Here’s a novel concept: Design a fully electric motorcycle that gets 200 miles to a charge, goes 0 to 60 mph in 6 seconds, tops out at 120 mph, and takes the force of a baby elephant to tip it over.
That’s exactly what Lit Motors has been doing with its C-1 self-balancing electric motorcycle, billed as the ultimate urban driving solution.
Based in San Francisco Ca, Lit Motors CTO Daniel Kim and his team have developed a prototype of the C-1 and plan to have it on the market by 2014.
The C-1 looks more like something out of the Jetsons than a motorcycle. It is fully enclosed (optional convertible or moon roof) in a steel unibody chassis with reinforced doors, and includes multiple airbags and a safety belt.
But the real kicker is the gyro technology. Two electronically controlled gyroscopes putting out over 1,300 ft-lb of torque keep the C-1 balanced at a stop, and although it will skid, it won’t tip or roll over, even in a collision.
Since it is classified as a motorcycle, C-1 riders will reap all the advantages, with its enclosed nature allowing you not to rely soley on your clothing for safety gear. Lane splitting, riding two abreast, utilizing the HOV lane and motorcycle parking spots combine with the economy and cleanliness of an electric vehicle, to offer the big city commuter big savings in both time and money.
In fact, the C-1 is aimed primarily at big city dwellers as a more efficient way to get around, and to those who commute to the city, with some estimates of time spent in traffic reduced by 50%. Another theory claims that if 10% of automobile drivers in California would switch to motorcycles, traffic congestion would drop by 40%.
So the big question is will the public buy it? With over 250 preorders at 24 grand a pop, that’s a start. Now if they can get some of that other 10% to buy in maybe they’ll have something there.
Check out the Lit Motors C-1 video on our google+ page.