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Light electric vehicles, urban bikes foci of design competition

Light electric vehicles and innovative urban bikes are the foci of this year’s International Bicycle Design Competition, according to the organizers.

In collaboration with the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Taichung-based Cycling & Health Tech Industry R&D Center has hosted the competition for the 16th consecutive year.

The annual competition has brought forth the latest trends of the industry and has also shown what the bikes of the future might become, the center said recently.

“There has been an obvious growth of popularity in electric bikes,” a spokeswoman of the center said, adding that six of the 19 finalists used such products.

Apart from a smaller motor system, how the battery is concealed in an aesthetic way is also crucial, she added.

The “Velocity,” an urban bike designed by Chen Cheng-liang of Taiwan, for example, has a hidden and detachable power assistance system inside the frame.

Such a system can be used to give assistance power for a person’s daily commute, but can be detached at the weekend if a person wishes to exercise.

Other bikes at the competition featured innovations related to night riding, luggage carrying or electronic device recharging.

One South Korean design even combined the idea of biking and surfing by extending a mini surfboard behind the bike, which a child can ride while the bike is being cycled.

This year’s competition attracted 839 participants from 51 countries, according to the organizers, who added that the best three designs will be developed into products for the market place.

The winners of the competition will be announced at the Taipei International Cycle Show on March 7, its opening day.

The show will run until March 10 at the Taipei World Trade Center Nangang Exhibition Hall.

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