MUNICH, Germany – His name is Adrian van Hooydonk; he is director of BMW's design department that has a staff of about 600. All these designers are working daily on the future of BMW cars and BMW motorcycles. Van Hooydonk was interviewed by NRC Handelsblad, one of the leading newspapers in Holland. Here he spoke on the future of two-wheelers.
That car companies are showing a growing interest in two-wheelers, including bikes and e-bikes is clear. At the last March Taipei Cycle Show we brought you the news on high ranking managers from General Motors visiting the show and the Taichung based bike companies while also the recent acquisitions of Pon Holdings are prove for that. Next to that, by now almost all car makers have lauched their e-bikes. Last week we showed the new Audi electric bikes at bike-eu.com.
Flirt with bicycles
Despite all this lots of industry insiders are convinced that car makers only flirt with bicycles to highlight the environmental nature of their brands. That appears to be very different. At least, according to the words of the director of BMW's design department.
In the interview with the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad, the following question was put to him: “Will we still be driving cars in ten years from now?” Adrian van Hooydonk replied: “Yes, individual mobility will stay. But riding on two-wheels will become more important. Other vehicles will be used in cities that need less space, have lower emissions and no noise.”
50cc sector to switch to electric drive
Van Hooydonk is not the only BMW executive that recently expressed the company views on the future of two-wheelers. Earlier Hendrik von Kuenheim, GM of BMW Motorrad, said that he expects the entire 50cc sector to switch to electric drive. Next to that, at a last February held conference of the Powered Two-Wheeler Industry Association, ACEM, in Brussels, the European industry underlined the important role that Light Electric Vehicles can and will play in tackling congestion and reducing carbon intensity in urban traffic. For more on that conference, click here.