Kymco may have the answer to one of the biggest problems with electric motorcycles by allowing riders to dial in their own motorcycle sound!
The Taiwanese scoter company is branching out with their SuperNEX electric sports bike concept unveiled last week in Milan.
They have produced this video which is actually quite useless as it doesn’t give an example of the sound nor show the bike in action.
However, we have little doubt that the concept will work.
Kymco has been around a long time and has been working on electric vehicles for the past few years.
The SuperNEX concept electric superbike features some serious kit including Brembo brakes, Ohlins suspension, Oz wheels, an alloy frame and Metzeler Racetec tryes.
Dial in sound
But the most interesting aspect to us is the sound.
Electric vehicles are quiet which is not only a turnoff for riders, but also a danger to pedestrians in the urban landscape.
On the highway, electric motorcycles can actually make quite a bit of noise. In fact, like most motorcycles, at that speed the loudest noise is tyre on tarmac.
But for those who love to hear the motor working, Kymco has developed what they call a dial-in Active Acoustic Motor.
Here is how they describe it:
The motor has a multi-frequency acoustics generator that reconstructs the dynamic sounds of the motor with great authenticity. It delivers the iconic supersport thrills and messages that every sportbike rider needs. The sound can be further tuned to rider’s liking for its character and volume. On a supersport motorcycle, the sound is one of the most important media for the human-machine connection. The sound communicates the rpm level and the load condition of the motor. It constantly gives the rider situation awareness, so riders can determine their timing for shifting the gear and applying the throttle. And, with the rpm rising and the speed climbing, riders hear the surge of the sound one crescendo after another. It is one of the most intense sources of thrill for the sportbike riders. The sound also declares the unique character of the machine. Whether it is vrooming, roaring, rumbling, or screaming, every supersport bike has its own distinct sound that is different in tone, intensity, texture and delivery. It is not only a discrete projection of each machine, but also an outward declaration of the owner.
They don’t say how it works but claim the rider can dial in sound and “tune” it to their taste.
Harley-Davidson’s LiveWire electric motorcycle which will be available overseas next year and in Australia at the end of 2020 makes a turbine “whooshing” sound by meshing the gears.
Maybe the SuperNEX does something similar with the gears.
Speaking of which, Kymco’s SuperNEX will also appeal to riders of conventional bikes because it has gears.
Like the ill-fated Brammo (and then Victory) Empulse, it has chain drive and normal gears.
Most electric bikes are direct drive and have twist-and-go-throttle with no gears like a scooter.
Other than that, Kymco has not released any tech specs on power, speed, range and battery charging times.
There is also no word on if/when it will go into production.