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If the last thing you need is to try and convince your significant other of why you need to buy another motorcycle, then do yourself a favor and don’t ever get on a LiveWire S2 Del Mar. Because as soon as you do, you’re going to want one. Trust me, it happened to me.

Harley-Davidson’s electric motorcycle brand LiveWire has just reopened reservations this morning for its second electric motorcycle model, the S2 Del Mar. The first round of reservations opened back in May for the Launch Edition, but they sold out in 18 minutes.

The company let me get an early test ride before reservations reopened, and now I can’t imagine going back to my boring old life before this bike.

That’s not to say that the Del Mar is perfect, but the bike itself checks nearly all of my boxes. The only major downside is that it’s still a bit pricey, at least for a motorcycle that will admittedly be used largely in a commuter role by most riders.

It’s certainly more affordable than the $22,799 LiveWire One, which currently serves as the brand’s flagship electric motorcycle. LiveWire had hoped to launch the production version of the LiveWire S2 Del Mar at closer to $15,000, but inflation pressures and supply chain drama saw the price creep up to $16,999. That’s still a big move in the right direction compared to the LiveWire One’s price, but it still keeps it a bit out of reach of a lot riders.

If you can swing it though, you’re going to be glad you did. Take a look at my first ride video below showing off my morning ride on the S2 Del Mar. Then read on for all of the details.

LiveWire S2 Del Mar first ride video

Newly revealed Del Mar specs

In addition to opening up orders for the S2 Del Mar, LiveWire also revealed more concrete specs and performance figures.

The updated city range is listed at 110 miles (177 km) on a charge, and we also got more info about charging options. Both Level 1 (think: normal wall outlet charging) and Level 2 (think: public charging station) will be available on the bike, but there’s no Level 3 DC fast charging like on the LiveWire One.

Even so, the company says a Level 2 recharge of 20-80% (indicative of real-world charge stops) will take around 75 minutes. That’s longer than a coffee stop, but it means that a lunch stop or shopping trip could conceivably put a nearly full charge back into your “tank.”

We don’t have an exact power rating yet, but the bike has nearly equal off-the-line performance to the LiveWire One, scoring a 0-60 mph time of 3.1 seconds. And when putting the bike in Sport Mode, I can vouch for what that feels like. There’s no clutch or gear shifting to get in the way, either. You’re going from feet on the ground to flying at 60 mph in barely the time it takes to say, “well I’ll be damned.”

The 418 pound (189.6 kg) Del Mar is a bit lighter than the 560 pound (254 kg) LiveWire One, so with the same acceleration times then it stands to reason that it will have a slightly lower power rating than the LiveWire One’s 78 kW motor.

LiveWire hasn’t announced the Del Mar’s top speed, but let’s just say it’s higher than you’ll ever need. I got it up to speeds that I had no business reaching on a New York highway and it seemed to have plenty of room to keep going. I wasn’t about to risk my license (or a speeding ticket on a bike I didn’t own) by pushing my luck any further than I already had, but suffice it to say that whatever the top speed is, there’s no road in America that you’ll be able to legally hit it.

For me, the Del Mar felt like a Goldilocks bike. It’s got a shorter reach than the LiveWire One, meaning you’re sitting more upright and don’t feel like you’re leaning out forward over the tank to grab the bars. But it’s also not too small either, and gives you enough height over the pegs that your legs aren’t tucked up underneath you. It’s no cruiser, but it’s at least closer to that end of the comfort spectrum.

I’m a more relaxed type of rider, anyway. As much fun as it can be crouching into an Italian sport bike, I’m much more at home in a comfortable upright position. And so the S2 Del Mar speaks to me.

In fact, I thought the Del Mar would be smaller than it was. Each time I looked at images of the Arrow platform, which is basically the structural battery and motor combo that the Del Mar is built on, it all just looked so compact. But the bike still has serious presence when you walk up and throw a leg over it. No one is going to think you’re on a small bike.

And when you blow them away at a traffic light, leaving them in your dust, they’ll be sure you weren’t on a small bike.

When it comes to battery capacity, we’re still left in the dark. LiveWire isn’t spilling the beans on that info just yet.

Based on the 110-mile city range offered by the company, and the Level 2 recharge time from 20 to 80% in 75 minutes, I’d wager that the battery will fall in the 9.5 to 10.5 kWh range. But that’s just an educated guess at this point.

