 Nm for a top speed limited to 200 km/h.

  • Range: 200 km (WLTP)
  • Price : 22 943 € (excluding environmental bonus)
  • Slow recharge (0 to 100%): Mode 2 or 3: 67 km/h
  • Fast recharge (0 to 80%): 40 min. 
  • Availability: 2020

Zero Motorcycle SR/F

Best electric motorcycles: Zero Motorcycle SR/F

The SR/F is a true StreetFighter. Zero Motorcycles has set a new milestone with a machine that is ever more powerful and maneuverable, and now capable of reaching an electronically limited top speed of 200 km/h, thanks to its 110 hp, 190 Nm torque engine.

  • Range: 320 km (WLTP)
  • Price: €23,190 (excluding environmental bonus) 
  • Slow recharge (0 to 100%) : 4h30
  • Fast recharge (0 to 80%) : 2h30
  • Availability: Immediate 

Verge TS 2020 

Best electric bikes: Verge TS 2020 

Goodbye RMK, hello Verge! If the brand name isn't the most appropriate for France, the Finnish manufacturer is taking advantage of its presence at EICMA to complete its transformation, two years after the presentation of the RMK E2 concept.

Presented as the Finnish manufacturer's first mass-produced electric motorcycle, the Verge TS is aesthetically very close to the initial concept, but goes one step further on the technical front. Whereas the RMK E2 promised 50 kW of power, the Verge TS boasts 80 kW (107 hp) and up to 1000 Nm of torque. Enough to take on the Zero SR/F in the premium segment.

  • Range: 158 km city (WLTP)
  • Price : 24 990 € (excluding environmental bonus)
  • Slow charge (0 to 100%): 4h
  • Fast recharge (0 to 80%) : 2h45
  • Availability: 2020

Harley Davidson LiveWire 

Best electric motorcycles. Harley Davidson LiveWire 

Largely inspired by the eponymous prototype prototype revealed by the American brand in 2014, the Harley-Davidson LiveWire features a 105 hp (78 kW) electric motor. The American brand has adopted the typical styling of other combustion-powered models for its electric model.

In terms of acceleration, the automaker claims a 0 to 100 km/h time of 3 seconds, and acceleration from 100 to 130 km/h in 1.9 seconds.

  • Range: 449 km (WLTP)
  • Price: €33,900 (excluding environmental bonus) 
  • Slow recharge (0 to 100%): 5h
  • Fast recharge (0 to 80%): 40 min. 
  • Availability: Immediate

Today, there are more and more electric vehicles on the road, and the number is set to increase over the next few years. If you thought the electric world was all about cars and bikes, you'd be wrong. There are plenty of electric motorcycles to suit all tastes, so all you have to do is make your choice.

Bonus  

Voxan Motors

La Wattman is Voxan's first high-performance electric motorcycle, dedicated to world speed record attempts. In July 2021, the Voxan Wattman will attempt to set a new world speed record on the Salar d'Uyuni in Bolivia. At the helm of this exceptional machine will be six-time world motorcycle champion Max Biaggi. The previous record having been set by Ryuji Tsuruta in 2019 with a speed of 329 km/h on the Mobitec EV-02A, Voxan will attempt to homologate 330 km/h on the Salar d'Uyuni, the world's largest salt desert, in Bolivia.

The Wattman's high performance is the result of several little secrets. For a start, the bike weighs just 300 kg (140 kg for the battery alone). Secondly, to avoid overheating, Voxan Motors has chosen to use carbon dioxide to cool the 15.9 kWh battery when the powertrain is at full throttle. This system enables the engine to deliver 270 kW, or around 362 hp, and 970 nm of torque.

BEST ELECTRIC BIKES

Today, there are more and more electric vehicles on the road, and the number is set to increase over the next few years. If you thought the electric world was all about cars and bikes, you'd be wrong. There are plenty of electric motorcycles to suit all tastes, so all you have to do is make your choice.

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Picture of Grace Nzuzi
Grace Nzuzi

Through my articles, I help you to better manage your energy transition. And I do this for professionals and private individuals alike.

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