Whilst the car industry has been on the long road towards sustainability for many years, the motorcycle industry has lagged behind. With the help of Mika Häkkinen and Valtteri Bottas, Verge Motorcycles are now changing that.
Many car manufacturers have integrated greener models into their portfolios over the past years. This trend hasn’t been mirrored to the same extent in the motorcycle industry with major players in the market such as Harley Davidson and KTM slow to adjust to a changing world.
The same can’t be said for Verge Motorcycles. The Finnish business is growing, and now has its first shop in Monaco. Their fully electric motorcycle, constructed in Estonia, is growing in popularity to the extent that they plan to open another factory in the USA, and further shops across Europe. “Let’s do what Apple did to Nokia,” Verge CEO Tuomo Lehtimäki tells Monaco Life. The Finnish businessman is well on the way to shaking up the industry.
Some famous Finnish faces
Whilst Verge has not yet penetrated the mainstream, demand is on the rise. According to Lehtimäki, customers are “screaming” to buy their most popular bike, the TS Pro, valued at €36,900. Keeping up with that demand is key, and their plans to expand into the US are indicative of a business that is growing exponentially, just as the demand for electric bikes increases.
The personnel at Verge are a notable contributor to the business’ success. Mark Wilson, after impressive stints at McLaren and Aston Martin, is just one element of a world-class team of experts assembled by the Finnish company.
Verge is also benefitting from the profiles of some of its advocates and collaborators. Former Formula One World Champion Mika Häkkinen, a Monaco resident, has been on board since the start. “He is investing, advising, giving his knowledge of motorsport. It is good for our visibility,” says Lehtimäki.
Häkkinen’s residency in the Principality, coupled with Verge’s desire “to be associated with Monaco”, made the partnership a perfect marriage.
A carbon fibre “Mika” model, termed by Lehtimäki as a “collectable item” is now on sale and can be seen at Verge’s showroom in Monte-Carlo.
Valtteri Bottas, currently driving at Formula One team Alfa Romeo, is also increasing the visibility of the brand. The Finnish driver and former teammate of Lewis Hamilton arrived into the paddock at the Monaco Grand Prix riding a Verge model. Through the support of two iconic Finnish drivers, Verge is becoming a national brand with international appeal.
“We are the technological leader”
A lot has changed since Verge came onto the market in 2018. Upon the release of their prototype, the charging infrastructure simply didn’t exist. However, in the words of Lehtimäki, Verge is a “technological leader” in the scene and is driving change.
Lehtimäki foresees the compulsion for evolution within the motorcycle industry, and within this context, is collaborative with the major players within the market. However, the Finnish entrepreneur wants to be a force for change within the field. “We want to be different,” he tells Monaco Life.
In a rapidly evolving industry, a rapidly evolving world, rivals may also have to be “different”. It is by being “different” that Verge has burst onto the market… and the market likes it.
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Photo source: Verge Motorcycles