Heads up! Earlier this morning (Friday, July 2) BMW dropped an announcement suggesting we’ll see a new electric scooter hit the market next week. From the teaser photo, it looks like the Definition CE 04 is about to hit the market in street-legal form.
BMW says the new vehicle will debut on its YouTube channel on Wednesday, July 7, in a live English-language presentation at 10 AM CEST.
What’s the Definition CE 04?
The Definition CE 04 has a name that sounds straight from a legal document, but it’s actually a BMW skunk works project. Sort of. Skunk works projects are usually hidden away from the light of day, but BMW has given us sneak peeks at this platform a couple of times. You can see one example below:
That video hit the Interwebz last fall, and when that happened, BMW basically said we’d see a production machine based on this concept in the future.
For many of us, we assumed that meant a far-off release date. BMW’s been playing around with electric scooters and improved battery designs for years now (remember, the electric C Evolution was available in Europe a long time ago, and BMW has a massive battery research plant as well).
However, there’s been no indication of big breakthroughs recently, no silver bullet to overcome the issues inherent to electric vehicles. No massive improvements to charging times, no significant increase to battery range.
With that in mind, it seems likely the production scooter seen in the title image will likely have specs similar to the concept bike BMW showed last fall. Back then, BMW told us the Definition CE 04 had battery range around 75-80 miles. The mention of “urban single-track mobility” on this web page seems to confirm that the new vehicle won’t be much different. This is a scooter that is designed for short rides around town, not long rides on the interstate.
Having said that, take heart! Last fall, BMW says it realizes riders need more battery range for longer-haul riding, but the company also said it’s working on that. Hopefully we’ll see improvement soon, with electric motorcycles able to charge quickly and ride for long distances before recharging. And hopefully, this release on Wednesday will be a step in that direction.