First functioning model is planned for the end of the year
Another partner is MTRL, a Dutch a start-up that has successfully put 400 bicycles with plastic frames and wheels onto the Netherlands' roads. "Founders Johannes and Benjamin Alderse Baas are partners who share our vision completely," says Blase, who is himself an investor in MTRL. "Together, we are refining the all-plastic bicycle." The bicycle start-up will begin production and sale of a children's model and an adult bicycle for cities by the end of this year. The German launch will be in early 2023. Other versions, such as an e-bike, have also been planned. In the future, the all-plastic bicycle is to be available both in a variant made of new plastic and in one made entirely of recycled material. The first prototypes, successfully produced and tested, were made of material from old fishing nets, for example. The adult bike made of virgin plastic is to cost 1,200 euros. There will be a surcharge of 200 euros for the recycled-plastic variant. MTRL is planning manufacturing facilities near plastic landfills around the world. "From ocean plastics to motion plastics - the igus:bike concept has what it takes to become a high-tech ecological product," says Blase.
"We have lots more ideas, such as installing condition monitoring using igus smart plastics. That would let you use your smartphone to see how many more thousands of kilometres the bike can take. That will hopefully convince many people who are still sceptical about plastic."