Every motorcycle is a compromise of sorts, buy a cruiser and you can't ride off road, buy something for the back woods and highway riding becomes uncomfortable. Erik Brinkman, an inventor and designer with IDS (Interactive Design Studios) in Victoria, British Columbia, thought about the problem and came up with the R-Bike, a shape shifting motorcycle.
The key to the R-Bike is the frame which has a scissor action built in. It can be changed from a stretched out cruiser to a standard to a high clearance off road bike whenever the rider finds it necessary.
The bike has a multi link suspension on both front and rear and is designed around a single cylinder engine. The seat, footpegs and handlebars all adjust as the frame shifts giving the rider the correct riding position for each style of bike. A nice feature is the ability for anyone to easily mount the bike with the seat in the lowest position and yet still have the ability of riding a high seat off road bike when the frame adjusts.
The bike only exists in the computer at the moment while they look for investors. According to the web site they plan to produce the first bikes in March of 2008.
This is an interesting design. It would be nice to see a prototype to evaluate how well it actually works. If they get the funding that will probably be first on their to do list. Neat.
Link: R-Bike website
Lots more images below showing shape shift plus an update from designer Erik Brinkman:
Erik sent us a couple of corrections:
1. We are not based in Victoria. We are all over the world and based on the Web. It is hard to gather enough quality talents together in one place, so, thanks to the internet, we can spread all over the world and it still feel like we are in one place. I spend half my time in Victoria, although at this time of year, I'd rather be in Maui :>)
2. This is fully engineered and so is way beyond a design concept. That is what 9 years of work brings. We will be taking pre-orders hopefully by the end of this month.
We have one thing left and that is the variable valve timing I need for the Diesel version. Not a big deal. The patent on VVT has run out, so it is a matter of making it.
3. The only thing up in the air right now is a matter of how to structure the long term manufacturing. On the one hand we have had requests from bike builders for regional building, yet I worry about quality control in such a "Third Wave" decentralized approach. A central factory allows better control over quality. Quality is everything. Then there is the matter of whether we should build the military version in a special facility. We are in discussions on that matter.