When is a moped not a moped? When it’s the Black Tea Moped. This electric motorcycle officially bears the Moped name, but it doesn’t have any pedals, as that implies. What it does have, is cool retro styling and an electric powertrain.
So, what’s the Black Tea Moped all about? The company’s media kit says “Black Tea was founded by Viktor during his studies at the Technical University Munich. He was always fascinated by the coolness of motorbikes & the thrill of the acceleration. However, he noticed that there is no appealing & affordable electric motorbike alternative. The market is flooded with electric sit-down scooters in Vespa Style which are not an option for thrill seekers like him.”
In other words, the German-based company started as a way to make cool-looking electric transportation. That doesn’t explain the goofy Black Tea name, but the rest of the origin story explains a lot about this machine—and its marketing.
Reading the Black Tea Moped’s website blurbage, you’re confronted with hyperbole at a level normally reserved for wrestling interviews. For example: “We founded Black Tea with the mission to make individual mobility exciting to unleash the full potential of your life. Therefore, we are devoted to building electric motorbikes with sexy design & insane performance, so that you look damn cool & enjoy every ride. We are hedonists & believe in the pursuit of fun.”
Rah, rah rah, baby! But while it’s easy to mock the enthusiasm, the truth is, Black Tea’s founders have tapped into the same ideas that are selling Ducati Scramblers. Plenty of young riders out there want bikes because of the promise of carefree, self-indulgent fun, and to show the whole world how cool and attractive they are.
Aside from the promise of The Good Life, what else do you get with the Black Tea Moped? You get an electric hub motor, 150-amp Sabvoton Controller and 72V/24.5 Ah battery. The motor has 5 kW peak output, 3 kW sustained output. Thanks to regenerative braking, the removable battery is supposed to have a 70-km range in the city, with four-hour recharge time. Top speed is supposed to be 80 km/h, but that may be restricted in some markets due to licencing regulations. The plan is to have this electric motorcycle rideable under AM or B licences in Europe, or M2 in the US—no motorcycle licence required.
As you’d expect, the frame is old-school tubular steel. The wheels are 18-inchers, front and rear. The Moped weighs 79 kg, and has a 750mm seat height. This scrambler should be very manageable for most riders.
Pricing is supposed to be 3,800 euros when the Moped arrives to market, but if you sign up for the Black Tea newsletter on its website, you can get 50 percent off that price. For more details, visit the company’s website.