I know that some folks will ignore this because the bike hasn't been delivered to a customer yet. However, some folks find this stuff interesting and I do field questions from time to time asking "so why is your bike better". Here's just such an answer that I sent out today:
While we obviously believe our bike (the C1xx) is more reliable than the VX-1 there's no market data to support this. However, here are some key points as to why we believe our bike will prove to be more reliable (and our testing confirms this):
1) The C1xx uses field proven sub-systems from major vendors for all aspects of the bike. The components selected for our first model are in reliable use elsewhere. Furthermore we've designed the control systems to keep within the operating limits. Other cheaper competitors are far more lax about the operating limits of standard components and folks like the VX-1 and Brammo Enertia use custom, niche products and have to deal with the inevetable field issues that arise (as well as the higher per-unit costs).
2) The C1xx uses LiFePO4 batteries and a per-cell charge balancing BMS. The VX-1 uses NiMH batteries and uses a "blind equalization charge" balancing system. The C1xx actively balances the cells on each and every complete charge, it does this by shunting charge around completely charged cells until all cells are fully charged. No cell is ever stressed by an over-charge or an over-discharge (during bike use we monitor the individual cells for low voltage cutoff). The VX-1 simply overcharges the NiMH cells every 10th charge (or something approximating that) - their basis for doing this is that the NiMH cells that receive full charge first then dissipate the excess charge as heat. However, they've no mechanism to know how long a cell is overcharged for nor if every under charged cell reaches full capacity. Likewise during bike use they have no way of knowing if an individual cell goes beneath the lower limit. Simply put they rely on pack averages, not individual cell monitoring.
As well as reliability here are some other reasons the C1xx is superior to the VX-1:
1) The C1xx is substantially lighter: 390lbs vs. 550lbs for our model with a 4.6kWh battery pack (24 cells) vs. the VX-1's 3.2kWh pack.
2) The C1xx is quicker: 70mph top speed vs. the VX-1's 62mph top speed for our model with 30 cells
3) The C1xx has superior range: 50 "real world" miles vs. VX-1's 30 "real world" miles (for our 30 cell bike which equates to a 5.7kWh pack)
4) The C1xx is less expensive and offers 4 models with different sized packs to allow the customer to select the best fit: C120e (20 x 40Ah) / $5499, C120 (20 x 60Ah) / $5999, C124 (24 x 60Ah) / $6499, C130 (30 x 60Ah) / $7499. Vectrix's approach to serving more cost-conscious customers was to try and introduce bikes with inferior lead-acid based technology. Our bikes are identical apart from the size of the battery pack which we clearly indicate affects both speed and range.
5) The C1xx has better servicability: While CuMoCo certainly plans on being in the EV business for a long time to come (it's a marathon not a sprint) should we not survive, or if the customer simply wishes to maintain their own bike with different choices, the components on our bikes can be replaced with widely available alternatives on a component by component basis. This is not practical with the VX-1 which would require a major engineering effort to replace the powertrain (battery, motor, power controller and bike controller are a more tightly coupled system in the VX - on the C1xx they have more independence).
As well as all of the above CuMoCo has a very open / transparent policy. We'd rather have happy, well-informed customers with realistic expectations than un-happy customers who feel cheated when the bike doesn't meet their expectations. That policy also applies to dealers and distributors. That seems to be another area where Vectrix appears to have failed.
So if you were considering a two-wheel EV but the demise of Vectrix has left you a little gun-shy I'd ask that you consider if the C1xx will meet your needs.
Thanks for reading.