Skip to main content

Confederate Motors to close, reopen with new name and electric motorcycles

Confederate Motors closing
The company name no longer works so the company will close. Birmingham, Alabama-based Confederate Motors is going out of business, reports Asphalt and Rubber. After an undisclosed dark period, a new company called Curtiss Motorcycles will introduce high-performance electric motorcycles.

Founded in 1991 by attorney H. Matthew Chambers, Confederate Motors is today, and soon will have been, a boutique motorcycle company known for extremely high-powered, big V-twin motorcycles. The official Confederate Motors closing will occur when the single last remaining P51 Combat Fighter is sold.

According to Asphalt and Rubber, Chambers told the Los Angeles Times the Confederate name had become a political liability. “I think we lost a lot a business with that name,” Chambers said. “We’ve missed out on branding opportunities. So, it’s time to retire it.”

The remaining P51 Combat Fighter is the Black edition. All Blonde editions have already sold.

The P51 is made entirely made from carved solid billet blocks of military-grade aluminum for robustness and fatigue-resistance. The bike’s 7-inch frame backbone also serves as the fuel tank with a 3.75-gallon capacity.

Powered by a 132-cubic inch (2,163cc) 56-degree air cooled V-twin engine, the P51 produces 145 hp at 5,100 RPM and 160 pound-feet of torque at mind-boggling low 2,000 RPM.

The rated 160 mph top speed was proved earlier in August when, according to Confederate’s website, the P51 ran 164.93 mph on “very slippery salt.”

The P51 uses adjustable monoshocks front and rear, double wishbone in front and cantilevered in the rear.

Weighing in at 560 pounds with fuel and fluids, the P51 has a 62.5-inch wheelbase and 29.5-inch seat height. There’s a 19-inch carbon front wheel with a 120/70XR19 tire and a 17-inch carbon disc rear wheel wearing a 240/45XR17 tire.

Curtiss Motorcycles is named for Glenn Curtis, an early aviator who also built and raced motorcycles. Curtis competed with the Wright Brothers. Curtis was dubbed the “Fastest Man on Earth” in 1907 after he rode a V8-powered Hercules motorcycle built by his company 136.3 mph in a measured mile at Ormond Beach in Florida.

The first electric model from the new Curtiss Motorcycle, suitably called the Hercules, is reported to be based on a low, sporty cruiser design and will have two Zero Motorcycles electric motors. Early estimates are the electric ride will pump out 175 hp and pull 290 pound-feet of torque. Chambers has not announced an expected release date or where it will be built.

Editors' Recommendations

The wildest electric motorcycle got wilder at CES 2023
The entire rim of the rear motorcycle wheel acts as a motor, eliminating the need for a chain or belt to drive the wheel.

Tron-style hubless electric motorcycles have made the rounds as concepts and Instagram clickbait for years, but like flying cars, they always seemed just out of reach. That changed last year when Verge (formerly RMK) began shipping its outrageous TS and TS Pro, and since then, the Finnish manufacturer hasn’t rested on its laurels. At CES 2023, Verge showed up with the TS Ultra, an upgraded version of the TS that pushes it to ever more unimaginable levels of power.

Though it looks nearly identical to its predecessors, a new powertrain elevates horsepower from the unique patented hub motor to 201 horsepower, nearly double the 107 horsepower of the older TS, and still a huge leap up from 137 hp in the TS Pro. Torque specs are even more eye-popping, up from an already excessive 737 ft-lb to 885 ft-lb, closer to what you would find on turbodiesel pickup than a motorcycle, or even a car.

Read more
VW previews its next electric car in trippy camouflaged form
Front three quarter view of a camouflaged Volkswagen ID.7 prototype.

The Volkswagen ID.7 is VW's next electric car, and while it won't be fully revealed until later in the year, the automaker provided a sneak peek at CES 2023.

VW said the production ID.7, which will be revealed in the second quarter of this year, will be influenced by the ID.Aero concept first shown in China in 2022. The camouflaged prototype VW brought to CES has the same general shape as the ID.Aero. It's a streamlined sedan that VW claims will have up to 435 miles of range as measured on the somewhat lenient European WLTP testing cycle.

Read more
How to charge your electric car at home
apple maps to get new ev feature eliminate range anxiety close up of the hybrid car electric charger station with power suppl

One of the biggest perks to owning an electric car is charging it in the comfort of your own home, rather than requiring stops at a gas station every week or so. That means that if you stay on top of charging, and don’t take super long trips, you’ll never really have to worry about when and where to "fill up."

But there are a number of ways to charge up at home, and they’re not all for everyone. In fact, some options are far better than others — and getting the right charging gear for your needs is definitely worth doing.

Read more