Although this concept has been around for a while, all that tinkering around it finally resulted in a finished, marketable product. Lo and behold, man invented the Copenhagen Wheel. It looks pretty stylish, in its bold red hue, but does it actually do something? Let’s look deeper.
While most e-bikes have their engine and batteries tucked inside their frames, making them appear somewhat bulky and motorbike-y at times, the motor of a Copenhagen Wheel proudly floats in the middle of your rear wheel for all to see, weaved into spokes. This comes with one huge advantage – you don’t have to give up your favourite road or city bike, you just simply change its rear wheel and you’re good to go. The company producing the Wheel, Superpedestrian inc, claims to have fitting wheel sizes and styles for any common bike type with the motor already attached and they will help you with choosing the best one for you. And if you’re fussy, design-oriented cyclist, they will customize the wheel to your needs.
As you can see, this ingenious concept of “instant” electric bike leaves you with no levers or displays, no wires or throttles. The Wheel claims to guarantee the most hassle- and hands-free ride there is because its intuitive embedded computers monitor your slightest movements and the speed and torque sensors simply adjust the motor to give you the most efficient pedal boost possible. This seamless synchronisation with your pedalling can expand your power and speed ten times.
The Wheel has five riding modes, ranging from no assistance (but still with tracking data) to Turbo, when you truly want to fly. The bikes top speed can reach up to 25 km/h and the range varies from 30 to 50 km, depending on the mode you deploy. A neat addition is the so called Regenerative Braking Assistance – a feat allegedly the first ever on an e-bike. Pedal backwards and the Wheel begins to brake, sending energy to the battery in a dynamo-like fashion, adding you some assisted mileage.
It’s zero surprise that in a wireless world ruled by apps Copenhagen Wheel does not stay behind. You can unlock the Wheel just by coming closer to it, as it automatically pairs with the app in your phone, either Android or iOS, through Proximity Unlock. The app also keeps track of all the essentials – distance you’ve cycled, the roads you took, how long it took you to get places, calories you’ve burned, and your average speed.
User-experience reviews are yet to flood the internet but from what we’ve seen and heard, the Copenhagen Wheel offers and extremely tempting and promising step towards a future of electric bicycles.