While electric cars are becoming more and more common all the time, with nearly every major manufacturer trying to get in on the shift to EVs, battery-powered vehicles are rarer when it comes to powersports. Right now, the major players are and Harley-Davidson (which only offers one fully-electric model) while other, smaller startups are attempting to find funding and gain traction, with their efforts often leading to nothing.
That's why it's exciting to see a new electric powersports company that's launching as an almost fully formed business with a product set to be available in just a couple of months. Not only that, but the product being launched isn't some crazy future-tech thing; it's a fun-looking and useful object that works with tech we have today. In this case, I'm talking about a company called Volcon, and the product it's launching is called (and this is a dumb name, I know) the Grunt.
The Grunt is an electric take on the small-displacement, big-tire, go-anywhere motorcycle, similar to the Yamaha Big Wheel, the Suzuki VanVan and bikes like the kooky two-wheel-drive Rokons. The Grunt differs not only in powertrain (more on that in a minute) but also in design.
Most of those bikes I mentioned previously look like the kinds of things you'd buy out of the weird back ads of a Popular Mechanics magazine from the '90s or maybe a sporting goods store. The Grunt looks almost like something that BMW or Ducati's sub-brand would release, but with chonky tires. It's got a modern, LED headlight, sweeping frame tubes and a generally minimalist aesthetic that works for me.
Beyond how it looks, the Grunt is cool for how it's powered. I've already said it's electric, but it's surprisingly powerful with its 50 horsepower and 75 pound-feet of torque. Volcon claims it'll do 100 miles to a charge, but with hot-swappable batteries, that could, in theory, be extended indefinitely. Top speed is said to be around 60 miles per hour, which sounds borderline terrifying. My favorite part is that it will be accessible with a price tag of $5,995 and an on-sale date sometime in the next couple of months.
Volcon has other projects in the works, including side-by-sides and the like, but I'm genuinely pretty excited to see where things go. It's a challenging world out there for new manufacturers at the best of times, and these certainly aren't those. Fingers crossed that I can throw a leg over a Grunt sometime soon.