newbie from motorcycle world - why so little about Polaris?

Tim Hardman

New Member
I'm from the gas powered motorcycle world. I have recently become interested in the electric powered motorcycles (Zero and Brammo (now owned by Polaris)). When searching for the electric motorcycle by Polaris I found out there is none at this time but there is a line of electric bicycles. Today while searching on electric bicycles in general, I have come to the conclusion that Polaris is a teeny tiny player in electric bicycles and there are so many other players that have been in this business so much longer. When I search reviews of best bikes, regardless of the category, Polaris is never mentioned and when checking out Polaris in this forum there is a total of 3 or 4 posts. I have no agenda and don't want to start a Polaris bashing or worship. I'm just a little perplexed since Polaris is pretty much a leader or contender in it's other product lines that I am familiar with. Can anyone give me the big picture on electric bikes and where the Polaris product falls in the hierarchy? It seems like a great time to be in electric bikes and motorcycles. Is this the beginning of the golden era for this technology now that battery performance and pricing is nearing the sweet spot? Thanks in advance to anyone who wants to reply.
Tim
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
Polaris is well known and experienced in the gas powered sport vehicle world. Several years ago when Polaris first introduced their electric bike line, a couple of guys from the company dropped by my shop with a demo unit of the bike. They knew almost nothing about that ebike and lots about the gas burners they sold. The reps had difficulty discussing specs or components on the bike, so it was apparent that the company had decided to just import an ebike and add it to their mix; a trend that was becoming common among branded car & bike companies at that time. We asked them to ship us a test unit and they agreed to do that but the bike never appeared. It did not give an air of legitimacy to the product. Talking with other dealers who bought the earlier models, these bikes had glitches that made them problematic and slow to sell . It does seem that the 2015 models are better built, so hopefully Polaris is taking their ebikes more seriously. Take a look at the series of reviews that Court has done on the 2015 Polaris bikes, http://electricbikereview.com/?s=Polaris+ebikes and decide for yourself.
 

Kaldeem

Active Member
Can anyone give me the big picture on electric bikes and where the Polaris product falls in the hierarchy?
First off, Welcome!
Second, the forums are populated by owner of those E bikes. As far as the "hierarchy" of E bikes go, there isn't any, really. Popularity is generated via rider experience with the bike and the company that sells it. Other than that, it's all based on bike spec's and batter/motor specs. So think bike build/quality then motor/battery performance and then customer reviews and over-all rider experience.

As for Polaris may or may not be a good bike. I dunno, I don't own one. If you say there are only 4 posts in that particular forum then maybe their bikes haven't caught up or generated enough interest for small E bike population here in the states.

What particularly about Polaris that peaked your interest? I've check out some videos that Court (the owner of this forum/site) has done some reviews on, and I didn't see anything jumping out above average for other bikes with the same spec's and price tag.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
Sure. There is a hierarchy. The Europeans make the fancy stuff, mostly the Bosch mid-drive stuff, and the prices get as high as $18000. Those brands are anything Accell/Currie plus BH. If it is European, it tends to be high end. The Stromer isn't a mid drive, but it's high end. The Australian Stealth models are not really legal, but if you are a power guy?

Almost everything else, and a lot of the European stuff, is Chinese imports. Some import directly, some assemble parts in China, some assemble here in the US. Remember, an ebike is mostly a bike, so bike parts go on a frame, and then you have a motor, a battery, and a controller.
 

pxpaulx

Well-Known Member
I'll echo the sentiments of the others above - one thing I'll say is that their newest set of bikes (3 or 4?) do look intriguing, especially the new fat bike, but I'm in the processing of specing and building my own instead for almost half the cost (and better components/battery/motor).
 

Tim Hardman

New Member
Thanks for the welcome, the overview and the comments on my question. I'm looking forward to learning a lot more about e-bikes in the next few months so I'll be back with more questions.

To Kaldeem - "what peaked my interest about Polaris e-bikes"? Well, I just stumbled upon them while looking for Polaris Electric Motorcycles. They looked nicely designed and the gears in my head started turning with business ideas I had already thought about that may take place in Minnesota, where Polaris is located, and whether or not there may be an opportunity for the e-bike concept to fit in as another spoke of the overall business idea/model I've been contemplating. As I do more research I will be back to this forum to ask more questions from you guys and gals, the experts, to help me with my decisions.