‘We’re going to rush home on Wednesday and then it will be the end of our tour’, says STORM-teams Bob de Vries in one of the many videoblogs the team has put fourth. The final stage in an 80-day trip around the world. The STORM Wave will go from Paris to Eindhoven: 500 kilometres.
Upon completing the final stage the book on the worldtrip will be closed after more than a year of preparation. In september 2015, the work on the bike -the world’s first electric tourbike- first started, in July 2016, the bike was revealed at High Tech Campus in Eindhoven. Finally, on the 14th of August of this year, the bike left for the roadtrips first stage towards Munich.
We haven’t decided on what the next big step will be for us.
In the final stage, between Paris and Eindhoven, the bike won’t drive solo. About 15 Tesla’s will join the STORM Wave towards Eindhoven. In the cars, the team-members will be driven. In the German city of Born everyone on the team will get on an electric bus. Different electric vehicles will join the bus and the team in a motorcade. In total, some 40 electric vehicles will join in.
After the trip, the bike will attend different fairs and will be shown to the public on different occasions. Which road the bike will eventually take, has not become clear yet. “We haven’t decided on what the next big step will be for us”, says team-member Bas Verkaik.
Trouble in Vienna
Verkaik is satisfied about the way the trip went, he says. “We wanted to prove that electric driving is possible anywhere in the world. I think we have done that. We drove 23.000 kilometres on a bike we have built in a year.”
In Vienna there was trouble, according to Verkaik. When the bike wouldn’t go for two days in a row, just on the third day of the trip. “At the time, we thought we would have to cancel the entire trip. We were lucky we could repair the default and the next day we were on our way to Romenia. After that, the bike kept on running for the remainder of the trip.”
At the end, the team has travelled about 23.000 kilomtres. The longest stage was driven on the 59th day of the trip on the 12th of October. When the Wave was driven from Los Angeles, California to Phoenix, Arizona: 752 kilometres.
The shortest stage was completed on day 40 (23th of September): from Xinyang to Nanching in China: 80 kilometres. On three occasions, the Wave reached a peak of 141 kilometres per hour. This happened in China and the US.
The team behind the STORM Wave exists out of 23 students, mostly from the TU/e in Eindhoven. With the expedition, the team would like to show the world it is possible to travel the world, using only electric transport. During the trip, trade missions were planned to aim the spotlight on the possibillities of electric driving and the further development of the transport. As of today, the team has no intention of actually putting the bike on a commercial market.
The STORM Wave is a modular bike. Which results in a range of battery packs that are constantly replacable. On this trip, 24 different batteries were brought along. When the bike wasn’t running at night, the empty ones could be replaced with new, full batteries.
Last week, the bike has been transported to Paris on a plane from the US. The STORM Wave has been in Washington and New York, where the team got the opporunity to show off the bike in the middle of Time Square.
Watch the latest weekly update to see how that went: