Erik Buell is well known for his work in the motorcycle sector. He was the founder, former Chairman, and Chief Technical Officer of the Buell Motorcycle Company, which later merged with Harley Davidson Corp. He started out making sport bikes with Harley Davidson engines, having Harley Davidson as a major stakeholder. In 2009, after stopping the production of all Buell motorcycles and being dropped from Harley Davidson, he established Erik Buell Racing. Hero MotoCorp acquired 49.2% stake of EBR in 2013, but their good times ended soon forcing them to shut down in 2017.
But now, Erik Buell seems to be interested in a new product: electric bikes. The new venture is called VanguardSpark and has two partners in addition to Buell. FX Terry, the head of Vanguard Motorcycles, and Frederic Vasseur, the founder of Spark Racing Technology that makes Formula E cars.
VanguardSpark will start the production of their two new models, whose detailed designs and specifications haven’t yet been revealed by the firm. The first model will be a pedal assisted electric bike called SpeedBike. Though it is being called a ‘bike’, it is more of an electric bicycle than a full-fledged electric motorcycle. The second model, the Commuter, is expected to be an urban electric motorcycle capable of going 150+ kilometres once fully charged.
The sketches of these models reveal the battery pack encased in a carbon fibre monocoque shell with a hub mounted electric motor on the rear wheel. The Commuter isn’t supposed to be a high performance bike and will mostly serve as an urban electric two wheeler. VanguardSpark have filed four patent applications and prototypes of the bikes are expected to be out in a few months.