Cycling doesn't have to mean exposing yourself to the elements, or even having to do all the pedaling yourself. Visitors to the 2005 edition of the Japan International Cycle Show could ponder the wind- and rain-free dimensions of the 800,000 yen ($7,000) AWTT electric-power-assisted tricycle from Japanese cycle venture Shirouma Science.
Yamaha Motor's new electric motorcycle Passol-L, on display at the Japan International Cycle Show in November 2005, comes with an in-wheel electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery.
This prototype "Locker Cycle" from Japanese manufacturer Pearl Metal is designed for stashing in coin-operated lockers at train stations.
The Locker Cycle, carrying the Captainstag brand, is expected to go on sale in Japan in 2006.
Fold this bicycle, and you get a hand cart. The "Carry Bike," from bicycle maker Lutz, features small wheels and suspension. It's priced between 38,000 yen ($330) and 48,000 yen, depending on the size.
Interest in electric bikes is also growing across the Pacific Ocean from Japan. Los Angeles-based EV Global Motors offers the Mini E-bike, which can be plugged into a standard wall outlet and which folds to a fairly compact 32 inches long by 14 inches wide by 31 inches high. Prices start at $1,395. The company is backed by legendary Chrysler frontman Lee Iacocca.
In Britain, start-up Ultra Motor is hoping to jump-start the market for personal transportation and clean vehicles. Here, inventor Vasily Shkondin stands next to one of Ultra Motor's electric bikes.