Fast Bikes - - UPFRONT -

Un­less you’ve been liv­ing un­der a rock, there’s ab­so­lutely no way you could have missed this an­nounce­ment in the last few weeks… even if you wanted to. Yep, the Gov­ern­ment are look­ing to put a ban on petrol and diesel vans and cans by 2040, as the UK is one of 17 EU coun­tries breach­ing an­nual tar­gets for ni­tro­gen diox­ide; a prob­lem which has been made worse by the fail­ure of the Euro­pean test­ing regime for ve­hi­cle emis­sions... But what does that mean for us bik­ers?

At the mo­ment, there has been no spe­cific men­tion on the stance for two wheels, but ei­ther way there’s ab­so­lutely no hid­ing the fact that elec­tric bikes are here to stay. Just look at brands like En­er­gico and Zero Mo­tor­cy­cles who are ac­tu­ally field­ing some more us­able re­al­world bikes. And with the rise of races like the TT Zero, we can’t help but think that the elec­tric wiz­ardry is only go­ing to be pushed fur­ther through­out the next 20 years. If you fancy an elec­tric bike, you can even pick up a tasty £1500 grant from the gov­ern­ment, if that’s enough to tempt you.

But it’s go­ing to take a bit more than that to con­vert us at FB from the beau­ti­ful feel, smell and sound of good old in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gines. It was bad enough hav­ing to wave off two-strokes, and Euro 4’s not ex­actly done us any favours while we’re at it. But go­ing to­tally leccy isn’t ex­actly get­ting us ex­cited, es­pe­cially fol­low­ing a re­cent track out­ing on one of these un­der­pow­ered and weighty types, but we’ll tell you more about that in an­other is­sue. For now, we’re just mop­ing over this de­ci­sion and hop­ing that things get a damn sight bet­ter be­fore that none-too-dis­tant dead­line, which the High Court and the En­vi­ron­men­tal Sec­re­tary pro­claimed was nec­es­sary to find a way to sig­nif­i­cantly re­duce the vol­ume of ni­tro­gen diox­ide pumped into our sky, as it is pur­port­edly linked to as many as 40,000 deaths each year.

And now for the good news! We don’t need to fret just yet though, as mo­tor­cy­cles do cur­rently meet lower emis­sion re­quire­ments than those on four wheels. And with that in mind, we reckon we should just get ev­ery­one rid­ing bikes. I’m not say­ing we’d be sav­ing the world, but it would be a good place to start…


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