Brammo makes NBC Nightly News

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Brammo_NBC.jpgWhen was the last time you saw a motorcycle get its own segment on a national news broadcast? Or, for that matter, this many awkward biker gang references? Brammo Enertia, leader of the pack?

Update: two more show segments included below; interviews with CEO Craig and Designer Brian.  >

  • PeteP

    Does there have to be a friggin’ “Outlaw Biker” reference for anything motorcycle related in the press?

    • Ajax

      the most exciting part about this was the idea that the cost for labor on the assembly is less than shipping from china. Thats awesome.

    • Core

      Watching it was like.. watching a dolphin try to fit in with humans.. on land. Was an awkward situation.

      • Core

        I figured I better mention I was talking about the news caster and not the bike…

    • cWj

      yes.

  • CafeRacer1200

    Well, I’m glad they did the story. The Enertia came out looking really good. However, If I heard one more Steppenwolf reference, I was going to demand that The Nightly News open every broadcast with quoted from Don Henley’s Dirty Laundry.”

  • Steven

    Yes, my used 02 KLR650 which gets 70 mpg is a fraction of the cost……$1500. But on the other hand the price has come down, and it really looks ok. And made in the US.

  • Andy Lee

    Unfortunately it has the same problems as electric cars – limited range and slow recharge. Definitely a step in the right direction though.

  • Syke

    “Does there have to be a friggin’ “Outlaw Biker” reference for anything motorcycle related in the press?”

    Unfortunately so – to get it across to all the mundanes in the Camrys and crossovers out there, the Hell’s Angel line is mandatory. You’re average non-/never-will-consider-it-riders sees all of us as some form of Hell’s Angel or other.

    And it’s been that way for at least the last 40 years.

    Hell’s Angels = probably the greatest bit of marketing in history.

  • GasBreather09

    I’m pretty sure this is just a glorified ugly scooter. And quite frankly have no interest in paying $8k for a bike that doesn’t go above 6omph. Like Steven said…even his used POS gets 70mpg…modern bikes are so gas efficient as is, that the “green buyer” buys gas powered motorcycles for the fuel economy alone. I guess now they needed a reason to stop at Best Buy on their way to starbucks on their bike.

    I for one will never buy an electric bike so long as I live. It’s like buying an automatic Porsche turbo..you should be castrated and burned at the stake in front of the village of true motorsport enthusiasts.

    • http://www.brammo.com BrammoBrian

      GasBreather09,

      “I for one will never buy an electric bike so long as I live. It’s like buying an automatic Porsche turbo..you should be castrated and burned at the stake in front of the village of true motorsport enthusiasts.”

      Ok, ok… Not a fan. Got it. Sheesh…

      BTW – It must blow your mind to know that we started out making a 10 liter 700+ HP V12 Supercar, then built the 2.8s 0-60 Ariel Atom, and then opted to do this instead… never say never.

      • jbt

        Yes, and those two were powered by gasoline, not friggin’ electricity, so either one of those vehicles would travel comfortable at highway speeds, and for more than what, 60 miles if lucky?
        No thanks, while I applaud the engineering, call me when there’s a major revolution in electricity storage and replenishment times.

    • Syke

      Never say never. Two years ago, after 30+ years of riding Triumph 650/750 twins, Harley-Davidsons, modern Japanese sportbikes (and customizing a couple of them into streetfighters), 900cc dual sports, vintage 70′s Japanese bikes and a few Honda Super 90′s, I discovered something I’d never have previously considered:

      A 150cc Chinese scooter makes more sense, and is more fun in city traffic, than any motorcycle I’ve ever owned.

      65mpg and I’m having a giggle for the 35 minute commute. What’s not to like?

      Oh yeah, my 924S is a five-speed.

      So never close your mind to a new concept.

  • Syke

    By the way, I’m old enough to be able to remember when Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild” had NOTHING to do with motorcycles. It was about a year between the time that the song was released, and “Easy Rider” hit the screen.

    In that time period, I heard the band live at my college – the song was just another one of the playlist, run somewhere in the middle of the set, no less.

  • Bronson

    Putting their lame “Motorcycle gang” comments aside, I thought it was a good piece. Thumbs up for Brammo.

  • http://loveandpolish.com John Garcia

    Hmmm… Just a little too “Green” for me. Who wants to smell the “exotica” of burning batteries when instead, you can have the pleasure of smelling VP race fuel. Ah… Satisfaction for the soul.

  • Roman

    It strikes me as an awesome little commuter. Plenty of range to get you there and back, with practically non-existent running costs. Keep the gas-powered bike for weekend fun, and you’re all set. I really don’t see what the problem is.

    Also there’s this: American innovation, fuck yeah!

