That’s not a joke, they really called the company Fuell. Buell has partnered with Sauber team principle and owner of Formula E chassis-builder Spark Racing Technology Frédéric Vasseur, as well as entrepreneur Francois-Xavier Terny, to launch the electric bike company.
Erik Buell is well known in the American motorcycle world. The former Harley-Davidson engineer founded his own motorcycle company, Buell in 1983. The company sold a controlling interest to Harley in 1993, and was consumed by Harley in 2003. By the end of 2009, the company was dead. Since that time, Erik Buell Racing has built race-only versions of the 1125-series bikes Buell was producing in 2009.
Fuell is one of many new up-and-comers in the electric bike world, but none of them have the engineering mind of Erik Buell backing them up. Where Buell knows two-wheeled engineering, Vasseur knows electric propulsion. Together, the two of them should be able to cobble something together that really works. Formula E seems to be working pretty well, so perhaps Spark knows what they are doing.
The new company is showing off two future products at launch, designed and built from the ground up by Fuell. The first is an electric-assist bicycle called the Fluid, which comes with an impressive set of statistics. The second is an EV motorcycle called Flow, with a proprietary wheel-motor, and two different power levels.
The Fluid is planned to launch to customers later this year with a price around $3295. The bike has two swappable batteries onboard, which helps it achieve an impressive 125 mile range. Further, it is said to be able to charge fully on a public charger in less than 30 minutes. This bike will be available in a 20 mph version and a 28 mph version. The company says it has planned the bike to be easy to ride and accessible.
The Flow is an exciting looking electric motorcycle available in 11kW (about 15 horsepower) and 35kW (about 47 horsepower) variants. The bike looks very futuristic, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Fuell says the weight is kept quite low in the chassis, likely explaining the low-hanging race-style aero fairing. Further, it says there is a 13-gallon internal storage compartment, which seems like a nice addition to an electric commuter bike. By using a wheel motor, the Flow removes the weight of a chain or belt, and needs no transmission.
Unlike other electric bike manufacturers, Fuell promises that it will offer “infinitely customizable” bikes, with upgrade parts offered for the motors, batteries, and chargers.
The company hopes to launch by the middle of next month with a fully functional website and purchase options for the entry level Fluid and Flow. Fluid deliveries are said to be on schedule for late 2019, while Flow buyers will need to wait until 2021 to climb into the saddle.
It’s an interesting project, despite the fact that right now we have very little to go on. Not even a website. If it were anyone else, I might call it bunk, but since Erik Buell and Frédéric Vasseur are involved, color me intrigued.