BMW Unveils “Boxer” Electric Motorcycle Concept

BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
BMW’s Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle concept, complete with Duolever fork, shaft drive and “boxer” power plant. Photos courtesy BMW Motorrad.

As most of the major motorcycle manufacturers in the U.S., Europe and Japan continue to pursue battery-powered electric propulsion, BMW found itself asking, “What would an electric BMW motorcycle look like? And how would it be immediately recognizable as a BMW?”

Given that the opposed-twin “boxer” engine has been at the heart of BMW motorcycles for more than 90 years, the answer seems to be something along the lines of the newly-unveiled BMW Vision DC Roadster concept bike.

BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
This top view clearly shows the protruding cooling elements, a nod to BMW’s classic “boxer” engine.

While the Vision DC’s battery is oriented in a standard vertical/longitudinal position, it has two cooling elements with integrated fans that extend out to each side, a nod to the protruding cylinders of the boxer engine. Slung underneath the battery and connecting to the driveshaft (another BMW hallmark) is the cylindrical electric motor itself.

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Clutching the battery from above is a split, milled aluminum frame with what appear to be carbon fiber reinforcing tubes that span the opening where the fuel tank would normally be. The subframe also appears to be of a tubular carbon fiber design.

Up front is a Duolever fork capped with an LED daytime running light (DRL) flanked by two LED lights, one for low and one for high beam.

BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
BMW says the rider’s apparel represents the next generation of riding gear, with integrated lighting and a magnetic backpack.

Even the rider’s clothes might offer a preview of things to come, including integrated lighting and a backpack that attaches to the jacket via magnets rather than straps.

Electric motorcycles are coming, whether you like it or not, and we’re excited to see BMW striving to stick to its signature look, making a battery-powered bike that’s still unmistakably a BMW.

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Keep scrolling for more images….

BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
Subframe is tubular carbon fiber, with LED tail lights.
BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
Driveshaft is exposed. Metzeler tires incorporate postage stamp-sized LED lights to aid in visibility.
BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
The flat, milled aluminum frame is suspended over the battery, which attaches via carbon fiber tubes.
BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
LED daytime running light (DRL) turns its cooling fins into art.
BMW's Vision DC Roadster electric motorcycle
Side-mounted cooling elements extend out when the bike is turned on.

1 COMMENT

  1. 2 things: 1) That looks like an uncomfortable riding position for anything longer than it took to make the photograph and 2) what’s the wheelbase of that bike? Looks like a blend of chopper/cafe racer. oh and 3) yay electric bikes.

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