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Universidad de Santiago former students develop first Chilean electric motorcycle

  • A team made up of alumni and students at Universidad de Santiago developed the first 100% Chilean high-performance low-cost electric motorcycle.


Two-wheeled vehicles have become important in large cities because they have been considered as a sustainable means of transport. Electric motorcycles, for example, stand out for their low-cost, their efficiency and their friendly relation with the environment.

In this context, Emilio Galleguillos, Electric Engineer graduated from Universidad de Santiago, became interested in high-power but low-cost electric vehicles with artificial intelligence. In 2014, he started to work on the first electric motorcycle fully manufactured in Chile. Now, Galleguillos and his company Alpha Motors are developing a prototype that they expect to present by mid-March.

Galleguillos has been interested in electric motors and electro mobility since he entered the Electrical Engineering program. In his dissertation, he evaluated the economic feasibility of introducing this motorcycle into the market, its profitability and all the technical parameters that will allow the new product to have a better performance without reducing its power.

He started to recruit students and professors interested in the project, including Dr Claudio Correa, who helped to develop the motorcycle’s engine. Later, with Ian Reglá, Industrial Engineer from Universidad de Santiago, he founded Alpha Motors. In 2017, Eduardo Toro, also an Electric Engineer from the same university, joined the company too.

Galleguillos says that their product will be similar to a Kawasaki sport motorcycle, with an initial fuel range of 100 km/h that can be increased to 170 km/h. He explains that it will have a low cost thanks to a strategic optimization of the engine that features an advanced computer control. The motorcycle will also be 25% lighter than traditional ones and charging 80% of its battery will take 30 minutes. Currently, a vehicle of this type is about USD13,500 and at Alpha Motors they expect to reduce the cost to about USD5,000.

He adds that the new vehicle will provide an economic, affordable, high-quality, emission-free, silent product with a unique design that includes an intelligent system.

Now, they are waiting for the results of some innovation national funding contests to finally fit the engine to the prototype, introduce the motorcycle into the market and offer the customers a unique experience.

“The development and design of this product is 100% Chilean. We want the customers to get to know the product and extrapolate its use to their own realities. We think that, in the short term, we will be able to start the serial production of motorcycles and begin to sell the final product,” Galleguillos concluded.

Translated by Marcela Contreras

Soledad Fuentes Mansilla