Electronics genius is now back with an battery-powered recumbent, complete with canopy

Sir Clive plugs e-recumbent

In the 1980s, Sir Clive Sinclair was pilloried for his C5. Undeterred, the electronics genius is now back with an battery-powered recumbent complete with canopy

Details on the £595 X-1 were released on the Sinclair Research website yesterday. The product is available for pre-order but won’t be available until July 2011.

The X-1 appears to be a pedal-assist machine. Innovatively, it has brakes which "provide 100% stopping power."

Unlike the open-top C5 – often wheeled out as one of the failures of the 1980s but which the Sinclair website says remains the best-selling electric vehicle of all time – the X-1 has a canopy, a "waterproof Acrylic bubble" that doubles as a roll cage.

The machine is claimed to have a "superlight construction": it weighs 30 kilos.

No doubt accurately, it is claimed the X-1 will have "strong visibility to other road users."

When the C5 was launched in 1985 it was derided for its low-slung stance and 15mph top-speed.

The X-1 has small wheels – 16inch? – and no visible suspension (or brake levers).

Much of the design work on products which appear on Sinclairzx.com is done by others, not Sir Clive. But his company does have a soft spot for bikes. He and his design team have produced a number of bike-like products over the years, including the Zike e-bike and add-on electric propulsion attachments for standard bikes.

Sir Clive invented the pocket calculator, the Spectrum computer, and digital watches.


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