BMW shows 75 mph electric scooter

BMW says its C Evolution is the final development step toward a production electric two-wheeler.

BMW C Evolution
The C Evolution is the third generation of an electric scooter being developed by BMW. BMW

In the last decade, BMW's motorcycle division dabbled in scooters as a green solution for crowded urban centers, producing the C1 for a few years. Now BMW is showing off the final fruits of a new project, an electric scooter designed to achieve the performance specifications of a gasoline-fueled scooter.

The C Evolution is the third generation of an electric scooter that BMW has previously shown in concept form. This two-wheeler uses an electric motor and an 8 kilowatt battery pack to drive the rear wheel. BMW says that it can go 62 miles on a full charge. Although a large battery back, it does not use liquid cooling. Instead, its casing channels air through the individual cells. As the batteries produce more heat under load, the C Evolution should be going faster as the batteries hit higher temperatures, improving the air flow.

BMW C Evolution
The C Evolution plugs into a standard car charging station. BMW

BMW also designed the C Evolution for a top speed of 75 mph. Anti-lock brakes are one technology borrowed from BMW's extensive experience building motorcycles. However, the C Evolution also uses brake regeneration, which helps account for its range. A single swing arm supports the rear drive wheel, which is turned by a shaft. LED lights decrease the load on the battery, and the rider gets speed and battery status from an LCD.

Interestingly, BMW incorporates a J1772 charging port, the same as used in new electric cars. The C Evolution can be charged to full in three hours.

BMW is using the C Evolution as a test prototype in real world situations. The company says it plans to offer a production version in the near future.

About the author

Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET. Prior to the Car Tech beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine. He's also the author of "Vaporware," a novel that's available as a Nook e-book.

 

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