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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Best e-bike ever? The IDEO/Rock Lobster Oregon Manifest entry [Bike Portland]


What happens when you combine one of the most esteemed product design and "innovation consultant" firms in the world, a highly respected custom bike builder, and the latest battery technology and then tell them to build the ultimate utility bike?
Introducing the Faraday, the Oregon Manifest Constructor's Design Challenge Entry from the San Francisco-based IDEO - Rock Lobster team...

According to team member Adam Reineck (from IDEO) the idea behind the Faraday was to create an e-bike with as much integration of batteries as possible. They also wanted to make it powerful enough to not only give an extra boost, but to do so with a significant load as well.
"It feels like you've always got a tailwind," remarked Reinick. An e-powered tailwind would sure come in handy in hilly San Francisco where this team is based.
Electric motors power both the bike (via a front hub motor with internal routing of all cables of course) and some seriously bright lights (see below). The lithium-ion batteries are the same ones used in the brand new Chevy Volt and they're only about 2 inches in diameter — which makes them fit perfectly into the Faraday's twin top tubes.

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