Curtiss pays tribute to a land speed hero with stretched-out electric Hera streetbike
Curtiss Motorcycles, the electric phoenix that rose from the ashes of Confederate, has released an image of its upcoming "hot rod goddess" at Pebble Beach. Named "Hera," this stretched-out, battery-powered monster is due to hit the streets in 2020.
The entire Curtiss company is named after fin-de-siècle daredevil, aviation pioneer and land speed record holder Glenn Curtiss, who scorched Florida's Ormond Beach with a 136.3-mph (219-km/h) motorcycle run in 1907.
Curtiss' bike for the occasion was one he built himself, a long, low and scary-looking beast constructed around a colossal 4.4-liter V8 that Curtiss had designed and built for aircraft use. This hulking brute made some 40 hp (30 kW), and the unofficial record he set would stand until 1930. The man's story is incredible – check out our brief exploration of Glenn Curtiss' achievements from a couple of years back.
See the resemblance? While today's Curtiss motorcycle company hasn't given out any performance or range specs for the Hera, it makes some very clear visual references to the 1907 bike, not the least of which is four hefty battery boxes lined up to look like a V8 motor.
It likely uses the same powertrain as the Zeus concept, that being two Zero SR motors, which would make it good for around 140 hp (104 kW). In an electric drivetrain, that will be hellishly quick. Perhaps its extra length and battery will give it an impressive range figure as well.
It doesn't promise to be a comfortable ride, from the looks of it. Be prepared to stretch forward considerably further than Glenn Curtiss had to on his own bike. And, let's just say the design direction of the Curtiss electric bikes hasn't been received particularly kindly by the public at this point. The Hera takes an already controversial design and stretches it out so that it looks like a back-breaker, too.
Still, if you're looking for unique and remarkable, this thing'll have it in spades. And the Curtiss team can't be accused of blending in with the crowd.
Source: Curtiss Motorcycles
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