Triumph’s TE-1 prototype electric motorcycle is already winning awards despite not being in production.
At the 2023 GQ Car Awards, the bike won Electric Motorbike of the Year. From reports following the testing of the TE-1, it is becoming apparent that any production model based on the prototype will be highly popular.
The exciting reveal of the innovative advanced electric powertrain and battery and the first styling sketches for the final Project TE-1 Prototype, Phase 2 of this landmark four-phase collaboration in British design and engineering, reaches a successful conclusion.
One of the judges, Paul Henderson, said,
“With a 0–60mph time of 3.6 seconds, top speed of 135mph, a 100-mile range on a single charge, and a 0-to-80 per cent charge time of just 20 minutes, Triumph’s first fully electric prototype has exceeded all expectations to set new standards in the sector. Triumph says they have no plans to put the TE-1 into production, but the technological advances, battery development and electronic breakthroughs will all feature in the British motorcycle brand’s next gen (or should that be first gen) production EV. In other words, the best is yet to come.”
Set up as an educational tool allowing Triumph to research potential electric motorcycles. The TE-1 is a product of a collaboration between Triumph Motorcycles, WMG at the University of Warwick, Williams Advanced Engineering, and Integral Powertrain Ltd. It was funded by the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles through Innovate UK. TE-1 underwent four phases in its two-year development, reaching completion in July 2022.
Chief Product Officer at Triumph Motorcycles, Steve Sargent
“We are delighted to have our efforts in developing an exciting, high performance electric motorcycle next-gened at the GQ Car Awards. There are significant challenges in bringing electric motorcycles to the mass market, but the TE-1 is a crucial step towards Triumph’s development and understanding of electric vehicle technology.”
The TE-1 has a throttle action and torque delivery map directly engineered from a Speed Triple 1200 RS; the track testing and dynamic rider assessments of the TE-1 prototype demonstrator deliver a level of handling that matches Triumph’s current triple-cylinder internal combustion sports performance motorcycles.
Brandon Paasch, Daytona 200 champion racer, participated in the final testing phase in engine performance evaluation and with the prototype’s final set-up through track testing.
“The throttle response on the TE-1 is incredible, it’s very torquey and when you first touch the throttle it’s instant power, which is obviously what I love as a motorcycle racer – I love when it’s super-torquey and picks up right away, so for me it was a really great experience. I got to peg this thing all the way from zero to 100% throttle, and it’s unbelievably quick, it pulls like crazy.”
Delivering on the objectives announced at the start of the TE-1 project in May 2019, focused on developing specialist electric motorcycle technology and innovative integrated solutions. Including battery and powertrain design innovation, initial test performance results far exceed the current benchmarks and industry targets. Developments in performance, efficiency and range are enabling Project TE-1 to fully deliver the partnership’s objectives to enhance the credibility and profile of the British industry providing substantial input into future electric motorcycle strategy from Triumph.
Throughout phase 2, Triumph has developed an all-new advanced vehicle control software that incorporates all the electrical systems to ensure intuitive throttle response, re-gen braking, traction control and all of the dimensions that a customer would expect from a high-performance Triumph motorcycle. Additionally, Triumph has integrated leading functional safety strategies into this software, supported WMG in rig testing, and fully developed the new prototype instrument display. Alongside this electrical and control system work, they have designed a brand-new prototype chassis, including the main frame and rear frame, which have been optimized alongside the battery and motor packages which will be further evolved in Phase 3 into the TE-1 Prototype which will be used as a mule test platform in Phase 4. During this chassis development, Triumph considered both the transmission design and the final styling of the TE-1 Prototype.
Rivals for any future Triumph electric motorcycle come from manufacturers with available road-going bikes.
Energica have several electric sports bikes that are already available, Harley-Davidson has its Livewire, Damon Hypersport.
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