What I can tell you is that I did around 40 miles (64 km) on the bike and used 55% of the battery, equating to a mixed range of approximately 73 miles (117 km). That ride included everything from city traffic to unreasonably fast highway speeds, so that’s probably a pretty fair “mixed” range figure. If you’re actually doing city riding or at least keeping it under 55 mph or so, that 110-mile range figure is likely within reach.

Between my city and highway riding, the Del Mar felt equally at home in both worlds. It’s small and light enough to be a nimble city ride, yet large and powerful enough to be comfortable on any interstate.

The one thing that felt a bit lacking was any sort of sound. To be fair, I was testing the bike in and around New York City, and so the city cacophony was never going to allow the nuisance of a modest direct drive electric motor whine through. But with a pair of LiveWire Ones on either side of me during much of the ride, I could hear their motors more than I could hear my own.

To be honest, the LiveWire One has always been a bit louder than I’d prefer. It’s got a cool sound to it, and the mechanics of the bevel gear that produce that sound add to the coolness. But when you really lean into it you get a fairly loud signature sound. The Del Mar, on the other hand, is so quiet that I couldn’t really hear it in the city. It left me wanting a little more auditory feedback. But perhaps if I had been in a quieter area, I would have heard what I was looking for.

Even so, the fact that the three of us (including my two LiveWire ride partners Chris and Jon) could all carry on a conversation while riding is testament to how much nicer it is to be on quiet electric motorcycles than rumbling ICE bikes.

All in all, I had a blast riding the LiveWire S2 Del Mar and came away majorly impressed.

I had initially expected to find a downgraded LiveWire One, when instead I was presented with a bike that rivals the LiveWire One’s performance, yet in a more comfortable and manageable package.

Sure, the LiveWire One will still have more range from its larger battery and faster recharging times with its DC fast charging ability. And if you want to go on cross-country rides, that’s the better bike. But for someone that just wants a missile on wheels for cruising the city and local highways, then the S2 Del Mar is the ticket.

It nestles itself right in between bikes like the Zero FXE and Zero DSR when it comes to price and range, meaning it gives a nice option for a middleweight electric bike with more range than pretty much any commuter should need, yet at a price that doesn’t blow past $20K and into flagship electric motorcycle territory.

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Norway just greenlit this vertical-axis floating wind turbine

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Norway just greenlit this vertical-axis floating wind turbine

Swedish wind turbine maker SeaTwirl got the go-ahead to test its 1 megawatt (MW) S2X vertical-axis floating offshore prototype in Norway.

Vertical-axis floating wind turbine pilot

In March 2022, Norway’s Ministry of Energy gave approval to SeaTwirl and Norwegian offshore wind test center Marine Energy Test Centre to pilot the vertical-axis floating wind prototype for five years at a former fish farm in Boknafjorden, northeast of Lauplandsholmenoff, 700 meters (2,297 feet) from the coast.

But four groups – the Norwegian Environmental Protection Association, the Norwegian Fishermen’s Association, and two campaign groups – appealed against SeaTwirl’s permit, and so the project was put on ice.

Yesterday, the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate rejected the appeal, so SeaTwirl’s S2X pilot can now proceed, and no further appeals will be considered.

CEO Peter Laurits said:

Our main focus is the commercialization of large turbines, SX, in floating wind farms. The outcome provides freedom to choose and plan the installation of S2x in the way that best supports that goal.

How S2X works

SeaTwirl says that “multiple S2xs can be placed in a dense pattern for increased output.” The company’s reasoning for building vertical (instead of horizontal) axis floating turbines is this:

The simplicity of the design and low center of gravity are the big advantages. All moving parts and electrical systems are easily accessible [and] close to the water’s surface, lowering maintenance costs.

The S2X prototype is 55 meters (180 feet) above sea level, and it’s around 80 meters (262 feet) below sea level. The turbine diameter is 50 meters (164 feet). Its rotor blade height is around 40 meters (131 feet). Its optimal operating depth is 100 meters (328 feet) and deeper.

SeaTwirl isn’t the only company testing vertical-axis wind turbines off the Norwegian coast – earlier this month, aluminum and energy giant Hydro and floating wind specialist World Wide Wind announced that they’re going to test a vertical-axis wind turbine made out of aluminum.

Read more: These companies will build a floating wind turbine out of aluminum


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Audi hints at luxury electric 4×4 to compete with Mercedes Benz and Land Rover

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Audi hints at luxury electric 4x4 to compete with Mercedes Benz and Land Rover

The luxury electric 4×4 you’ve been waiting for is set to emerge in 2027, and no, it’s not the Mercedes Benz G-Class or Land Rover Defender. It’s a new secret project from Audi.

