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Tag Archives: electric vehicles

E-Bike Retrofit Kit Monitors Your Heartrate, Adjusts Assist Accordingly

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Many people use bicycles as an exercise tool, and not only as an outdoorsy activity. But sometimes, when you’ve ventured out a little further than you normally do, it’s nice to have a little assistance on the way back. The Falco Fusion Sports Electric Wheel is an electric motor hub that can be mounted on just about any bike, turning it into an electric assist vehicle. Its rugged design means that this also includes mountain bikes, by the way. The 50V 400Wh Li-Ion battery pack is good for up to 110 miles of assistance, which is great, but not the salient feature. That would be its compatibility with heart-rate monitors, which would allow it to precisely and automatically control the amount of assistance its sending your way, based on how tired you are. If your goal is to maintain your heart going in a specific range, but suddenly a hill shows up, this electric hub would let you climb it without pushing your heart above its target.

Granted this isn’t the first electric drive hub we’ve come across, but we believe it’s the first time we see it integrated with heart-rate monitoring. It’s doing the Kickstarter dance at the moment, so we’re not sure if it’ll ever see light of day. A $495 pledge can get you on your way to owning one.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

The Rio Firefly Handcycle Transforms Any Wheelchair Into A Motorized Wheelchair

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The indignities suffered by being confined to a wheelchair are only compounded by the fact that you’re expected to provide your own locomotive power. The Firefly Electric Handcycle by Rio Mobility is a battery powered wheel that attaches to the front of just about any wheel chair and transforms it into an electric wheelchair. It will get up to 18 km/h (11 mph) for distances of up to 24 km (around 15 mi) between charges. This should be sufficient for regular daily chores that would normally be tedious and exhausting if they had to be done without external assistance. The device is light enough (under 15 kg (33 lb)) that you should be able to just pick it up and throw it in the car. And most importantly, as many mobility devices cost a fortune, the Firefly Electric Handcycle is relatively affordable at $1,950.

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If Drifting Is Your Thing, The Verrado Trike Will Blow You Away

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When it comes to wheeled vehicles it’s easy to become obsessed with acceleration and power figures. But at the end of the day the important thing is how much fun you’re having while driving. To that end, the Verrado Electric Drift Trike by Local Motors might have a thing or two on its four-wheeled cousins, the cars. You might have heard of downhill drift tricking already, but this drift trike trades gravity assistance for an electric engine. Gone are the days where you have to ask your buddy with a pickup truck to haul you back up the hill. This vehicle “combines a BMX fork with a 20” heavy duty front wheel featuring an aluminum casting around the brushless hub motors, two rear karting wheels lined with PVC pipe, a strong disc brake and a powerful programmable electric motor.” A 3 hour charge will give you 45 minutes of fun or up to 12 miles of travel if all you end up doing is going in a straight line. But let’s face it, if you’re going to pledge $1,560 for one of these, you’re really looking to be going sideways around a track, and that’s more than ok.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ TheAwesomer ]

OneWheel Self-Balancing Electric Skateboard Feels Like A HoverBoard

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It may not be the same board that Marty McFly promised us we’d have by 2015, but it’s close enough for those of us who tried it at CES to be content. The OneWheel Self-Balancing Electric Skateboard uses a central go-kart wheel wrapped around a brushless electric hub to propel you forward (and backward) up to 20mph by simply leaning in the direction you want to go. Accelerometers, gyroscopes and advanced algorithms keep you upright, and the sensation of riding the board has been described as one “flying over the pavement”. Even though it has a somewhat limited range of 4-6 miles, the fast charger will fill the battery back up in as little as 20 minutes. Currently well funded on Kickstarter, a $1,299 pledge will get you a board with a standard charger (2 hour charge time), while an extra $100 covers the fast charger.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ GeeksAreSexy ]

Chubby Electric Motorbike Claims “World’s Most Powerful” Title

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The Voxan Wattman electric motorcycle was unveiled last Monday at the Paris Motor Show, with all the fanfare that a bike claiming to be the world’s most powerful should have. And on paper at least, they’re right: the bike boasts 200bhp at 10,500RPM and 150 ft lb instantaneously. This is enough to propel the two-wheeled machine from 0-60 in 3.4s and to 100mph in 5.9s, on the way to a top speed of 106 mph (170km/hh). That’s not too bad, but is far from the fastest. The Lightning Electric Superbike takes that title, doing the 0-60 in 3s flat, on the way to a top speed of 166mph (265km/h).

