Trik.E’s Quest to Perfect the Electric Bike

In the quest to create the perfect green vehicle, designers often come up against a basic problem: this vehicle has basically already been invented (and it’s called the bicycle). Rather than reinventing the wheel, so to speak, why not soup up the basic bike and surmount the essential issues that keep it from being a realistic commuting option for the masses? That seems to be the idea behind the Trik.E electric tricycle, which comes to us by way of Green Fudge.

Problem number one: protection from the elements. We’ve seen some interesting examples of enclosed bikes before, but this is definitely one of the most interesting. Not only does the Trik.E’s striking design protect you from rain and snow, it grants you light cargo storage, perfect for commuting. (Riding a tricycle with the two wheels up front is bound to turn some heads, as well.) Problem number two: effort. Sure, we all need exercise, but few of us want to arrive at work covered in sweat. That’s why the Trik.E offers electric assist, via a 750w electric motor and 36v lithium plug-in battery pack, which can take the vehicle up to 20 mph (but does not require a driver’s license to operate). Problem number three: accessibility. It’s true that not everyone can ride a trike, but having three wheels rather than two certainly increases this vehicle’s accessbility to the masses.

Trik.E

image via Speed Studio Design

It’s great to see designers thinking intelligently about green transportation on the human scale, and putting all these factors together in a way that looks as if it could actually catch on. The more urban planners incorporate bike lanes into the transportation matrix, the more attractive human-powered-vehicles like this one look. (After all, even if you’re riding in a solar-powered car, you’re still stuck in traffic and sitting on your duff.) The Trik.E is currently in the design phase, but hopefully we’ll be seeing them on the road soon.

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.