Bird to expand its shared fleet with this 2-seat moped-like machine

bird to expand its shared fleet with this 2 seat moped like machine cruiser

Bird has just unveiled a chunky-looking electric bike that it plans to launch alongside its scootersharing service.

The Santa Monica, California-based company said it will introduce the Bird Cruiser this summer in select markets before making a decision on whether to roll it out more widely.

The two-wheeler features 20-inch wheels and is powered by a 52-volt battery, though Bird is yet to reveal its top speed and how far it can travel on a single charge.

The moped-like machine also includes full suspension and a long, cushioned seat ensuring a comfy ride for up to two people, as well as a digital display showing ride information.

Photos of the Cruiser show the bike with foot pegs, giving it the appearance of an electric moped, though there’s also a version with pedals so you can put your legs to work on flat terrain, preserving battery power in the process. A Bird spokesperson told Digital Trends it will “offer the best option for each particular market” when it launches the vehicle in the coming months.

The Cruiser’s beefy look is partly to help it withstand the challenging demands of daily life in a bikesharing scheme — think inclement weather, rough riders, and vandals.

“Designed and engineered in California, Bird Cruiser is an inclusive electric-powered option that is approachable, easy-to-ride, and comfortable on rough roads,” Travis VanderZanden, founder and CEO of Bird, said in a release this week.

Searching for new revenue streams, Bird recently began sales of a new stand-up scooter that it’s also adding to its shared fleet. It’s not clear if it also plans to sell the Cruiser.

App-based services using shared two-wheelers have mushroomed in the last couple of years, growth that has brought with it its own set of problems. The dockless schemes, for example, can lead to sidewalks becoming clogged up with rentable bikes and scooters, and there have been plenty of accidents — some fatal — involving riders and sometimes innocent bystanders, too.

Local lawmakers were slow to grasp the fast-growing popularity of the services, though this has changed recently with the introduction of regulations that limit the number of services and available vehicles. Meanwhile, some providers have launched programs to encourage greater responsibility among riders.


How the furious pace of innovation has sculpted the world’s fastest motorcycles

The technology that powers modern MotoGP race bikes isn't just inside of them -- it's everywhere. Literally every single part of the bike, from the brake pad coating to the shape of the gas tank, is painstakingly designed to make the rider…
Movies & TV

Prime-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite TV series currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

What is Apple CarPlay? Here's all you need to know about iOS in your dashboard

CarPlay is one of two major infotainment systems currently vying for your car's dash. Here's everything you need to know about the system, including its feature set and host of third-party apps.

Uber vs. Lyft: Which ridesharing app goes the distance?

Uber and Lyft have changed the way people get from A to B, and while these ridesharing companies provide the same service on paper, they operate in different ways. Here, we break down the major differences between the two.

Google Stadia vs. Blade's Shadow: How the game-streaming services differ

Google Stadia and Blade's Shadow are two very different game-streaming services. We've outlined the key differences between the two to help you decide which one you should pay for.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Illuminated keyboards and a retro gaming console

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Volvo invented the three-point seat belt, and it might be the company that kills it

Volvo didn't invent the seat belt, but the firm patented the three-point configuration found in every new car in 2019. Autonomous technology will force automakers to rethink how they keep motorists pinned to their seats, and Volvo is…

What is Android Auto? Pull over and we'll tell you everything you need to know

What is Android Auto? Google's app overrides native infotainment systems to reduce distractions while driving. Here's everything you need to know about it, including the feature set and compatible car models.

The hottest of all Mini hatches is coming with a Batman-approved design

The Mini John Cooper Works GP concept first seen at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show will go into production in 2020, Mini has confirmed. The John Cooper Works GP is the ultimate performance version of the Mini Cooper.

Airbus-backed Voom could take on Uber’s on-demand flying taxi service

Airbus-backed Voom says it's planning to take its on-demand helicopter taxi to more U.S. cities this fall, a move that could put it in direct competition with Uber's app-based air taxi service launching soon in New York City.

Airstream inspiration Road Chief puts an off-grid luxury camper on the road

Updated for off-grid camping for four people, the Bowlus Road Chief Endless Highways awaits your tow hitch and your wallet. Bowlus design, build quality, and technology in a world-class trailer towable by most mid-sized SUVs.

Ford promises exciting GT supercar news at Goodwood Festival of Speed

Ford will make an announcement regarding its GT supercar at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed. The GT's racing career is winding down, but could Ford be planning a hotter road-going version?

This ’60s Ford Mustang EV has Tesla-like specs and a Rolls-Royce-like price

British startup Charge Cars planted its flag where electric cars and muscle cars meet when it unveiled a battery-powered 1960s Ford Mustang. Starting with a reproduction shell, the firm added an electric powertrain and modern electronics.
Product Review

2020 Mercedes GLS shows what happens when unstoppable force meets immovable luxury

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS is more than a luxury family-hauler. Yes, it’s got all the luxury features and all the bells and whistles of modern technology, but this three-row Teutonic tank has some serious off-road chops as well.