Michael Czysz's Mind-Bending Electric Superbike - Dreaming in Digital

American motorcycle designer Michael Czysz embraces electric power

By Aaron Frank, Photography by Adam Campbell

Exact Change
Why the MotoCzysz e1pc is the Future of Superbikes
"Is it as good as a gas bike?" That's the only question that matters regarding electric superbikes, and it's not easy to answer. By most objective measures-top speed, weight, lap times-it's not even close. Any 600cc sportbike will run circles around MotoCzysz's e1pc, the most sophisticated electric motorcycle in the world. But measured against more subjective criteria, in terms of power delivery and overall rideability, the e1pc is by far the better solution. There's never been a sportbike that's easier to ride fast.

The e1pc redefines our idea of a powerband. Michael Czysz says his motor produces 250 lb.-ft. of torque from zero rpm, and maintains that mammoth output undiminished three-quarters of the way across its rev range before tailing off. Power availability is always proportional to the amount of space under the dyno curve. With a graph that looks more like a rectangle than the traditional triangle, the e1pc offer more headroom under its curve than any internal-combustion engine in the world.

On the racetrack, this translates to power that feels immense, immediate and incredibly broad. Whenever you pick up the throttle on a traditional motorcycle, you get a different torque response depending on engine rpm. Because the e1pc's torque output is so linear and wide, you almost always get the same torque response. Whether exiting a 20-mph hairpin or a 120-mph sweeper, engine response is consistently powerful and predictable, like a bike that's always in the right gear with the revs perfectly matched.

The e1pc's direct-drive electric powerplant is essentially silent and vibration-free, and with no gearbox or clutch to manipulate, layers of distraction are stripped away. Keith Code famously described riding a sportbike as "making change from a $10 bill: $2 of attention is spent on the shift lever, $2 on the clutch, $2 on the throttle and $2 on the brakes. The $2 left over is what you have to spend on everything else." The preternaturally calm e1pc gives you what feels like $6 in change, so you have even more attention to spend on body position, traction management and negotiating curves.

This unique sensory experience, and the unparalleled ability to focus on going fast, is the essence of an e-bike's character. "Without any noise, vibration or gears, you'd think this bike couldn't possibly have any character," Czysz says. "But what I find is that you're able to get in tune with the bike on a much deeper, more profound level. You're able to concentrate better and go faster as a result. To me, that's everything. If I can go faster, I think it's a better solution."

We agree. And we can't wait to ride the next-generation e1pc. Czysz says new battery technology will subtract 100 lbs. from the 525-lb. bike, making it comparable to a 600cc sportbike, while advances in motor development will allow higher rpm to turn that prodigious torque into more horsepower and greater top speed. Believe it or not, a few more technological leaps will have many of us lusting for electric superbikes.

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