You can pitch in for a green bicycle

A 38-year-old MBA graduate goes online to raise funds to develop new e-bike

Published: 12th July 2016 05:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th July 2016 05:27 AM   |  A+A-

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BENGALURU: Coimbatore-based jute machinery technician  Manikandan has designed India’s first crowdfunded eco-friendly electric bike — SPERO.

This 38-year old, with an MBA, has been working on this project for three years. He is ready to launch three models of his electric bike in India — one that can run 30 km on a single charge; second, 60 km; and the third,  100 km.

The last model could help courier boys, he says, because you can attach a carrier to it. The bikes will be priced between `29,900 to `50,800.

Manikandan is trying to raise funds for his innovation on Fueladream.com — the Bengaluru-based crowdfunding platform. His target is `30 lakh and he has managed to raise close to `21. 65 lakh so far.

Besides contributing to the project, the funders even have an option of buying the e-bike through Fueladream.com. Of course soon it will be available in other platforms too. Seventy and odd bookings have been made so far.

This bike uses little energy because it is powered by a lithium-ion battery similar to the ones used in our smartphones.

This is a rechargeable and replaceable gadget. On one full charge, the bike can run for a maximum of 100 km with a maximum speed of 25 kmph.

The bike’s selling point is cruise control. This feature allows people to ride at a set speed for 20 seconds, during which you don’t have to use the throttle.

Like petrol bunks, charging stations will be set up at various points in the city.

The developers have taken security very seriously. ”The bike has a digital lock. Unless the correct passcode is entered, the bike’s electronic function won’t be activated,” says Manikandan.

You can also choose to pedal the bike. “This cycle has been tested for safety,” says Ranganath, CEO and founder, Fuel-a-dream.

Manikandan rules out the possibility of the cycle’s lithium ion battery overheating.

“There is absolutely no chance of that happening. The battery is extremely well-protected and is highly durable,” he says.

There is another handy feature: The battery is rechargeable and can also be used as a power bank for your phone.

The design is classy but the best part is how this cycle, or any other, can easily outmanoeuvre Bengaluru traffic and escape jams.

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