As electric motorcycles garner additional attention, more and more OEMs are getting into the game – including some extremely well-known brands.Harley-Davidson made a huge mark when it unveiled its LiveWire electric prototype in 2018 – a bike that will be offered in 2020.
And now another OEM is heading into the world of electric moto – BMW Motorrad. The Bavarian brand revealed its Vision DC Roadster concept this week – an attractive naked with an engine that resembles BMW’s iconic boxer twin.BMW has not released any further details about production or release dates about the cleverly named DC Roadster, but we expect to hear from them soon.
BMW Motorrad Vision DC Roadster Concept Overview
A vertical and longitudinal battery replaces the boxer engine and includes massive cooling ribs that protrude from the side – similar in design to the original BMW R 32, which was developed by Max Frix in 1923. We can also see that the cylinder-shaped engine is positioned under the battery and connected to the drive shaft.“The boxer engine is the heart of BMW Motorrad – an absolute stalwart of its character,” says Edgar Heinrich, Head of Design BMW Motorrad. “But BMW Motorrad stands for visionary zero-emissions vehicle concepts, too. In view of this, one question that arises is: what would happen if we were to replace the boxer engine with an electric motor and the required battery?“The Vision Bike shows how we’re able to retain the identity and iconic appearance of BMW Motorrad in distinctive form while at the same time presenting an exciting new type of riding pleasure.“After all: anyone who’s ever tried it out in practice knows very well that riding on two wheels is just as exciting when it’s electrically powered! The high level of torque right at set-off makes for breathtaking acceleration. This almost brutal power delivery creates a whole new experience of dynamic performance. And the BMW Motorrad Vision DC Roadster puts a face to this experience.”Following is from the official BMW Motorrad press release:In the side view, the BMW Motorrad Vision DC Roadster presents a highly dynamic gesture with clear front-wheel orientation. The low front section and the short, high rear convey a sense of agility. Instead of the fuel tank, a flat, finely-wrought tubular structure spans the vehicle corpus. Its further shaping integrates the seat in a modern form, thereby creating the flyline of a sporty roadster. The frame structure is a key factor in defining the dynamic side view.The large battery with its laterally protruding cooling systems is positioned at the center of a frame milled from aluminum. The three-dimensional surface finish on the battery trim conveys a contemporary aesthetic appeal with its precise contours. The cooling elements echo the slight forward tilt of the battery silhouette, giving the side a dynamic momentum. When starting the electric motor, these cooling elements move out slightly, indicating that the bike is ready to go.High performance with a light touch.The overall appearance of the BMW Motorrad Vision DC conveys a sense of lightness so as to emphasize driving dynamics. Elements such as the seat and the cooling system appear to hover around the battery. On the frame itself, lengthwise milled grooves create a fascinating visual effect, reducing the perceived volume and highlighting the bike’s longitudinal dynamics.This impression is further underscored by means of openings in the milled aluminum frame and the tubular frame structure arranged above it. High-tech materials such as carbon fiber and aluminum reduce the overall weight and give the BMW Motorrad Vision DC Roadster a technical aesthetic. Meanwhile, red contrast elements and brushed aluminum at selected points such as the battery, frame, and cool systems emphasize the bike’s innovative geometry.High-quality details on closer inspection.A key element of the BMW Motorrad Vision DC Roadster’s captivating overall appeal is the elaborate finish to be found in all its details. Within the mainly dark color concept, it is the mechanical elements such as the exposed universal shaft and the Duolever fork that add striking accentuations.In this case, the two classic BMW features are re-interpreted and elaborately showcased. In the same way, the suggested triangular frame echoes a typical feature of earlier BMW motorcycle models, even recapturing its white lines, which in this instance fluoresce in the dark. The minimalist design of the front and rear lights is an iconic implementation of the hallmark BMW Motorrad lighting, reflecting a maximum reduction in modern style.The headlamp shows the LED daytime riding light in a dynamic, flat U shape, while two compact LED lenses on each side provide the low and high beam. This creates a hallmark lighting design that makes the concept vehicle instantly recognizable as a BMW motorcycle – both during the day and at night.The rear light consists of two C-shaped LED elements which are integrated into the aluminum rear carrier in minimalist, technically high-quality form. On the flanks of the tires exclusively made by Metzeler for the Vision Bike, five fluorescent elements, each about the size of a postage stamp, are integrated. They combine innovative design with safety aspects: standing and moving, the lighting elements create an exciting graphic effect. In the darkness, they increase the visibility from the side and thus providing more security. They also convey dynamics when in motion.
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!