Bike sharing programs have recently become very popular in major cities around the world including London, Paris, and now even traffic-clogged New York, a trend that is changing the way many people commute and influencing the way roads are designed. But not everyone possesses the physical fitness to bike around the city, and even for the physically capable, pedalling a bike after a long day of work can be a challenge.
One solution to this conundrum that has become popular in Japan is the use of electric bikes, but committing to an electric bike can often mean limiting your biking to motorized travel, and owning a heavy bike that is almost as involved as a scooter. A U.K.-based company has come up with an invention that could change all that. The Rubbee is a device that can be attached or removed in under 30 seconds that essentially adds an electric motor to your regular bike. With a range of 15 miles, the Rubbee weighs only 14 pounds, has a recharge time of just two hours, and can reach speeds of up to 15 miles per hour.
The device is weatherproof, can be fitted to any size tire, includes a rear LED light, and is controlled by a handlebar-mounted throttle. The only downside of the device is its price, which is about $1,300. However, when you consider the fact that the device can be easily be transferred to different bikes over time, suddenly the price doesn't seem as high.
Scheduled to be available in November, the company is still looking for support for the project via Kickstarter. In the meantime, you can see how the Rubbee works in the video below.