We’re no stranger to e-bikes here, but most of the examples we’ve seen so far have very much been meant for A-to-B rides. Audi’s aiming to fix that with its e-bike Wörthersee prototype. The carbon fiber transport not only has a strong 2.3kW motor — the most powerful ever in a bike, so says Audi — but can use that power for tricks. You can flick the Wörthersee into a wheelie mode and either shift your weight around or leave it fully automatic, depending on the fierceness of your stunt skills. Not that it’ll be a timid ride if you prefer to keep both wheels on the ground, as a motor-assisted pedaling mode will take you up to 50MPH, and you can still ride at 31MPH if you’re not keen on using your legs. That’s faster than the already speedy Grace One City we tried, folks. The vorsprung durch technik also comes through a smartphone tie-in, although in a much more stunt-savvy way than the app- and tuning-focused Ford E-Bike Concept: it tracks video and trick runs, both for its own game system and for bragging rights on Facebook.
With a very light 3.5-pound carbon fiber frame and a quick 2.5-hour charge-up time, the e-bike Wörthersee sounds like a wild ride that will charge quickly enough for a spin on your lunch break, but we wouldn’t rush to put down a deposit. Audi is calling the prototype a “show bike,” which is a sign than the design as-is won’t show up at the local sports store. We’ll let you know if the Wörthersee or a more pragmatic descendant makes the leap to a dealer.
Ford already wowed us with the Evos concept, but the slinkiest hybrid we’ve seen so far here in Frankfurt has not four wheels but two. It’s a concept bicycle from Ford called — wait for it — the E-Bike Concept. It packs an electric motor built into the front wheel that can power it up to a maximum speed of 25 km/h, driven by a 9.2Ah battery. Or you can power it the conventional way by pedalling, torque conveyed to the rear wheel over a carbon belt. (Oily chains are so last century.)
Perhaps even more interesting is what rests up on the handlebars. No, that’s no iDevice — refreshingly it’s a Galaxy S II. Through some custom software, riders will be able to change suspension modes and of course monitor battery charge, not to mention get a little assistance from Google Navigation and maybe pump out some Pandora too. The word “Concept” in the title here and the spindly frame design should give you a clue about when this thing will see production — probably never. But, we’ll be back with an update if that ever changes.