Cabin bikes seem like a good idea, overcoming the inclement weather and road hazard detriments of riding a motorcycle, while still providing the narrow profile and agility that only having two-wheels affords. The question is; why haven’t they caught on?
Peraves ag have been building cabin motorcycles for about 20 years now. Their first foray – the Ecomobile – became popular enough to keep the company in business with more than 90 sold to date. The current lineup includes that model in multiple variants, as well as the updated Monotracer. Both bikes are powered by BMW motorcycle engines, and both use outrigger wheels for low speed maneuvering, as demonstrated by notorious motorcycle-hater, Jeremy Clarkson in this BBC clip-
The concept of the cabin motorcycle is not unique to the Swiss, as BMW marketed a semi-closed step-through scooter called the C1 a few years back. That bike offered enhanced safety and weather protection over traditional scooters, but didn’t make a dent in the marketplace, and was discontinued.
Peraves has been the only maker to stick to the cabin motorcycle format, and their lack of further success may lie in their product’s price tag, which for the new Monotracer is about $75,000. But that doesn’t explain why other makers – especially in the era of high fuel costs and depressed motorcycle sales – haven’t offered cheaper alternatives.
With a 125-mph cruising speed, two passenger capability, motorcycle maneuverability and fuel economy, and all-weather protection, what’s not to like about these? It also seems that their arresting styling would appeal to the pretentious Earth-firsters who want to save the world, while at the same time making sure everyone sees that they are saving it.
So the question is: why haven’t these things caught on, and do you think they ever will?
Let us know.