Volata_GGBridge_Night

The cycling industry has been closing the distance with electronics for some time now. Various accessories and components have added electronic shifting, turn-by-turn navigation, lights, and even theft protection into our rides. Now, Volata Cycling has built these technologies and more into their bike providing an all around urban/commuter capable of hitting your everyday route. Get ready to (not have to) plug in…


video & photo c. Volata Cycles

The Volata offers flush integration between a Bluetooth powered smart computer and a CNC’d aluminum stem. The computer offers more than just the standard ride duration, distance, and average speed features. Thanks to your smartphone’s data and paired sensors, it shows weather forecasts, navigation, heart rate tracking, music control, and cellphone pop notifications. A joystick crowns the rear shifter allowing for computer navigation, while the front shifter is topped with a button for the 96cb electronic horn.

Volata_Phone_Computer_App

The Volata automatically syncs trips with the rider’s phone by Bluetooth, which also lets you share ride efforts, and view the bike’s condition (charge and location). Lastly, an anti-theft system monitors the bike with motion detectors. Should it be moved or taken the bike’s alarm is set off and it begins to track the location via GPS.

Volata_Urban_Action_Side

Bundled with a belt driven crank system, 11 speed Shimano Alfine internal rear hub, and Shimano’s Di2 electronic shifters, the Volata is built with reduced maintenance in mind. Additionally, a front hub dynamo helps keep the lights (and screen) on when trekking away from outlets. The frame is constructed with 7005 grade Aluminum and incorporates internal cable guides for the electronics and the hydraulic brake lines. The fork features two built-in headlights, and just above the rear wheel is a tail light placed in the frame. Integrated racks and bags are said to be coming soon.

Volata Cycling is taking reservations for $299 with a total price of $3,500 when orders ship. It comes in two color options -white and gray- and sizes from S – XL, and weighs 23.37 lbs (size M, claimed).

VolataCycles.com

 

15 COMMENTS

  1. It’s a good start! But to be a practical bike for the masses it should have fenders in addition to the coming rack, much fatter tires, and a flat bar with some decent backsweep, to make it a normal commuter. Currently it’s a “racing commuter” for sporty riders who aim for a workout. Also, it’s time that commuter bikes got integrated frame locks (with optional lock-onto-other-object attachment).

  2. I agree it needs an integrated frame lock and security bolts for the stem. It’s one of the more thought out designs I’ve seen here so I’m sure this company has a bright future ahead.

  3. Love the concept, price is a bit steep, and why did they need to copy LOOK for their top tube / stem interface design?

  4. I’ll say, this looks encouraging. Possibly the best concept I’ve seen thus far from bikes in the “next level commuter” arena. They haven’t tried to reinvent the wheel, just refine the ride in a smart way. Nice work.

    It’s spendy because a third of the costs are in those electronic/hydraulic shifters! Yikes. I’d hate to take a spill and need to replace one–joystick component makes them proprietary? Otherwise kudos to them.

  5. It’d be nice for them to offer the stem and joystick control with a option to use their hub or anyone elses dynamo maybe integrate a headlight into the stem. I love the tech, but I already have a topend carbon commuter, I need another $3500 bike like I need a hole in my head.

    • N+1?
      But seriously, the stem light idea is a smart change, and it would mean being able to update it as newer better LEDs become available.
      I agree as well that going with the drop bar was an odd choice especially since the Alfine hub is already so expensive. No need for overly complicated levers and extra length of handlebar you never use in the city. Man, i think i only ever find myself in the drops commuting when I’m going down a big ass hill and want the extra leverage on the brake.
      Vanmoof has so far done the best integrated lock that’s significantly available, but it’s clearly far too heavy a solution for wide adoption.

      Is there actually a market for this sort of thing? This is inches away from the level of overkill of the car market.

    • The major weakness is that electronics become obsolete so fast that you are going to be locked into old technology as soon as “the next big thing” comes along.

      • Hello Dave, this is Marco from Volata Cycles. Thanks for bringing this up.

        This is something we spent a lot of time thinking of while developing the tech features. The most important thing, is that for particularly obsolescence-sensitive features (e.g. navigation), the “brain” is the user’s smartphone, whose maps are constantly updated. The bike firmware, which of course requires constant updates, can be update over-the-air from the rider’s smartphone via bluetooth. All other sensors and actuators (light LEDs, horn, accelerometer, temperature sensor, light sensor, display, etc.) are not components that become obsolete as fast as smartphones or other consumer electronics do. We’ve decided to adopt a solid electronic architecture that can support a much more elaborated firmware for future constant updates.

  6. Coming from the perspective of an actual bike commuter riding in a very cyclist-hostile country, this is a GREAT concept. There are a few things they could improve (I agree with the fenders and mounting a more powerful 600-lumen minimum headlight into the stem, and suggest rear rack eyelets), but it’s a breath of fresh air from the other pie-in-the-sky commuter bike concepts that seem to have been designed with zero input from actual bike commuters.

    I understand the cost too since we’re talking about Di2, the 11-speed Alfine IGH, Gates Carbon Drive belt, and a front dynamo hub. All of those parts cost a pretty penny but hardened bike commuters will appreciate them as investments IMHO.

    Good luck to Volata. This makes a thousand times more sense than that Cyclotron thing.

  7. Doubt the shifting with an internal hub is any good. The whole purpose of bikes for me is not to be “techy” from an electronic standpoint especially. Looks fancy though. 😉

    • Amen to that… I’ve heard the electric alfine works very well, but it really doesn’t interest me. And the sheer volume of Di2 bikes coming through my shop now shows that the technology is making tremendous footholds, but still, my 11sp Ultegra mech runs perfectly once the tune sets in. I have nearly 5000mi on my current tune and I replaced a chain and cassette in there and didn’t even have to adjust fine-tune on the rear derailleur. Set it and forget it. The Di2 never looses a tune, and has a lighter action to it (obviously) but when you consider modern mechanical Ultegra to the flight deck stuff of just a few years ago, or double tap Apex from a couple years ago, there is no comparison, it’s just so smooth and easy to use.

  8. Why is he honking at the cable car?
    And please stop advertise to presumed white straight guys with pretty women loving their tech. Grow up!

What do you think?