German manufacturer BMW has unveiled its two latest electric vehicles – although neither is a car.
The first is a signal that the 3-series maker is considering entering the e-scooter market, despite laws in the UK banning the use of private models on the road – although rental schemes in busy cities have been legalized.
The Clever Commute is an e-scooter with a range of 12 miles and a battery that can be removed so it can be charged at home without having to bring the vehicle inside.
The second concept is the Dynamic Cargo electric bicycle, which could make the lives of Deliveroo riders less tiring – without increasing air pollution in the country.
Is BMW entering the e-scooter market? The German brand has showcased its new Clever Commute concept vehicle
BMW says the Clever Commute is designed for ‘last mile’ rides.
With the vehicle folded to fit in the trunk of a sedan, the commuter can drive to the outskirts of the city to park and use the electric scooter to reach their office or destination of choice in the city.
It aims to reduce congestion, time wasted by drivers in traffic and air pollution.
But it can also be seen as the ideal mode of transport to avoid inner-city emission tax zones, such as the soon-to-be-expanded Ultra Low Emission Zone in London or the series of Clean Air Zones following those already launched in Birmingham.
It would mean drivers can keep their non-compliant petrol and diesel cars but avoid ULEZ charges of £12.50 per day (the office is less than 20 miles away from the edge of the North and South Ring Road) or the Birmingham CAZ daily rate of 8,-.
The German brand says the e-scooter is designed for ‘last mile’ rides. It can be folded to fit in the trunk of a sedan car, and when the driver reaches the suburbs of the city, they can use the electric vehicle to reach their workplace
The e-scooter has a folding footboard and the rear wheel can be swiveled back to shorten the wheelbase. BMW says this makes it ideal for going up and down escalators when using public transport or getting around the city
The Clever Commute e-scooter was showcased earlier this week alongside a new Dynamic Cargo e-bike
Should you run out of power on your way to work, the e-scooter also has a ‘public transport mode’, where the footboard folds up on the sides and the rear wheel can be swiveled back to shorten the wheelbase.
And charging is easy, as the owner can remove it completely from the scooter’s frame, take it home or work and plug it in for the next trip.
BMW says it will not produce the e-scooter in-house, but is already ‘in talks with potential licensees’.
Like the scooter, the e-bike has an electrical range of 20 kilometers and a battery that can be removed to allow the user to recharge the batteries at home or in the office
The e-bike has a pivot in the frame, so when the rider turns, the handlebars tilt but the rear wheel remains flat. This allows the rear part to be used to transport goods – or children
The battery powers the two rear wheels and the electric motor supports the rider as soon as they start pedaling
The Dynamic Cargo e-bike also has a range of 12 miles, but is narrower and shorter than conventional bicycles.
“Our goal was to develop a concept that retains the agility and ride feel of a normal bicycle while adding innovative, safe transport options,” said Jochen Karg, head of vehicle concepts at BMW Group’s New Technologies and China division.
The most important part of the three-wheel Dynamic Cargo is the front main frame, which is connected to the rear section via a pivot axis and can tilt in the corners.
It means that the rear section stays flat when the rider takes a turn so that the load – such as children or deliveries of chicken tikka masala – is not thrown around.
Although it has pedals, the electrified drivetrain is activated as soon as the rider starts using them, with the extra power going to the two rear wheels only.
A number of modular rear elements can be chosen, from child seat to surfboard carrier
There’s even the option of a folding recliner so riders can pull up and take in the scenery when on the move
BMW says it has no plans to build the e-scooter or e-bike concepts itself, but is ‘in talks with potential licensees’ about the manufacture of the vehicles
The German manufacturer says it offers “more driving stability in all weather conditions compared to two-wheeler designs”, as well as being easier to pick up and take around the city on public transport.
The concept has several options for the rear, from a child seat to a surfboard carrier.
There’s even the option of a folding recliner so riders can pull up and take in the scenery when on the move.
There’s also a choice of storage area for fast food delivery riders to keep items warm – or for commuters to store rain gear for the eventual downpour they’re likely to encounter in the UK.
Like the Clever Commute e-scooter, BMW says it won’t make the e-bike itself, but has been in talks with potential partners to produce the Dynamic Cargo.
Earlier this month, the German car brand unveiled its new CE 04 electric motorcycle, which will cost around £10,000.
It has a range of 80 miles, a top speed of 75 mph and a matching light up parka jacket.
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