As e-bikes continue to explode in popularity and cause a nationwide shortage of the two-wheeled transports, waves of new riders are discovering the benefits of pedaling their way to work without breaking a sweat. And the ability to distance oneself from other commuters in crowded public transportation certainly sweetens the deal.
But many more are discovering a significant downside to bikes, which is that riders aren’t protected from the weather, be it heavy rain or the glaring sun. That’s a problem that CityQ is hoping to solve with its enclosed electric vehicle known as the CityQ Car-eBike.
And now the Oslo-based company has opened pre-orders for its Car-eBike as it prepares for 2021 deliveries.
CityQ Car-eBike prepares for production
We’ve seen electric pedal cars before, but CityQ’s version is one of the more polished options to come across our desk.
The CityQ Car-eBike features doors and a cargo space for carrying luggage, groceries, and other necessities. The doors and windows can be set up for either fully enclosed or semi-enclosed riding. The micro EV has seating for either two adults or one adult and two children.
Interestingly, the CityQ Car-eBike’s pedals aren’t connected to any gears or chains. There’s no direct drive — only software to enable a drive-by-wire system that powers the vehicle’s 250W electric motor up to its Euro-spec top speed of 25 km/h (15.5 mph). Considering that the vehicle is rated to carry loads of up to 300 kg (660 lb), I have a feeling that “250W” sticker is doing some seriously heavy lifting.
The bike is designed to fit into the EU’s cargo and four-wheeled e-bike laws, meaning it could theoretically share the bike lane, at least legally speaking. Whether you’d get the side-eye from other cyclists is yet to be determined.
The CityQ Car-eBike measures 87 cm (34 inches) wide, which actually isn’t that much wider than a mountain bike, which can run up to 80 cm (31.5 inches) wide. Though at 70 kg (154 lb), it weighs more than even the heaviest of electric mountain bikes I’ve ridden.
With a pair of batteries, the Car-eBike can travel around 70-100 km (43-62 miles) per charge.
CityQ’s founder Morten Rynning explained in a statement provided to Electrek:
CityQ is an e-bike with the comfort and technology of a car and with the benefits of a bicycle. You can cycle two children and luggage door to door without having to worry about bad weather, car traffic, or parking issues. Nor do you have to worry about hassle with mechanical gears and chains — as these have been replaced with a software-managed drivetrain — like you find in electric cars. That is why we call CityQ a Car-eBike.
After three years of development, the CityQ Car-eBike is now available for pre-order. A €99 ($111) deposit will hold your spot in line, though the purchase price is expected to be north of €6,000 ($6,700).
While that’s admittedly quite pricey in e-bike terms, it actually falls short of the high prices of other similar offerings we’ve seen in the past. For example, the US-built PEBL electric bike-car costs over $10,000.
Slap a solar panel on the CityQ Car-eBike, and now I’m actually getting pretty interested. I’m probably not interested enough to begin crafting a pitch to my wife on why I need to buy this, but I absolutely see the potential of bike cars like this. If cycling infrastructure in cities was better, I’d feel safer in something like the CityQ Car-eBike. But I imagine there are already many cities where this type of vehicle could be a viable option, especially in rainy areas.
What do you think of the CityQ Car-eBike? Let us know in the comments below!
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