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After Harley Davidson showcased their company’s first all-electric motorcycle at CES 2019, it became clear the electric vehicle revolution was making its way to the motorcycle market, something that Ducati confirms by announcing that the company was nearing production of their first all-electric motorcycle.
The Future is Electric
As reported by Micah Toll at Electrek, as early as 2017, Ducati Western Europe’s Managing Director Edouard Lotthé said that Ducati was planning on introducing both an electric scooter and an electric motorcycle. However, the earliest they could conceivably make it to market was 2021 and that wasn’t guaranteed.
Now, however, there’s confirmation that an electric Ducati will be introduced soon. At a recent Moto Student event, the CEO of Ducati, Claudio Domenicali, announced to the crowd that “The future is electric, we’re not far from starting series production.”
Ducati isn’t a stranger to electric vehicles, Toll points out. They have produced several models of electric bicycles in conjunction with other firms and Ducati has previously produced an electric motorcycle concept vehicle along with the Milan Polytechnic School of Design.
Ducati Responding to Growing Demand For Electric Motorcycles
In addition to Harley Davidson and Ducati, other motorcycle manufacturers are getting in on the electric motorcycle market.
Toll lists several manufacturers in his piece who are producing electric motorcycles. Italy’s Energica has long been manufacturing electric sports bikes, including high-performance models whose speeds exceed 150+ mph. Other brands such as Zero have unveiled a new line of electric motorcycles for 2019.
Lightning Motorcycles is set to unveil their latest model called the Strike. The Strike features impressive performance, reaching a top speed of 150 mph, a range of 150 miles, and can fast-charge in about 35 minutes. What’s more, the starting price for the Strike is $12,998, more than 60% less than Harley Davidson’s LiveWire, which is priced at nearly $30,000.
Rise of the Urban Bikes
While the history of motorcycles usually features open roads and fast speeds, the future of motorcycles is becoming increasingly urban.
In cities, a motorcycle will rarely ever need to exceed 50 mph, much less 150 mph and they rarely need a range greater than 50-60 miles for a round trip.
With this in mind, Super SOCO’s TC Max features a much more modest 62 mph top speed and a range of 68 miles and Fly Free has three models that top out at around 40-50 mph. The TC Max will sell for a little over $5,000, while Fly Free’s offerings can be purchased in the neighborhood of $4,500.
The Future of Electric Vehicles
As the effects of climate change become more and more apparent around the world, the need to transition away from burning fossil fuels and towards more environmentally-friendly vehicles will become more pressing and the market for electric vehicles of all kinds will only continue to grow.
Ducati, Harley Davidson, and others show is that vehicle makers of all kinds recognize this reality and are positioning themselves to expand their product lines for the future. By giving motorcycle enthusiasts what they want while producing vehicles that the world desperately needs, Ducati and others are showing the path forward for vehicle makers of all kinds, both two-wheeled and four-wheeled, on how to survive in a rapidly changing world without having to sacrifice what made their companies great in the first place.
Editor's Note: This article has been updated to properly reflect that Elektrek was the original source for the story. We apologize for the omission.