Cycle Show 2012: The YikeBike

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There are always a few eyecatching oddities at the Cycle Show. Last year we got electrocuted to make us stronger, this year Singletrack contributor Benji took a spin and the odd bit of a swerve on the YikeBike.

It’s a rather cunning folding electric cycle; think penny farthing meets Blade Runner. Using a Lithium-ion battery to power it to a top speed of 23kph, the 450W motor sits within the 20″ diameter front wheel. Invented in New Zealand, it’s designed to increase the range of commuters and speed up trips around town.

It’s steered with the reversed bar, which also houses lights, indicators, the accelerator and the regenerative brake. Here’s Benji in action:

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Two versions are available, with a carbon fibre model weighing 11.5kg and costing £2,569 , while the cheaper aluminium chassis version comes in at £1,350 and 14.7kg. Although that’s not light, it’s feasible to carry for moderate distances.

The stock range is 10km although that can be increased with external battery packs in 10km increments, up to 30km, though we imagine the weight also rises.

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