Creating a bicycle wheel with built-in motor, to be able to use it on any type of bicycle, is not a new idea, and there are already some models on the market. But it still looks like an interesting business. A good example of this is the new UrbanX from Singapore, a company looking for funding through the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter - having already far exceeded the investment requested, and still have many days to complete the application. That is: The UrbanX wheel is going to be manufactured.
The concept is why to buy an electric bicycle if you can buy a wheel with motor to place it, when you want, to your bike. The new company UrbanX proposes a light but powerful wheel, and speaks of a very reasonable price, lower than the competition. It will offer two different models, the ECO with a 240-watt motor and the BOOSTER equipped with a 350-watt motor. It will carry a lithium-ion battery pack that can be carried home for recharging. It is estimated that about 1 hour and a half of charge at home will give an autonomy of about 50 kilometers.
The electric wheel is mounted on any bicycle in one minute. It has a support to pedaling via Bluetooth using an app on the mobile, which in turn is placed on the handlebars of the bike. A handlebar thumb throttle is optional and the only part connecting to your bicycle. If you choose to only want a pedal assist only bicycle and not full electric, you have the option to not instal the throttle. Without the need to pedal you can go with a speed limit of 25km/h and 33 km/h respectively.
The wheel is made of aircraft aluminum, very strong and very light at the same time. Its weight is between 7 and 9 kilograms. UrbanX will be available in 6 sizes; 24”, 26”, 27.5”, 29", 650c & 700c, that covers 99% of the global bike market. Unlike most other add-on electric options, UrbanX also works with both rim and disc brakes and any tire you choose that fits the rim size.
And we are talking about prices: between $ 699 and $ 799, depending on the wheel and the electronics you need.
The fundraising campaign at Kickstarter will end in April; then immediately begins with the serial production of this model, which will soon be available worldwide.