The 2017 BOLT Team is an interdisciplinary design team housed in the Joseph F. Ware Jr. Advanced Engineering Lab at Virginia Tech. The team's goal is to develop internationally competitive high-performance electric motorcycles for zero emissions, and all-electric races.
Since the team's inception, two prototypes have been completed and have proven themselves to be top contenders. The 2012 first generation BOLT went undefeated in class and won the North American Championship after placing third internationally. The 2014 second generation BOLT competed in an AHRMA eMotoRacing sprint race, placing first in the all-electric category. The team is currently in the process of redesigning systems in the second generation BOLT to improve performance in eMotoRacing sprints, and set a university team speed record. In parallel, the team is prototyping designs for a third motorcycle with hopes of competing in big league events such as the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and the TT Zero at the Isle of Man.
BOLT team members gain from the experience of applying their education in a hands-on environment. There are few commercially available products which meet the requirements of a winning electric powertrain, and so BOLT team members learn to think outside the box and solve unique engineering challenges. Designing and hand-building a motorcycle which harmonizes with the talents of elite and highly-skilled riders is no light undertaking, and there is little room for error or complacency. BOLT is a valuable experience for students, requiring professional attitudes, innovative thinking, and the drive to succeed.
The mission of the BOLT Team is to maintain the reputation and history of innovation at Virginia Tech by building all-electric motorcycles to compete in the AHRMA eMotoRacing series. The BOLT team is dedicated to evolving electric vehicle technology through design, construction, and demonstration of a high performance electric motorcycle and as a competition based team strives for nothing but the best performance on the track. By challenging the standards of performance, the team expects to increase the viability of clean emissions motorsports.
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