Want a bike to take on the train, tube or sling in the back of a car? Now available is what’s being billed as the world’s lightest, and certainly one of the most distinctive, folding bikes.
The Hummingbird Bike, engineered by Prodrive, has been in development for more than 18 months and is the British motorsport and advanced technology group’s first venture into cycling.
Weighing just 6.9Kg, it boasts a unique three-step folding mechanism, which allows the bike to be collapsed in just five seconds – supposedly making it the world’s ‘fastest’ folding bike.
At 6.9 kg, the bike is around 3 kg lighter than any comparable folding bike on the market. Central to this is a lightweight carbon frame, hand made by Prodrive Composites in Milton Keynes, which gives the bike its distinctive styling, very different to any other bike in the world.
The Hummingbird was conceived by Petre Craciun, a London-based designer and keen cyclist. He thought that existing folding bikes on the market were heavy and unattractive so decided to design his own.
He approached Prodrive at the beginning of 2016 to refine the bike, optimise its ride and handling, and create the carbon frame so that it could be produced in volume and sold globally.
Prodrive’s engineers carried out a rigorous design and development process using the latest computer aided design and analysis software, to optimise the bike’s rigidity while minimising weight.
Each bike is hand-built at Prodrive’s headquarters by the M40 at Banbury, with each frame individually numbered. A visual carbon frame is also available with the herringbone carbon weave laid up precisely and lacquered to give a perfect finish.
The Hummingbird comes as a single or four-speed option with an electric boosted option currently undergoing evaluation. This should be available in 2018.
Says Petre Craciun, Hummingbird’s Designer:
“Since buying my first BMX bike at the age of 14, I’ve become more and more obsessed with the idea of going everywhere freely. It was this desire to remove the restraints of other more cumbersome folding bikes that sparked the idea to design a transportable option. Hummingbird’s functionality, coupled with its eye-catching design, makes it the stand-out product for the sophisticated commuter.”
Adds David Richards, chairman of Prodrive:
“Hummingbird combines all the key attributes of technical excellence that Prodrive stands for. But this is just the beginning. As with all the projects we work on with our clients in the motorsport, automotive, marine and aerospace sectors, we will be constantly striving to find new ways to innovate for the cycling industry.”
Available in four colours, and made to order, prices for the Hummingbird start from £3,495. For more information visit www.hummingbirdbike.com.