Italian car brand links up with MomoDesign, launches Urban Bike

There are those who will always argue that two wheels are better than four. If, by some web search abnormality, you're among them, you've probably realised by now that you've come to the wrong website. However, today, we do happen to have something that might interest you.Once great provider of beautiful cars to the Italian middle classes Lancia has just released evidence that it's branching out into pedal power. This is its Urban Bike. It's been designed, and is being built, in collaboration between Lancia and MomoDesign, and is described by the former as "the first two-wheel Lancia cabrio."We'd say it was missing certain defining characteristics of a cabriolet, like, say, an engine, steering wheel, a body, doors, proper seats, and, apart from anything else, about a tonne of metal. But let's not quibble over details – it's a nice piece of kit all the same. That's because this is no ordinary bike; it's been created to minimise weight and maximise performance. Lancia's Urban Bike uses a toothed belt rather than a chain to take drive to the rear wheel, which, it says, makes pedalling smoother and more comfortable. It has eight gears housed within the hub of the rear wheel. Together, these features make it the perfect bike to ride in your business suit, as there's less risk of getting an oily trouser leg.The frame is made up of bow-shaped structures which, again according to its maker, soak up roughness in terrain and, in tandem with its wide-section tyres, "renders dampers and suspensions superfluous."And, although we know what you're thinking, this Lancia definitely won't rust. It's frame, fork, handlebar, seatpost, mudguard and pannier are all made of carbon fibre; its pedals are magnesium; the wheels are aluminium; and the whole bike weighs less than 11kg.

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