Once inflated, the Poimo isn’t immediately ready to carry you off to your destination. You then need to install some additional components including pairs of front and back wheels, a brushless electric motor, a battery, and a wireless controller which is entirely integrated into the separate handlebars. The final package weighs in at a little over 12 pounds, but the research team who created it believes its weight could be greatly reduced if and when the Poimo moves from the prototype research stage to a product ready for consumers.


Assuming it’s not easy to accidentally puncture, there are many advantages to using an inflatable structure instead of a rigid frame for an e-bike. Battery life and range would be maximized thanks to the lighter weight, and in the event of an accident, replacing the inflated frame would potentially be a lot cheaper than having to write off the entire thing as scrap. And while testers have reported the inflated frame is a lot sturdier and rigid than expected, it should still provide some helpful cushioning in the event a rider accidentally collides with a pedestrian. It wouldn’t be like getting hit by a pillow, it would potentially be far less dangerous than getting hit by a car.