American electric motorcycle manufacturer, Lightning Motorcycle Corp, has filed patents for a new capsule type vehicle in China. The design patents have not been officially published by the company but the images have been circulating the internet which shows the enclosed motorcycle design.
According to the leaked image, the brand appears to have enclosed all the motorcycle components except the lower parts of the wheels inside a capsule-like structure similar to streamlined motorcycles that can be seen breaking high-speed records. The image appears to have a large glasshouse for an all-round view which also protects the rider from weather elements. The front of the vehicle appears to have sleek twin-split headlights and tail lights that reverberate the front.
The electrical drivetrain components are also enclosed within the streamlined structure which do not heat up as much as the internal combustion engine counterpart. While details on the powertrain are scarce, the brand has set a world record for the ‘Fastest production electric motorcycle’ in 2011, with its LS-218 which claims a top speed of 350.8 kmph (218 mph). If the brand uses the same powertrain it could further propel the top speed of the vehicle due to its streamlined design.
The streamliner could feature a composite carbon-fibre bodywork with a lightweight space frame design to keep the weight in check. The vehicle also appears to have along with wheelbase for high-speed stability and also to enable more space to pack larger batteries. The aerodynamic design reduces the drag co-efficient which benefits the vehicle with a longer range and higher top speed.
The brand may be planning to break another record at the Bonneville Salt Flats with the electric-powered streamliner, but chances are that Lightning will put the concept into production.
As of now, the brand retail two electric-powered motorcycles the Strike and the LS-218. The Lightning Strike is priced at USD 19,998 being the more affordable among the two.