Tag Archives: AKO

AKO tests tilting trike prototype

Lithuanian start-up AKO is now testing its electric-powered tilting trike prototype which is somewhere between a motorcycle, trike, car and plane.

Like the Piaggio and Yamaha leaning scooters, the Yamaha Niken leaning motorcycle and the non-leaning Can-Am Spyder roadster, it has two wheels up front and a single wheel at the back.

But the most interesting departure is the steering system which is somewhere between an aircraft yoke, car steering wheel and motorcycle handlebars.

Riders turn the bars/wheel the same as a motorcycle to steer, but can also move the steering column side to side to tilt the machine up to 30°.

AKO leaning electric itrikeAKO leaning electric trike

The hefty 500kg AKO is powered by a 26kWh battery and electric motor driving a shaft to the single rear wheel.

Output is 200kW with 600Nm of torque.

Range is claimed to be more than 300km with a top speed limited to 240km/h.

That compares with the Harley-Davidson LiveWire with 150km of highway range and 235km of city range.  It will arrive in Australia later this year costing probably more than $40,000.

Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycleMBW tests the LiveWire in the US

AKO applied for the patent in July 2019 and is now in the prototype testing phase so production is be a long way off yet.

The company is now asking for manufacturers interested in production to contact them via their website: akotrike.com.ako trike

Tilting into the future

Several other companies are also working on tilting three wheelers.

Yamaha is particularly keen on a leaning trike future and has applied for several patents.

Yamaha Niken VMax leaning three-wheeler coming AKOYamaha patent drawing

Honda was the only one that has applied for a leaning trike patent with an electric motor until the AKO.

Honda Neowing Goldwing leaning three-wheeler trike patent granted akaHonda patent

And late last year, Kawasaki applied for a patent for a tilting trike.

Kawasaki leaning three-wheeler patent drawingKawasaki leaning three-wheeler patent drawing

We can see the advantages of a tilting three-wheeler:

  • More front contact patch means great cornering confidence;
  • Better braking performance from the extra contact patch;
  • Safer and therefore attractive to more people; and
  • No need for a side stand or to put your foot down when stopped.

There are also disadvantages compared with a traditional two-wheeled motorcycle or scooter:

  • Costlier and more complex suspension;
  • Less lean angle;
  • Wider footprint and less ability to lane filter;
  • Heavier and therefore higher fuel/power consumption; and
  • Greater tyre replacement costs.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Kawasaki leaning toward three-wheelers

Kawasaki seems to be following Yamaha and Honda in developing a leaning three-wheeler with its latest patent application in the US.

Yamaha already has the Tricity leaning three-wheeler scooter and Niken motorcycle as well as patent plans for more leaning trikes with two front wheels including a VMax!

Yamaha Niken VMax leaning three-wheeler coming AKO
Yamaha leaning VMax patent drawing

Honda has also applied for patents for leaning three-wheelers as has AKO who want to make an electric version.

Each model has a different idea of how leaning three-wheelers with two front wheels should lean and steer.

The Kawasaki design looks quite complex with horizontal links instead of conventional vertical forks and a mono shock like a BMW telelever arrangement.

Kawasaki leaning three-wheeler patent drawing
Mono shock

Here is how they explain it in the patent filing abstract:

A saddle type vehicles includes two front wheels, a left front wheel supporting member and a right front wheel supporting member which are turned around a left front wheel turning axis and a right front wheel turning axis respectively, an upper lean arm and a lower lean arm which are rotated around an axis perpendicular to a vehicle width direction, and a steering rod. The upper arm is connected to the left and right members via first and second connecting parts which are provided on the left front wheel turning axis. The lower arm is connected to the left and right members via third and fourth connecting parts which are provided on the right front wheel turning axis. The steering rod is arranged forward of the steering spindle. In a front view of the vehicle body, the steering rod is arranged between the upper and lower arms.Kawasaki leaning three-wheeler patent drawing


It may look complex and heavy, but they claim it makes it lighter.Kawasaki leaning three-wheeler patent drawing

Pros and cons of leaning

The advantages of leaning three wheelers is that they feel very much like a normal bike to ride, but they double the contact patch on the front which improves cornering grip.

They can also be made to stay upright without having to put a foot down at slow speeds or stationary.

Yamaha Niken neowing leaning
Niken (Image: Yamaha)

This makes them ideal for novices or those who can no longer support a motorcycle because of leg injuries or age.

However, the disadvantages of leaning three wheelers are that they are ugly, heavy and more expensive.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

AKO patents leaning electric trike

Lithuanian start-up AKO has applied for a patent for an electric-powered vehicle somewhere between a motorcycle, trike and a car with the ability to lean in corners.

Of course, there are already leaning three-wheelers such as the Piaggio MP3 scooter and Yamaha Niken.

Yamaha is particularly keen on a leaning trike future and has applied for several patents as has Honda.

Yamaha Niken VMax leaning three-wheeler coming AKO
Yamaha patent drawing

However, Honda is the only one that has applied for a leaning trike patent with an electric motor.

Honda Neowing Goldwing leaning three-wheeler trike patent granted aka
Honda patent

Until now!

AKO trike

AKO leaning electric itrike
AKO leaning electric itrike

Team AKO describe their machine as an “electric inverse leaning trike”.

That means it has two wheels at the front, rather than at the rear like traditional treikes.

The “roadster” style with two wheels at the front is similar to the leaning MP3 and Niken and the non-leaning Can-Am Slyders.AKO leaning electric itrike

The AKO is a two-seater with the rider in front and passenger behind and a completely covered shell, not just a roof like BMW’s C1 scooter which the Bavarian company might be re-launching.

The leaning technology is apparently hydraulic button other details are available.

What sets this apart is the electric power plant.

Because the trike configuration is bigger than scooters and motorcycles, it allows them to fit a bigger battery which means more range.

While Harley is currently launching its LiveWire with 150km of highway range and 235km of city range, the hefty 500kg AKO is claimed to have 300km range and 140kW of power. 

Harley electric LiveWire Harley and Indian announce 2018 sales results AKO
Harley LiveWire

No other tech specs are available yet as it is still just a patent drawing.

Despite the realistic images, there isn’t even a prototype yet.AKO leaning electric itrike

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com