Common Tread

Yo what?! The Johammer J1 electric motorcycle looks like nothing else

Apr 15, 2014

Here's one you're not going to see at your local Bike Night any time soon. But man, think of the crowd that would gather if you did ride up on a Johammer J1.

The Johammer J1 is an electric motorcycle built in Austria that definitely goes its own way, in terms of style. But the quirks are more than skin deep.

Beyond the obvious issue of styling, the Johammer raises other questions in my mind. The J1 has a low center of gravity but I have to wonder about the decision to attach the motor to the rear wheel, like many scooters. I hope that's less unsprung weight than it appears to be.

The Johammer's motor is actually attached to the rear wheel.
Also, also don't miss the front suspension. No ordinary fork here. The English version of the website says the "progressive buffercontrol in the front prevents break nodding." I think that means it decreases dive under braking. (On a personal note, as someone who does professional translation work on the side, I'm glad to see the software hasn't made me redundant just yet.)

I'd love to ride one of these, just to see how all this quirkiness handles.

Lithium-ion battery supplies the power. Suspension is also unconventional.

How big a crowd would this motorcycle draw at your local Bike Night?
The Johammer uses a lithium-ion battery and a brushless AC motor that uses off-throttle decleration forces (what we call "engine braking" in the internal combustion world) for recharging. The manufacturer currently offers two models. It claims the J1 provides 150 kilometers (93 miles) and the J2 offers 200 kilometers (124) of range. Both have an electrically limited top speed of 120 kph (75 mph).

If you decide to fly off to Austria and buy one, expect to pay about $31,740 for the J1 or $34,500 for the J2 at current exchange rates.

Pricey, sure, but just check out those daisy stalk mirrors. Who can put a price on this level of fame at your local Bike Night?