Vektron is designed to fold small enough for carriage on public transport but can reach speeds of up to 20mph

US-based Tern has collaborated with Bosch to develop its new folding e-bike. It says that its new Vektron solves the problems of portability, storage and theft which are critical shortcomings of conventional electric bikes.

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Josh Hon, Founder of Tern says: “Electric bikes are really hard to put in a car or take on public transport. And most electric bikes are difficult to store in downtown apartments, leaving them vulnerable to theft. The Vektron solves these issues.”

Tern's e-bike is powered by a Bosch motor

Tern’s e-bike is powered by a Bosch motor

Because the bike rolls on 20 inch wheels, the Bosch motor is stepped up to allow the Vektron to run at speeds of up to 20mph, the same as reached by larger wheeled e-bikes. Tern says its small wheels mean that it can accelerate faster than its larger-wheeled brethren too. Range is quoted at 40 to 80 miles on a full charge.

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The new bike is designed with enough adjustment to fit riders between 4 foot 10 and 6 foot 5. It includes a rack and can be fitted with a purpose-designed child seat too. With a low centre of gravity, Tern says it’s stable and easy to ride. Carrying it might not be such fun though: Tern quotes a weight of 21.8kg.

Vektron is designed to fold down for storage and transport

Vektron is designed to fold down for storage and transport

“With small wheels you get punchy acceleration, a more maneuverable ride in traffic, and plenty of space between the wheels and rider for cargo-carrying,” according to Joakim Uimonen, Design Director of Tern.

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Tern claims that the Vektron can be folded in under ten seconds and can be rolled onto trains, buses and the underground, as well as into lifts in office buildings. It says that you could get two into a car’s boot for travel too.

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US customers who fund the development via Kickstarter are able to get the Vektron at a reduced price, with the campaign open from October 19 to mid-November. Their bike will be delivered to one of Tern’s US dealers for collection fully assembled. Tern bikes are distributed in the UK by Paligap.