It seems one company has figured out the answer to the problem of electric motorcycles’ limited range: The Hanebrink Hustler X5 has a claimed 320-km range, 128 kph top speed, and a set of bicycle-style pedals under its sporty fairing.
Of course, battery-powered bicycles have been around forever; they’re even common in the third world. But the X5 is a lot more high-tech than the Chinese-built rattletraps you see whizzing around the city, under the pilotage of insurance-scoffing indigents in need of a shower.
Along with the bold range and speed claims, the bike comes with a dual suspension monocoque chassis, made from aircraft-grade aluminum tubing. Power comes from four li-ion nickel manganese nobalt liquid-cooled AllCell batteries. The Crystalyte 5303 Mid Motor connects to the rear wheel via a 14-speed transmission. Braking comes from a four-piston Brembo disc brake up front and an Avid disc brake in back.
If you ever run out of power while racing madly about on your battery bike, you can simply unbolt the lower fairing (you can unscrew the panels with a coin) and use the pedals to get from A to B. The machine weighs 54 kgs, though, so it’s not exactly a lightweight mountain bike.
The price isn’t lightweight, either. We couldn’t find any dollar figures on the Hanebrink website, but Gizmag claims the prices for the X5 start at US$16,940 – more than enough to buy a fuel-efficient, gas-powered motorcycle and stll have dough left over for a pretty sweet bicycle.