27 May, 2022
You may be one of the many people who took up cycling during lockdown as a way of avoiding public transport. In which case, you may well also be one of the people who experienced the crushing disappointment followed by fury that comes from returning to the place you locked your bike only to find (if you’re lucky) a wheel chained to a lamppost or (if you’re unlucky) nothing at all.
In London, a bike is reported stolen every 16 minutes and that only reflects people who go to the trouble of reporting it – the true figure is believed to be much higher. We can all buy better, and more locks, but what if we had a different kind of bike altogether?
That’s where this week’s Goods comes in. The Yerka V3 bills itself as the world’s first theft proof bike, because the bike frame itself is the lock. Essentially, you unlock the bike and the frame opens up allowing you to attach it to a pole, fence or bike rack. Even the wheels are protected as they require a tool with a pattern unique to your bike to remove them. Breaking the lock means breaking the frame, thereby rendering the bike redundant – even assuming the thief can figure out whether what he or she is looking at is in fact a bike, as once it’s locked, it looks most unlike something we would recognise as a bike.
The Yerka V3 also removes the need to carry around a look, making for a lighter smoother experience – crucial for those of you looking to make those marginal gains in your cycle commute.
Is it sustainable? Well, it’s a bike, and bikes come with a carbon footprint, from their manufacture and from the energy we burn while cycling (more here, for the data geeks). But it’s pretty minimal in comparison to other modes of transport, and for now, getting (and keeping!) a bike remains one of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint from transport. And Yerka is working on a bike made from 100% recycled materials, so watch this space!
By Claire Jost