Battery-powered bikes, like other EVs, have benefits besides high performance. However, although electric motorcycles do generate fewer emissions, not all of their building materials are necessarily as kind to the planet. And for many potential owners, there’s always the question of, not just battery range, but battery longevity. Brooklyn-based Tarform’s Luna, though, is trying to address both concerns.
2021 Tarform Luna specs and features
The Tarform Luna was first shown as a prototype in 2018, RideApart reports. Actually, the electric motorcycle didn’t even have a name back then. Now, though, the Luna is finally ready for a widespread release.
Tarform’s CEO and founder Taras Kravtchouk took inspiration for the Luna from time spent riding and customizing his own Triumph Scrambler, Cycle World reports. He wanted a bike that didn’t rely on “toxic” materials but was still robust enough to last for years. As he told The Drive, “Vehicles of tomorrow should be built to last, with the spirit of craftsmanship preserved. Vehicles should be built for upgradability and not obsolescence.”
On the “upgradability” front is the Tarform Luna’s 10-kWh lithium-ion battery pack and 41-kW motor. The electric motorcycle produces 55 hp and has a claimed city range of 120 miles. With the onboard 3.3-kW charger, Tarform claims the Luna can recharge from 0-80% in 50 minutes; it’s also Level 2-compatible. And if the battery’s performance or capacity starts dropping, it’s replaceable.
The bodywork’s replaceable, too. It’s also recyclable—and recycled. The body panels are made of a combination of woven flaxseed fibers and brushed aluminum. The motor is made of biodegradable cornstarch plastic, and the seat’s made of biodegradable vegan leather. Tarform is also reportedly working on replacing paints and primers with a special algae-and-iron-based material.
There’s only one dial, a 3.4” circular HD display with Bluetooth. However, the Luna also has IRS Racing regenerative disc brakes, 3 riding modes, keyless ignition, a rearview camera, and blind-spot detection with haptic feedback.
Pricing and availability
As of this writing, Tarform is accepting pre-orders for the Luna. There are 2 versions planned: the Founder Edition and the base model. Production will begin in summer 2020, with deliveries starting in 2021.
Both Luna electric motorcycles can be reserved with a $500 refundable deposit. The base model starts at $24,000; the Founder Edition, though, starts at $42,000. However, that upcharge does come with a few extra features. Only 54 Founder Editions will be made, each with upgraded Ohlins suspension, billet-aluminum wheels, and customized bodywork. These will be options on the base model.
Luna vs. the electric motorcycle competition
At $24k, the Tarform Luna isn’t necessarily cheap.
However, it is cheaper than the Harley-Davidson LiveWire, which starts at $29,799. Harley’s electric motorcycle does have a longer claimed range (146 city miles), and significantly more horsepower (105 hp). But it can only match the Luna’s recharge speed with a Level 3 charger. And at 549 pounds, it’s 109 pounds heavier than the Luna.
The Energica Eva EsseEsse9+ is $2650 cheaper than Tarform’s bike, but is more powerful and has a significantly longer range. In fact, for about the same price as the Luna, you can equip the Eva with Ohlins dampers. However, Energica’s electric motorcycle doesn’t offer the biodegradable and recyclable materials that Tarform’s does.
Finally, there’s the Zero SR/F. For roughly the same price as the Tarform Luna, the SR/F can be equipped with Zero’s PowerPack, increasing the claimed city range to 200 miles. Though in Cycle World’s testing, it was actually less efficient than the LiveWire. Again, though, the Zero doesn’t have the Luna’s materials.
Deciding if the Tarform Luna is the electric motorcycle for you ultimately depends on a test ride. But it looks like the decision boils mostly down to this: are you willing to pay the price for the styling and eco-friendlier design?
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