If it really will become the i-Phone of Cycling is of course still written in the stars. But what’s clear yet is that the Mando Footloose is one of the most innovative bikes at this year’s Eurobike. Today it was officially launched as the folding e-bike featuring automotive know-how.
The Mando Footloose folder is the world’s first ‘pedal by wire’ bike. That means that the hybrid drive system brings the power directly to the drive wheel with its high performance dual winding motor, while at the same time also serving as a generator. By pedaling mechanical energy transforms into electricity which feeds the e-bike battery. This makes the Mando Footloose to a certain extent self-generating. By adding battery energy the standard range of 30 kilometers can be increased. With a throttle the Mando can become a speed pedelec or even a light e-scooter.
But there’s more technology from the car industry packed into the hydro formed frame like the sensor engineering that provides comfort, security and anti-theft protection. There’s also a 2-speed auto shifting system as well as an electronic control unit with integrated sensors for making riding and handling easy.
The Mando Footloose is developed by South Korea based automobile suppliers Mando Corp. and Meister Inc. under the leadership of Yoon Soo Park, President of Meister Inc (photo middle). He was assisted by British bike designer Mark Sanders (right) as well as Dutch e-bike expert Han Goes (left). The two were brought on board for design and product development.
The Mando Footloose will get on sale in South Korea next month. The automobile suppliers will use their domestic market as a testing ground. Earlier extensive testing of prototypes took place in Korea and in Europe.
Sale of the Mando Footloose in Europe is planned for mid 2013. Retail price has not been set yet but will be in the premium ranges. Distribution will take place at multiple channels in Europe through selected partners in the European countries and through selected dealers.