Take on the 4x4s... with a 3x3!
Russian trike-makers join forces to create an all-wheel-drive recumbent trike, and are set to start production later this year...
Posted by Peter Eland on Friday 23 Jul 2004
A new all-wheel drive trike has just been announced:
What, if any, would be the advantages of 3wd?
Having ridden through snow for several months last winter, I can see a big advantage to the 3WD arrangement, if it works. With a single rear drive wheel, I had to get out and push my Cab-Bike up some very tiny hills. When these guys say they make velomobiles, does that mean that they will be putting the Berkut VM body -- or something like it -- on this trike? That could be very interesting here in Minnesota
Last year I too had snow to contend with, unfortunately with the additional problem of extreme hills.
I had to resort to my own form of 3wd, which was pedaling and pushing the front wheels round, so 3wd would be very welcome.
I would think that the frontwheel drive layout of early Berkuts already improves traction a lot compared to one wheel drive... depending on weight distribution, about a 100%, sufficient for occasional slippery uphills. 3 wheel drive improves traction 200%. The latter must be a hoot for real off-road driving/slippery conditions, imagine all wheel drifting through a slippery corner...
Just in case anyone's expecting an answer from the Russians, they've just managed to contact me to say their internet provider has been down completely for the last few days following extreme weather, and they still have problems getting online. They also hope to have no less than five trikes with them on the Eco-trip in Finland - I hope for pics soon.
They have a nice report from the Finland eco-trip up at
Brilliant concept, elegantly done. They should also license the design to other manufacturers to get worldwide coverage faster. Some day this will be a universally available option, and will be common on 3wheelers in rural areas and places subject to snow and bad road conditions.
I can also see these having utility applications, e.g. plowing snow on sidewalks (pavements), perhaps grass cutting, parks maintenance, and other cases where you need to operate an auxiliary device or tow a fairly heavy load whilst maintaining traction on unfavorable ground. Think of the applications for which small tractors are normally used. These instances might call for an ultra-low gearing range that could be selected via a front derailleur.
Anyone know what kind of price range is expected for these machines? And any news on availability in the United States?
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