Author Topic: Evolution of the Empulse  (Read 3079 times)


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Evolution of the Empulse
« on: October 28, 2011, 12:49:41 AM »
Will expand on this over time.


2009-04-08 - Brammo announces Enertia TTR for entry into the inaugural Isle of Man TTXGP race. Based largely on the shipping Enertia street bike, the TTR powertrain is much closer to the powertrain later shown in the Empulse concept.

2010 - A New Hope

2010-06-03 - Asphalt & Rubber speculates about a possible upcoming sportbike project from Brammo.

2010-07-09 - Asphalt & Rubber confirms a forthcoming TTR-based sport bike from Brammo.

2010-07-15 - Brammo announces the Empulse; "available for immediate order and deliveries will commence in 2011". Brammo talks up benefits of direct drive.
"There's nothing between you and the road. With no clutch and no gearbox to get between your throttle command and the application of torque to the rear wheel, the Empulse provides the smoothest delivery of power you're likely to have ever experienced."

In an interview following the reveal, Mr. Brammo discusses making a offboard level 2 charger available as an option. "about 45 minutes per 1 kwh on 110, about half that on level 2"

2010-09-28 - Brammo lists Level 2 charging in the Empulse specifications.


2011-03-?? - Brammo tests IET-equipped Empulse prototype.

2011-05-04 - Brammo announces partnership with SMRE for IET (integrated multi-gear transmission and electric motor).

2011-05-04 - Brammo emails preorder list to announce Empulse will "integrate our latest technology and deliver a superior bike in 2012". The obvious implication is that the Empulse will feature IET but Brammo does not confirm this at this time.

2011-05-25 - Rumors surface of a change of battery suppliers away from Leyden Energy.

2011-07-23 - Brammo announces Empulse TTX turnkey racebike program. Empulse TTX is a racing-modified Empulse with factory support.

2011-08-17 - Brammo confirms Empulse will ship with IET standard.
"[IET] enables the 2012 Empulse to accelerate hard from the line up to a high top speed, something that is just not possible to achieve with a single ratio electric motorcycle."

2011-09-06 - Steve Atlas on the Brammo Empulse RR wins the 2011 North American TTXGP series.

2011-10-19 - Brammo confirms that the Empulse will support two-up riding.

2011-12-09 - LA Times reports that the current prototype battery is 9.7 kWh and the shipping battery will be between 9.5 and 10 kWh, indicating that the less expensive 6 kWh and 8 kWh models have been dropped. They also report that the motor may increase in power from its original 40 kW / 54 hp specification.


2012-01-05 - Brian Wismann reveals that the Empulse will support J1772 and charge in 3.5 hours.

2012-01-06 - Brian Wismann reveals the BPM 44/70 battery modules to be used in the Enertia Plus. Presumably the same cells will be used to build the Empulse battery packs.

2012-04-09 - Brammo Empulse newsletter reveals BPM 15/90 battery module to be used in production Empulse, shows Empulse prototypes on dyno, shows CAD model of battery module and motor / transmission package.

2012-04-18 - Brammo announces specifications for the production Empulse. Notable changes are 56 miles highway range @ 70 mph, 9.3 kWh capacity, regenerative braking, 440 lb 470 lb weight [silent edit sometime in May]. Empulse will be available in a standard and an R model; R model is equipped with higher-quality suspension and brake components and some carbon fiber fairing components.

2012-04-30 - Spy photographers capture the production Empulse filming promotional video.

2012-05-08 - Empulse launch in LA. Production bikes revealed, prices and nominal shipping dates announced: Empulse R in June for $18995, Empulse in Q1 2013 for $16995.

A book titled "(r)Evolution of the Empulse" (ahem) is available as part of the Empulse launch swag. The bike has most excellent insights into the design and production of the Empulse. Later an adapted digital version of the book with embedded video is released for free as an Apple iBook.

2012-06-?? - Brammo reportedly switches from SMRE motor to Parker motor for the production bike. IET is retained, but integration efforts reportedly cause a slip in production timeline. Edit: motor change confirmed by Brian Wismann on 12/11/2012.

