While we see plenty of new electric motorcycle designs entering the market each month, leaning electric trikes are fewer and far between. Lithuania-based AKO’s electric leaning trike is even more unique thanks to its high power and sporty handling characteristics.
In development for the past five years, the AKO trike is designed to handle like a sporty electric motorcycle while providing the enclosed advantages of an electric car.
With a tire shredding peak power of 200 kW (268 hp), the trike will certainly offer enough power for high-performance riding.
But unlike rigid trikes, the 30-degree lean angle will allow it to corner hard and feel more like a conventional leaning vehicle.
As AKO’s CTO Arturas Mikalauskas explained:
The whole concept for this trike was to make the riding experience as natural as possible, while at the same time extraordinary. That is, to make it feel like maneuvering a small airplane.
A 24 kWh battery pack will provide up to 300 km (186 miles) of range, according to AKO. An option for DC fast-charging will allow the trike to get back on the road quicker.
Seating for two also makes it possible to share the fun while increasing the utility of the trike.
Cofounder and CEO Jurgis Lecas discussed the goal of the vehicle:
Sustainability is not about being electric only anymore. Besides the exceptional design and high-end technical solutions, we’re introducing a vehicle that fills the gap between cars and motorcycles perfectly. It may not be a complete problem solver for everyone. For some it will be a great car alternative; for others it will be something exclusive, something outstanding.
The company is marching closer to production and is now taking fully refundable €100 deposits toward the trike’s target price of €24,000 (around $29,000).
However, the company still has a ways to go. AKO currently operates two prototypes that they’ve been using for testing and R&D. You can see them in action in the video below, which is worth a watch to fully understand these epic three-wheelers.
AKO’s designer Dominykas Budinas expanded further on how the company achieved the AKO trike’s unique design, and how it lends itself to such sporty riding:
The design of this trike is based on pure forms of nature combined with raw technical elements. My personal challenge was to make this trike look memorable and exciting. It was essential to follow the airstream which resulted in a sleek and dynamic forms. I guess you could say that it has the looks of a shark with a steep sharp nose and a strong thin line diving the sky and ground reflections, making it look super light and nimble.
Don’t count three-wheelers out. Several companies are making promising progress on the trike front, including Oregon-based Arcimoto. The company’s FUV saw production grow to over 100 vehicles in 2020, ahead of ambitious plans to reach an annual production rate of 50,000 vehicles in the next two years.
Arcimoto is even getting into the leaning three-wheeler game with its recent acquisition of Tilting Motor Works.
Chinese electric scooter manufacturer NIU also unveiled a leaning three-wheeler last year, though we haven’t heard any news lately regarding its production plans.
Enclosed leaning three-wheelers just may offer the all-weather solution that riders need to get them out of cars and into smaller and lighter EVs.
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