The concept of a folding bike that may be packed away right into a suitcase-sized form has been round for many years, with Honda’s Motocompo most efficiently implementing it in a manufacturing mannequin 40 years in the past. Now one other Japanese firm, known as Icoma, has sprung up with an identical machine, the Tatamel.
An award-winner at this yr’s CES occasion in Las Vegas, the Tatamel is basically a contemporary tackle the Motocompo thought, utilizing the pliability provided by an electrical powertrain to fold even smaller than the unique Honda model did. Similar to the Motocompo, the bike is aimed toward quick “last-mile” journeys and inner-city use, with a comparatively restricted vary and efficiency however utilizing a design that’s mild and compact sufficient to be simply packed right into a automobile. At present an idea, it’s meant to be launched in manufacturing kind later this yr.
Powered by a 51.2V, 12Ah lithium iron phosphate battery driving an electrical motor rated at 600W (0.8 hp) however with a most output of 2kW (2.7 hp) for brief durations, the bike’s efficiency is within the moped class, with a prime velocity of round 25 mph with about 19 miles of vary per cost. Unfolded, it’s 48.4 inches lengthy, 25.6 inches broad, and 39.4 inches tall, however the wheels, bars, and footpegs can all be folded in, making a briefcase-like form. In that kind it measures 27.2 inches lengthy, the identical distance in top, and solely 10.2 inches broad. The concept is that you may slide it below your desk at work or pack it into the trunk of your automobile. Since a full cost solely takes solely three hours from a typical wall socket, it may be totally charged once more in time on your return journey. Sooner or later, the corporate plans to supply prolonged battery packs as much as 29Ah, greater than doubling the bike’s vary.
Regardless of its measurement, the Tatamel nonetheless has suspension at each ends, with a 10-inch entrance wheel suspended on a traditional fork and a monoshock for the tiny 6.5-inch rear wheel. The primary construction is aluminum, with 3D-printed exterior panels that may be swapped to vary the bike’s look. Weighing 110 kilos able to trip, the bike’s most really useful load is double that determine at 220 kilos. When folded, a pair of skateboard-style wheels on the again imply it’s simple to maneuver round with out selecting the entire thing up.
In addition to a commuting automobile, Icoma sees the Tatamel as a helpful addition for tenting journeys, performing as each short-distance transport and as a cell energy pack with USB sockets to cost telephones and, optionally, an AC outlet for bigger electronics. For the time being, the corporate has an formidable goal of getting the bikes onto the market within the US in April 2023, with a base MSRP of $3,999.