BMW wants to reinvent urban mobility on two wheels

Let’s face it, getting around cities can be a bit of chore these days. More of us rush to urban centres to seek better opportunities, and that means roads are getting crowded and public transport stretched to the limit. The answer? BMW believes it’s the BMW Motorrad Concept Link, an emission-less, two-wheeled vehicle it thinks is the future of urban mobility.

Unveiled at Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este 2017 in Munich, the Motorrad Concept brings BMW’s current ideas of electric cars to a tech-infused two-wheeler and boasts zero-emissions running on an energy pack – just like the i3 and i8, to an extent.

The Motorrad would look pretty distinguished on the roads, as its Liquid Metal Titanium has a very BMW feel to it, and the semi-matte black on the front creates a nice contrast. The design features a low-slung stretched body with a flat seat, while BMW’s iconic lights have been placed into the rear side panels.

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On the technical side, the Motorrad Concept panels don’t completely cover the side section at the rear. It might look a bit odd, but it’s not for show – it’s all to improve overall aerodynamics.

Alexander Buckan, head of vehicle design at BMW Motorrad said: “The technical realities of electric drive – such as the flat energy packs in the underfloor and the compact drive on the rear wheel – allowed us to create a highly distinctive design which shapes a new segment.”

So why does BMW think it’s so good urban centres? The Motorrad Concept Link is designed to have quick acceleration and easy handling for tight corners, so it’s well suited to city roads crowded with cars and buses – or even narrow, European streets.

But it’s not just about zero emissions, the Motorrad also promises connectivity with your smartphone, in particular knowing what’s in your smartphone calendar, so the GPS can plan your next journey and what route to take you. The two-wheeler would then adapt your journey for more scenic options when you have time or opt for the fastest route when you’re in a rush. Handy.

With the i8 and i3, BMW is making a bold play into electric vehicles. The Motorrad is in keeping with the theme of EVs and certainly makes sense given the manufacturer’s wider strategy.

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