So how are they rethinking the hopelessly retrograde bicycles we've all been riding?
Instead of buying a bike and then buying lights and a GPS computer, the founders of Volata Cycles think the whole thing should come as an integrated package. Volata Cycles is launching this summer with an electronic, internal-hub shifting, hydraulic-braking, slick commuter bike that has an app-based computer and front and rear lights all built right in and powered by the front hub.
Brilliant. A bicycle is a machine that can last you for decades that you can accessorize as needed, whereas electronic gadgets are fickle, disposable items with a shelf life measured in months. Naturally then you'd want to integrate them instead of changing your accessories as they age or wear out.
Volata Cycles is selling the bike for $3,499 at www.volatacycles.com, asking for a reservation fee of $299 with the remaining balance due upon delivery beginning in July 2017.
I was convinced, so I headed over to Volata's site to configure my new dork sled:
I was able to choose from two colors, four sizes, three saddles...and that was it.
Sure, I would have also liked to specify some other details such as stem length, but when you spend $3,499 for a Volata you have to hope they eventually get around to offering them in different sizes:
Thank you, Silicon Valley, for "disrupting" the versatility and adaptability right out of the bicycle.
And now, I'm pleased to present you with a quiz. As always, study the item, think, and click on your answer. If you're right then great, and if you're wrong you'll see Cat 3s.
Thanks very much for reading, ride safe, and may we soon be liberated from the heat dome.
--Wildcat Rock Machine
1) Which "Entourage" star recently doored a cyclist?
--Daniel Day Lewis
2) From July 25th through July 29th, the NYPD will crack down on:
--Drivers who endanger bicyclists
--Bicyclists who endanger drivers
--Officers who block bike lanes
--Bicycles with tires exhibiting excessive tread wear
3) Who is Graham?
--An "interactive lifelike sculpture demonstrating human vulnerability"
--A test subject for New South Wales's experimental helmet implant
--Yet another lame new "Star Wars" character
--A Masters cyclist who took too many PEDs
4) Silca's new T-Ratchet portable torque wrench is yet more proof that carbon fiber is a stupid material for bicycle components.
5) How much for an old wooden baby block at the Brooklyn Flea?
6) A person who points to his or her head as you ride by and mouths the word "Helmet!" is called:
--A Helmet Nazi
--A Helmet Mime
--A Safety Kippah Enforcement Agent
--A typical Australian
("What, no helmet?!?")
7) Basically nobody really knows shit about why bikes work.
***Special PSA-Themed Bonus PSA!***
Okay, two things: 1) Seems like more of an anti-bullying PSA than a bike safety PSA; and B) How does a helmet help if you take a 2x4 to the face?