We thought that we had pretty much seen the bike that Mission Motors is sending to the Isle of Man for the TTXGP when it was photographed testing at Infineon Raceway. It has since become apparent that the company won't leave well enough alone, and as the competition appears to be getting more and more capable, the electric motorcycle start-up has pulled out all the stops. The first, most easily noticed change is the drastic smoothing out of the fairing. The speeds on the Isle of Man circuit are expected to be high and to help increase its efficiency at this pace, modifications had to be made. The sharp creases in the angular bodywork have given way to a rounded super-aerodynamic shape as you can see in the photo above. Other adjustments the bike has received are a bit more subtle.
While the motorcycle had done a lot of its early testing on a track, the guys prepping the bike for the big race have realized that driving the 37.7 mile course will present somewhat different challenges and have attempted to optimize the performance profile to match. They found a stretch of road with similar characteristics, somehow wrangled their own black and white safety vehicle, and had Seth LaForge, their senior software engineer, drive 40 miles behind a truck loaded with cameras with a highway patrolman watching his back, acquiring data all the while. Seth reports the machine's performance like this,
The bike felt fantastic - perfectly smooth yet with an eerie turbine-like wail, it poured out gobs of torque with a turn of the wrist at any speed, no shifting required. Consistent corner entries were easy, using "engine braking" (actually regenerative braking - recharging the battery while slowing) to slow into a corner, then using easily controlled torque to power back out.Whilst we wish we had access to the entirety of the footage shot that day, we have to be satisfied with the short video Mission Motors has put up on YouTube. Hit the jump for a short teaser of the trip.
[Source: Mission Motors]