Lightning LS-2??R aims to become world's fastest production bike

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Electric motorcycle manufacturer Lightning are hoping to wrestle the title of world's fastest production bike from the Kawasaki H2R when they run their new Lightning LS-2??R during this year's Bonneville Speed Week.

Lightning already produce the fastest street-legal production bike with their LS-218, which reached a top speed of 218mph on the Bonneville Salt Flats. The track-only H2R beat the Lightning by 2mph, an accolade that Lightning are now hoping to better.

The standard LS-218 makes a claimed 200bhp and has a range of 100 miles at motorway speeds, but Lightning founder and CEO Richard Hatfield hopes the LS-2??R will produce close to 300bhp, and he says it's already producing 250bhp.

Those question marks in the model name? They won't be there long - they're only there because Lightning don't yet know how fast the new bike will go.


Hatfield has already tested the new bike, at the mile long El Mirage course in California, where it managed a top speed of 212mph. With much more room to play with at Bonneville, Hatfield is hopeful the bike will top 220mph: "We don't know how fast it can go yet, so we've left the question marks in until we see how it goes at Bonneville. We just did our first run at El Mirage with it. It's everything we hoped it would be," Hatfield told

"You know, I hate to make predictions, because the universe tends to punish me when I make predictions. Let's say this: if we manage to go faster than we did before, I'll consider it a success. If we get into the 220s, I'll consider it a big success, and anything over that will be whipped cream and ice cream on top of it."

Bonneville Speed Week takes place August 12-18.

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Liam Marsden

By Liam Marsden

Former MCN Web Producer