An innovative stand-up bike has already raised double its $50,000 (£34,000) fundraising target on Kickstarter. The Halfbike II has three wheels — one large and two small — and doesn’t have a seat. At the time of writing, the project has raised over $112,000 (£76,000) with 22 days of fundraising to go.
Halfbike II is the work of Sofia-based startup Kolelinia, headed by architectural duo Martin Angelov and Mihail Klenov. The pair said the Halfbike was a simple design for getting around contemporary cities. The project is the follow-up to the original Halfbike, which debuted on Kickstarter in 2014 and raised £55,000.
Klenov said he was under no illusion that the Halfbike was a replacement for traditional bicycles but said it did have some advantages. “We’re in no way trying to convince anybody that a Halfbike is better than a bicycle nor that you should get one and throw away your trusty old bike,” he tells WIRED.co.uk.
“The two are so different that they’re actually hard to compare. The feeling of riding a Halfbike is really nothing like riding a bicycle.” Klenov says the main advantage of the design is its portability, adding that it was also a lot of fun to ride.
Design, prototyping and testing of the Halfbike II has already been completed and shipments to Kickstarter backers should begin sometime in July. Most of the parts are bespoke, including the frames, handlebars and trucks, with bicycle parts used for some components. If the project reaches a new fundraising target of $250,000 (£170,000) all Halfbikes will come with lights and fenders, its creators said.
The Halfbike is just over one metre long and one metre high and can be folded in half for storage or when taking public transport. Weighing 8.2kg, the frame is made from aluminium with the handlebars formed from treated plywood.
The design of the Halfbike II was changed a lot based on feedback from the first iteration last year, Klenov explained. “The whole team learned a lot from the first production run last year. We also received so much feedback about the original Halfbike from our first backers. We completely redesigned it based on the lessons learned, especially the frame and handlebar.”
Backers on Kickstarter pledging $399 (£270) will receive a Halfbike II from the first production run of 200 in July, with free delivery to the US and Europe. The second production run is set to ship in September.