Lightning Firsts

Lightning is the first company to bring a true electric superbike to the consumer market and has been the first in many other areas. We have focused on developing leading edge technology for the past 7 years. We are a leader in high performance electric vehicle development. Below are highlights from Lightning’s product development.
2013 Lightning Electric Motorcycle Made History at Pikes Peak

2013 Lightning Electric Motorcycle Made History at Pikes Peak

The first time at a major motorsports event, an electric motorcycle beats all of world fastest gas-powered motorcycles. Click here to learn more.

2012: 1st Solar Powered Superbike

2012: 1st Solar Powered Superbike

For the first time in history, a major motorsports competition was won by a vehicle powered solely by solar energy. Lightning competed in and won the EPower/TTXGP race during the MotoGP weekend at Laguna Seca in July 2012, on solar power alone. Then in Nov, Solar-Powered Lightning Motorcycle set New Speed Record at El Mirage.

2011: First E-Bike to Break 200mph

2011: First E-Bike to Break 200mph

Lightning set a new world land speed of 215.907mph (218 mph top speed) at Bonneville UT. Lightning had impressive 40 mph improvement from the world record just a year ago (which was also set by Lightning). Any motorcyclist understands this is not an easy task to push such improvement. Lightning was featured on Time Square, CNN morning news and other medias.

2009: First Landspeed Record

2009: First Landspeed Record

In October 2009, News Headline: “The Salt Flats Have Never Been This Quiet!”. Here’s the official release: “This week, at the historic SCTA World Finals at the Bonneville Salt Flats, a new player in the rapidly developing electric motorcycle industry emerged. Lightning Motors, running one of its pre-production prototypes was able to achieve a top speed of 166.388 mph. This exercise places the Lightning Motorcycle as the fastest production electric motorcycle in the world.“

2008: First Lithium ATV

2008: First Lithium ATV

Lightning developed the first Lithium battery powered electric ATV. It has over 30 horse power and more than 40 miles range per charge. Out ATV featured excellent off-road capability with near silent operations. The electric ATV was torquey and fun to ride. Our electric ATVs seemed equally suited as a product for hunters or as a daily utility vehicle in a winery. With the lessons learning from the electric ATV Lightning later contributed to the development of both “off road ready” and “combat ready” ATVs and UTVs right out of the box.

2007: First 40 miles range Hybrid

2007: First 40 miles range Hybrid

The engineering team at Lightning built the first PHEV able to exceed 40 miles in EV mode on one charge. Lightning’s developed a 10 KWH battery pack that augmented the Toyota’s original battery system. After adding Lightning PHEV kit, the Prius average fuel economy nearly doubled from 43 mpg to over 80 mpg. To protect the batteries, our engineering team developed Lightning’s battery management system (BMS) that monitored and balanced the lithium battery pack. This Lightning PHEV kit was designed with ease of installation as a key.

2006: First Electric Sport Bike

2006: First Electric Sport Bike

By 2006, the Lithium battery technology became viable, Lightning converted a former Yamaha R1 race bike to electric. With over 60 horsepower, nearly 70 foot pounds of torque and a top speed of 100 mph this early prototype was fun to ride. The real world range of over 60 miles and Skyline Drive as our test track motivated us to continue to evolve the project. Despite being a raw prototype the bike inspired considerable media attention and interest from the motorcycle community. The LA Times shot a test ride video of our prototype. Click here to view the video. We were told by race organizers that the LA Times video featuring our first electric sport bike stimulated them to create the early electric motorcycle competitions on the Isale Of Man and in the US.This is a significant milestone because it was the first electric sport bike that demonstrated the potential of electric motorcycles. We spent countless hours envisioning the next evolution and embarked on a journey to achieve parity with internal combustion engine bikes. We began to believe that electric motorcycles were the future.

1995: 1st Electric Porsche Race Car

1995: 1st Electric Porsche Race Car

In 1995, Richard Hatfield joined an electric Porsche race team dedicated to winning a national electric vehicle road race. This project ignited Richard’s interest in electric vehicle technology and began the quest to achieve parity with ICE vehicles. This first electric Porsche used a 300+volt battery pack. At that time, the battery technology didn’t provide enough energy density, but the electric Porsche provided a glimpse to the possibilities.In the next 6 years, Richard was racing both electric and cellulosic ethanol based vehicle and won several championships.

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