When American vets returned from World War II, they immediately took to the Army’s standard issue Harley Davidson motorcycles they had seen and ridden in the service. These were, however, very large bikes and the early riders simply chopped off the parts that they found unnecessary. Viola! The iconic American “chopper” is born. The story was much the same in Europe. However, with the Continent’s narrow, winding roads, a lighter, quicker, more nimble motorbike was needed. The result was the highly stylized cafe racer; a stripped-down, blazingly fast motorbike that for many is the essence is motorcycling.
Now, thanks to some ingenious DIY wrench twisting from a South Carolina-based husband and wife team, there is finally an electric motorcycle with the look, feel and bugs-in-the-teeth speed of a classic cafe racer. We learned about this sleek electric ride from AllAbout Bikes.
Ed and Tammy Fargo have a long history in motor sports, bike building, even drag racing, but they’ve always had an eye for a cafe bike. After spending $250 for a 1978 Honda CB750 with a few missing parts, the two started the design and build.
After ripping out the engine and exhaust, the Fargo’s installed a Headway batteries, Altrax 450 AMP controller, a Mars (now Motenergy.com) ME1003 Motor and Airtech period-correct fiberglass parts. The Fargos report the 90 volt power plant allows the “Juice” cafe racer to hit 102.5 MPH — a very, very pretty, all electric, zero-emission 102.5 MPH.