Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Any way you slice it, it's one cool ride. The electric bike mixes pedal power with a battery pack. Hills? Easy as Pi.
SAN FRANCISCO -- Electrobike calls it the world's fastest hair dryer, but its Pi electric bicycle isn't even in the same league. It has half the wattage of a Conair -- just 750 watts, or about 1 horsepower.
That's the federally mandated limit for an electric bicycle like the Pi, which does triple duty: It's a traditional pedal pusher, a motor-driven bike and an art piece. You can ride it as long as your legs and lungs hold out. Or just nudge the throttle with your thumb and let the 36-volt pack of nickel metal hydride batteries do the heavy breathing. Or you can park it in the living room between your Eames chairs and Albero sofa and admire its arching architecture.