Dry Ice-Cooled Electric Motorcycle Aims for Land Speed World Record

Voxan has unveiled a new e-moto called Wattman, and aims to break the world land speed record.
Brad Bergan

Voxan has debuted its newest electric motorcycle — called the Voxan Wattman, according to the company website.

Racing past other e-moto products, the Voxan Wattman is a supremely fast bike — built for the singular purpose of claiming the world record for the fastest electric motorcycle.


Voxan Wattman e-moto shoots for land speed record

Initially shooting for the land record sometime this month, plans for the record-breaking drive have been delayed until 2021, according to Electrek.

While there are a lot of attempts underway to break the electric vehicle world record right now, the Voxan team doesn't seem worried — including the six-time motorcycle world champion Max Biaggi, who aims to enter the record books on the Bolivian Salar de Uyuni salt flat in July 2021.

This latest delay prevented the Voxan team from breaking the record this July, but it hasn't discouraged them from debuting the futuristic bike this week.

The new e-moto features a novel design that breaks with tradition. Instead of a frontal fork, the bike sports a double-wishbone front suspension setup. There's no front brake or parachute, with the bike instead using a rear brake and extra physical runoff to slow to a stop. The lack of a front brake actually improves aerodynamics, and avoids sketchy bouts of instability created when the front brake closes at extremely high speeds.

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Voxan Wattman Resting
The e-moto has no front brakes, improving aerodynamic stability. Source: Voxan Motors / Venturi

Voxan's new bike dumps battery capacity fast

The e-moto's 317-kilowatt (425-horsepower) engine is powered with a 15.9-kilowatt-hour battery. Notably, this is roughly the same capacity found in typical motorcycles. The Harley-Davidson LiveWire, for example, comes with a 15.5-kilowatt-hour battery.

However, the big difference between them lies in the design — Voxan Wattman's battery was tailor-made to dump nearly all of its energy in a few short minutes, whereas most electric street bikes can go for hours in one charge.

This bike's battery weighs 140 kilograms (309 pounds) — nearly half the whole bike's 300 kilograms (661 pounds).

One can imagine how dumping this much power in so short a period generates a massive amount of heat. But the Voxan Wattman avoids the aerodynamic drag radiators create with a new and creative approach to engine cooling: dry ice.

Frozen carbon dioxide (CO2) is held in a reservoir inside the bike and works to draw heat away from the batteries and motor.

Voxan Wattman Frontal
The new e-moto uses dry ice for coolant, instead of a bulky radiator. Source: Voxan Motors / Venturi

Aiming for the world land speed record

The Voxan team hopes to make a top speed of at least 330 kilometers per hour (205 miles per hour), while also breaking the old 2019 record of 327 kilometers per hour (203.1 miles per hour) at the same time, set by Ryuji Tsuruta, a Japanese rider of the Motibec electric motorcycle.

Tsuruta's record is the official world record, but the canon of land speed doesn't count the famous Lightning Motorcycles LS-218, which hit a recorded top speed of 350.8 kilometers per hour (218 miles per hour) at the Bonneville Salt Flats in 2013.

When this wild year of crossing calamities comes to a close, speed demons and fanatics may take heart in the knowledge of the team behind Voxan's Wattman, and its upcoming shot to break the world's land speed record.

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