The name Sinclair was stamped on single-person electric transport way back in 1985 with the world's first mass produced electric vehicle – the Sinclair C5. Fast forward to 2010, drop a wheel, shed lots of weight, add modern batteries and you start to get a picture of the newly developed Sinclair Research X-1. Essentially an electric-assist recumbent bicycle with an open-sided fairing, it has the aerodynamics, ergonomic pedaling position and weather protection of a velomobile, yet its weight and price are closer to those of an electric-assist bicycle.The wheels are too small, the profile too low, and the price too high. If it sat up a little higher (maybe with a trike frame instead of a bike?) and was closer to $500 than $1,000, then I think they'd be onto something here. Also, if it's going to be a run-to-the-nearest-grocery-store-for-milk-and-eggs mobile, which is one of the chief uses I would have for it, then it needs a place to put a bag of groceries. Is there a little room behind the seat there? It's hard to tell.
Friday, November 5, 2010
Close, but no cigar.
Sir Clive Sinclair's X-1 pedal-electric hybrid: