An urban micro-factory helps Fonz clock 100

by Petrol Mum

FONZ (the Australian electric motorbike maker formerly known as Fonzarelli) is celebrating the milestone of 100 of its electrifying, custom-built NKD motorbikes now on-road in every State and Territory in Australia.

Since the launch of the first NKD in late 2019, the rollout of Australia’s first locally produced electric motorbike faced multiple challenges due to the lockdown restrictions and global supply shortages of lithium cells and chips used in the FONZ powerpack.

FONZ Founder, Michelle Nazzari, said the company had originally planned production in South Australia to take advantage of local automotive talent and government support for the renewables industries – but all that had to shift gear.

“With FONZ headquartered in Sydney, we made the decision in early 2020 to bring our production plans closer to home and ramp up in our ‘urban micro factory’, with the team having since delivered 100 NKDs from our compact production facility in Redfern.

“Up to 20 motorbikes can be built here each month, but FONZ is now playing catch up so we’re now looking to expand to a larger facility in 2022.

“We’re incredibly proud to have reached the 100 on-road bike milestone with NKDs being ridden by owners in every State and Territory in Australia!”

“It has also been great to see both NSW and the ACT abolished stamp duty for electric motorcycles and electric scooters this year. While we know all States and Territories operate slightly differently, it’s encouraging to see growing support for two-wheeled EVs.”

FONZ sources as much as possible from local suppliers within a 200 kilometres of their premises to minimise the environmental footprint in the NKD manufacturing process.

“There’s a lot of greenwashing these days. It was important to us to source locally and get the certifications to show that it is possible to manufacture this type of product in Australia.”

Locally-made also means that each bike is custom built to spec and the multi-award winning NKD series has been certified by the Australian Made campaign.

Nazzari says there is no denying that NKD is not for everyone.

“There are many differing tastes out there but this plucky little beast is certainly turning heads wherever it goes. What’s particularly great is the endorsement we’re getting from people who truly know their stuff when it comes to performance.”

Former Australian racing car driver, Adam Kaplan, says his NKD is the perfect urban assault vehicle for his lifestyle in Noosa.

“The power delivery makes my pillion and I laugh every time we give it a squirt, and it’s sure footed and stable to ride and I love overtaking unsuspecting vehicles uphill with 2 up,” says Kaplan.

Kaplan rides the NKD X with a carbon fibre body kit. He wanted the ability to be able to carry his surfboard to the beach so FONZ designed an integrated surf rack system, which later became a popular option for other NKD owners.

For more information about the NKD range, visit the Fonz website

Photograph by Fonz.

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