We’re seeing more and more four-wheeled “e-bikes” with manufacturers increasingly inclined to explore the gap between bikes and cars. The latest is CityQ’s cargo e-bike, which the firm is somewhat vaguely referring to as a ‘car e-bike’.
CityQ is an electric bike with doors and full weather protection. It can be fitted out with a cargo bed for luggage or rear seats for two children.
The firm says its aim is to provide “car-like comfort and technologies” – but crucially, with a 250W motor and a maximum speed of 15mph, the vehicle is aligned with European regulations for e-bikes.
While the Estonian and Norwegian startup is still looking for investors ahead of its official launch, it has recently agreed a deal with pilot customer Upsteam for 10 cargo CityQs.
Upsteam is a mobile car wash firm, so the bikes (sorry, we can’t bring ourselves to say ‘car e-bikes’) will be fitted with steamers, vacuum cleaners and other equipment.
“UpSteam is a green clean tech company, so replacing our own car traffic with cycling makes sense,” said CEO Martin Kristerson. “And with CityQ we can bring all our equipment by ebike – and not having to worry about traffic, parking or car-free areas. It is efficient, sustainable and innovating [sic] – aligned with our UpSteam mission.”
Commenting on the deal, CityQ founder Morten Rynning said: “In order to replace car traffic with cycling, cities need this type of innovation.
“Only 30% of us cycle in bad weather. CityQ makes cycling more convenient. And similar to electric cars we replace mechanics with software and connectivity.
“As with a Tesla car or your smart phone, CityQ can be repaired, updated and added new functionalities via the web – by automatic software updates and new app versions.”
CityQ is due to go on sale next year.