That emulation technology is cool and all, but how does the actual bike go?
Remember the Emula electric concept bike we told you about in May, 2020? It’s an electric motorcycle that’s meant to be completely different from any other electric bike on the market. Through strategically placed speakers and its proprietary McFly controller, it can allegedly emulate the experience of any one of 1,000 piston-powered bikes.
At the beginning of August, 2020, Emula released this teaser video to get us all excited about seeing this bike take to the track. Emula says that the full video is coming some time in Autumn 2020, with no exact date given.
As you’d expect of a track teaser video, there are plenty of action clips with excellent sound, meant to stir us up and get us excited about what’s to come. On just about any other bike, this approach would be completely standard, but on this bike? You can’t unknow something once you know it, and I have so many questions about this thing.
Riding any bike is a very specific combination of sensory feedback. It isn’t just about how it looks or sounds, but also how it smells or feels. Any or all of those points can—and often do—change throughout the time that you’re in the saddle, depending on how you’re riding. The way your bike maneuvers in different situations is also a key part of your experience.
Even if the Emula’s speaker, feedback, and electronic control setup is sophisticated enough to be convincing to a rider in the saddle, the experience is limited by the physicality of the actual object. It might sound and react like a Suzuki RG125 Gamma, but there’s no way to get that feel exactly right. Plenty of us have never ridden one, so that’s not a visceral reference we’d be able to draw upon. Will anyone riding this thing be impressed with all that 2electron has been able to accomplish, or will it just be seen as a sad echo of an experience most of us may never get to have?
Then again, maybe the Emula is the perfect bike for 2020, with its option to just roll with the quiet electric bike vibes for the outside world, all the while it’s piping your favorite emulated bike sounds into your Bluetooth headset or headphones so you only hear it if you’re the one riding. Both a good bike and 2020 make you scream inside your heart, right? Right.