It is hard to catch us off guard, but that is exactly how we would describe our experience with the Kymco SuperNEX. We didn’t see it coming.
What you are looking at is the Kymco SuperNEX, an electric superbike. It is attractive, it has a six-speed gearbox, and it has a top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h), which it reaches in 10.9 seconds…and that is about all we really know about it.
Kymco’s unveiling of the SuperNEX was filled with buzzwords and ideas, but light on details and specifics, which has us thinking that his halo bike is more style than substance.
To be fair though, there are a few interesting features that the Taiwanese brand shared, which have us hopeful that the SuperNex is more than a ploy at stealing headlines.
First up is the Kymco FEP (Full Engagement Performance) electronics package, which includes launch control, rear-wheel lift control, traction control, and various riding modes.
The FEP level can be tailored to the rider’s preference, though Kymco doesn’t really go into specifics on how these settings are adjusted. We are also without cold tech specs on the motor and battery, which is a pretty crucial thing when pitching a crowd on an electric superbike.
We do know that the bike has a slipper clutch, and that shifting can occur without the use of the shift lever. The sound of the electric motor is “enhanced” with what Kymco calls an “active acoustic motor”, which the rest of us would simply call a speaker.
Like the idea of playing engine sounds back to the rider, some of Kymco’s ideas don’t seem fully baked. Our experience with gearboxes on electric motorcycles has left us leery of the idea, and in fact the connection between rider and machine when there is no gears to shift is perhaps the pinnacle of the sport.
As a machine, the Kymco SuperNEX looks the part, though. It has Brembo brakes, Öhlins suspension, a twin-spar aluminum frame, and an attractive set of bodywork.
But, it only looks the part. At no point did we actually see the Kymco SuperNEX operate…in video during the presentation, or in person on the stage. When greeted by skeptics, it is good to bring along a proof of life.
The whole presentation and machine feel very vaporware to our senses right now, but here we are…talking about the Kymco SuperNex – I am pretty sure that means that Kymco just won EICMA.
It would be great to see a brand like Kymco come out of nowhere and surprise the motorcycle industry with a proper electric supersport, but first we see, then we believe. Until then.