clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

New electric bike is based on a 1941 Jean Prouvé design

A commuter bike for the design set

White bike in front of white house Coleen

In 1941, the French architect Jean Prouvé designed a bicycle for workers in France that would help them commute from home to work cheaply and easily. The bike had a low-slung cruiser seat and hefty metal frame with a thick center bar that slanted downwards like a ramp. It was an instant classic.

Blue electric bike Coleen

Nearly 80 years later, that same frame has gotten a very modern update. French company Coleen has designed an electric bike that takes inspiration from Prouvé’s original form. Designed for urban riders, it has the same cruiser DNA, only updated with some high-tech features.

Close up photo of leather handlebar Photo via Coleen

The Coleen comes loaded with a battery that charges from zero to 100 percent in just over two hours. A no-glare screen displays information like distance traveled, battery charge, and speed. Best of all, the bike starts with a keyless ignition—press a button on your smartphone and you’re good to go.

Close up of bike gears Coleen

On show at CES 2019 and available for purchase this summer, the $5,400 Coleen comes in three colors—light blue or gray with a white stripe, and white with navy stripes—and has a leather seat and handle bars. It’s timeless yet modern. which is to say, it’s a high-tech bike that doesn’t look a bit high-tech.