LeEco has entered the U.S. market in a number of areas, including TVs, smartphones, self-driving cars, and now, high-tech bicycles. The company is introducing two models, the Smart Mountain and Smart Road bike, and each are outfitted with a range of gadgetry, from GPS to a touchscreen to, yes, lasers.
Both of LeEco's bikes have a 4-inch touchscreen between the handlebars, which provides the rider with turn-by-turn directions using HERE maps, a speedometer, crank speed, and smartphone notifications, to name a few. The interface is a fork of Android 6.0, and runs on a quad-core Snapdragon 410 processor. The bikes are equipped with GPS, a compass, accelerometer, barometer, Bluetooth, ANT+, and have a 4G SIM card slot. Also, both are shipping with chest strap heart rate monitors, so that you can see how fast your heart is pumping.
On the end of each handlebar is a red light that acts as a turn signal, and lasers beam down from each side of the bike, creating a virtual "lane" that alerts drivers to give you enough room.
A hydraulic lock on the rear wheel keeps would-be thieves from stealing your ride, and if someone tries to make off with it, an alarm will sound, and you will be notified on your smartphone, where you'll also be able to track the bike's location. All of this is powered by a 6,000 mAh battery that's recharged as you pedal.
As befitting something this high-tech, both bikes have carbon fiber frames and handlebars, and both have 11-speed drivetrains. The Smart Mountain Bike weighs 26.9 pounds, a SR Suntour XCR Air front fork, and a 27.5-inch/650b diameter wheelset. The Smart Road Bike weighs 18.5 pounds.
Pricing and Availability
LeEco's bikes should hit specialty retailers by the second quarter of 2017; pricing has yet to be finalized, but given all that goes into them, they're not going to be cheap.
As shown with its self-driving car, LeEco is not tiptoeing into the U.S. While the price of its smart bikes will definitely limit them to a niche audience, we can see this technology trickling down into less expensive models.