Skoda not only presents its first electric car in Geneva but also a 4kW strong two-wheeler called Klement. Connectivity and agility are at the core of the urban mobility concept, that comes with an unusual drive for a bike.
In addition to looking to the future, Skoda also wants to show the origins of the company that began as a bicycle maker 124 years ago under the founding fathers Václav Laurin and Václav Klement. Naturally, bikes have been first to be electrified, and the Klement moves rather far from any classic bike concept.
The wheel hub motor on the rear wheel has an output of up to 4 kW and accelerates up to 45 km/h, thus placing it in the e-bike (moped) or speed pedelec category. Only this bike has no bottom bracket but fixed pedals. Drivers accelerate and brake by tilting the pedals and Skoda likens the principle to hoverbikes in their press statement. If the user shifts their weight forwards on the pedal, the hub motor accelerates. Pivoting the pedals backwards activates a hydraulic disc brake at the front equipped with ABS and also regenerative braking at the rear wheel.
Regular power comes from two lithium-ion batteries with 52 cells each have a total capacity of 1,250 Wh. This should be sufficient for an electric range of up to 62 kilometres, says Skoda. The range is limited in this case mostly by the bikes increased power needs, not the weight which Skoda specifies as no more than 25 kilos. The batteries can be easily removed and charged at the socket.
A lighting system integrated into Klement includes LED headlights and brake lights, LED indicators – built into the pedals – and daytime running lights. A smartphone holder with inductive charging function is located on the centre bar just in front of the handlebars. The smartphone is the key to the networked driving experience. This means that the two-wheel concept can be linked to all Skoda connectivity offers, such as the Coming Home function, the automatic emergency call and remote diagnosis and maintenance. Geofencing can also be used to program a limited range of applications. A series version of the Klement could in future incorporate many other ideas, such as driver assistance systems or Function on Demand.
It is still unclear whether the concept will make it into series production. But Skoda does not want to rule it out completely: “We are therefore examining whether and how this exciting new mobility concept could complement our portfolio in the future,” says Guido Haak, Head of Product Management at Skoda Auto.
Additional reporting by Nora Manthey.