Despite boasting more power, the Wattman suffers from being too heavy. The 12.8kWh battery, while being able to recharge to 80% in 30 minutes, doesn’t appear to provide much real world range. As tested by the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) standards, the company can claim a range of 180 km (112 miles). But this means “an average speed of 33.6 km/h (21 mph), which suggests that the batteries will last 5.35 hours at an average power of 2.4 kW (3.2 hp).” That’s not a typical usage scenario for a bike. At full power, the batteries last… 5 minutes. Granted that too isn’t a typical usage scenario, but it’s important to keep in mind that while they’re making huge strides, electric vehicles still have some way to go. And to pursue the title of “world’s most powerful”, while sacrificing performance and range in the process is an easy way to lose the interest of potential customers.

There’s no word on price, but given they’re hand-assembled, we’re going to guess it’s pretty high.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

Smart Wheel Pedal Assist Takes Some Strain Off Your Morning Commute

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This isn’t the first battery powered pedal assist on the market, but we like some of the features on the FlyKly Smart Wheel. It bolts on easily to just about any bike frame and adds roughly 9 lbs. of extra weight. In exchange for the extra mass, you get an electric motor that gets you up to, and keeps you at your desired cruising speed (20mph max), as soon as you start pedalling. Just set your target speed on the related application, and it does the rest automatically. When it senses you breaking, it slows down as well, without you having to explicitly tell it to slow down. With a range of 30 miles, you should have enough for a daily round trip, and if not, maybe you shouldn’t be commuting with a bike. Finally, it has an application-toggled lock option that prevents the back wheel from spinning and adds a layer of security should your bike get stolen. It even has a GPS module if the enterprising thief decides to carry it away, allowing you to locate it from a distance.

Considering all the features on the FlyKly Smart Wheel, we’re not too shocked to see the $550 price tag, which is really just a pledge for the still unfunded Kickstarter campaign.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ Engadget ]

Electric Scooter Uses iPhone As Dashboard

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Not the most popular mode of transport in the US of A, a good chunk of the rest of the world loves their scooters. The A4000i from Japan’s Terra Motors is fully electric, with a range of 65km, which should be enough for the average commuter. Reaching top speeds of 65 kmh (40mph), the A4000i features a recessed space on the dashboard in which an iPhone is meant to go. Once there, the phone will display your current speed, as well as battery charge and other information.

Other features include a removable battery, which you can carry inside with you to charge. This is particularly useful if you live in a high rise building, and lugging the whole bike with you inside is not an option. Finally, the battery is rated to last 50,000km (31,000 miles), which is about 5 times more than a standard battery from other e-bikes.

The A4000i will be released this November, mostly in Asian countries. Its estimated price in the Japanese market will be ¥450,000, which is about US$4,500.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

[ Advanced mobile phone car kits provide a safer way to handle your phone as you drive. ]

Mission Motorcycle RS: The Electric Bike Just Entered The Big Leagues

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With Tesla paving the way, the reputation of electric vehicles as tree-hugging, wheeled road turtles is slowly fading away. The Mission RS from Mission Motorcycles is breaking ground in terms of performance. With an electric motor that’s one tenth the size of a standard motorcycle combustion engine, the RS packs 160hp and 120 ft/lbs of torque starting from 0 rpm. This can propel this crotch rocket to 60mph in 3 seconds, cover the quarter mile in a blistering 10.492 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 150mph. The bike is so fast that “Piloted by Steve Rapp, the Mission RS dominated the 2011 FIM/TTXGP at Laguna Seca, finishing the 8 lap race 39.9 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher. Rapp’s qualifying lap time of 1:31.3 broke all previous electric vehicle records at Laguna Seca.” All this with zero emissions, barely any engine noise and a real world range of about 140 miles. You won’t go cross country with this beast, but at least you’ll care about the environment without sacrificing any performance. You will sacrifice one thing however, and that’s money. The Mission RS is limited in production to 40 vehicles, and costs $75,000. Its almost-as-performing and much less rarified sibling, the Mission R, “only” costs $30,000 to $40,000, however.

[ Product Page ]

Electric Bikes Don’t Have To Scream That You’re A Green Loving Hippie

Maybe you secretly love the planet. With a bit of introspection, you could discover that you’re a closet tree hugger. That’s cool, we don’t judge. But if the fear of coming out has prevented you from getting in on the electric bike bandwagon, with their proudly bland aesthetics that purposely scream “Look at my eco-conscious getup!”, then perhaps the Marrs M-1 could change all that. It’s an electric bike that combines the lines and handlebars of a 1920’s Harley Davidson, with the geometry and general allure of a cruiser. We dig it, big time. It offers a 20 mile range with speeds that are electronically limited to 20mph, by law. “The bike [also] features a 48V lithium battery, brushless DC rear hub motor, hydraulic disc brake, air cooled battery box, 3-piece crank case, as well as motorcycle quality wheels, tires, hubs, controls, seat, and grips.”

Sadly, like anything pretty, so is the price tag: $7,500. They should be available later this year.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gadizmo ]