Helicon eº is like the Schwinn Stingray of electric-assist cargo trikes
When most people think of an electric-assist cargo trike, they likely picture something with the single wheel in the back and the storage compartment in the front. Well, the retro-cool Helicon eº trike is different, in that it moves the cargo-carrying action to the rear.
Manufactured by German company Helikon, the Helicon eº's "hip vintage design" puts the single wheel in front and throws in a set of chopper-bike-like handlebars.
Although such delta-type trikes (two wheels in back, one in front) are generally considered to be less stable than tadpole trikes (one in back, two in front) when cornering, they also tend to have a much tighter turning radius. They're also often easier to get on and off of.
The Helicon eº sports a hand-welded steel frame along with a 4-mm fiberglass front fairing and 175-liter (46-US gal) lockable rear cargo compartment. A 250-watt mid-mount motor augments the rider's pedaling power, taking them to a top assisted speed of 25 mph (40 km/h). One charge of the 15.6-Ah lithium battery should be good for a range of about 70 km (43.5 miles) using a medium amount of motor assistance.
Some of the trike's other features include a padded ergonomic seat, an Enviolo Automatic 2 transmission, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, Supernova head- and tail lights, SR Suntour front and rear suspension, plus Ryde Andra 40 rims clad in Schwalbe BigBen Plus tires – the front wheel is 26 inches in size, with the rear two coming in at 24.
The whole thing is claimed to tip the scales at 59 kg (130 lb) and can support a maximum rider/cargo weight of 150 kg (331 lb). It measures 200 cm long by 79 cm wide (78.7 by 31.1 in). A child seat, which the user can swap in place of the cargo compartment, is currently in the works.
"Our primary objective is to make the tricycle an appealing option for everyone," Helikon founder Pascal Löser told us. "It is often misconceived that tricycles are solely for disadvantaged individuals, but we aim to showcase their versatility and wider applications."
The Helicon eº trike can be ordered now via the Helikon website. It's priced at €6,499 (about US$7,063) and is available in color choices of metallic gray, red or blue.