Manufacturers seem intent on shifting what you buy…
It’s been since 1987 that a two-wheel Can-Am motorcycle has been produced, yet the Canadian company is looking to return to that section of the market in the near future. As you already know, the plan is to roll out of a new lineup of all-electric motorcycles, a bold move for the brand. Admittedly, it’s not quite as bold as many all-electric motorcycle companies with no reputation established which have been popping up and folding like crazy lately, so this might actually go somewhere.
See how a Toyota commercial shows everything wrong with the industry today right here.
Currently, the only motorcycles Can-Am offers are the three-wheeled Ryker, Spyder F3, and Spyder RT. Some absolutely love the things, but to others they’re a joke. There’s only a shadowy teaser image of the upcoming Can-Am motorcycle lineup. From it, we can tell there are four models. What looks to be a roadster and an adventure bike are more visible in the shot. Of the other two we can pretty much only see a vague outline of the very front section, but it’s reasonable to guess one’s a cruiser. The other could be a sport bike, although that’s not likely. Some think it’s a Ryker or Spyder, which is entirely possible.
We won’t see the first all-electric Can-Am motorcycle hit the market until midway through 2024. Since it’s the most visible in the shot, we can assume the roadster will kick things off. When the other three will launch hasn’t been announced.
This plan doesn’t stop just at Can-Am jumping back into the motorcycle market with an all-electric lineup. Parent company BRP says it will invest $300 million over the next five years to electrify its other product lines. The goal is to have EV offerings for the public by the end of 2026, so you should be able to grab a side-by-side, ATV, or three-wheeler without a tailpipe. Just how much these models will cost, their range, and other specs are entirely unknown at the moment. Likely these vehicles are in the early development stage, so Can-Am probably doesn’t know how practical they’ll be.
What this plan doesn’t entail is ending the production of internal-combustion-engine models, so don’t panic about that, at least not yet. With more governments moving to ban the sale of anything that burns gas, Can-Am likely is readying compliance models to launch in those markets.
Can-Am has developed a modular electric powerpack technology called Rotax, although it sounds like the design hasn’t been fully ironed out. The company announced development work is ongoing at its facilities in Austria, which are being expanded. What’s more, a development center focusing solely on electrification is being established at the company’s headquarters in Quebec.
You might remember that back in 2019 Can-Am acquired Alta Motors, a struggling EV motorcycle company. The Rotax Sonic E-Kart came out afterward, and it’s no coincidence it shares a name with the powerpack tech. What’s more, BRP has made some EV, hybrid-electric, and even fuel-cell vehicles in the past, so this is a direction it’s been experimenting with for a while. Still, it’s one thing to experiment and another to commit to market delivery, especially across the product lineup. Don’t be surprised if this initiative spreads to other brands beyond Can-Am like Sea-Do or Lynx as time goes on.
It will be interesting to see how competitors react to Can-Am’s announcement and subsequent moves in the market. After all, Polaris partnered up with Zero Motorcycles at the end of September 2020 and the first fruits of that union, the Ranger EV, has arrived with more electrified models to come.