Freecross is made to simulate skiing ... on three wheels
If you're an avid skier who wants to stay in shape over the summer, then you might use a fitness device along the lines of a Nordic Track. One of the problems with those machines, however, is that you're just stuck in one place while using them – the exact opposite of the freedom that's a big part of skiing. That's why skier Wolfgang Haupt teamed up with Porsche Engineering to create the Freecross.
As you can pretty much gather by the photos, the Freecross uses your arm and leg motion to deliver power to the rear wheel, via a bicycle-style chain drive. It's not unlike the ElliptiGO, although it incorporates the arms and adds a third wheel.
You steer by leaning to one side or another, sort of as you would when skiing. A Nuvinci N360 continuously variable rear hub transmission allows users to "gear" up or down (on the higher two of the three models), while stopping power is provided by disc brakes in the front wheels and a roller brake in the back.
The arm levers can be adjusted up or down to suit the height of the rider, plus they fold down for easier storage and transport. The weight of a complete rig ranges from 25 kg (55 lb) for the Basic model, to 28 kg (62 lb) for the Pro and upcoming Premium versions.
Haupt had the Freecross on display at Interbike last week, where he told us that although it's been around in Europe for the past few years, it's only been officially released in the US market within the past year. Pricing for it there starts at US$3,999, although a less expensive model is on its way.
You can see it in action, in the following video.