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MIC adopts protocol for determining electric motorcycle top speed

Consumers wanting to compare top speed capabilities among various electric motorcycles will soon find help from a new test procedure developed by the Motorcycle Industry Council. The Top Speed Test Procedure for Electric Motorcycles, just created by the MIC’s Electric Vehicle Subcommittee, establishes standards for determining an electric motorcycle’s maximum velocity.

“Manufacturers have used a variety of means for calculating top speed, presenting a challenge for shoppers interested in what an electric bike can really do,” said Tim Buche, president and CEO of the MIC.  “Some methods used right now may not give an accurate measurement, even under similar test conditions. The more that electric motorcycle makers adopt this protocol, the more it can help buyers who are taking a good look at this emerging segment.”

The MIC anticipates that manufacturers will immediately and voluntarily begin using the new protocol. The MIC subcommittee also expects to have this new test procedure adopted by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE).

The MIC’s Top Speed Test Procedure is based on the European Union test procedure, and sets standards for the many variables involved in determining top speed, such as vehicle equipment, battery charge-discharge cycle, test roadway conditions, rider weight, attire and riding position, and atmospheric conditions such as wind speed, temperature and atmospheric pressure.

The MIC’s Electric Vehicle Subcommittee includes more than 15 representatives of on-highway electric motorcycle makers who are currently in various stages of developing electric motorcycles, as well as other industry participants.

“As more and more electric motorcycles appear on the market, having standards we can all agree on is vital to manufacturers and to our customers,” said Abe Askenazi, chair of the Electric Vehicle Subcommittee and chief technology officer at Zero Motorcycles. “The new top speed test procedure is just one of the many standards the subcommittee has already published or is working on.”

Besides the test procedure, the subcommittee is addressing a broad scope of issues related to electric vehicles, including public information and education. On Capitol Hill and in state capitals, the MIC’s government relations staff monitors and advocates lawmaking that promotes electric vehicle use and ensures that two- and three-wheeled vehicles are included in such legislation.

The entire text of the MIC’s new Top Speed Test Procedure for Electric Motorcycles is available here.

The Motorcycle Industry Council exists to preserve, protect and promote motorcycling through government relations, communications and media relations, statistics and research, aftermarket programs, development of data communications standards, and activities surrounding technical and regulatory issues. As a not-for-profit, national industry association, the MIC seeks to support motorcyclists by representing manufacturers and distributors of motorcycles, scooters, motorcycle/ATV/ROV parts and accessories, and members of allied trades such as insurance, finance and investment companies, media companies and consultants.

The MIC is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., with a government relations office in metropolitan Washington, D.C. First called the MIC in 1970, the organization has been in operation since 1914. Visit the MIC at

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