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Motobatt Hybrid Batteries on the frontier of innovation

Written by
Matt Finch
Published on
April 22, 2021 at 12:14:23 AM PDT April 22, 2021 at 12:14:23 AM PDTnd, April 22, 2021 at 12:14:23 AM PDT

Motobatt has Gone beyond the limits of both Lead acid and Lithium chemistries in one battery! An original innovation with ground breaking technology advances in performance and longevity.

Placing itself at the forefront of the Powersports industry, after several years of research and development Motobatt has launched the newly created “Hybrid technology.”

Motobatt Hybrid was designed specifically to address the known industry challenges with Lithium batteries in Powersports applications. Larger Twin cylinder motorcycles like Harley Davidson, Ducati and BMW draw down hard on the battery as huge inrush currents are required to spin the larger starter motors and turn the crankshaft. These long stroke twins with high compression engines are extremely tough on any battery. Any battery not in tip top condition will struggle to "hold the CCA" required to make a successful ignition in modern Big Twins. This is true of course for any starting battery, but with big twins you need everything going for you. Note you should always have any battery connected to a maintenance charger when the vehicle is not in use.


If we begin to understand the larger cubic capacity of engines plus technology and engine management system loads over the last decade, you will be staggered to see manufacturers still utilizing the same size battery as 30 years ago! Therein is the engineering issue, no space to put a larger battery. This results in less “headroom” for additional lifespan as the battery ages chemically. If we look at a 2-liter car engine you will find a 650cca battery with 55-60 AH of capacity of double the size and acid volume. To start a long stroke 1900cc Harley you have only 300-500cca and 20-30 AH acid starved battery, with a much higher Amp draw on start up. As long as it can get off the showroom floor, that’s the end of it for manufacturers. Not to mention demands of the modern consumer.

The excitement of Lithium technology for Powersports starting batteries was initially welcomed, however in early days pricing was prohibitive. 10 years on prices have reduced and a Lithium battery can be had for around double the price of Lead acid OE battery. But along the way there have been many issues that have disappointed consumers and cost a lot of pain and money along the way. We discuss the main ones in this blog.

Motobatt Hybrid has been designed to have the correct amount of Amp Hour capacity and hold high voltage numbers to create the "watts" required for the job of turning the starter at full speed.

Let’s explain further the two main reasons customers think they want/need a lithium battery.

  • Higher Cold Cranking Amps (CCA)
  • Lighter weight vs Lead Acid types (usually around 50%)

CCA is a number banded around by battery manufacturers a bit like horsepower. It’s good to have more horsepower, but that is not always the vehicle that reliably wins the race. The whole package is what constitutes a reliable product or vehicle. What is important to know is CCA is irrelevant unless you are at zero degrees or less. (this relates solely to cold weather performance, not reserve capacity or internal resistance, or hot weather performance). The number that really starts your engine is Watts.

Example you have a 2 KW starter motor, not a 500CCA starter motor.

In the case of Lithium batteries, if you look closely, they are not rated at CCA, but CA. That is to say they do not perform with Cold Cranking Amp measurement at -18/0C. Cranking Amps (CA) is measured at ambient temperatures. The fact is Lead acid batteries also have higher CA at ambient temperatures, up to 30% more.

The colder it is the more resistance a lithium battery has, so it will likely fail well before a lead acid battery in sub-zero temperatures, or activate the safety control board if it has one. This will result in having to recharge the battery as it will default to zero volts. Therefore, the CCA numbers are grossly inflated on most lithium battery brands. Current testing equipment cannot even measure the CCA of a lithium battery.

So, in the real world of ambient temperatures what really matters is how many watts the battery is able to supply from initial load to engine start. A sick or poorly tuned bike may take more start attempts, draining the battery voltage further each time under load, which in turn reduces the available watts. This is why after multiple attempts the battery becomes exhausted and the engine turns slower.

With Motobatt Hybrid after 15 start attempt amazingly the voltage is actually climbing when Lithium or Lead acid alone are already dropping at 5 start attempts.

Amps x Volts=Watts If the voltage is dropping under load, you get less watts.

The second and undeniable issue with Lithium starting batteries in powersports application is that they do not have the same Amp Hour capacity as the OE battery. Example on a Harley dresser the 32 Amp hour battery is replaced by only a 12 Amp hour lithium. The Lithium battery may have higher CA, but it is well down on Amp Hour or reserve minutes. These capacities are needed to run on board accessories during and after start up. If the ECU sees low amps available, it will not start the engine. Lithium batteries can take higher rates of charge therefore (in a lab test) they can be utilized with less Amp Hour capacity. The common issue is though if the voltage is low, they discharge a lot of initial power then they are depleted. In some low draw uses like racing where there are limited electronic comforts, and wide-open throttle is the normal use the charging system can keep up but in day to day use they really offer no benefit and more problems.

Common Lithium problems

An example problem arises when the Harley with a high-end sound system, electronics, and heated clothing is travelling at low traffic speeds on a warm day and the Lithium battery is being drained faster than it is being charged. The result is the next time the bike needs to start, the resting voltage is too low and the battery fails completely by either over-discharging the battery, or if equipped with PCB it activates the low voltage protection circuit. At best it has let you down, at worst you have destroyed your battery.

