From Box To Bike
October 18th, 2012
After my two wheels and I slipped on wet pavement last week, I was glad my slightly bruised bike was not made of cardboard. Then again, it didn’t cost $20.
Izhar Gafni, an Israeli designer and cycling enthusiast, is gaining press for an invention that he hopes will, you know, change the world. His prototype for a cardboard bicycle (!) seeks to bring an inexpensive, durable and efficient form of transportation from the most impoverished villages of Africa to the world’s most impacted cities.
With government grants funding most of the production, the estimated cost per unit ends being up a mere $9. Gafni imagines the bikes will sell for about $20, as retailers have to make a profit. His company sees ad space on the bikes as their main form of revenue.
Worried about the boxy bike’s lifespan? Well, they’re so inexpensive longevity almost doesn’t matter! There is a standing option to recycle your bike back at the factory if it is damaged, and Gafni claims the cardboard creations will seldom need maintenance or adjustment.
Smaller bikes for children, wheelchairs and even motorized versions are in the works as the bikes begin rolling of the production line.
What Gafni likes about his bike the most? “It’s cardboard!” Duh.
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