Firs read this article and watch this video from Motorcycle.com here.
Now, I am a Brammo fan. It is well documented, but I have also tooted Zero’s horn as best as I can. But this article has me thinking. Ok, it straight-up-no-chaser has me pissed off, but I’m easily wound up. So for now lets chalk it up to that.
Lets look at the quote (from the above linked article) I am most focused on, “When the Empulse exists we’ll have a product to compete with it. Until then you have to talk about what exists. I mean, why not compare us to a MotoCzysz? It’s the same thing isn’t it? They both exist in very rare quantities in a lab somewhere,” says Harden. “Zero will continue to develop products according to our vision and our strategy for the brand, and we’ll continue to make announcements about products when it’s relevant for the marketplace. The last thing we want to do is excite people about things that don’t exist.” Now, you put that into the context of an e-mail I received some time ago and you’d be wound up over something that seems relatively benign too.
But lets look at this objectively. Brammo, in an interview with me, has said that the Empulse will be for sale sometime during the riding season of this year. So as late as this fall, or as early as late spring would be my guess. But Mr. Harden has said that they will have a product that will be able to compete with it when it is ready. This means one of three things. 1) Mr. Harden is cocky prick and is taking a cheap shot at Brammo implying the Empulse won’t be ready for another year, 2) Zero has spies at Brammo, or 3) (and this is the important point) they have a bike in the works that will be ready to go in 6 months or less that will compete toe to toe with the Empulse.
So, if 3) is the case and you are a sportbike type rider, do you really want to spend the cash on a 2012 Zero S 9 only to have it be obsolete this year? I’d like to note that their bikes usually change significantly every year, which is what Brammo has tried to avoid in the first place. So most likely your brand new 2012 will pale in comparison to 2013’s Zero. Brammo is on about a 2 or 3 year cycle right now. And then you have to ask yourself, if this new bad bike will be ready so soon, why haven’t we heard about? Hmmm, maybe because they need you to buy the bike they are making right now?
There is, of course, a forth option. 4) Brammo misses the 2012 riding season and doesn’t have the Empulse ready for sale until this winter, the same time Zero announces their 2013 line up. Hmmm. All we can do is sit back, and wait and see.