The environmental and cost performance of current and future motorcycles
Abstract This work presents an integrative approach to environmental and cost assessment of current and future motorcycle technologies for four motorcycle size categories, three powertrain types, and a variety of fuel supply chains. We consider conventional gasoline (ICEV), battery electric (BEV) and fuel cell electric (FCEV) motorcycles with production years from 1990 to 2030. Motorcycle energy consumption is modelled based on the world harmonized motorcycle test cycle and calibrated with data measured from existing motorcycles. We model the potential future performance of motorcycles by adapting the model input parameters according to historic trends and future component performance predictions. We find that smaller motorcycles have much better environmental performance than larger motorcycles, though this is mostly due to the fact that larger motorcycles have different driving patterns: urban driving is found to have much lower environmental impact per kilometer than highway driving. Current BEV are found to have similar ownership costs to ICEV. They also have reduced climate change potential by roughly 60% when they are powered by electricity from natural gas, 80% when powered by renewables, and they still offer advantages over conventional motorcycles when charged with electricity from hard coal. Next generation BEV are found to have similar environmental performance advantages, though with a definite cost advantage. FCEV climate change reduction potential is found to depend strongly on the source of the hydrogen fuel, with climate benefits being substantial with hydrogen originating from renewable energy sources. Future cost competitiveness of FCEVs is linked closely to the development of fuel cell costs. Highlights LCA and cost assessment of motorcycles including battery and fuel cell powertrains. Battery motorcycles already cost competitive with large environmental benefits. Motorcycle environmental performance most strongly dependent on driving speed. Extensive supporting information including calculation files and life cycle inventories. Graphical abstract [DISPLAY OMISSION]
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