E-Type: A minimalist electric scrambler from Crooked

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
Most conversations about electric motorcycles revolve around how they stack up against their petrol-powered counterparts. But there’s really no need to pick sides. Electric and ICE bikes are going to coexist for quite some time before one takes over from the other, so we might as well enjoy them both.

“These two worlds can harmonize very well,” asserts Dominikus Braun, co-founder of Germany’s Crooked Motorcycles. Among the shop’s offerings is a made-to-order custom based on the Yamaha XS400; a minimalist scrambler with compact proportions. Now they’ve copied and pasted that design onto an electric bike, to prove that it can look just as good.

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
It’s an idea that Crooked’s been milling over for a while, but finding the right donor bike was key to nailing the brief. They eventually connected with the Swedish brand RGNT, whose flagship product, the ‘No.1,’ is a stylish and compact electric retro. Its 21 kW hub motor is good for 21 kW of peak power, with a top speed of 120 km/h [75 mph] and a range of 148 km [92 miles].

“We immediately got into the same vibe, and had the same views when it came to design language,” says Dominikus. “The reduced classic style of both companies was a great thing to have in common.”

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
The RGNT No.1 is rather fetching out the box, with clean lines and barely any clutter. Regardless, Crooked had an even more simplistic design in mind. Dominikus believes that “simplicity is the key to brilliance,” but, as any motorcycle designer will tell you, making something simple is often complicated.

The stock bike’s battery covers and fake tank look great, so the team didn’t need to mess with those much. But the seat and subframe had to go, as did the generous digital display that the No.1 comes with. Needless to say, Crooked had to employ some electronic trickery to make that happen.

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
Crooked started by hacking off most of the donor bike’s subframe, before welding in a shorter one with a kicked-up loop. But first, they perfected the design using CAD software, so that it would be easy to duplicate in the future. New YSS shocks do duty out back, lifting the tail by just over an inch from stock.

The top’s finished off with a custom seat, and there’s a LED taillight from Supernova Frenched into the subframe.

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
Part of Crooked’s plan was to do away with the No.1’s side covers, so that the bike would have an open design under the seat. But since that’s where RGNT have packed a lot of the bike’s wiring, a lot of stuff had to be relocated. The solution came in the form of a CAD-designed cable duct that sits just behind the battery. Other electrical components were tucked up ‘into’ the seat.

Ditching the original dashboard was even harder. To make sure the bike still ran properly, Crooked disassembled the original unit, and relocated the individual circuit boards to a custom-made housing inside the ‘tank.’

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
A tidy Motogadget speedo now sits front and center—if you want to check your charge level and range, that’s now done via a smartphone app. The cockpit also wears new handlebars and grips, with Motogadget bar-end turn signals. A small Bates-style headlight sits up front, flanked by a pair of 3D-printed fork covers.

Crooked left the brakes and front forks alone. And, since the No.1 came specced with tough Excel rims, they simply swapped out the tires for a set of adventure-ready Continental TKC80s.

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
Like the rest of the bike, the RGNT No.1’s branding is tasteful—as are the contrasting lines that flank the main enclosure below the tank. So Crooked looked for ways to add their branding in a way that would feel natural. The answer came in the form of a pair of laser-cut tank badges, and a small plaque that sits on the cable duct under the seat.

As a final touch, they added a small LED strip below their logo on each side of the tank. It can be configured to shine in myriad colors, adding an extra layer of customization onto the bike.

Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles
Dubbed the ‘E-Type,’ this charming electric scrambler will be available in a limited production run. Customers have some wiggle room to customize it beyond what’s shown here, and Crooked can make it road legal for them too, depending on the country they’re in. Interested parties can pre-order it now, and deliveries are expected to start rolling out from October.

Oh, and Crooked will keep building Yamaha XS400 customs on order too. So if you can’t figure out whether you prefer electric power or fossil fuels, you can cover all your bases by ordering one of each.

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Custom electric scrambler by Crooked Motorcycles

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