Audi have launched a new ‘e-Bike’ that brings gamification to the cycling masses.
Featuring a 2.3kW electric motor and a full on-board computer that connects to your smartphone, this new bicycle offers challenges and performance tips to riders.
Is this the dawn of a new type of bicycle?
The new Audi e-Bike isn’t for everyone. Designed to appeal to those cyclists who do tricks rather than those who race, it will initially just make appearances at various sporting events in Germany, starting with the Wörthersee Tour, the 31st meet for Audi, VW, Seat and Skoda fans; trial biker Julien Dupont and downhill specialist Petra Bernhard will demonstrate their stunts and streetbike skills at the event.
“The e-bike appears incredibly precise, highly emotional and strictly functional. Indeed, the design effort focused on its function as a sports machine. All design elements are thus firmly aligned to the technical features.” – Hendrik Schaefers, one of the designers at Concept Design Studio Munich.
When connected to a smartphone, the rider is awarded points for completing tricks that the bike is constantly monitoring. In ‘pure mode’ the cycle uses only pedal power, but when engaged the motor can take the rider up to 80kph/50mph. It even has a ‘balanced wheelie’ mode for beginners that offers assistance when pulling a wheelie by using the motor to compensate for the forward and backward movements of the rider.
Check out the video below for some impressive demonstrations of the Audi e-Bike’s capabilities.
Is it the future of cycling? Given the leaning towards tricks and the fact that a motor is never going to help you get fitter, we think in this form the Audi e-Bike appeals to a limited audience, but the technology on show does open up the door for performance-enhancing statistics and advice for all riders in the future.