Decades after the original Tron hit cinemas, it’s still influencing futuristic designs. The design of this smart bicycle is unmistakably based on Tron’s Light Cycle – namely its two illuminated, spokeless wheels. And if you’re riding the Cyclotron, you’ll probably feel like you’re cruising through a futuristic landscape.
Besides being visually striking, the spokeless wheel hubs turn themselves on in low-light conditions, serving as an additional safety measure. The increased visibility can last for eight hours on battery alone. Red laser lines, which are optional, project out rearward to mark a kind of personal bike lane. Dubbed a smart bicycle by its creators, it connects to a smartphone app that tracks distance, heart rate, speed, and calories burned. All of the features are powered by an on board lithium-ion battery.
As I’ve mentioned, the wheels themselves are hubless, enabling what the designers are calling Utility Slot Modules, which are storage containers made to fit inside the wheel. While a great concept, I’m eager to find out how the added mass in the wheel will affect the gyroscopic effect. With the array of fixtures available, there’s even a sidecar for additional passengers. All of the smart bicycle features are actually integrated into the frame, giving it a futuristic style that also protects key parts from getting dirty.
The base Cyclotron is a manual 12-speed. However the top-of-the-line model has an electronic gearbox that shifts in under a fifth of a second – even while at a standstill. If you’re looking to simply enjoy the ride, you can enable an automatic mode where the gearbox will do all the shifting. Solid polymer tires require no air and are estimated to last over 9600 km.
“We combined two layers of carbon fibre with an ultra lightweight core structure. This way we can use fewer layers of carbon fibre and less resin, without impairing stability,” according to the company.
The smart bicycle, while not feather light like many high-end traditional bikes, is still impressive at under 26 lbs.
After launching their crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter back in June, they exceeded their initial goal by €119,000. Backers can claim their own Cyclotron with a pledge of $1125 or more. Shipping is estimated for June of next year. So, are you looking to get your hands on a spokeless smart bicycle?
Daniel is an Art Director and Graphic Designer with over a decade of experience in advertising and marketing in the Greater Toronto Area.