It was only a matter of time before electric mobility reached the world of snow
A couple of years ago, some manufacturers began working on prototypes capable of moving through ski areas without the need for combustion engines. Throughout 2022 the first electric snowmobiles will hit the market.
The first to be marketed will be a very light model, halfway between an electric bicycle and a motorcycle. It is manufactured by the French company Moonbikes and does not have great claims, except that of being practical.
The idea of making an electric and agile snowmobile came from the head of Nicolas Muron, founder of Moonbikes, in 2015. He was spending a few days at his grandparents’ house , in the village of Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce, in the Alps. French when he realized that in summer there were infinite mobility solutions. In the cold months, however, the offer was limited to true SUVs, polluting snowmobiles or the own ability and dexterity of each person to move or have fun in the snow on their own feet. So he decided to find a solution to move in winter capable of withstanding 25 degrees below zero. The model that is now going on sale is probably the answer to your concern, but not to that of many snow enthusiasts who will have to pay 8,500 euros to enjoy one of these motorcycles assembled by Bosch that, in addition, will be marketed in a short limited edition of 1,000 units.
The Moonbikes is 70.5 cm wide so that it can go through a door or, in other words, be stored in a shed and has a power of 3 kW, just enough to reach a maximum speed of 42 km / h during its 1 , 5 hours of autonomy. Its managers say that it can be easily transported and it is true that it is not as heavy as a conventional snowmobile, but not everyone can lift its 87 kg, battery included.
Hot on the heels, or rather the track of the caterpillar, is the Canadian Taiga Motors, which is also going to start marketing three electric snowmobiles in Canada in the coming days: the high-mountain Ekko, the Atlas trail and the Nomad cargo. . In all three cases, Taiga Motors has devised a thermal management system to keep the battery in optimal condition even when temperatures are extreme. Unlike the Moonbikes, here we are already talking about another level in every way. The first, the price, which starts at 15,000 euros, but also the equipment because these three snowmobiles allow some customization of the mechanical parameters. It can also carry a complementary mobile application that takes care of route planning and monitoring.
The Ekko model, with a range of 98 km, accelerates from 0 to 100 km in 4.1 seconds thanks to a 120 hp electric motor and allows you to customize terrain profiles on the screen it incorporates.
The Atlas is similar to the Ekko in terms of power because it also delivers 120 hp but, being lighter, it accelerates in just 3.7 seconds. There is also a 180 hp version that does the 0-100 in 2.9 if you want more adrenaline.
The Nomad, the electric snowmobile for those who need to transport loads of up to 350 kg, delivers 90 hp in its basic version, although there is another high-performance version of 120 hp.
And this, where is it loaded?
If charging an electric car involves certain difficulties, fill the batteries From a snowmobile it becomes a real feat. Manufacturers assume that each of us has a charging point in our high mountain chalet in the snow. But if not, the question is not easy to resolve. In the case of Moonbikes, thanks to its supposed lightness, you can put it at home not without some difficulty in connecting it to a socket. The Taiga Motors models have it more complicated due to their greater size. For this reason, the company has, for the moment, begun the installation of fast charging points along certain forest trails in the Quebec region. In Spain? Well, here for now we will have to wait or negotiate a loading point with a ski resort. In other words, easy what is said is not going to be easy, but it is better to think about electric mobility also in the high mountains because the environmental impact of snowmobiles is real. Until now, almost no one has dared to open this front because there are others that are more obvious, but voices are also beginning to rise about this type of mobility … no matter how wintery it may be.