  • Recce

    Yeah, I have 50mpg KLR, but that certainly doesn’t mean I would not be interested in one of these. Why do they have to be mutually exclusive? Initially marketing through Best Buy is stroke of genius. Longer term, however, there will have be cycle dealers involved to deal with real world issues, trade ins, finance, service, etc. Can you imagine the kid at Best Buy when you need a new tire installed or a leaky fork seal repaired?

  • http://ridethetorquecurve.blogspot.com hoyt

    The stale references to “biker gang” & Steppenwolf are lame to the existing riding crowd, but it probably got the attention of the non-riding public on the couch. More of those riders buying Brammo is great for all of us. I think the piece was good considering a short national news segment.

    The recyclable content of the bike is incredible. Thank you Brammo

    I’m anxious to see how good a naked electric bike could look. Someday (as batteries get small enough), maybe the beauty of the bike will be what is not there at all, leaving the rest for a stylish frame and whatever aesthetics can be given to the electric motor.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      It’s actually a really good looking bike, it’s just hard to shoot. Check out Grant’s photos in our test ride and tell me you still don’t like it.

      • hoyt

        I don’t mind the look of the Brammo commuter at all.

        I was referring to other styles of electrics. Currently, there are the commuter and the sportbike. What will a cafe electric look like?

  • W

    IMHO Without the range of a Sportster (75 mi back in the days of the small tanks) it has limited U.S. sales potential even in compact urban areas.

    Whether customers actually need 75 miles does not matter. Perception is everything to the U.S. consumer. Our country of SUV drivers likes to know that they can do something whether they do it or not.

    The marketing message here is unclear and, like it or not, that is a critical component Brammo will need to succeed. Real greenies in urban centers are on bicycles and will continue to be. Car people will want to feel they have the potential to travel a practical distance and motorcycle people still want a motorcycle experience (with all that entails). Who are they trying to convert?

    I am also not sure why electric MC companies in the U.S. keep trying to reinvent the proven basic geometry of motorcycles.
    The Brammo is closer to an electric mountain bike than a motorcycle. Agni and some of the others amy be taking the less exciting path but they are taking a path is more likely to put a real electric bike under a motorcyclist.

    Above all, ignoring any of these practicalities, bikes don’t sell if they don’t trigger something visceral. Can anyone here actually remember what the PC800 looked like? A couple of good ideas in that one but it looked like a piece of IKEA furniture, as well.

    • jconli1

      “I am also not sure why electric MC companies in the U.S. keep trying to reinvent the proven basic geometry of motorcycles.”

      the Brammo’s geometry looks to me like just about every small standard and UJM ever made.

      I just don’t get the hate for these things. Even if its not your style, something American made, innovative, far more useful and competitively priced than anything that’s come before – plus upgradable for the future? What’s not to like?

      I’m looking forward to test riding one soon.

  • http://matthewabate.wordpress.com Matthew

    Good for them getting in the news. Even if it is a joke of a news show, at least (potentially) millions of people saw it.

    Even if you hate this specific bike this is a good thing.

    • http://www.brammo.com Brian Wismann

      Glass half empty kind of a guy are we? ;)

  • Hangar4

    It looks good but it needs a little more top end speed. After all, commuting on the highways in SoCal is a necessary evil.

  • David A. Park

    Speed, 60mph. Range, 45mi. What is the range at 60?

  • Roman

    I just don’t get the hate for these things. Even if its not your style, something American made, innovative, far more useful and competitively priced than anything that’s come before – plus upgradable for the future? What’s not to like?
    Thank you, I don’t get the hate either…is it an internet thing (i.e., every internet forum in existence has a disproportionate amount of negativity)?

    As far as upgradability goes, is that in terms of swapping out the battery once a newer and presumably more robust model becomes available? If so, that’s pretty damn clever.

    • W

      No hate here, I am impressed with the Agni effort and some of the others. My questions are practical questions about the product and the business model.

      If one is selling a concept, great, do what you like and the market be damned. However, to actually make an impact, it means selling the product to some reasonably large group of consumers. To do that, a manufacturer must answer these questions, this is the nature of selling products.

      The technology means little if you can’t find enough people to adopt it to support your business model (City Car).

      You can be assured these are questions that the big OEMs are asking themselves, as well, before they make decisions about whether or not to enter this market.

  • JRA

    im waiting for d sport version

  • http://www.urbanrider.co.uk Urban Rider

    @ Brammo

    Who are the guys in the video riding the bikes? They are wearing pretty ugly sports bike type gear. How is that going to appeal to Joe Public?

