January 25, 2011 Leave a comment
Ok so this is pretty cool. A friend of mine turned me on to this while we were kicking it in Tahoe this past weekend. Fatherhood-tinted glasses will change the way you look at the world. In this case, we were discussing the various ways to use bicycles that don’t involve going downhill fast. As in my previous posts, I touched on the simple Bamboo Bike and then the uber versatile Yuba cargo bikes. I was discussing these with him and everytime I mentioned something, he would trump me with something cooler.
Yes he had an Xtracycle (another brand of cargo bike that has the FreeRadical that attaches to an existing bike) but he lives at the top of a steep hill in Boulder. The cargo-style bikes are good for a lot of things. However loading up with milk and rice for the family and hoofing it up a 24% grade is not one of them. Enter the Bionx electric assist.
I’ve seen motors on bikes and motorbikes. But this one is cool…. It’s ELECTRIC. That means it’s QUIET…
The other cool thing about it is the regenerative aspect. You can put power back into it. You can turn gravity into electricity. It will slow you on high speed descents. Pretty cool, huh?
He had to cut spokes and rethread his rear wheel. But I gotta give it to him. He’s taken a couple of new technologies and created a bike that works for him. As a civil engineer working on transportation projects in Boulder, Colorado, he is setting a standard for his constituents and an example for the city’s residents. Nice work.
What does it cost? There are currently several models for kits. The differences being High-Speed, High Torque and Light Weight. Between $1890 and $2195 will get you into this. Or you can get crafty and get a setup on eBay or Craigslist. You can also choose to purchase a whole bike outfitted with the Bionx set up. I saw some renditions here.
Now I want one, too.