Most of the fun and funky vehicles I manage to dredge up for the Awesomely Weird Alibaba Electric Vehicle of the Week are big on weirdness but short on power. This time that seems to be reversed, as this electric race car is more wild than weird and comes with some seriously impressive performance.
This isn’t some slow crawling electric battle tank or ice-cream truck shaped like a VW bus. Those are more typical of this series on odd Chinese EVs, but this time we’re going all-in for extreme performance.
That means you’d better be ready to buckle in for speeds of up to 160 km/h (100 mph)! And based on some of these product photos, I wouldn’t mind buckling into the passenger seat for the first few rides.
Powering this little racer’s rear wheels is a 10 kW (13.5 hp) electric motor, which might not sound that powerful, but remember just how potent the low end torque from an electric motor is for rocketing off the line.
And since the entire vehicle only weighs 650 kg (1,433 lb), not to mention an extra 45 kg (100 lb) of cover girl model, there just isn’t that much mass here to be accelerated.
Plus the Chinese tend to rate motors with continuous power, not peak power. So there’s probably more kilowatts under the hood than we’re expecting. There’s no information on what kind of controller is powering that motor, but I’d wager that the peak power could be closer to 20 kW (27 hp).
There’s also a surprisingly large battery in this little racer, to the tune of 14.4 kWh. It’s a 96V pack built from LG lithium-ion cells and would give several American electric motorcycles a run for their money.
According to the vendor, it should be enough for 150 km (96 miles) of range per charge, though there’s no mention if that’s on a city street track or the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Speaking of city streets, the company says that the vehicle is ECE certified and “can be legally driven on European streets”. I guess we’ll just have to take their word on that, unless someone wants to buy one of these and try it out themselves.
There’s no word on DOT-certification and so it’s likely not street legal in the US. But that might not stop someone from going full-‘Murica doing donuts in the local Krogers parking lot with their bald eagle riding shotgun.
If you want to get some skin in the game (eagle not included), it’s going to cost you a cool US $28,000. Or at least that would be the first payment. There’s no telling how much you’d have to fork over afterwards for ocean freight, import charges, taxes, and other add-on charges along the way.
But for anyone hoping to try their luck with the local European cops, it’s at least comforting to see that these vehicles seem to actually be in real production.
The vendor shared several images of what look like a sea of frames alongside several partially assembled race cars.
I’m not recommending anyone actually try to buy one of these from Alibaba. In fact, I’d probably recommend the opposite. Let’s just treat this as a fun window-shopping exercise.
But for the person who inevitably ignores my warnings (as many of my readers have been known to do) and plunks down some serious cash for one of these, let me know if and when it arrives. I will be there in a second to go for a ride with you!
Juiced launches new Scrambler X2 as ‘better than ever’ electric bike
San Diego-based e-bike company Juiced Bikes has just launched a new version of one of the company’s most popular electric bikes. The updated Scrambler X2 is “back and better than ever!”.
Juiced Bikes is one of the longest-running e-bike companies in the US. As an e-bike dinosaur, I started in the space back in 2009, and even back then Juiced Bikes was the go-to e-bike company. So they know a thing or two about building electric bikes.
The Scrambler was one of their early hits, showcasing how mini-bike styling could be incorporated into the North American e-bike market. Now, the popular model has been relaunched as the Juiced Scrambler X2.
The box-framed electric bike comes with a series of new components, including a “massive, upgraded 1,000-Watt motor and controller system”. A humorous typo on the product page right now shows the motor listed as “100 watts”, but it should actually pump out 10x that much power according to the actual tech specs.
Similarly oversized is the new 52V 15.6 Ah battery that is SGS-certified to UL 2271. Its 811 watt-hours of capacity are said to be sufficient for up to 55 miles (88 km) of range on a single charge. Keep in mind though that if you’re cruising around at the bike’s top speed of 28 mph (45 km/h), you’re not going to get that higher end of the range spectrum.
Those Class 3 speeds are reachable on pedal assist using the bike’s cadence sensor. The Scrambler X2 will top out at 20 mph (32 km/h) for riders who want to stick to throttle-only operation in order to maintain Class 2 compliance.
