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2011 Frankfurt Auto Show: Electric Two-Wheelers All The Rage

 
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2012 Smart ForTwo Electric Drive



It isn't just the cars that are going electric at the Frankfurt Auto Show, currently open to the public until September 25.

Two-wheeled electric vehicles are popular too. Frankfurt show is very much focused on urban mobility - and having driven through the city during the press days last week, we're not surprised!

The major German manufacturers all used the show to preview small, urban electric vehicles, but many makers showed off electric scooters and the occasional electric bicycle too.

Smart eBike and eScooter

One of the most prominent electric two-wheelers at Frankfurt was the Smart eBike. Technically it's not an all-electric two-wheeler, but a "Pedelec". Much of the motive power comes from your own legs, but it still has 37 miles of all-electric range, so if you don't fancy getting sweaty on your way to work, it should handle that fine.

Downsides? There's no word on price yet, but we can't see it being particularly low. Many pedelecs seem to retail for at least $1,500, even for basic models. The eBike doesn't look basic...

Also making another appearance was the eScooter concept. As yet, this still seems no closer to production, but it's a pleasingly clean, modern design.

BMW Concept E scooter

Think of a BMW scooter and you may remember the C1 - an odd scooter with a roof and seatbelts. The Concept E is more conventional in its styling, but also fits in well with the i3 and i8 concepts of future mobility.

The battery provides enough juice for around 62 miles of range and the electric motor should give enough power to keep up with 500cc and 600cc "maxi scooters". Charging from absolutely zero takes less than three hours.

Ford E-Bike Concept

Ford explains its decision to preview an E-Bike fairly easily: "The E-Bike market is growing very, very rapidly, with some 30 million units sold globally last year". The company has tried to apply some of its current design language to a two-wheeler, and ironically ends up looking better-resolved than some of its cars.

The frame is incredibly lightweight at 5.5 pounds, and range on electric mode is just under 53 miles courtesy of a 340 watt-hour lithium-ion battery. 80 percent charge comes up in 2 hours.

Husqvarna E-go

Also on the BMW stand was BMW Motorrad partner, Husqvarna, with an electric supermoto-style bike. It weighs in at only 176 pounds so should be light to maneuver.

Beyond that, there aren't many details about the bike, nor has Husqvarna confirmed whether it will make production or not. For the time being then, Husqvarna's claims that "urban traffic will seem like a videogame" are equally as virtual.


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