Sky, principle partner of British Cycling and former Olympic gold medallist Chris Boardman MBE who is now regarded as one of the world's foremost experts on cycling technology have combined to create an artist's impression of the "Everyday Bike of the Future".
Key features include a super-lightweight carbon-fibre frame, an ipod-style central computer system, completely spoke-less wheels and puncture-proof, self-inflating tyres.
One of the most successful British cyclists of all time, Chris Boardman MBE, led the research and development team for British Cycling in the run-up to the Beijing Olympics. e is a man renowned for finding the extra competitive edge technology can offer cyclists and his two companies, Boardman Bikes (developing bikes for all-levels) and Boardman Elite (creating new technologies for the world's best cyclists) service riders from grass roots to the elite levels of the sport.
This expertise makes him the perfect person to speculate on what the Everyday Bike of the Future might look like.
Chris Boardman MBE, commented on the Everyday Bike of the Future concept: "I've had a huge amount of fun working with Sky on the project and seeing my thoughts brought to life in this graphic. Carbon-fibre is definitely the future of bike technology as it is strong, super-lightweight and malleable...it's like lego for adults and would help people store and transport their bikes. The lotus style-shape and spoke-less, centre-less wheels would make the bike as aerodynamic and easy to ride as possible and I can also see a time when bikes house a tiny battery-powered motor to help people with tougher journeys.
"There would also be a removable, Ipod-style central computer system which could provide the rider with GPS, readings on distance travelled, calories burned etc. A central computer system might also house a thumb-print ID lock which would help prevent theft with both the central computer system and the battery assisted motor-unit would be powered by solar panels on the frame."
"The most significant impact of the evolution of bike technology would be that it would encourage more people to start cycling by breaking down some of the barriers currently preventing them. That's what has driven my thinking with the Everyday Bike of the Future as a lightweight frame, battery assist and features such as self-inflating tyres will help provide extra encouragement for people to saddle-up in the future. Of course I could be completely wrong...but at least speculation about bike technology might encourage a few more people to take up the sport now."
Everyday Bike of the Future features
Toughened carbon fibre would be used for the bike construction.
The construction would be low weight and lotus-type shape to make the bike as aerodynamic as possible (and potentially provide a large usable internal space).
Carbon-fibre is the ideal material to use for bikes as it can be moulded into any shape and is super-lightweight ('it could even be lego for adults').
Lotus shape would also leave a huge space in the middle of the bike which could be used for storage and to house a battery unit and a bike lock system
Battery assistance would be available on the bike to provide motorised-support to the rider where necessary battery would be charged via solar cells embedded in the skin of the frame and further re-charged through braking.
The small battery (and motor) would be housed in the frame near to the bike's pedals
Spoke-less and centre-less wheels.
Self inflating tyres: Small compressors would be inside the tires which would regulate the pressure.
Self fixing punctures: Liquid rubber capsules fill in any holes created by punctures.
Shaft-drive system instead of china, inside the frame.
Saddle Height / Control.
One button push to change saddle height.
Lights and Safety
Built in LED lights.
Auto turn-on when light levels drop.
Central Information System
Electronic information system as the centre-piece of the car (similar to a car dashboard).
Information such as speed, miles travelled, tyre pressure, temperature, heart-rate etc. would be displayed.
Thumb print un-lock or code and alarm via central computer system.
Built in GPS which also tracks bike position for theft.
Sky has been the principle partner of British Cycling since June 2008 and supports the sport from elite through to grassroots level. The coming months will see Sky's "Summer of Cycling" initiative aimed at encouraging more people to get back on their bikes kick into gear. Activity will include "Sky City Rides" which will be hitting Glasgow, Manchester, London and Leicester and allowing participants a traffic-free journey through city streets on selected dates in July and August. More details can be found at: www.goskyride.com