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Review: LS 218 – The World’s Fastest Superbike

Innovation never sleeps, and that’s what we are counting on, to wake up to something new each day, isn’t it? Every minute, new ideas pop-in and new inventions are being worked upon in the automobile sector.

You all would know that it has been over 100 years since the evolution of internal combustion engine motorcycles, however, in the last 10 years, electric engine motorcycles have been the new face of the future.

LS 218

Needless to say, the speed at which technological advancements are born is quite interesting and that is what Lightning Motors has successfully tapped into.

Lightning Motorcycles has taken a big swing in the motorcycle community especially in the category of speed and electric.

  • They put themselves on the map in July 2012 when they won Epower/TTXGP race using a solely solar-powered motorcycle.
  • The same bike set a new land speed record in November 2012 with a 215.960mph record at Bonneville.
  • They have also taken a head start by shoving into the garbage the negative perception that electric powered engines cannot become power racing motorcycles.
  • The company has blazed the trail for the futuristic innovation of zero combustion and fully electrical mechanical engines.

The LS-218 is not just the fastest racing superbike alone, it is also currently the fastest street-legal production motorcycle in the world.

LS 218

Sounds super exciting, right?

Well, read the article to know about the fastest superbike that has earned all the attention and reckoning of the motorbike industry.


LS 218

The LS-218, unlike all internal combustion engine, makes use of a direct drive motor.

Yes, you heard that right!

  • It is packaged with an IPM liquid-cooled motor with a 168 FT-LBS Torque, 200 Horsepower, and 10,500 RPM.
  • With this two-wheeler, you do not have to worry about the continuous change of gears for transmission, simply hit the throttle and blaze down the road.
  • While transitioning from medium speed to maximum speed, you simply turn up the throttle and it keeps pulling without the need to shut off to change the gears.

According to Founder and CEO of Lightning Motors, Richard Hatfield, the LS-218 makes use of a predictable and progressive mode of acceleration capable of getting full power and this contributes to how fast it can go.

  • The throttle of the engine is mapped in a way in which 60% of the throttle movements amounts to only about 30% of the torque, and the remaining 40% takes the torque to its maximal level before it hits its 218 mph top speed.


LS 218

For a superbike with such a high top speed, it is imperative to provide brakes that have the ability to halt the bike in no time in an emergency and that is just what Lightning Motors has done with its product.

  • Test riders confirmed that the LS-218 did justice to the brakes.
  • It has been equipped with a dual radial shaped Brembo 320mm disc forged with 4 piston calipers each of which is distributed evenly as 2 Brembo T-drive 320mm fully-floating rotors and 2 Brembo GP4-RX CNC radial calipers.

In short, you do not need to worry about slowing down or coming to a complete halt in just a few seconds.


LS 218

  • The wheels are manufactured with a lightning forged aluminum for both rear and front.
  • The front tires are sized at 3.5” x 17”, 120/70ZR17 while its rear tires are sized at 6.0” x 17”, 190/55ZR17 for quick swerving, balance, and better acceleration stability.


LS 218

  • The design of the world’s fastest motorcycle is quite sleek and beautifully streamlined.
  • Lightning Motorcycle and Race Tech have partnered for the development of track-ready suspensions all of which is articulated into the LS-218.
  • Its front suspension is designed with a Race Tech fork, fully adjustable spring preload, compression, and rebound damping and NIX30 cartridge internals. These cartridges underwent TiN surface treatment with billet aluminum radial caliper mounting.
  • Its rear suspension also has a similar billet aluminum swingarm, an Öhlins TTX36 Shock and linkage system as well as an adjustment for preload, ride height, high and low-speed compression, and rebound.
  • The height of the seat is about 32 inches off the ground and the bike weighs about 495 lbs.


LS 218

  • The engine of the powerful LS-218 electric bike is powered by a 380V 20 kWh lithium battery pack which can last for 160-180 miles on a single charge.
  • The battery pack can also be provided with options of either 15kwh or 12 kWh depending on user preferences.
  • It takes approximately 30 minutes to charge the battery with its DC fast charger while its level 2 charger takes about 120 minutes to fully charge.


Starting at a price range of $38,888 the LS-218 is a big leap for the electric motorbike industry worldwide. It is definitely “THE BIKE” for those who love speed, class and believe in a clean environment.

A small drawback, however, is that being electric, it is noiseless which may not go down well with riders who are fond of the “VROOM” sound of a bike.

Honestly, the LS 218 is an expensive buy and daily commuters may not be ready to shell out so much for a motorbike.

Well, I do hope that Lightning Motorcycles innovates some cheaper alternatives that are more accessible even for the Indian motorbike market!

Disclaimer: This article was prepared or accomplished by it's author in their personal capacity. The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the view of Motorbikes India or it's owners.

The views and opinions expressed on this web site are soley those of the original authors and other contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Steve Gerweck, the GERWECK.NET staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

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Motorbikes India (MI) is an online magazine about motorcycles in India. Motorbikes news, articles, clubs & events, routes, insurance, finance, maintenance & safety. We welcome contributions, from anyone that is enthusiastic about biking. If you are part of a motorbike club in India, please be sure to keep your club info and events up to date in our clubs section.

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