Frog eBike 2012 Concept by Frog Design

04/09/2012 @ 5:57 pm, by Jensen Beeler11 COMMENTS

Frog eBike 2012 Concept by Frog Design frog ebike JSH 5

We already talked about the Frog FZ750 Rana that is on display now at the SFMOMA, and the word on the street is that the folks at Frog Design are already missing their favorite lobby decoration. Looking to draw from the design-changing ethos that was first created by the FZ750, Frog designer Jin Seok Hwang (New York office) took stylus to hand, and inked what he hopes will be a new influence in modern motorcycle design — though this time around the exercise is being done with an electric motorcycle.

What should strike you first about Hwang’s design is the massive hole where an internal combustion engine would normally reside. That is no mistake, as Hwang is hoping to convey both a figurative and symbolic message about the transition from petroleum-based fuels to electrons. The motor is in the rear wheel, while the batteries are housed in the bottom of the chassis.

While a tank shape has been retained, we’re not quite sure how a rider would grip the sides of the bike with their legs when cornering. Still, it is an impressive concept from a company with a strong pedigree in industrial design. Will it influence designs to come? Only time will tell.

On Frog’s website, Hwang describes his creation with the following:

The overriding expression I aimed to capture is the resulting visual impact of the electric motor replacing the traditional combustion engine and its related systems. The large mass of the combustion engine, formerly a defining feature of a motorcycles profile, is now a symbolic void. The new electric motor’s copper coils moved inside a hubless rear wheel, at once streamlining the motorcycles composition and providing for a highly efficient and direct transmission of power.

I was very conscious about retaining the emotional impact of the iconic motorcycle silhouette however, and as such repurposed the bulky volume formerly known as the gas tank. It has become an ergonomic affordance for the rider, a support underneath and in front of the rider hugging his or her bike at great speeds. This design element provides a continuous formal transition from the back of the seat to the front of the instrument cluster and down around the void, transforming into the new location for the bikes fuel: the batteries.

The entire bottom chassis is dedicated to storing battery cells. This location lowers the bikes center of gravity, creating an extremely stable ride. Because the motorcycle’s speed is controlled directly by the power to the electric motor, virtually all other major mechanical components of a traditional motorcycle are no longer required. Fly-by-wire steering, full OLED digital instrument panel, full time connection to the cloud, and a helmet with heads-up display and retina tracking complete the trip into concept territory. Let’s ride!

Frog eBike 2012 Concept by Frog Design Frog Design electric motorcycle Jin Seok Hwang 03

Frog eBike 2012 Concept by Frog Design Frog Design electric motorcycle Jin Seok Hwang 01

Source: Frog Design

Comment:

  1. carboncanyon says:

    Yikes. Don’t let product designers design bikes. Hubless wheels are lame… seen it so many times.

  2. paulus says:

    is it a slow news week?
    Nasty and not a bike. It is an appliance.

  3. Damo says:

    I feel like I would have to dress up like Daft Punk to ride one of these.

  4. Little John says:

    This article inspired me to go out to the garage and give my growling, fossil-fuel-burning Ducati a hug.

    I swear it wagged its tail pipes.

  5. Dr. Gellar says:

    W..TF?!

  6. nakdgrl says:

    Frog just needs to stop. They do much better job designing scrub brushes than bikes. IMHO.

  7. David says:

    Obviously designed on a napkin…..at Dunkin Doughnits.

  8. I’m almost embarrassed to say this, but I kind of like it. And I think the bulk of that might have to do with its use of curves instead of harsh angles.

  9. J. Kelly says:

    Like most concept bike/car designs very little is given to function. What’s with the huge “donut” in the middle? To reduce wind profile?? Is this intended for use amongst the windiest locales? Concept bikes = design wanking!

  10. Mz Debo says:

    Dude you guys are crazy. I love bikes and build custom bikes. This here is the best new technology, get with it. Where can I sign up to test ride or even buy one. I work in the computer industry and this is the path that everything is taking. We are moving into a decade where we need to thinking about how to save money and this is it.

    I love this design. I can think of 50 ways of customizing this bike. Like I said send me an email when this is available for testing.

  11. Conjurer says:

    well…the speedo gauge is nice though