Fernando Alonso debuts Kimoa e-bike with unique Arevo-3D printed frame ahead of Miami Formula 1 GP

Two-time Formula 1 world champion Fernando Alonso has unveiled a new, 3D printing-optimized e-bike in the run up to the sport’s inaugural Miami Grand Prix.

Launched by Alonso-founded lifestyle brand Kimoa, the electric bicycle features an Arevo-3D printed unibody frame, making it highly-customizable, as well as stronger and more lightweight than glued or bolted together competitors.

To celebrate the debut of Kimoa’s e-bike, which is set to retail for upwards of $3,999, one of its resellers Simply EV has now kicked-off a stylish launch event in Miami, just days ahead of the city’s own introduction to the high- octane sport or Formula 1.

“At the heart of Kimoa’s DNA is our drive to create a more sustainable lifestyle,” explains Kimoa founder and global ambassador, Fernando Alonso. “The Kimoa E-Bike powered by Arevo gives people a curated step towards that active and sustainable lifestyle, tailored specifically for each rider.”

Kimoa’s Arevo-3D printed e-bike. Photo via Arevo.

Arevo’s frame-printing background

Since it was founded in Silicon Valley during 2014, Arevo has managed to establish a strong name for itself in the world of continuous carbon fiber 3D printing. The firm’s portfolio largely revolves around its Aqua 2 3D printer, a system with a six-axis robot-mounted printhead and sizable 1,000 x 1,000 x 830mm build volume, that’s capable of turning high-fiber thermoplastics into robust, large-format parts.

To enhance the capabilities of its system, Arevo also offers to supply users with its proprietary Continuous Carbon Fiber Reinforced Thermoplastics, in addition to its ‘Xplorator’ operating software. According to the company, the latter features a generative design module that provides “the brainpower behind every step of the Aqua process,” from initial part design right through to production.

When deployed in tandem, Arevo’s offerings are said to enable adopters to achieve significant lightweighting via geometric optimization, and this has been borne out in various electric vehicle (EV) applications. Having partnered with Franco Bicycles to 3D print a frame for its Emery ONE e-bike in 2019, Arevo then embarked on a similar project by 3D printing a single-piece frame for the ‘Superstrata.’

More recently, the company has collaborated with San Francisco-based studio Branch Creative to design and 3D print the ‘Scotsman’ electric scooter. This time featuring a unified carbon fiber composite frame, handlebar and stem, the two-wheeler was reportedly shipped late last year with a top speed of 45 mph and an asking price of $2,999 to $4,999.

Arevo's 3D printed 'Scotsman' electric scooter.
Arevo’s 3D printed ‘Scotsman’ electric scooter. Image via Arevo.

Kimoa’s ‘Arevo-powered’ e-bike

Formally unveiled at an exclusive launch event near Simply EV’s flagship store in Wynwood, the defining feature of Kimoa’s first-ever e-bike is its unique unibody structure. By 3D printing the bicycle’s frame in a single pass from a continuous carbon fiber thermoplastic, the firm has managed to forgo the need for joining parts onto it, giving it more impact-resistance than traditionally-made alternatives.

In addition to providing the bike with seamless strength, Kimoa says that producing it via additive manufacturing also enables it to be “fully-customized to individual riders.” Thanks to Arevo’s technology, adopters are therefore able to tailor the bicycle’s frame to riders’ heights, weights, arm and leg lengths, as well as riding positions, and it’s said to be configurable to over 500,000 different combinations.

Other customization options include choosing a riding style, ie road, gravel, commuting or cruising, picking between metal or carbon fiber wheels, adding fluorescent flourishes to the e-bike’s livery and thanks to integrated wiring, potentially electronic upgrades too.

When it comes to battery life, meanwhile, the electric bicycle is good for 55 miles of range off a two-hour charge, which is comparable to that of the Superstrata Arevo launched two years ago. Those fortunate enough to find themselves in the Magic City this weekend can try out Kimoa’s e-bike for themselves, while taking advantage of some F1-themed amusements, ahead of the Miami GP on May 8, 2022.

As well as being available via SimplyEV and Simply MAC stores, it’s expected that interested e-cycling enthusiasts will soon be able to design and configure an e-bike of their own via Kimoa’s website as well.

AREVO's Aqua 2 3D printer (pictured) is reportedly able to print four times faster than its predecessor.  Photo via AREVO.
Arevo’s latest 3D printer ‘Aqua 2’ (pictured) is reportedly able to print four times faster than its predecessor. Photo via Arevo.

Continuous carbon fiber competition

While Arevo has clearly found a niche use case that its technology is particularly well-suited to addressing, it’s far from the only firm operating in the continuous carbon fiber 3D printing space. In July 2021, Continuous Composites, raised $17 million towards the commercialization of its technology, shortly after revealing that it was developing 3D printed drone wings for the US Department of Defense.

9T Labs raised $17 million last year as well, in order to fund its efforts to fully-bring its Red Series Additive Fusion Solution platform to market. Utilizing a combination of 3D printing and compression molding, the system is said to be capable of producing more than 100,000 carbon fiber-reinforced parts per annum.

Impossible Objects has also established itself as one of the early leaders in continuous carbon fiber 3D printing. The firm began working with Owens Corning in May 2021, with the aim of developing a specialized fiberglass 3D printing composite that features the high strength-to-weight ratio and excellent chemical resistance needed, to serve as a lower-cost alternative to metals like aluminum .

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Featured image shows Kimoa’s Arevo-3D printed e-bike. Photo via Arevo.

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