The EICMA show tends to only appear on the radar of ardent motorcycle fans, as it’s the motor show to attend if you want to catch a glimpse of fresh metal, the occasional concept machine, and the latest clothing and protective gear.
All of the big guns attend, with the likes of Ducati, Yamaha and Suzuki using the show floor as an excuse to wow crowds with the next generation of machinery.
However, in recent years, attention has shifted to electrification and motorcycles boasting batteries and electric motors are becoming ever more prevalent.
This year, a number of established names in the biking world dropped the silk sheet on electrified bikes, while Milan’s Esposizione Internazionale del Ciclo also played host to a plethora of emerging brands from exotic markets that you’ve perhaps never heard of.
Here is a round-up of the most exciting metal from this year’s show…
1. Lambretta Elettra Scooter
Could there be a more perfect brand to reveal an electric scooter at an Italian motorcycle show than Lambretta? About as quintessential as pupil-dilating coffee and calzone, Lambretta chose home turf to reveal its electrified future in the form of the stunning Elettra e-scooter.
Stylistically, it builds on the company’s illustrious 77-year history with an evolved design that packs enough future touches to ensure it appears thoroughly modern, without straying too far from Lambretta’s iconic form.
The scooter is powered by an 11kW – or 15hp – electric motor, meaning it won’t be much faster than some of its 125cc machines of yesteryear. Charging the 4.6kWh lithium battery is said to take around five and half hours from a domestic socket, while fast-charging capabilities see that topped up in around 35 minutes from a public fast charger.
There is no word on a max range, but Lambretta says the Elettra has a top speed limited to 30mph, arguably making it one of the most stylish, learner-friendly scooters on the block when it eventually goes into production. Molto bello!
2. Kawasaki Z7 Hybrid
Kawasaki recently revealed its Ninja 7 Hybrid model, which wallops motorcycling convention in the face with a punitive 451cc parallel twin paired with a 9kW max traction electric motor and diminutive battery packs.
The result, according to Kawasaki, is 1,000cc motorcycle performance from a relatively weedy 450cc engine, as well as the ability to ride a short distance on electricity alone. You can also switch between manual shifting via bar-mounted buttons or opt for a fully automatic experience. Properly futuristic stuff.
The Z7 Hybrid, which was unveiled at EICMA this year, is essentially a stripped-back Ninja 7 Hybrid, boasting the same tech with a more aggressive, street fighter aesthetic.
3. Royal Enfield Electric Himalayan
Royal Enfield is rapidly becoming one of the most popular motorcycle brands out there, thanks to its mix of stylish retro street bikes, adventure machines and low-capacity bikes that suit nearly all levels of rider, especially those on tighter budgets.
The marque suggested it was toying with the idea of electrification a few years ago, but surprised everyone at EICMA when it revealed an electric Himalayan model.
However, this is more a scientific study for Royal Enfield than a production machine, as the electric Himalayan is still very much a work-in-progress prototype. In fact, the model is referred to as ‘The Testbed’ internally and as such, details on powertrain, range and performance figures are still tightly under wraps.
“We saw this as an opportunity to create something unique and to inspire future generations. What began as a capability exercise for our teams, is now this electric adventure motorcycle we are very proud of; a new expression of our love for adventure and the mountains,” Royal Enfield’s chief growth officer Mario Alvisi told MCN.
4. Italian Volt Lacama
Another home crowd hero, the Lacama from Italian Volt has been several years in the making, but following acquisition by electric tech company Tazzari EV, it now has the ability and technical knowhow to put this beast into production.
Marketed as an electric streetfighter, the Lacama comes boasting four riding modes, one of which is dubbed Rocket and unleashes the full 150hp peak power and a massive 230Nm of torque onto the road below.
There are two versions on offer, starting with the most aggressive Hypersport that can manage more than 250km (155 miles) on a single charge, while a Hyperlight version goes a little easier on peak performance but sheds a little weight, so tips the scales at 197kg.
Tazzari EV’s team of engineers has been integral to the development of the machine, producing an advanced battery temperature management system, which includes “circulation of dielectric liquid by immersion of the batteries”.
This allows for rapid and intense cooling, while heating allows them to be recharged even in harsh winter temperatures. Apparently, the system also packs self-extinguishing fire-fighting properties.
In one final novel move, the body work can be swapped completely, allowing the owner to change the look of the bike with a few simple screws. Pricing is set at around €30,000/$32,000, so it certainly won’t be cheap.
5. Yadea Kemper
It might not have the same exotic appeal as, say, a Ducati Panigale, but the Yadea Kemper arrived in Milan packing some serious performance credentials.
Firstly, the company stated a charge from 0-80 per cent would take just ten minutes thanks to its “high performance battery pack”, while a peak power of 40kW puts it in-line with numerous middleweight, 55bhp ICE roadsters currently on the market.
The Chinese-made machine uses a 6.4kW/h Lithium-Ion phosphate battery, compatible with Type 2 or CCS2 chargers and plugs, while its performance particulars see it accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62mph) in 4.9 seconds, and on to a top speed of 160 km/h (almost 100mph).
Brembo 4-piston brake calipers, KYB suspension and other premium parts suggest that this could be a real contender in the European and US markets if the price is right.
6. Ultraviolette F99
The world already knows about Indian brand Ultraviolette’s F77, an all-electric performance machine that is capable of accelerating from 0-60km/h (0-38mph) in under three seconds, while the proprietary battery tech is said to offer 190 miles of range on a single charge.
It’s a great-looking machine to boot, while European pricing of between €9,000 and €11,000 (around $10,700 / £8,700 / AU$16,600) makes it a much easier pill to swallow than many rival electric bikes.
That’s all well and good, but just look at the F99 factory racing version, which appears to want to devour anyone who so much as glances at it. Designed with pure aerodynamic prowess in mind, the electric motor has been tweaked, so max power output is up to 90kW (120bhp) and the top speed extends to the 160mph region.
Fingers crossed a road-going version of this makes its way to dealers, because this writer would be willing to hand over an internal organ for one.
7. Velocifero Race-X
Aside from Royal Enfield’s electrified Himalayan, many eMotorcycles tend to appeal to the inner city urban commuter, or perhaps those more profligate sportsbike owners prepared to part with vast sums to own the spiky end of the performance spectrum.
The Race-X by scooter manufacturer Velocifero does things a little differently by sporting chunky tires, protective bodywork and a quasi-street scrambler look that appears to take some inspiration from Ducati’s Scrambler model.
The battery has a capacity of 6.48kWh and can be fully recharged in 2.5 hours from a common 110-240 volt outlet, while a monoshock at the rear and a USD (updside-down) front fork give it a slice of additional toughness.
According to its makers, it is aimed at the youthful scooter market, meaning it can be ridden by anyone with a basic CBT in the UK, or simple scooter licenses in other markets.
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