BMW Motorrad Concept Vehicle BMW E-Scooter - Click above for high-res image gallery

The BMW Motorrad Concept Vehicle BMW E-Scooter is all-electric, but does its best to provide the range of a regular, internal-combustion-engine scooter. The point of this exercise was to create an electric mount that could take the place of a scooter commuter in terms of range, power and convenience. The E-Scooter has a daily range of 100 kilometers (62 miles), and it's battery can be fully charged in three hours from a household outlet.

Speaking of that battery, instead of a proper frame, the aluminum casing for the battery and liquid-cooled ancillary systems acts as the frame. BMW says the powerplant is strong enough for "safe and reliable overtaking" on highways and for "hill starts on steep slopes" with two on board.

Lacking a hub motor and planetary gearbox, a toothed belt runs from the electric motor to a belt pulley on the swinging fork pivot, where a drive pinion controls power to the rear wheel via a roller chain. Intense, yes, but what else would you expect of BMW? For all the info, check out the gallery of high-res photos below and the press release and videos after the jump.





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BMW Motorrad Innovation Day 2011. BMW Motorrad Concept Vehicle BMW E-Scooter.

01.07.2011
Innovative development study with elevtric drive.


Space is becoming increasingly scarce in the major conurbation centres and traffic density is growing continuously. Political and social conditions are changing. All these factors coalesce in increasing demands in terms of private transportation. The concept vehicle BMW E-Scooter with electric drive provides an innovative look at changing urban mobility needs.

While the currently available, purely electrically-powered scooters have been almost exclusively used inside towns and cities to date due to their performance and range, which makes them suitable for short distances only, the concept vehicle BMW E-Scooter offers a much broader spectrum of use.

High range and excellent performance figures.
Since it was conceived as a future-oriented vehicle for commuting between urban areas and the city centre, therefore attracting funding from the German Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development, there were two main requirements for its development: dynamic figures comparable to those of a maxi scooter with a combustion engine and a high range in realistic conditions of use.

The concept vehicle BMW E-Scooter provides the necessary sustained output and maximum speed for safe and reliable overtaking on urban motorways and also when carrying two people. It is also easily capable of managing hill starts on steep slopes with a pillion passenger.
The development study also has the necessary maximum output to be able to achieve acceleration figures within the important 0 - 60 km/h range, which are at the level of current maxi scooters powered by a 600 cc combustion engine.

The high storage capacity of the battery allows a daily driving range of over 100 kilometres. In this way, the BMW E-Scooter concept vehicle provides a long-term, zero-emissions urban and suburban travel option which is suitable for everyday use.

Fast charging at conventional power sockets.
The E-Scooter concept vehicle's battery is charged at regular household power sockets as found in Europe, the USA, Canada and Japan, so no special charging station is required. When the battery is completely flat, the charging period is less than three hours. However, practical experience has shown that the battery rarely runs out completely, so charging times are generally shorter.

Frame.
Unlike existing maxi scooters with combustion engines, the concept vehicle does not have a main frame. Instead, the aluminium battery casing - which also contains the electronic system required for battery cell monitoring -takes over the function of the frame. The steering head support is connected to it, as is the rear frame and the left-hand mounted single swing arm with directly hinged, horizontally installed shock absorber.

Electric machine, power electronics and charging device.
Due to its high output, the BMW Motorrad development study has no hub motor with direct drive or planetary gearbox. Instead, the high-performance electric machine is mounted behind the battery casing. The secondary drive consists of a toothed belt from the electric machine to the belt pulley mounted coaxially on the swinging fork pivot with drive pinion. From here, power transmission occurs via roller chain to the rear wheel. When the E-Scooter is decelerated in trailing throttle or when braking, the energy released is recuperated, thereby increasing the vehicle's range by between 10 and 20 per cent depending on driving profile.

The electrical components required for the electric drive are installed on the top of the battery casing. The external battery electronics system permanently collects and monitors data such as the temperature and voltage of the battery cells, both during travel and while charging. The power electronics acts as a control system and controls the electric machine. The charging device includes a charge cable which allows the battery to be recharged at a conventional household power socket. In addition to the other components like an ISO insulation monitor, high-voltage indicator and a high-voltage distributor, a DC-DC converter is included. It is required to change high voltage to low voltage power to supply the 12 volt vehicle supply and especially for the control units.

Cooling system.
During travel, the electric machine and power electronics are liquid-cooled, as is the charging device during charging. An electric coolant pump ensures coolant circulation through the radiator. While a coolant is commonly used for the battery in electrically powered cars, the E-Scooter concept vehicle uses an air cooling system in order to save space.