2012-07-01 - Mail Tribune reports that Empulse production will begin in August. Brammo has linked to the article but not confirmed the new date.

2012-07-27 - Brammo shows Empulse TTX race adaptation of the production Empulse R. Presumably this will race in 2013 for the eSuperStock award.

2012-08-20 - Wes Siler @ HFL reviews the production Empulse R, pronounces it awesome-sauce. Later, adapted versions of the review show up on Wired, Jalopnik, and MCN.

2012-08-24 - Brammo posts a photo of the Empulse mid-wheelie. Probably the most important advantage of IET ; )

2012-09-02 - Steve Atlas on the Brammo Empulse RR wins the 2012 North American TTXGP series.

2012-10-02 - Brammo publishes a video of Wes's ride on the Empulse and some discussions with Eric Bostrom and Brian Wismann.

2012-10-05 - Brammo forum member Virtually Yours reports a delivery window between the end of November through December.

2012-10-20 - EmpulseRider née EmpulseBuyer is announced as the second Brammo Evangelist, winning one of the first Empulse Rs to be produced. Lucky bastard ;D The bike is delivered on 2013-05-09 after a CO dealership comes online.

2012-10-21 - Steve Atlas on the Brammo Empulse RR wins the 2012 World TTXGP championship.

2012-12-07 - First Empulse R delivered to a customer. (!!)

2012-12-11 - Brian Wismann confirms that the Empulse R will use a Parker GVM motor, with slightly higher top-end power and different gearing.


2013-02-13 - FreepZ posts details on the Empulse gearing.

2013-03 - Multiple Empulse R bikes have shipped to Brammo Forum owners and many other owners around the US. The Empulse has arrived in volume.

2013-04-09 - 00049 reports about a problem with heavy water contact and the bike remaining on after removing the key. A dealer fix is available that should correct this problem.

2013-04-25 - publishes the first comparison test between the 2013 Brammo Empulse R and the 2013 Zero S. They praise the Empulse for its stoplight acceleration and excellent components, and the Zero for its ease of use as a commuter bike.

2013-05-05 - Brammo makes AFM history by racing the Empulse TTX and RR bikes against gas bikes.

2013-05-15 - Skuzzle receives his Empulse E1!

2013-05-29 - Recall notice issued for a potential motor controller short. Potential short was caused by a deviation from standard procedure during assembly; five bikes were affected and notified.

2013-06-19 - Recall notice issued for a potential structural failure in the Empulse tail assembly.

2013-06-30 - Arthur Kowitz races a customer Empulse TTX at Refuel SportElectricTT 2013.

2013-07-21 - Brammo and Zero race against each other at Laguna Seca for eRoadRacing North America round 1. Both Eric Bostrom and Shane Turpin on Empulse RR bikes broke the 2011 race record set by Steve Rapp on the Mission R. In an crash- and fault-marred race, the production-based bikes are approaching the 2010 lap times set by the pure race bikes.

2013-09-11 - Brammo announces a class-leading 5 year warranty for their BrammoPower battery systems, retroactive for all 2013 Empulse and Enertia Plus models. Zero later announces a similar 5 year warranty coverage program for their 2014 bike batteries.

2013-10-31 - Cycle World publishes an instrumented comparison between the 2013 Zero S and the 2013 Brammo Empulse R. Brian noted on brammoforum that the Empulse battery modules were loaded with firmware that incorrectly reported state of charge, resulting in erroneously low indicated range.

2013-12-04 - ESBK breaks news of a TTX P2 bike. Based on the TTX, the P2 will have a full fairing and additional performance upgrades. Darvill Racing announces plans to race in the 2014 European eRoadRacing championship with both a TTX P2 and a standard TTX.

2014 - The Empire Strikes Back

2014-01-02 - Brammo announces a $2000 price cut ("retail incentive") in existing stock of 2013 Empulse bikes. 2013 Enertia Plus bikes also receive a $1000 price cut.

