Comparing the 2013 and 2014 Brammo Empulse and Empulse R

This week, Brammo announced their 2014 model year Empulse and Empulse R, so I was curious about what changed.

Not much has changed, and what did change isn’t enough to convince someone sitting on the fence.  For the same price, you could purchase a Zero S or SR 11.4 with more range (albeit a slower top speed), and more accessories or support for CHAdeMO (DC fast charging).

This information comes from the official Brammo spec page for the 2014 Empulse and the Internet Archive’s cache of the 2013 Empulse spec page.

In summary:

  • The MSRP has not changed, but the 10% federal tax credit expired at the end of 2013.  In January 2014, Brammo offered a temporary $2,000 discount for the 2013 Empulse and Empulse R, and $1,000 discount for the 2013 Enertia, but now that it’s February, that’s gone, too, so if you waited to see what 2014 would bring, it is a bike that is 10% more expensive for no gain in performance (YMMV).
  • The top speed has increased by merely 5 mph (but the Zero S’s didn’t change).
  • The city range has increased by merely 7 miles (but the Zero S’s didn’t change).
  • The highway range has increased only 2 miles.  No rider’s going to notice, though.  (However, the Zero S now offers a “Power Tank”—an extra battery that offers 34 more miles / 54 km and fills up the storage space where a gasoline bike’s gas tank would be.)
  • Torque and regenerative braking are now adjustable.
  • The bike weighs 10 pounds less, but someone forgot to update the kilogram measurement on the web site.
  • The tires are now by Continental instead of by AVON.
  • The available colors are different:
    • Removed:  white
    • Added:  silver and two kinds of yellow (or one kind of yellow and a typo)

 

Model 2013 Empulse 2014
Empulse
2013 Empulse R 2014 Empulse R
Motor Controller Sevcon Gen 4 Sevcon Gen 4, Size 6 (650A peak) Sevcon Gen 4 Sevcon Gen 4, Size 6 (650A peak)
Speed 105 mph (169 kph) 110 mph (177 kph)

Driving Modes – handlebar selectable:
Normal (75% Torque, 50% Regen)
Sport (100% Torque, 100% Regen)

same as 2013 same as 2014
Range: City (19 mph / 30 kph average) 121 mi (195 km) 128 mi (206 km) same as 2013 same as 2014
Range: Highway (70 mph sustained) 56 mi (90 km) 58 mi (93 km) same as 2013 same as 2014
Weight 470 lb / 213 kg 460 lb / 209 kg same as 2013 same as 2014
Colors Red, black, white Red, black, Tour de France yellow, yellow, metallic same as 2013 same as 2014
Tires (front/back) 120/70-17 AVON AV79 / 180/55-17 AVON AV80 Continental 120-70 ZR17, 58W / 180-55 ZR17, 73W same as 2013 same as 2014
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