Rakesh Dhawan has a unique, and versatile, vision for the future of electric bikes. Why commute via one bike and train on a clunky stationary bike in your basement when you can combine the two? Welcome to the concept behind the Falco eDrive.
Dhawan himself was early to the U.S. electric bike market — he’s been involved since 2001. His company, Dulles, Va.-based Falco eMotors, began experimenting with electric drives in 2011. But it wasn’t until recently, as the surrounding landscape of training apps developed, that the Falco eDrive became a really exciting possibility.
“We’ve been trying to connect the dots for a long time,” Dhawan told Technical.ly, which is why he was so excited to unveil “the first ever indoor/outdoor bike conversion that transforms any bike into a smart outdoor hybrid eBike and an interactive indoor power trainer” at CES in Las Vegas last week.
The eDrive has two main functions. First, it turns any bike (you can purchase a bike with the eDrive from Falco, or attach it to a bike of your own) into an electric bike with a top speed of 28 miles per hour and a range of 100 miles.
The other function, the trainer function, commences when you bring your bike inside, attach it to a stand and use it (essentially) as a stationary bike. Within this function, the eDrive integrates with various training apps like Zwift or TrainerRoad to simulate virtual terrain (you can even see yourself in the virtual terrain and compete against others with the help of a mounted iPad or television).
Falco eMotors develops all the hardware and software tech necessary for this product in-house, with a team of about 60 split between Dulles (the HQ) and India. “We are really passionate about cycling,” Dhawan told Technical.ly.