BMW electric concepts give glimpse of the future of personal mobility

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BMW have released a new electric vehicle concept that’s neither motorcycle nor scooter, but which is aimed at pulling youngsters into the brand.

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With a low weight, low seat height and a skateboard for footrests (don’t even start...) BMW are hoping the Concept CE 02 is just the ticket to attract a new generation of riders. Think Honda Grom but with batteries.

"At first glance, there is little about the BMW Motorrad Concept CE 02 that is typically BMW Motorrad – it’s something completely new," says Edgar Heinrich, Head of Design BMW Motorrad.

BMW CE 02 rear

"We want to strive for something novel and be pioneers – which is what we’ve proven ourselves capable of with various projects in the past. The Concept CE 02 features new proportions and modern forms of single-track mobility in an urban environment."

So what does all that mean? Well quite simply the CE 02 takes a lot of the design and engineering of the CE 04 scooter (which has gone from concept to production) and slims it down for 16-year-olds.

The CE 02 weighs just 120kg, over 110kg lighter than the CE 04, while still managing a range of 55mph. It’s powered by a 14.75bhp electric motor that can push the mini-machine to a top speed of 55mph – more than enough to get to college.

BMW CE 02 right side

There’s a small TFT dash as well as LED lighting throughout. Power comes from a pair of batteries under the seat, which is just 730mm high.

For now BMW are insisting this is just a concept but the CE 04 production bike followed the concept by less than a year, so we wouldn’t be surprised if the real thing appears this autumn.

BMW Vision AMBY electric concepts

BMW i Vision AMBY (left) and Vision AMBY

In the race to work out what personal mobility will look like in the future, BMW have another couple of projects up their sleeve. The Vision AMBY and i Vision AMBY are ultra-lightweight electric cycles - the i version has pedals, the other does not.

Plenty of other manufacturers ae going down a similar route, but where the BMW differs is a variable speed limit system. This would change the bikes’ power output depending on where it is being ridden.

There are several ideas being considered for how it could work; geofencing or a smartphone connection could do it automatically or user selection (which has inherent problems) could be used.

BMW Vision AMBY right side

This means that the bike’s top speed could be limited to around 15mph on cycle paths, 28mph on inner city roads and then more like 40mph out of town – for example. BMW hope that the AMBY will prompt governments to consider including a legal framework for modular speed vehicles in the future.

Performance details are vague at the moment, but the Vision AMBY is projected to weigh around 65kg and have a range of 68 miles between charges.

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Jordan Gibbons

By Jordan Gibbons

News Editor, owns some old bikes. Should know better.