Electric bike ‘dead silent’

Future motoring . . . William Halligan and his new 2019 Super Soco TS electric motorcycle on the platform at Dunedin Railway Station. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

William Halligan, of Tainui, talks to motoring reporter Shawn McAvinue about his 2019 Super Soco TS electric motorcycle.

How is it to ride?

I have done 170km on it in the first three days of owning it new and it’s been bloody good.

Why did you decide to go electric?

My family has a Nissan Leaf car and I wanted something like that. I’ve owned an Italian-looking 50cc four-stroke scooter and wanted more of a road bike. This bike needs less maintenance – on this all you need to do is replace the brake pads and brake fluid and tighten the boltsĀ  – that’s it. It’s incredibly reliable.

How far can you travel on one charge of your battery?

About 80km and I could second battery for it and increase its range.

How fast can they go?

Up to 70kmh.

What does it sound like running?

It’s dead silent – all you hear is your brake pads working and bumps in the road – that’s it. You can hear a text message sounding on a cellphone in your pocket when you’re riding it.

How is the experience of no engine noise?

It’s great – I love it. I chose a bike with an orange colour scheme so people can see me because I was worried people walking on the road could not hear me so I need to be seen.

Isn’t part of the thrill of riding a motorbike twisting the throttle and hearing a noise?

It certainly is – having no noise is unnerving for some riders – but there’s something charming about having a bike that doesn’t make any noise. As you’re not distracted by noise when you’re driving it, it’s easier to focus on what you’re doing.

Is your bike turning heads?

It is – especially driving through town on a calm day.