Swiss inventor Yvan Forclaz has used a joystick – mode of control that is associated with aircraft or video games – in bikes. The joystick bike has received many tweakings and has been refined since the first time it appeared. The bike is now ready for the users to get their hands on it. Forclaz’s design is an electric-assist recumbent bike that is steered by using a joystick that is mounted on the right-hand side. It has a direct mechanical link to the front wheel of the bike.
A second stick on the left side is used to manage the electric motor which shows stats on power, speed, distance, and autonomy displayed on a little LCD screen. The joystick bike has been toned down somewhat in comparison to the motor as compared to the earlier prototypes. The decision seems to have been made to allow the bike to be road-legal in various countries. It supported a 400W electric drive powered by a 72 V battery pack and can reach speeds of up to 60 km/h. The consumer-ready bike can now have a 250W motor, 48V battery and can reach a top speed of 25km/h.
These specifications bring it in line with electric bike lawn in the UK, Europe, parts of Asia and Australia, US and Canada. There is still the option to crank the motor up to 1000W if your local laws allow. The team also plans to ship the joystick bike in three different kits. Motorization, seat and frame, and all the technical components so that the buyer can put it together quickly. There is also an option to receive a pre-built bike that comes with a little high pricing and most likely higher shipping cost as well. There is also another Fat model which can be taken to the trails.
The joystick bike has so far raised around $3,800 on the Kickstarter campaign. The total goal was $53000 with 42 days to go. For a full bike kit, the pricing starts from $3000 while the individual kits and test drive days are also available for lesser price. The team expects to begin shipping the kits in May of this year if everything goes according to the plan.