This electric folding motorbike could be the perfect vehicle for apartments
A Japanese startup is taking electrified transport to smaller places than ever.
Icoma's Tatamel electric motorbike, on display at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2023) this week in Las Vegas, promises clean and convenient transport in a neat design that folds up when not in use. After charging from a standard power outlet for three hours, it can ride for nearly 20 miles at speeds of up to 25 mph.
"You don't need any parking space, you can push it in the house," a representative for the company tells Interesting Engineering. "Especially in Tokyo, there's no space, so it's very important."
The bike is the latest in a series of folding transport methods, ideal for those living in smaller living quarters. British company Brompton is famed for its lineup of folding pedal bikes, available in standard and electric-assist variants, while foldable motorbikes like the 1960s Fuji Go-Devil demonstrate the value of such a product.
The Tatamel takes this to all-new levels. The customizable bike features 3D-printed parts to enable easier tweaking during the order process, which means buyers can swap out the side panels to an alternative of their choosing.
"It's like a smartphone case," the representative says.
The side panel design allows for some impressive creations. Icoma's stand at CES 2023 highlighted a TV panel, which means riders can roll up and host an impromptu movie screening out on the street. A company representative suggested riders could even attach a solar panel to charge the bike.
Icoma Tatamel folding motorbike: price, specs, release date
When IE first covered the bike in October 2021, the release date was unclear. The company now tells IE that the bike will likely launch in Japan in the spring. Pricing is yet to be determined, but the company expects it to cost around $4,000 in the United States. The bike's website states a target launch date for the U.S. as April 2023.
The bike weighs 110 pounds and supports a load of up to 220 pounds. When unfolded, the bike measures around 39 inches tall, 25 inches wide and 48 inches long. When folded, it measures 27 inches tall, 10 inches wide and 27 inches long.
The lithium iron phosphate battery has a capacity of 12 amp-hours, or around 0.6 kilowatt-hours. The company is researching an added battery that could expand capacity up to 29 amp-hours. The cell is rated for around 2,000 to 3,000 cycles.
Those who are looking to produce their own side panels will want to know that the panels measure 350 millimeters by 570 millimeters exactly, or around 13 inches by 22 inches.
For those looking to store an electric vehicle safely in their house, the Tatamel could be the ideal solution.
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