It is said that “Knowledge is of no value unless you put into practice.” And with this very belief Mr. Faisal Thakur, former BMX Champion & Owner of Pro9 Bicycle Studio designed a SOLAR POWERED ELECTRIC CARGO CYCLE (SPEC BIKE).
A marketer by academics and a cycling entrepreneur by choice, Faisal fully conceived, planned and developed the concept of a solar bicycle in his studio by roping in few school students. He formed a team of 22 students from nearby schools and started to work on this project a week before the Republic Day Parade which is held annually by BIRD at Bandra Bandstand on 26th of January. The idea of choosing this occasion was to reach out to maximum people and convey a clear message of eco-friendly transportation.
I saw his masterpiece on the event day where he rode this innovative solar cycle along with a huge convoy of school children following him on their cycles. The solar powered electric cargo cycle was kept on the bandstand promenade for public display and interaction with the crowd. He was completely surrounded by young students and parents so i decided to meet him in person at his studio on another day and learn more about his novel invention.
Faisal has an incredible story to share with us on climate change. His friend who has shifted to China for work, is an automobile designer and very passionate about driving sports cars. One day he saw him switch onto electric vehicle as he felt that way he could reduce his contribution of carbon emissions at the same time continue to pursue his passion for sports cars. This evolving thought moved Faisal and he thought that it’s the right approach his friend has taken and now is the time we all reduce our dependency on natural resources.
Faisal opines that “it is important that we translate our knowledge into actions. With the rising issues of global warming and climate change our duty is to respect mother nature and limit our use or best shift to alternate energy sources.” He re-affirms his faith on children and says “if given the right direction, they will not consume non renewable resources the way we have been consuming. Using products powered by solar energy is the best thing we can give to the next generation. All we have to do is inculcate a different thought process within the youth. His friends action of selling his fuel powered car and moving onto an electric one was about mindset change. So why not have a personalized solar powered electric cargo cycle for active mobility that too with direct health advantages. More importantly, at a tender age it is easier to make children understand the benefits of solar energy and solar powered products. Further, cutting down fuel consumption has economic benefits too for a nation. Currently, India has a huge oil demand to meet which is sourced from the Gulf countries. Such innovative products like these has tremendous potential to change the transportation model of any city and make the urban planners re-think. A new idea can certainly give people more choice and when there is a larger shift in transportation choices the country can definitely gain out of this transaction.”
“When a child is equipped with adequate knowledge, he can work towards the interest of the society” says Faisal. Visiting local schools and training kids has become a ritual for him. When asked how was his experience working with kids he explains “These children are blessed with unlimited capabilities. They are curious and have a creative bend. They encourage you to think beyond established boundaries and challenge your limits and some of them even surpassed my expectations. When i was designing the solar powered electric cargo cycle, i often encouraged them to make their suggestions and welcomed it at every stage. Some of them had their favorite hobbies and were emotional about them which reflected in their ideas. At times they drifted from the central agenda but i held them back.”
Faisal, recently attended the “World Sustainable Development Summit 2019” held at New Delhi where his solar powered electric cargo cycle was kept for exhibition.”
Some Unique Features of the SPEC BIKE are –
- There have been 3 wheeler solar powered trikes but this one is first of its kind in India.
- One charge: 65 kms.
- Takes 8-9 hours to charge 80% of the battery in the Sun
- Battery is detachable and can be charged at home in 3 hours.
- It can be dismantled and packed in 2 bicycle boxes.
- Handle has multiple holding positions.
- Rotating nose less saddle.
- Color – sparkle blue
- The extended portion of the frame is built using high quality Stainless Steel pipes for strength and light weight.
- It has multiple redesigning option and can be converted into a tandem too.
- The cargo bike has enough space for storage and can be used for touring purpose.
You can reach out to Faisal Thakur for product inquiries –
Some more pictures taken at the Republic Day Parade Event
Author: Vijay Malhotra, Mumbai