The problem arises commercially and physically. To engineer correct OE Amp Hour capacities into the battery. The first issue is you now have additional connections and multiple packs inside the battery case, meaning the addition of more expensive circuitry and connection points of failure. This leads to almost double the expense, which makes a very small number of people who can afford it. In most cases though there simply is not enough physical space to put additional packs into the battery case in parallel. So, few part numbers can effectively be built, the common default is advertising more CA to make it look good, but actually it has less AH capacity, performance issues and poor cold weather performance. Even if you take the expensive option, you still have all the same issues if the pack is over-discharged or overheated. With double the pack weight, you are now in the weight range of Motobatt Hybrid anyway without the benefits and at a much higher price point.

Motorcycle charge systems are notoriously prone to overcharge spike events and lack of charge control. High temperatures (heat sink) in the regulator, degradation of the stator and electrical system accelerates failure of Lithium batteries.

All motorcycles with the exception of very few late model high performance off road machines, are NOT designed to effectively charge and maintain Lithium batteries. Powersport charging systems are not optimized with algorithms for Lithium, they are designed for Lead Acid. This is why Lithium batteries require a special charger.

Motobatt Hybrid batteries are the correct chemistry and are charged perfectly by the OE charging system. Lithium batteries require a charge profile between 13.1 and 14.4v.Beyond this voltage the repeated exposure to over/under voltage spikes and incorrect charging profile damages the cells and will cause premature failure to the battery and may damage your charging system. Motobatt Hybrid batteries are the same voltage and have the same charging profile as OE charging system. The AGM Hybrid design can take higher voltage spikes often seen in European machines and older solid state regulator machines.

All lithium batteries require a special lithium charger to correctly balance, charge and maintain, this is an additional expense to an already higher cost item. It is true that they require a special charger to consolidate and repair the insufficiencies and punishment of the Powersport charge system and the costly charging errors of uninformed consumers who may treat lithium chemistry like a lead acid design. Generally, these chargers will balance the cells in the lithium battery and try to optimize it. However many times the lithium battery has been parasitically drained by the powersport vehicle, and cannot be revived.

Motobatt Hybrid requires no special charger since it is designed to be charged just like a normal lead acid battery. Further is has its own CBC board inside which constantly optimizes performance and balances cells. No additional expense but all the benefits. Lithium batteries do not do well in an over discharged state, deeply discharged cells are often unrevivable. In fact most failures cannot be analyzed by any available test equipment, frustrating when this expensive light battery is in the trash can and often you don’t know why.

Motobatt Hybrid is a world first in both preventing warranty and wastage. It is the only AGM lead acid battery with an low voltage shut down to protect the battery from being drawn down to failure, or parasitically drawn down by the vehicle. This is the number one cause of battery warranty enquiries and failures! Simply apply a standard charger to "wake up" the protection board and the lithium component begins a rapid charge. Within 20-30 minutes you have reliable voltage to make a quick restart. Once running the board will optimize the charge rate between the two chemistries until the battery is charged.

Motobatt AGM Lithium Hybrid design creates a higher "Specific Energy" per lb than any battery design on the market. By utilizing both technologies together controlled by our patented CBC board. Hybrid technology essentially gives a much Higher AH rating than OE with all the benefits of high Cranking Amps of Lithium in hot and cold conditions.

Motobatt Hybrid has more than double the Amp Hour capacity of the equivalent Lithium competitors!

The two chemistries "help" each other. The Lithium reduces voltage drop on starting loads so the lead component is barelydrawn on. This results in up to 5000 cycles with 90% of original capacity! This is where Hybrid Technology shines. It is simply incredible in real world situations. The right battery for the right job with reserve capacity to back it up.

Hybrid batteries are rated for both CCA and CA. Additionally they provide even higher PCA (Pulse cranking Amps) for the first five seconds. Real numbers matter since CCA means nothing much if you have a high voltage drop you get a CCA drop. In cold conditions the lead component of the battery builds energy which is shared to the Lithium to "wake it up" and double down on cranking while providing optimal AH capacity to run engine management system with ease.

The combination of Hybrid produces higher CCA faster than either chemistry alone. A prefect and harmonious blend of Lead and Lithium achieving the a much superior performance than either, by way of increased Amp Hour capacity and Lithium Cranking performance.

Hybrid can replace 92 High-capacity part numbers with just 5 SKU's, many times you will be able to migrate this battery to your new ride since interchangeability is common.

  • Completely compatible with all Powersport charging systems old or new.
  • No Special Charger required, no extra cost for big CCA!
  • Faster charging time, rapid recovery of voltage
  • Uniquely versatile with its "M-Flex" terminal providing solid multi connection posts, fits more bikes
  • Outstanding reliable cranking Power in hot and cold conditions
  • Highest Specific Energy and Energy Density
  • Longer cycle life than Lithium or Lead acid
  • Double the Amp Hour capacity of Lithium, superior to Lead acid
  • Protection against overcharging and over discharging
  • Dynamic cell balancing
  • Longer shelf life
  • Lowest cost of ownership around 30% more than OE and less landfill
  • Less expensive than Lithium only designs with superior performance
  • 30% Lighter than Lead Acid Designs

You can purchase a Motobatt Hybrid battery at www.motobatt.us or check out your local Motobatt distributor or reseller.