One of the drawbacks of electric motorcycles, or e-bikes, is battery range, with most brands getting around 300 km and 120 km being the norm for the lower end of the market. Swiss e-bike maker Ethec is intent on changing the game, Tesla style, with an electric two-wheeler that promises to go 400 km.

This is achieved with the use of 1,260 Lithium-ion-cells, arranged in the space where a traditional motorcycle engine would sit. Using it’s proprietary Battery Management System (BMS), the Ethec e-bike maximises battery range by manipulating variables such as battery charge and temperature.

To optimise battery performance, the e-bike uses oil-cooling, supplemented by fans and cooling fins, with continuous monitoring of cell voltage and temperature. The Ethec battery pack is rated at 15 kWh, driving front and rear wheel hub motors rated at a continuous 22 kW with a peak output of 50 kW.

Regenerative braking is used to recharge the battery pack, fed by the twin electric motors. A sensor on the brake levers measures the amount of brake force, slowing the Ethec down purely by regenerative braking until more braking force is required and the hydraulic brakes are then applied.

Front suspension on the Ethec is with a girder fork, and conventional twin shock absorbers on the rear swingarm. Inside the cockpit, a 7-inch LCD display shows all the necessary information with rider-bike interface done via the screen.

The Ethec team is made up of 13 mechanical and one electrical engineering students from ETH Zurich and two industrial design students from the Zurich University of the Arts. The team is lead by project head Dr Josef Mayr, with Marco Job and Dominic Schmid as project and technical leads, respectively.