You Can't Walk on Water but You Can Absolutely Bike on It

No, that does not mean you're a demigod

By Evan Bleier

 
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24 October 2017

Winner of the "concept" category at this year's New Zealand Best Design Awards, the Manta5 Hydrofoiler XE-1 allows riders to plane over the surface of the water on lakes, oceans or rivers.

With a lightweight aluminum frame and two carbon fiber hydrofoils for lift, the 44-pound pedal-powered hyrdofoil bike uses a 400-watt electric motor for added boost. It runs for about an hour on a single charge from and tops out at 12 MPH.

Although it’s buoyant, the rider’s weight will cause the bike to sink when it’s not being pedaled. However, it is possible for the rider to remount the bike while it is underwater and perform a “submerged launch” to start riding again. We’re told it ain’t easy. But hey, practice makes perfect.

“I want these bikes to go well beyond just being a leisure product — I want it to be a sports product so it's competitive,” co-founder Guy Howard-Willis says. “If it's competitive it’s a whole different market it fits into, and who knows, one day it might be in the Olympic Games. I can see that, it may take a while to get there, maybe I'm too ambitious, but like I say I’ve always been a dreamer.”

At least part of his dream is a reality as the XE-1 is available for presale. Pricing details are TBD.

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