    If it were me I’d put a mannequin next to it in Best Buy dressed up in the kind of gear people can imagine themselves walking around off the bike in. Alpine Stars Nero, Belstaff, Tucano Urbano Figaro Jacket etc…

    We supplied Wes and Grant the jacket thy wore on the bike in their feature. I think there is alot you could do with dressing the rider on the bike appropriately to extend your mass appeal. After all people have to imagine themselves riding it.

  • Holzer

    I honestly like the styling, particularly the wheels and the front view. If the ranger were slightly higher and the price slightly lower, I’d be eager to grab one for commuting, errands, fun little jaunts, etc.
    My main issue is that I enjoy being on a motorcycle much further than 45 miles and I enjoy going faster than 60 mph so it’s not yet applicable for me when it comes to enjoyment.
    Made in America, using recycle components, zero emissions (not including the power generating plant emissions), mechanical simplicity, practical riding position, these are ALL great aspects that should help Brammo succeed.

  • wbkr

    Hard to shoot… I bet it is. I’m not against e-bikes at all, but this one looks like Barbies bike. FOr a bike to sell it has to have performance or looks or preferably both. This one has neither (yet).

    • jconli1

      “FOr a bike to sell it has to have performance or looks”

      Then explain the great success of the V-Strom 650.

      • s0crates82

        Versatility, MPG, range, visibility, and comfort.

      • Syke

        Never made the mistake of looking at performance only in terms of 0-60 time, top speed, or lean angles through a corner. A lot of times, performance is best described as how well you can get through 500 mile days going cross country.

        That kind of performance is a lot harder to do, and a lot more impressive than what you get in fifteen seconds after the traffic light turns green.

  • http://www.brammofan.com/ Brammofan

    Brammobrian beat me to it. The “born to be mild . . to the planet” was a bit cringe worthy. Other than that, it was great.

  • http://www.xborgforum.de/forum/portal.php Eric H.

    Hello all…

    I find this bike very cool…The European city I liove in is certainly very small when compared to the cities you others call home…Here, such a bike would be an absolutely perfekt alternative to gasoline-powered transport when travelling in and out of city center, to and from work…(So long as you didn’t need to ride it on any major highway and the like)

    However, for anything other than this, the Enertia needs bigger balls – more power, longer duration and more gooo faaaaaast…!!!

    I’d ride it if someone gave me one…But, they have much work to do before I’m ready to buy one…

    We also here these types of bikes :

    http://www.zeromotorcycles.com/

    Best regards,

    Eric H.

  • jconli1

    (I agree on both counts regarding the Strom. My question was a rhetorical response to wbkr’s quote…)

  • s0crates82

    Also, I don’t get why these electric bikes aren’t two or three speeds. Hard to build a tranny/clutch that can handle the torque? I’d think that a multi-speed transmission would help with range AND top speed. Are there special physics involved that I don’t know about?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      The inefficiency transmissions would bring would negate any benefit from the extra ratios. The single speed setup is virtually lossless.

  • Charlie

    1) needs a higher top speed (at least 95 or so)
    2) needs to do 0-60mph in 6.5 or less
    3) the range is ok as long as it can be recharged in a relatively short amount of time.

    that said it isn’t a bad bike, and I think a lot of people will buy them instead of scooters, but it lacks the speed to make me happy. I would prefer a new ninja, for half the price. I know performance isn’t always best measured in acceleration or top speed but 60 is not fast enough for anything but city use.

  • Mattro

    I love the concept. People have this zero-sum image of the motorcycle world, even among more traditional rides. No room for cruisers among the sport bike crowd, no room for classics among the new bike crowd, and now no room for electrics among the combustion fuel crowd.

    No, this will never replace my v-twin motorcycle, but I’d be glad for it to be my electro bike. Just because I like a big juicy burger doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the benefits and particular merits of a veggie pattie.

    That having been said, if I had $8k laying around, it would go to a the superior power and utility of a full-on motorcycle. Get the economy of scale up and reduce the price. At $5500, the Enertia would truly be set in motion.

  • Ian G

    This is reasonably cool, and is a start in the right direction. Just so everyone knows, unlike the internal combustion engine, which has had over 100 years of development put into it, development in electric power basically stopped after 1910, as we discovered cheap oil, etc etc. Electric power will take more work obviously, as it only has a fraction of the development and resources being invested in it as internal combustion engines. To give you an example, the batteries in your bikes have existed unchanged for 100 years. If people want to see better electric vehicles, they need to realize that development is just restarting about now. Before people give up, give it 20 years of development. You will start seeing some amazing products, and acceleration. Because, electric motors have 2+-.5 times more torque than power, and can make for some impressive statistics. So, we should all realize, that our Motors and batteries are about as-long on the scale of development as petrol motors in the 40s and 50s. So just give them time, and they will improve!