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Yamaha electric crosser nears production

Yamaha Europe, the Dutch bikesport federation KNMV, and two high-tech firms Dohms Projecten and Spike join forces to build a race-ready Yamaha e-bike that is said to be as fast as a 250F and will go on sale in 2021.

Yamaha already makes electric motors for mountain bikes but this machine is made by Dohms’ EMX-Powertrain firm and uses their motor in a YZ250F chassis with a Spike battery.

The design in action. Photo by Bart van Overbeeke Photography

The official info says: The first electric motocross bike, EMX bike, that can compete with the current generation of 250cc dirt bikes. The prototype should be ready by the end of this year. The bike is a joint development project of Dohms Projects and Spike, supported by Yamaha Europe N.V. and the KNMV.

The new EMX is increasingly taking shape on the drawing board of startup Spike in Helmond. An electric motor is being built into an existing Yamaha YZ250F chassis. “I am convinced that the electric motorcycle we build will soon be faster than the current generation of dirt bikes,” says Bas Verkaik of Spike. “The big advantage of an electric motor is that the torque is much higher. This gives it more pulling power. You can drive a faster lap with it. ”

Opportunities
The idea for a competitive electric motocross bike came about a year and a half ago by motocross racer and MX trainer Elmar Dohms. “There are changes going on in terms of noise and the environment, which are to the disadvantage of dirt bike with a combustion engine. That is why I conducted a feasibility study with my company into alternatives. This showed that there are possibilities in the electrical field. ”

At the same time, the KNMV also looked at sustainability in motorsport. “I am a big fan of motocross. The smell of petrol and the sound of crackling engines ”, says Patrice Assendelft, director of the KNMV. “We really don’t give up on traditional combustion engines. But we have to look to the future. Now we can still make noise. However, if circuits face restrictions, then we must be prepared for the future.” An electric MX machine, which emits no harmful substances and makes no noise, makes practicing motocross easier. ”

At full power
The battery that will power the motorcycle is developed by Spike. Dohms looks at the drive, gearing and, for example, the weight distribution. In addition the battery is easy to replace to continue for a second moto session. Yamaha Motor Europe N.V. is enthusiastic about the initiative. “We are happy to support this project of Dohms and Spike as we feel it is important to motivate companies and initiatives like this to boost developments in electric technology. We are very much looking forward to test and evaluate the prototype to understand how the technology from Dohms and Spike performs in our YZF chassis,” says Leon Oosterhof from Yamaha Motor Europe’s Product Planning Division.

More details will be announced in the coming months. To stay updated regarding the development process see www.emx-powertrain.com  

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