Electric bikes and motorcycles have been seeing increased military use for several years. So it should come as no surprise that Ukrainian forces have found them to be an effective tactical vehicle to fight back against Russian aggression.
It’s been more than two months now since Russian soldiers invaded Ukraine’s borders, indiscriminately attacking both civilian and military targets.
Ukrainian defenders have bravely pushed back against Russian attacks, often having to rely on superior strategy and tactics to make up for a significant statistical disadvantage.
Russia handily outnumbers Ukraine in terms of military personnel and vehicles. Yet a steady stream of images of burned-out Russian tanks has become a constant reminder of Ukraine’s fierce determination as well as Russia’s military floundering. Now new images of locally built electric motorcycles are offering up yet another vehicular reminder of Ukraine’s determination to defend its land and people.
ELEEK, a Ukrainian electric bicycle and motorbike company based in Ternopil, has begun supplying the Ukrainian Army with the company’s ELEEK Atom motorbikes.
The ELEEK Atom Military, a special designation for the bikes commissioned by Ukrainian forces, feature a top speed of 90 km/h (55 mph) and can travel up to 150 km (93 miles) on a single charge. They are designed to carry heavy gear, offering a payload capacity of up to 150 kg (330 lb.), yet weigh just 70 kg (154 lb.) each.
The bikes are lighter than traditional gas-powered dirt bikes, make less noise, and reveal a reduced heat signature on Russian drones scanning with thermal imaging.
Mamuka Mamulashvili, commander of the Georgian Legion, a unit in the Ukrainian Army formed of mostly ethnically Georgian soldiers, told The War Zone that he requested the electric motorbikes for his sniper teams.
Mamulashvili explained that his teams required the electric bikes to quietly insert into a target area, engage the enemy from a distance, and then quickly exfiltrate before the Russians answer with artillery strikes on the location.
The bike itself can be seen in the walkaround video below.
The use of electric motorcycles and e-bikes by militaries is an increasingly common trend.
Norway’s armed forces began testing fat tire electric bicycles in border guard applications as early as 2018.
The New Zealand Defence Forces began testing UBCO’s electric utility bikes in 2020, using the motorcycles for patrol roles.
Australian Soldiers have been testing Stealth electric bikes since last year.
Multiple special forces units in Europe and the Middle East have also tested high power electric mountain bikes for field use.
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Author: Micah Toll