Hybrid Bike Connects to Smartphone, Offers Customized Ride

Product Lifecycle Report

Many people resist using a bicycle for daily transport because they’re reluctant to arrive at work or a social event sweating from the effort of getting there. Electric bicycles are an option, but they tend to be expensive, heavy and inelegant.

Enter the Copenhagen Wheel, which lets riders transform their standard bikes into electric hybrids simply by swapping out the rear wheel.

Slated to become available for purchase by the end of this month, the wheel was developed by students at MIT’s SENSEable City Lab and has won multiple design awards, including the James Dyson Award in 2010. The wheel is being brought to market by Superpedestrian, a Cambridge, Mass. start-up that recently received $2.1 million in funding from Spark Capital.

The Copenhagen Wheel’s distinctive red hub contains a motor, a removable lithium battery pack and a gear system, as well as environmental and location sensors that provide data…

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