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Curtiss Motorcycles clues | Manufacture News | News

This year sees the rebranding of Confederate. After decades building uber-expensive V-twin cruisers for the Hollywood set, it’s turning its attention to electric bikes and becoming the Curtiss Motorcycle Co.

While Confederate boss Matt Chambers announced the plans last year, there’s been little mention of the actual models the firm will make. However, it has now filed documents with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explaining how its 2018 VIN system will work, including names of planned models and basic details of their power units.

The document lists four models: Hercules, Zeus T Block, Starfire V Block and Warhawk. The latter appears to be the electric bike that Curtiss will make its debut with; it has started teasing the name on Instagram, giving the date 5 May 2018 for its unveiling.

These four bikes will use three power units, although the document doesn’t reveal which model will get which motor. The big surprise is that petrol power is still on the cards despite the touted all-electric intentions. The 2163cc S&S X-Wedge engine, as used in various previous Confederate models, tops the list, albeit in a lower state of tune; just 67kW compared to 112kW in the FA-13 Combat Bomber (AMCN Vol 67 No 14).

With its electric bikes, the firm is planning to use two arrangements; a single motor with 22kW and a twin-motor arrangement with 44kW. This suggests the Hercules and Warhawk may be single-motor electric bikes, the Zeus T Block a twin-motor, and the Starfire V Block the V-twin, petrol-engined machine.

The VIN system reveals provision for four different types of motorcycle in the range: ‘Standard Production Series’, ‘Prototype Production Series’, ‘Special Edition’ and ‘Race Edition’.  

By Ben Purvis