Bicycles

Electric-assist trike tilts into corners

The Tris Bike's front wheels tilt up to 30 degrees relative to the frame
The Tris Bike's front wheels tilt up to 30 degrees relative to the frame
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The Tris Bike's front wheels tilt up to 30 degrees relative to the frame
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The Tris Bike's front wheels tilt up to 30 degrees relative to the frame
The Tris Bike features front, central and rear cargo racks
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The Tris Bike features front, central and rear cargo racks
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The Split version of the Tris Bike disassembles into two pieces
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The Split version of the Tris Bike disassembles into two pieces
The Tris Bike can reportedly go up to 30 km (19 miles) on one three-hour charge of its battery
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The Tris Bike can reportedly go up to 30 km (19 miles) on one three-hour charge of its battery
By blocking the tilt action, Tris Bike riders can stop without putting their feet down
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By blocking the tilt action, Tris Bike riders can stop without putting their feet down
Parking-brake devices built into the tilt-blocking and front brake levers keep the Tris Bike from rolling away or tilting over when left unattended, so no kickstand is necessary
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Parking-brake devices built into the tilt-blocking and front brake levers keep the Tris Bike from rolling away or tilting over when left unattended, so no kickstand is necessary

While some people like the added stability offered by trikes as compared to bikes, the things can actually be tippier when cornering. The Italian-designed Tris Bike addresses that issue, with tilting front wheels that let it lean into turns. It's also got an electric-assist motor.

Sort of like an upright version of the Polish EV4 semi-recumbent e-trike, the Tris Bike incorporates a mechanism that allows the two front wheels to tilt up to 30 degrees relative to the chromoly steel frame. They can also pivot a maximum of 60 degrees to either side, giving the trike a relatively tight turning radius.

When stopping, riders can use a handlebar lever to block the tilting mechanism – this keeps the front wheels sitting vertically straight, so the trike stays upright without the need for riders to put their feet on the road. Additionally, parking-brake devices built into the tilt-blocking and front brake levers keep the Tris Bike from rolling away or tilting over when left unattended, so no kickstand is necessary.

By blocking the tilt action, Tris Bike riders can stop without putting their feet down
By blocking the tilt action, Tris Bike riders can stop without putting their feet down

The rider's pedalling power is augmented by a 250-watt Zehus rear hub motor, which is itself powered by a 30-volt/160-Wh lithium-ion battery pack. Aided by a kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) that harvests energy when braking, the trike can reportedly go up to 30 km (19 miles) on one three-hour charge of that battery.

The exact range figure will depend on the amount of electrical assistance used, which is selected via an accompanying iOS/Android app – at the highest level, riders can pedal at a maximum speed of 25 km/h (16 mph). That app also provides information such as battery charge level, current speed, and distance travelled.

Other standard features include front, central and rear cargo racks, battery-powered head- and tail lights, and mudguards on all three wheels. Buyers can also opt for a costlier Split model that disassembles into two sections for travel, or a cheaper non-motorized Light version. The main Fix model, that has a motor but that doesn't split in two, tips the scales at a claimed 26 kg (57 lb).

Should you be interested, the Tris Bike is currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. A pledge of €2,299 (about US$2,605) is required for a Fix, with the planned retail price sitting at €2,900 ($3,285). Assuming it reaches production, shipping is estimated for August.

It can be seen in action, in the video below.

Sources: Kickstarter, Tris Bike

TRIS BIKE : the tilting electric bike with three wheels from Italy

2 comments
JoelTaylor
Well, once again a bike company that only gears their bikes for flat ground. The TRIS Light, the one without e-assist, has only a 2 speed Sturmey Archer "kick" shift rear hub. It's Gear Inch (gi) is in this odd place, 46 gi on the low end and 60 gi on the high. Those numbers are fine for flat ground but the least little incline, especially with a load, and pedaling will prove quite difficult given that the bike weighs almost 50 lbs (22kg). Which given its final retail of ~$2500 US (~$1800 KS early bird) is frankly laughable. At that price they could easily have included a common and inexpensive 7 speed internally geared hub. To put that price in context, I recently bought a all-road bike with a 12 speed Pinion Gearbox, hydraulic disc brakes, low maintenance Gates Carbon Belt Drive and front hub dynamo for $2,200. The Pinion is the expensive bit, adding about $1,000 - $1,200 to the price of a bike. It's also using a combination of a 20" drive wheel (that's ok) and two 16" wheels in front, not so ok. The tire selection for 16" wheels is limited making it fairly hard to get (good quality) tires for. The tilting mechanism uses a chain system, which means more complexity, moving parts and weight. I can only guess that they did it this way so they could file a patent or avoid licensing fees for a patent. For a simple straight forward tilt design see the TRe-Go, though it lacks the tilt lock-out of this bike. https://newatlas.com/trego-cargo-bike/49475/ This is another over hyped and over sold Indi/KS darling.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
This design solves the problem of falling down on an uphill stop with feet locked in. Regenerative braking and three wheels solves the problem of stalling on hills. The design can be very light since the load remains in the plane of the wheels. I am making one with a carbon frame and light components.