In a world where sustainability is at the core of industry & a way of creating balance with the planet is imperative; all sectors of the automotive industry in particular, are having to adapt & adopt a new way of driving their powertrains.
The EV markets are established for passenger cars/small vans, natural gas/hydrogen & methane are already being used to power some of the heavy-duty sector & new ‘future fuel’ options are continually being developed for aviation & marine.
So where does this leave the two wheeled world of motorcycling? Well, in it’s current development phase, motorbikes are certainly continuing to be electrified & not only for the road market.
I recently wrote about the incredible advances in eSports Cars & in particular the phenomenal technology behind the McMurtry Speirling Fan Car & what this development could mean for the future of eMotor Racing.
In motorcycle racing the options have until recent years been limited to small independent manufacturers, University collaborations or as in the case of the Isle of Man TT Zero race, it became dominated from 2013-2019 by Mugen, a team with associations at Honda.
However, since 2019 the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup has been the new addition to the MotoGPTM World Championship.
An all-electric series powered by Italian eMotorbike manufacturer Energica, MotoE™ has seen close racing & outstanding battles on some of the most iconic circuits in motorcycle racing. (1)
The Energica EGO was first showcased at EICMA in 2013. It was then a culmination of years of electric racing competition, with numerous victories including the 2010 European Championship during the first zero-carbon TTXGP competition and runner-up for the 2011 TTXGP World Championship. (2)
In 2018 Dorna Sports selected Energica to be the single manufacturer for the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup from 2019-2022. The all-electric races at iconic MotoGPTM circuits all over Europe feature 12 international teams, fielding 18 race pilots on identically prepared EGO Corsa racing machines. (2)
The Energica Ego Corsa has a maximum speed of up to 270km/h – (168 mph), 120 Kw of power, a high voltage lithium-ion battery @ approx. 20 kWh , 215Nm of torque from 0-5000 rpm & weighs in at a considerable 258kg.
However, as the original four year development agreement between Dorna Sports & Energica comes to a close, it is another Italian manufacturer which steps into the MotoETM arena.
As of the 2023 season, Ducati will be the sole official supplier of bikes competing in the FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup, the electric class of the MotoGP™ World Championship.
The first electric Ducati is a completely unique bike. Code Named ‘Ducati V21L’ the MotoETM race bike has been developed in total synergy by Ducati & Ducati Corse engineers & incorporates never seen before technical solutions for the battery pack, motor & inverter. (3)
Battery – The battery pack weighs 110 kg and offers a capacity of 18 kWh with a 20-kW charging socket integrated into the tail. Inside there are 1,152 cylindrical cells of the “21700” type.
Motor – Power: 110 kW / 150 cv. Torque: 140 Nm. Maximum rotation speed: 18.000 rpm. Weight: 21 kg.
Total bike weight – 225 kg.
Maximum recorded speed – 275 km/h, recorded at Mugello Circuit. (3)
The V21L is currently a prototype bike which starting from 2023 will compete in the FIM MotoE™ World Cup, with Ducati being the sole provider of the eBikes for the MotoETM series.
Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Motor Holding said of the MotoETM & Ducati collaboration:
“Ducati is always projected towards the future & every time it enters a new world it does so to create the best performing product possible. This agreement comes at the right time for Ducati, which has been studying the situation of electric powertrains for years, because it will allow us to experiment in a well-known & controlled field like that of racing competition.
We will work to make available to all participants of the FIM Enel MotoETM World Cup electric bikes that are high-performance and characterized by lightness. It is precisely on weight, a fundamental element of sports bikes, that the greatest challenge will be played out.
Lightness has always been in Ducati’s DNA & thanks to the technology & chemistry of the batteries that are evolving rapidly we are convinced that we can obtain an excellent result,”
Written & cited by Katy-Jane Mason for & on behalf of Dolphin N2.