Dec 17, 2020

World’s Fastest Motorcycle is Solar Powered

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability, transportation

The Lightening SuperBike is the fastest production motorcycle in the world, clocking in at 218 MPH. (There are faster bikes, but none of them are street legal.) It recently won the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, beating all competitors, including gasoline-powered bikes. But don’t ask how many cylinders its engine has — this bike is solar powered. Well technically it’s battery-powered, but it charges the batteries with solar energy.

Image: SMA America

The SuperBike sports a liquid-cooled 125 kW electric motor, roughly equivalent to a 167 hp engine. At non-racing speeds, it offers a 100 mile range on the highway and 160 mile range in the city. Wondering why the mileage is higher in the city than on the highway? Two words: regenerative braking. How much will it cost to “fill the tank?” With its 370V 12 kWh battery bank and an electric rate of $0.12 per kWh, you can drive 160 city miles on $1.44 worth of charge, assuming you’re charging it from the grid. If you go solar, it’s free after you recover the investment in the solar panels and inverter.

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