2014-02-03 - Brammo announces the 2014 Empulse. The 2014 Empulse drops 10 pounds of weight, improves slightly in range and top speed, and is available with new color schemes. Installed equipment is slightly different: the dash is restyled, the handlebars are tweaked for improved riding position, and the OE tires are changed to Continental SportAttack 2.

2014-03-14 - Brian Wismann presents some of the technical features of the Empulse using a cutaway model.

2014-07-20 - Shane Turpin on the Empulse RR sets a course record for the REFUEL time trial. His single hot lap here is very close to the outright course record set by Steve Rapp in qualifying during the 2011 TTXGP / FIM ePower race.

2014-08-22 - Brammo announces significant price cuts in the 2014 Empulse and 2013 Empulse / Enertia models. The updated prices, while billed as temporary incentives, significantly reduce the price differential between the Empulse and competitive gas bikes. The price cuts and inventory liquidation continues through the Polaris acquisition announcement.

2015 - The Return of the Jedi Empulse

2015-01-16 - Polaris acquires Brammo. Manufacturing will move from the Talent, OR location to Iowa, while Brammo will continue to develop electric powertrains.

2015-06-10 - Brian Wismann leads the Victory Motorcycles team to a 3rd place podium finish at the Isle of Man TT Zero, with rider Lee Johnston turning in a 111.620 mph standing lap. The Mugen Shinden bikes earned a 1-2 finish with John McGuinness turning in a record 119.279 mph lap record.

2015-07-20 - One of the Victory Empulse RR racing bikes was stolen and then quickly recovered from Brammo's headquarters.

2015-07-28 - Polaris announces the launch of the 2016 Victory Empulse TT, a mild refresh of the 2014 Empulse R. Notable upgrades include 10% larger battery capacity, a 3.5 kW onboard charger, and narrower rear wheel / tire to improve handling. The Victory Empulse marks the first "full size" electric motorcycle offering from a traditional manufacturer, joining the BMW C Evolution scooter and the KTM FreeRide E supermotos.

2015-08-12 - TheVOG and numerous other groups get a first ride look at the refreshed Empulse. Impressions are generally positive, praising the bike's handling and acceleration. The six speed transmission remains a polarizing feature.


2016-06-08 - Victory returns to the Isle of Man TT Zero with a redesigned Victory RR racebike. A steel trellis frame replaced the aluminum twin-spar frame that has evolved since the Enertia TT racebike in 2009, and a significant improvement in battery capacity allows the motor to be tuned up as well. These improvements earn the Victory Racing team a 2nd place podium finish with a 115.844 mph standing lap, more than 4 mph faster than 2015.

2016-06-28 - Victory Racing brought the second Empulse TT race bike to the 100th anniversary Pikes Peak International Hillclimb. Despite narrowly escaping a crash, Don Canet ran up the mountain in 10:17.813, earning Victory a 2nd place overall finish among gas and electric motorcycles. (Lightning won the motorcycle race overall in 2013 with a 10:00.694 finish).

2017 - Curtains

2017-01-09 - Victory Motorcycles shuts down. Electric motorcycle operations transferred to Polaris, likely to be terminated. Existing Empulse stock marked down between $10k to $14k.

That's all folks.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2017, 07:56:15 PM by protomech »
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Re: Evolution of the Empulse
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2012, 06:11:36 PM »
Bump for those interested. I'm looking forward to adding a "first production Empulse shipped" entry to this list..
« Last Edit: April 07, 2012, 06:18:39 PM by protomech »
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Re: Evolution of the Empulse
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2012, 06:28:53 PM »
It's done! We've now left the "Before Customer Empulse" era.. or BCE for short.. and entered the "Customer Empulse" era.. or CE for short.
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Re: Evolution of the Empulse
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2012, 06:56:10 PM »
I really appreciate your work keeping track of this, Michael.
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Re: Evolution of the Empulse
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2012, 07:46:41 PM »
I'm mostly writing it for my own fact-checking use .. but figure it's a good thing to have around.
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