Airbus’ Light Rider is The First 3D Printed Motorcycle

What happens when an aerospace-specialist develops a motorcycle instead of calculating spaceship-engines? A unique concept is born.

This peculiar looking thing is called the Light Rider, and it’s the world’s first 3D printed motorcycle. With a state-of-the-art 3D frame, APWorks – one of Airbus’ subsidiaries – used bionic algorithms in order to define the organic frame structre using nature’s design principles.

In other words, it has an aero-space approved approach, created out of thousands of 30 µm thin layers in a metallic powder bed, that offers the bike superb stiffness. APWorks says it’s using the best materials as the whole frame is created out of Scalmalloy – an aircraft-grade aluminum that offers the specific strength of titanium and is unequaled in 3D printing.

The entire rig also weighs only 35 kg (77 lbs), which in conjunction with its emission-free 6 kW electric motor that outputs up to 130 Nm of torque, offers a power-to-weight ratio equal to that of a supercar. It does 0 to 45 (28 mph) km/h in 3 seconds and has a top speed of 80 km/h (50 mph), with a driving range of 60 km (37 miles).

“We have used our know how of optimization and manufacturing, to create means of transportation, that match our expectations”, explains APWorks’s Niels Grafen: Exceptionally strong, impressively lightweight and of the highest quality.

Airbus’ APWorks plans to make an exclusive small series of the Light Rider – street legal for everyday use – with only 50 units planed. A deposit of €2000 ($2,229) will secure you one, but the full price of the bike is €50.000 ($55,727).

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