Faraday e-bike funded on Kickstarter, in Portland this weekend

Buffered Bike Lane with a bike symbol and arrow pointing forward

See it in Portland this weekend.

One of the most anticipated new bikes in years, the Faraday Porteur, is headed to Portland this weekend. The bike, which was discovered here on BikePortland when it debuted at the Oregon Manifest Design Challenge competition back in September, boasts a gorgeous design, detachable front rack, hub-powered lights, and a smartly integrated battery for electric assist.

Earlier this month the man behind the bike, Portland native and MIT grad Adam Vollmer announced he planned to mass-produce the bike. Vollmer went to Kickstarter in hopes of raising the $100,000 needed to get the production started. The project quickly reached that goal and now Vollmer and his crew have left the San Francisco Bay Area where the company was founded and are headed up to Portland.

I caught up with Vollmer via email to learn more about his Portland roots, the rise of Faraday, e-bike evangelism, and more…

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The ‘best e-bike ever’ soon available to the masses

Buffered Bike Lane with a bike symbol and arrow pointing forward

The Faraday, shown here at the Oregon Manifest
field test in Portland last September,
will soon be available as a production bike.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Back in September, when the entries in the 2011 Oregon Manifest Design Challenge competition were revealed, one bike in particular caught my eye. It was the “Faraday” electric-assist bike built by a California-based team made up of design firm IDEO and bike company Rock Lobster.

With its drop-dead good looks (inspired by French porteur bikes from the 1940s and ’50s), functional utility features, and super e-tech wizardry, I went out on a limb and dubbed it the “best e-bike ever”. Today I learned that the bike has become the first ever Oregon Manifest entry to go become a full-fledged brand and go into production.

According to the Faraday Bikes website, the bike will be available for purchase on July 18th. I haven’t heard what the retail price will be, nor do I know who’s behind the brand; but to me, the larger significance is that this bike could catapult e-assist into the mainstream, and it was born at the Oregon Manifest.

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