The wonderfully named Black Sparrow Industries has cooked up an electric vehicle with a difference: a tricycle that's ridden standing up. Robert Worobey designed the Tribey to appeal to surfers and snowboarders among others, and the designer claims that the vehicle is built to withstand serious abuse, including traversing 3-inch deep potholes. With the addition of a bolt-on kit, The Tribey can also be ridden from a recumbent position, making the Tribey a curious hybrid of recumbent trike and a motorized skateboard.

The Tribey measures 78 inches (198 cm) long, 30 inches (76.2 cm) wide and weighs 90 pounds (40.8 kg). The trike is fitted with a 48-V 10-Ah battery pack and MagicPie 3 wheel hub motor (rated at 1 kW) from Golden Motor, a supplier of equipment to convert ordinary pushbikes into fully-fledged EVs.

The spec allows a 195-pound (88.5-kg) rider to reach a claimed top speed of 25 mph (40.2 km/h), though top speed can be tuned down via a computer. Black Sparrow Industries says the Tribey has a range of about 18 miles on a single charge, though points out that this will depend on terrain, weather, and how you treat the thumb-controlled throttle.

The Tribey is designed to be both repairable and upgradable. The rear assembly can be upgraded to anything with a 1.25-inch tube diameter, and Black Sparrow Industries even suggests that bicycle trailers and surf board rack can be fitted (though you'd better live pretty close to the beach to make use of the latter item).

The mark 7 Tribey will shortly go on sale. Built to order, Tribeys are available only to customers over 16 years of age, and will be required to sign a liability waiver (so, use at your own risk, basically). The price of the mark 7 is currently listed at US$2499.

Check out the Black Sparrow Industries website for videos of the Tribery in action.

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