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The ambitious, up and coming electric motorcycle manufacturer Lightning has big plans for its new RR motorcycle. The new model doesn’t have a name yet because the name depends on how fast it will go at Bonneville Speed Week in August.
Its current model is called the LS-218 due to its official top speed of 218 mph which it achieved at the Bonneville Salt Flats back in 2012. Since then, Lightning has been touting the LS-218 as the fastest motorcycle in the world - gas or electric. In 2013, an LS-218 won the Race to the Clouds at Pike’s Peak by a margin of over 20 seconds proving that it’s good at much more than straight-line speed.
As if that weren’t enough, Lightning has a new prototype that its expecting will be even faster. A couple weeks ago, the new, unnamed prototype ran at El Mirage and hit 211.73 mph. That beats the LS-218’s standing start mile record of just 189 mph.
Now they have their sights set on Bonneville. According to a press release published by Motorcycle.com, Lightning believes the “new design has the potential to smash our own production bike world speed record of 218 mph.”
The big difference in the new bike is a higher density battery pack. The new battery technology gives the new bike a torque “curve” that they claim is a straight line between 100-9,500 rpm. They’ve also upgraded the chassis to be lighter and more stable.
Lightning has already made amazing progress in the world of electric motorcycles and this new prototype will push the limits even further. Like Tesla and Energica, they’re proving you don’t need internal combustion to achieve incredible performance.
Here’s Jay Leno talking about the LS-218 with CEO Richard Hatfield and taking it for a spin.