The 71.5 lb (32.4 kg) e-bike also includes front suspension, all-terrain knobby tires, an oversized moto-style headlamp, an oversized retro seat that can fit two adult riders, an “advanced” LCD display, and a USB charging port.
In the five years since the original Scrambler was introduced, Juiced has developed a number of new components and tech advancements that have made their way onto the new version. As CEO and founder of Juiced Bikes Tora Harris explained:
“When we launched the original Scrambler in 2018, we were determined to develop a high-performance e-bike that would turn heads and take alternative transport in an unexpected direction. The Scrambler X2 brings the fun and thrill of e-biking to the next level, harnessing top-notch power, speed, style and safety so everyone from seasoned cyclists to first-time riders can find more joy in the journey.”
The Scrambler X2 launched in three colors of Desert Tan, Black, and Red. It also currently comes with an exclusive introductory price of US $1,499, marked down from its $1,899 regular price.
What do you think of the new Scrambler X2? Let’s hear your thoughts in the comment section below.
‘Beyond justification’: Record number of fossil fuel lobbyists attend COP28 climate talks in Dubai
A man wearing a thawb walks past flags of nations participating in the UNFCCC COP28 Climate Conference the day before its official opening on November 29, 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Sean Gallup | Getty Images News | Getty Images
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Nearly 2,500 fossil fuel lobbyists are estimated to have been granted access to the COP28 climate conference in the United Arab Emirates, according to an analysis from advocacy groups, reflecting a sharp increase from last year.
A report published Tuesday by the Kick Big Polluters Out coalition found that at least 2,456 fossil fuel lobbyists registered to attend the two-week long summit. That’s more than almost every other country delegation, except for Brazil (3,081) and COP28 host the United Arab Emirates (4,409), the analysis said.
The findings come at the mid-way point of COP28 and as a fight over the future of fossil fuels takes center stage.
Campaigners say the number of fossil fuel lobbyists attending the talks is “beyond justification” and signals that polluting industries are seeking to advance a fossil fuel agenda at the expense of frontline communities.
Others, however, including former U.S. energy secretary Ernest Moniz, said that Big Oil’s participation at COP28 should be welcomed.
The International Energy Agency said in the run-up to the talks that the oil and gas industry faces a “moment of truth” about their role in the global energy system and the deepening climate crisis.
A COP28 spokesperson was not immediately available to comment when contacted by CNBC.
“2023 was a year like no other. Record temperatures, record levels of emissions, and now we see a record attendance from Big Polluters at UN climate talks,” said Muhammed Lamin Saidykhan, head of building movement power at Climate Action Network International, a global network of civil society organizations.
“The window to preserve a liveable planet is rapidly closing. At the same time, ever greater numbers of Big Polluters are allowed to roam around this summit, which communities on the frontlines cannot afford to have fail again,” they added.
The surge in the number of fossil fuel lobbyists attending the U.N. climate talks follows a growing call from public officials, U.N. constituencies and civil society groups to eject polluters from the talks.
For many at the U.N. talks, which are being held in Dubai through Dec. 12, COP28 can only be recognized as a success if it results in a deal to phase out all fossil fuels, the burning of which is the chief driver of the climate crisis.
Not everyone is on board with calls for a phase-out. Russia has said it would oppose this language being used in the final agreement, while COP28 host the United Arab Emirates has signaled its preference for a phase-down.
The language of the final agreement will be closely monitored. A “phase out” commitment would likely require a shift away from fossil fuels until their use is eliminated, while a “phase down” could indicate a reduction in their use — but not an absolute end.
There’s also a debate about whether an agreement should center on “abated” fossil fuels, which are trapped and stocked with carbon capture and storage technologies. “Unabated” fossil fuels are largely understood to be produced and used without substantial reductions in the amount of emitted greenhouse gases.
In an unprecedented start to proceedings on Thursday, delegates at COP28 sealed the details of a landmark deal to help the world’s most vulnerable countries pay for the impacts of climate disasters.
A flurry of COP28 announcements have since sought to help decarbonize the energy sector, with nearly 120 governments on Saturday pledging to triple renewable energy capacity by 2030.
Quick Charge Podcast: December 4, 2023
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