Audi is the latest car manufacturer to build itself an electric bicycle.
The e-bike, which has made its debut in concept form at the Wörthersee GTI Meeting in Austria, is all about technology and lightness.
Carbon fibre is used for the frame, and as a result it weighs a minuscule 1.6 kg (3.5 lbs). Similarly, carbon fibre reinforced plastic is used for the 26” wheels and the rear swing arm.
In fact, the entire bicycle tips the scales at just 21.0 kg (46.3 lbs), and almost a quarter of that is accounted for by the 48 V / 530 Wh lithium-ion battery pack. With a recharge time of two and a half hours, it feeds a 2.3 kW electric motor that produces an impressive 250 Nm (184 lb/ft) of peak torque at the rear wheel.
The e-bike’s rider can choose between five modes: ‘Pure’ relies on pedal-power only; ‘Pedelec’ offers assistance from the motor, allowing for a top speed of 50 mph (80 km/h) and a range of between 31 and 44 miles (50 to 70 kilometres); ‘eGrip’ uses the motor only, and offers a top speed of 31 mph (50 km/h); ‘Power Wheelie’ and ‘Balanced Wheelie’ are designed for those who want to keep the front wheel in the air with varying degrees of electrical assistance.
Standard equipment is comprehensive, and includes LED lighting, a smartphone-activated immobiliser, an on-board computer, disc brakes, upside-down front forks and nine hydraulically-activated gears.
There’s no word on whether the e-bike will make it into series production, or what a likely price tag would be. However, it’s probably the case that for the foreseeable future Audi’s two-wheel focus will be on its new subsidiary, Ducati.
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