TimHuber

62 months ago

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Fuell: Erik Buell’s Latest Electric Moto Company

Los Angeles, California, United States

After picking himself up and dusting himself off after the closure of EBR, Erik Buell has set his sights on the eBike game

If you have even a tenuous grasp on motorcycling, then you’re no doubt familiar with the name Erik Buell. Buell has previously been the driving force behind a number of motorcycle companies — all of which for one reason or another have gone belly up, largely due to reasons outside of Buell’s control. Undaunted from his previous attempts, Erik is back for 2019 with an all-new company, this time, embracing two-wheeled electrics.

The Fuell Flow Electric Motorcycle

The Fuell Flow Electric Motorcycle

Last year this same electric project was announced under the label of “VanguardSpark Motorcycles”. The new e-outfit was cofounded by Buell, Frédéric Vasseur of SPARK Racing (a Formula E supplier), and Francois-Xavier Terny of Vanguard Motorcycles (hence the name VanguardSpark). Fast-forward to today and the new firm has just officially launched — showing off a new company name, as well as its pair of electric two-wheeled offerings.

The Fuell Flow features a 13-gallon locking storage compartment

The Fuell Flow features a 13-gallon locking storage compartment

Meet “Fuell Motorcycles”

The moniker is obviously a nod to Erik, though we’d also argue that the Buell name carries more weight (and marketing value) than Vanguard or SPARK. The company’s press release states that it strives to deliver bikes that it describes as “innovative, upgradeable, and attractive”. So what are these products that supposedly possess said traits?

Press photos show a large color display and what look like bar-end mirrors

Press photos show a large color display and what look like bar-end mirrors

The Flow

The bonafide motorcycle of the two, the Flow is a full-faired electric two-wheeler. The Fuell’s design blends modern visual themes with vintage-inspired touches, with a disk-style rear-rim held via a single-sided (monoshocked) swing-arm positioned beneath a café-humped style tail section. The Flow’s bodywork fully encases the powertrain, which is capped off with a faux fuel-cell, nestled behind a set of inverted forks holding a dual-stacked HID headlight setup and upswept, tracker-style bars. Just like prior offerings of Buell’s, the Flow’s aesthetic design will likely be somewhat divisive.

The Flow was designed with urban riding in mind, hence the raised bars and upright riding position

The Flow was designed with urban riding in mind, hence the raised bars and upright riding position

At the heart of the Flow is a proprietary wheel-mounted electric motor — available in two different powertrain specs; 11kW, 15hp model (roughly comparable to a 125 and designated as a moped) and 35kW 47hp version (around a half-liter gasser and legally classified as a traditional motorcycle). The Fuell boasts what the press release calls a “high-tech fully-connected dash” which looks trick as hell in the photos, though we aren’t really sure what connectivity and features are on hand.

While the rear-wheel disc isn't going to do you any favors in a cross wind, the look is popular

While the rear-wheel disc isn't going to do you any favors in a cross wind, the look is popular

The Fluid

The second of the two offerings, the Fuell Fluid, is an electric bicycle with impressive performance and specs that genuinely looks like a regular, pedal-powered bicycle. Pushing the Fluid along is a hub-mounted motor drawing power from a dual-battery unit that’s said to offer a 125-mile range. The lightweight ebike sports internal hub gears and a carbon belt too. Other amenities on the Fluid include disc brakes, an LED headlight cube, mirror, and what appears to be a handlebar-mounted LCD display.

The Fuell Fluid

The Fuell Fluid

Like the Flow, the Fluid is offered in two variants; a pedal-assist bicycle limited to 20mph, and the “S-Pedlec which is capable of almost 30mph — though they both come equipped with a pair of 490wH battery cells (collective 980). According to press info, the Fluid is reportedly good for whopping 73ft-lbs of torque — on tap at all times — which is a lot for a bicycle.

The Fluid eBike features road-going bits like a mirror, dash, and headlight

The Fluid eBike features road-going bits like a mirror, dash, and headlight

Pricing & Release Dates

One of the most surprising aspects of the press release was the pair of ebikes’ MSRPs. The Fuell Fluid ebike starts at only $3,295, while the base model Fuell Flow’s (11kW) pricing begins at $10,995. The press release also states that both models can be upgraded, and that Fuell will offer higher-spec batteries, chargers, motors, and accessories. The upgradable element is more important than most probably realize, as EV technology is moving at a paid pace, and being able to adopt the newest battery or motor technology via an upgrade allows Fuell’s wares to stay technologically relevant and not become obsolete after only a few years (making that low MSRP all the more attractive).

The Flow features rear passenger grab handles that will also act as crash:drop protection

The Flow features rear passenger grab handles that will also act as crash:drop protection

Fuell says additional information will be made available on both the company, as well as its first two bikes, and over the next two months, Fuell is slated to debut working prototypes to the public. (The Fuell website is also scheduled to be up by the end of April 2019). As far as deliveries go, unfortunately the Fluid ebike is the first of the pair to hit showrooms, scheduled for deliveries by the end of 2019, while the Flow electric motorcycle on the other hand won’t become available until 2021.

While it resembles your average bicycle, the Fluid boasts over 70ft-lbs of torque

While it resembles your average bicycle, the Fluid boasts over 70ft-lbs of torque

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parul001

62 months ago

Cool bike