Lexus looks set to expand its range of hybrid vehicles in a manner which almost nobody saw coming. Its next concept project, bizarrely enough, is a hybrid bicycle. Say what now?
Don't adjust your LCDs, this really is a two-wheeled Lexus. But although it's a hybrid, it doesn't rely on a combination of electric and petrol power. Instead, it supplements the rider's pedal power to the rear wheel with a 25.9V lithium-ion battery pack and a 240W electric motor driving the front wheel, making it both-wheel drive.
Like all the best hybrids, the Lexus bicycle has a regenerative braking system, which converts heat energy from the brakes into electrical energy that's stored in the battery. It can also be plugged into the mains and recharged in a mere two hours. It has an eight-speed shift-by-wire automatic transmission, which, according to Lexus, "references" that of a Lexus LS 600h limousine.
Lexus currently has no plans to mass-produce the bicycle, but it has built a couple of prototypes, one of which is being shown off at the Great British Bike Ride -- a four-day charity ride that will see hundreds of cyclists riding from Land's End to Twickenham.
Have a butchers' at more pictures of this thing in our photo gallery and let us know what you think in the comments section below.