A luxury electric Audi 4×4 coming in 2027

In a first from Audi, the German automaker is showing interest in the luxury 4×4 segment. The secret new electric SUV will feature a top-notch interior with the ability to perform its best on and off the road.

Audi unveiled its new activesphere concept Thursday, a four-door crossover coupe that doubles as a truck. The concept combines a luxury SUV, sports car, and off-roading pickup into one versatile EV.

Although this is a separate concept from the planned electric Audi 4×4, the off-road EV gives us an impression of where the automaker is headed.

In an interview with Autocar, Audi’s head of design, Marc Lichte, hinted at the idea of a new 4×4, saying:

I think there is space [for a rugged SUV in Audi’s lineup]. There is potential because there are only two premium players, and I think there is space for a third one.

Lichte didn’t give up details other than mentioning it will ride on one of Volkswagen’s platforms other than the Audi-Porshce co-developed PPE platform like the activesphere concept.

Since Volkswagen’s next-gen SSP platform designed for all segments has been delayed until at least 2028, there’s a good chance Audi’s new 4×4 will share technology with VW’s recently revived Scout off-road brand of vehicles.

electric-Audi-4x4-2
Audi activesphere concept, a separate project from the 4×4 (source: Audi)

Following Volkswagen’s announcement last year that it would revive the Scout brand for an all-electric lineup and bring rugged SUVs to the United States, reports surfaced VW was considering Canadian parts manufacturer Magna (which also builds the Mercedes Benz G-Class) to help build the vehicles.

The initial plans called for Audi to build Scout models in a new US facility but were later scrapped. According to Autocar, the two brands may still benefit from each other.

Audi is already working with Magna to develop electric vehicle batteries for the Scout brand. With VW reportedly leaning toward having the part supplier build 100,000 Scout EVs, there could be room for an additional 50,000 electric Audi 4×4 models to be built alongside.

Audi is already familiar with electric off-road technology with its beastly RS Q e-tron rally car (and Quattro four-wheel drive tech) and is well known for its premium luxury interior. It seems like a match made in heaven to me.

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VW will install up to 25,000 EV chargers globally in 2023

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VW will install up to 25,000 EV chargers globally in 2023

The Volkswagen Group announced today that it will install up to 25,000 EV chargers globally along with its partners this year.

How many VW EV chargers are coming

At the end of 2022, Volkswagen Group had installed more than one-third of the 45,000 EV chargers that it intends to install by 2025 – that’s around 15,000 EV chargers with a charging capacity of up to 350 kW.

Geographically, the total of 45,000 will break down to 10,000 EV charging stations in North America, 18,000 in Europe, and 17,000 in China.

VW is planning for around 10,000 of its EV chargers – what it calls “high-power charging points,” in corporate speak – to be online in Europe, and up to 25,000 in total globally by the end of 2023.

Who’s installing them and where

Electrify America (EA) is in charge of VW Group’s electric infrastructure in the US. EA’s website says it currently has 3,551 fast and Level 2 EV chargers online and that 90 are “coming soon.” So it’s going to take quite an effort for VW and EA to reach its North American goal of 10,000.

In Europe, IONITY, a joint venture between Audi, Volkswagen Passenger Cars, and Porsche are doing the EV charger installations.

The VW Group launched Ewiva with the Enel X Way in Italy last year to install EV chargers, and it’s going to install around 8,000 of those 10,000 European chargers with BP and Iberdrola. The latter will focus on the main traffic arteries in Spain.

In China, the EV charger installation work is being performed by the joint venture CAMS.

Electrek’s Take

OK, I admit it: I’ve got skin in the game here. My 2023 VW ID.4 comes with three years of free Electrify America charging. But I’ve got just one EA fast charger near me, in New Hampshire, and really annoyingly, there are ZERO EA chargers in the state of Vermont.

If you think about it, 25,000 EV charger installations globally in what is now just 11 months is a monumental effort. If they reach their target of 40,000 by the end of this year, they’d only need to install another 5,000 to reach their 2025 target. Hopefully they’ll bump up that 45k number.

Read more: Here’s how many EV chargers the US has – and how many it needs

Photo: Electrify America

Click here to find a local dealer that may have the VW ID.4 EV in stock.


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