Dragging commuters kicking and screaming out of their cars and away from horsepower is a difficult thing to do. Cars are safe, comfortable, and convenient, after all.
North Carolina-based Organic Transit believes it has a solution to ease the transition to manpower, however, and it’s called the ELF.
The concept is straightforward: an electric-assisted pedal-powered trike (or recumbent tadpole) is outfitted with a composite bodyshell complete with trunk and space for luggage behind the driver. Chunky bicycle tires make solid contact with the ground a three gears come as standard, maximising range. Disc brakes also make the ELF quite a serious piece of kit.
Electrification lies at the heart of the ELF’s appeal. Thanks to a 600W electric motor it has a zero emissions range of 14 miles with no pedaling at all, while some have enjoyed 30 miles of assisted riding if they’re prepared to pedal a little. Charging the trike takes a little as 1.5 hours to charge from a domestic source and it can also trickle charge through the solar panel roof, taking seven hours to completely charge.
The ELF costs $4,995 and comes fully assembled. You’ll likely want to include some optional extras, however, which quickly add up. Our pick would be a Mango paint job ($125), bamboo cargo shelves ($150), a second battery pack ($600), and perhaps a carbon fiber nose panel ($500… so maybe not).
So far more than 300 ELFs have been sold since a successful crowd-funded launch last year. If you’re interested there’s an extensive FAQ section on the Organic Transit website.
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