ASHLAND — Electric motorcycle maker Brammo Inc. is gaining traction in its efforts to equip police forces with its green machines.
The police department in Fort Collins, Colo., has begun a monthlong trial run using an Enertia Plus LE motorcycle in the town of 148,000 about 60 miles north of Denver.
"As we look to maximize fuel efficiency and green technology, it made sense to conduct a trial of Brammo's all-electric motorcycle," Capt. Jim Szakmeister, of the agency's patrol division said in a news release.
Brammo Global Fleet Director Greg Lemhouse said Colorado State University campus police also will run the Enertia Plus through its paces.
"We believe in our product and technology," Lemhouse said Thursday. "Once a government agency has the opportunity to use it, they will see how it will benefit them."
Lemhouse said Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., Providence College in Rhode Island along with police units in Newark, N.J., and Kansas City, Mo., are lined up for trial runs, as well. Brammo's motorcycles also are used by Hong Kong police and Ashland police.
"The hands-on experience lets them see operationally how it can help them," Lemhouse said. "And it exposes their communities to the possibility of reducing fossil fuel use and alternative fuels."
Fort Collins Police spokesman Matt Johnson said the agency presently operates a seven-bike fleet of Harley Ultra Classic Electra Glides and Kawasaki Concours 14s.
Enertia Plus LE models are equipped with emergency lights and accessories, allowing Fort Collins police to use them in a variety of patrol, security and traffic-enforcement details.
"There's a range difference and a difference in the throttle works, so there is a different feel when you're putting the pedal to the metal," Johnson said. "You get used to the traditional gas engine response, and there is a much different sensation with this."
He said bikes used in traffic patrol might exceed the single-charge range of 100 miles.
"It's not uncommon for them to ride quite a distance during the day," Johnson said.
Brammo receives feedback from police departments on day-to-day performance, which it incorporates in modifications.
Reach reporter Greg Stiles at 541-776-4463 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.