While the Lotus brand is well-known for its sports and racing cars, it is less recognized as a bicycle manufacturer. Nevertheless, they have now revealed the Lotus Type 136, a high-performance electric bike with a hefty price tag. Lotus is not entirely new to the bicycle scene. In the early 1990s, the company’s engineering team collaborated with British bike designer Mike Burrows to create the Type 108, a futuristic-looking racing bike with a monocoque carbon and Kevlar frame.
The team behind it focused on aerodynamics and wind tunnel testing, much like they do with their car models. With its unique design, the Type 108 helped the UK secure the top spot in the 1992 Olympic Games. Lotus repeated this endeavor in the mid-1990s with the Type 110, also sleek and constructed from carbon. Of course, both of these models were reserved for high-level competition and had very limited production.
The Battery Hides Inside a Water Bottle
With the Type 136, Lotus revisits its legacy as a creator of exceptional bikes, but this time, they have incorporated electric assistance. Once again, the design is influenced by the brand’s expertise in aerodynamic profiles for their race cars. The motor it houses is the HPS Watt Assist Pro, weighing a mere 300 grams. At first glance, it’s impossible to tell that the bike is electric, as the manufacturer has discreetly integrated the motor into the crankset. Made of carbon fiber, it is a lightweight at 9.8 kilograms despite its electric assistance and battery.
The battery itself is quite unique, resembling a water bottle attached to the frame. It can deliver 193 Wh and up to three hours of pedal assistance. However, unlike other electric bikes, the Type 136 remains entirely usable without assistance due to its weight. Lotus is not entering mass production, and this Formula 1 of electric bikes will initially be produced in a limited run of 136 units at a price of €25,000. Beyond this limited production, subsequent units will be available next year for around €18,000.