Safety.
BMW Motorrad is one of the very few motorcycle manufacturers to be able to draw on its own experience and expertise in the automobile field in the development of electrically powered vehicles. Synergies are derived from the development of the BMW E-Scooter concept vehicle not just in the ready availability of technical components but also in the area of high voltage engineering and the associated safety requirements. Here for the first time, standards established by the leading automobile manufacturers relating to high voltage safety (> 60 volt) and functional reliability are being applied to a two-wheel vehicle with electric drive.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      Brex
      • 3 Years Ago
      When viewing the photo gallery, why is there no way to return to the article? There used to be a "Return to Post" link but now one has to click on the Autoblog logo, go the the home page and drill back down to get to the article. Please fix it.
      vvk
      • 3 Years Ago
      > battery can be fully charged in three hours from a household outlet. Yeah, if you live in Europe and have a 220V outlet.
      Mike
      • 3 Years Ago
      BMW, bring back the C1!!
      Andre Neves
      • 3 Years Ago
      A "camo'd" scooter deliberately shown to the press? Really? What's the point of putting camo on pre-production vehicles these days if you're just showing it off to everybody!?
        tump
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Andre Neves
        Builds mystery. Also, it may be that the bodywork isn't "final" so they don't want to go "here it is!" and then release it and the bodywork is different. Kind of like an "ignore this part for now" sign.
      stclair5211
      • 3 Years Ago
      Stupid. How much will it cost? I GUARANTEE it will cost more than a comparable gas scooter. It will cost more, be slower, heavier, and has less range while needing to be charged which adds more cost. Going green ALWAYS costs more. REALITY CHECK ECO LOSERS: If you want us to adopt your green horse sh#t, make it cheaper than the real deal!!! Save us money AND people will buy it!!! And not this phony, but you will save gas BS.
      Javanese
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why.. just why. Cant they just make a regular scooter? Sure the electric might have the range of a normal petrol engine scooter, but when it ran out of gas in 100 miles, a petrol engine only need 2 minutes to go another 100miles, how long do you have to charge the battery again? A scooter will definitely get 80mpg isnt that green enough?
        Russell
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Javanese
        It's not about if it's green enough now. This is a stepping stone.
        m5nm3
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Javanese
        That's a moot point, all EVs are not economical right now but its not about that right now. Manufacturers need to put products out there to properly run long term R&D. Look at the first personal computers that came out and no one could afford. EVs will be getting cheaper and make more economical sense.
        carboy55
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Javanese
        Oh for crying out loud, does the flat earth society always have to show up? No it isn't "green enough," if you must know. The object of alternatives to ICEs is to stop shipping billions to people who harbor terrorists and really don't like us in addition to reducing emissions.
      fly by wireless
      • 3 Years Ago
      Leave it to the Germans to engineer complexity purely for the purpose of the self-back-pat. KISS (keep it simple stupid) apparently doesn't translate well into German, if at all.
      Orin O'Neill
      • 3 Years Ago
      The Vectrix could go 62 miles on a charge... as long as you didn't ride it faster than 25 mph. So, BMW combines useless range with needless complexity. But they'll sell as many as they need to because there are enough drooling knuckle-draggers with money who worship the roundel...
      AngeloD
      • 3 Years Ago
      What is the motive to build, or better yet buy, this electric scooter. Gasoline engine scooters of this type are already very economical. The Suzuki Burgman 400 gets 65-70 mpg. Where is the great benefit from the more expensive electric drivetrain?
        Brex
        • 3 Years Ago
        @AngeloD
        Hey, you've got to start somewhere.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Rotation
        • 3 Years Ago
        Why is that? Electric motorcycles are heavier than gas ones due to the battery weight. Can you really lighten the frame when the motorcycle is at least as heavy as normal?
          fly by wireless
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Rotation
          These days, electrics can be about the same weight as gas bikes, especially if you use OEM pouch-type lithium batteries. Even the back yard hack with Chinese lithium batteries shouldn't be too much heavier. As for Dan's comment, a little extra steel or aluminum doesn't add much to the price of a bike from the builder's standpoint so it's really a moot point. At the end of the day it comes down simply to what they want for it and what they think folks are willing to pay (assuming they actually WANT to sell the thing). This is a BMW. That name alone adds 30% or more to the price of just about anything they build before the first screw is turned so don't count on this thing being inexpensive.
      Rotation
      • 3 Years Ago
      In the US, a regular outlet will get you about 4.5kWh in 3 hours. A LEAF takes about 0.34kWh to go a mile. This would have to take 0.013kWh to go a mile in order for this to work. I know motorcycles are more efficient than cars but 25x more efficient?
        moa
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        in europe we have 240v in our walls. so 3 hour charge is about 8.5-9kwh. 9/62=0.145kwh and that sounds plausible.
        Brex
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        I don't know that you can compare capacities and charge times since most batteries are not fully discharged nor fully charged.
      TJP
      • 3 Years Ago
      How many of you travel more than 62 miles daily? I think in US the average daily vehicle travel is around 23 miles per day. I live in Finland and I just bough this chinese low speed ~30mph retro-looking electric scooter for just 1850 euros. Range with it is "only" 50km and it's more than enough for my daily travel as I charge also at work. I just need to stay out of highways, which is not a problem in urban areas. And in about 17 months of driving to work I've saved it's price just in gasoline, compared to our car. My daily travel is about 40km, a 20km (~30 minute) trip to one direction using the shorter (but slower) route, perfect for scooter.. With a car along the highways it's 52km per day (120 euros a month in gasoline). Not to mention that I don't even have to pay for the electricity. Even if I did, the price for it is around 50 (euro) cents per 100km (12 cents per kWh, with 2kWh batteries and 50 km range per charge). With the price of gasoline here in Finland, it compares closer to 700 miles per gallon. So do the math. You really can't travel cheaper (or greener). Electric is also much more maintenance free. Only the break pads and tires are the parts you need to check and change once a while, as the brushless hub motor is pretty much maintenance free. And the batteries last about 3-5 years if maintained properly. That's the biggest expense. (Few hundred dollars.) Still a lot cheaper than gasoline. No wonder there's more than 120 million electric scooters in China. Too bad I don't have the guts to drive it through our damned cold winter... ;-)
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