The world’s first bike designed and hand-built by Formula One engineers is currently on display in the London Science Museum, and on sale at Harrods.
Factor 001, the creation of engineers at BERU f1systems, has been described as both a ‘rule-destroying speed machine’ and a ‘mobile sports laboratory’. Riders are promised rapid acceleration with minimal exertion, thanks to the lightweight and extremely rigid carbonfibre monocoque structure, with ‘twin-vane’ architecture that can be adjusted to within a millimetre to suit the rider’s measurements and typical riding position. You can even opt for carbon ceramic disc brakes.
“Our twin-vane design provides substantially improved lateral stiffness and therefore more of the power generated by the rider is transmitted into forward motion,” explains John Bailey, managing director at BERU f1systems. “A conventional frame, even one made of carbon composite, flexes when the rider applies force to the pedals, which absorbs energy and reduces acceleration. Our twin-vane frame almost completely eliminates this problem, delivering an exceptionally responsive ride.”
The standard bike costs £22,000 but a version with integrated electronics is due to be released in April, at a price of £27,000. The multi-channel electronics package offers an amazing array of ergonometric data collection, logging and analysis. It can simultaneously correlate biometric data from the ride, physical force data from the bike and environmental data to offer what was previously possible only in a laboratory. The rider can record everything from skin temperature, respiration rate and individual leg power output, to atmospheric pressure and humidity. The data are displayed via an LCD touch screen, and can be downloaded later for ‘post-ride analysis’.
Factor 001 customers will additionally be invited to an in-depth cycle fitting and analysis session, lasting two to three hours, to assess the rider’s cycling physiology, technique and alignment.
“Each model takes six highly skilled engineers a week to make. With only a limited number of bikes due to be built, we expect Factor 001 to become a desirable collectors’ item,” concludes Bailey.