So first off, yes. This thing real. The new Spanish RedShark trimaran bike is designed to give cyclists a pedal-powered workout, a familiar fit & feel, but the freedom to explore new places on the water.

RedShark tri-hulled pedal-powered bike-boat

The RedShark is billed as a trimaran (tri-hulled boat) developed for aquatic cycling. The core idea seems to be to open up a huge amount of untapped unexplored area, either for a chance to get away from civilization (in a bikepacking mode) or for uninterrupted training.

The RedShark is a product of experienced Spanish auto/moto-sector product designer and cycling enthusiast Josep Rubau’s wild imagination. Living close to the sea either was inspiring or corrupted his sensibilities, depending on your perspective.

A lot of development went into creating the RedShark, and it will be interesting to see how it fares in a consumer market. For now it seems that three models are being offered, that appear to vary a bit in both construction and component setup to tailor to different types of users.

The Sport model is billed as the fastest and for the most serious athletes. RedShark Sport is built to train fitness, and gets a time trial or triathlon inspired cockpit, with a healthy dose of carbon components and clipless pedals.

The RedShark Adventure is the bikepacking, or rather boatpacking, model. Designed to  exploring lakes, rivers, and calm seas it includes a bullhorn bar and several bags to carry more supplies for longer overnight adventure touring in untouched coastal areas.

The RedShark Fun model wasn’t available to see at launch, but appears to be the lowest priced version. Meant for more recreational users, not necessarily for existing cyclists, it appears this model may use a cheaper frame construction, leaning less on carbon fiber. This build strips the RedShark back to the essentials, with a more upright flat-bar riding position.

Tech details

The core ‘bike’ frame and two wings that connect the three hulls are all made of carbon fiber in what RedShark calls the structural zones. The entire bike/boat is 100% produced in Europe, across a wide range of material suppliers.

The three pontoon hulls are then made of more resilient ABS plastic that can handle running aground and daily wear.

Besides obvious inspiration from bikes, the whole RedShark bike/boat borrows a lot of cycling components to make it work. The Adventure model uses big platform pedals and a e-bike specific crank to turn the differential in the bottom bracket. The Sport was outfitted with road pedals in the interest of pedaling efficiency, but the thought of getting off the shore or a dock in road shoes onto a boat is truly terrifying.

The adventure model borrows heavily from the bikepacking concept, strapping a number of bags on to the bike/boat to haul your lightweight camping gear. Other than the bags and a water bottle cage behind the crankset, the RedShark does include a sealed waterproof hatch inside the rear of the main hull to keep sensitive gear like your mobile phone and water protected from water.

Forward propulsion is provided by an impeller directly under the mast continuing down from the bottom bracket with a direct drive gearshaft. It isn’t clear how the gearing or gear ratios were developed as it doesn’t seem adjustable. So speed on the water isn’t really clear, making me curious how it would fare on the open water or in moving streams vs. on  lakes and other more calm bodies of water.

Directional control is handled by a pair of rudders directly under the front mast, turned by the standard bike handlebars that are offered on various models.

studio & outside photos courtesy of RedShark

The two side pontoons folds up for portability, and the ability to transport it on a low-mount trailer hitch bike rack (or a roof rack). Then a couple of roller blade wheels on the rear allow you to maneuver the RedShark around, with about as much mobility as a packed bike travel case.

Pricing & Availability

To be honest I was surprised that this contraption isn’t as astronomically priced as expected. Sure the top-end version with full carbon cockpit, components and the lighter weight hull looks like it will sell for almost 10,000€ (pricing is not yet finalized). But we’ve been told the more affordable Fun version around 4000€ will put this more in reach for a wider audience.

Availability seems a bit more up in the air. The RedShark was just unveiled for the first time to the public over the weekend at Sea Otter Europe in Girona. The water-bikes are in production now, wholly in Europe, with official availability to be revealed later this summer. perhaps as early as in a few weeks at Eurobike.

You know you want one!

RedSharkBikes.com

61 COMMENTS

    • …and not a PFD, because when you topple over and try to swim in cycling shoes with legs that are thoroughly tired, only good things can happen.

  1. The level of design and engineering work put into this is quite impressive. But yeah, the helmet part…missed that! Funny. Wonder if they did this in-house or if they hired a design firm? If so, who?

  2. lots of posing, but little pedaling. There’s a reason – the drive train needs a small, highly geared flywheel in it to smooth out the pedal action. I liked the hydro foil a lot more, but don’t know what kind of power is required to keep it on the foils.

    • What foils? This thing is probably a barge in the water, and is likely geared very low to make it easy for even kids to ride it.

      I just want a normal pedal drive kayak with actual bike company experience behind the pedal drive mechanism. Not the ridiculous Mirage Drive on Hobies or super plasticy/cheap pedal drives on Perception kayaks. I want a darn gearbox and robust prop setup that can take some watts!

      • Have you tried the Mirage? It’s very efficient and a serious workout. It’s also a proper boat and you have a paddle as back up propulsion. I would not want to deal with a gear box in a marine environment.

  3. Based on my experience paddle boarding, this is not a good idea. The center of gravity is too high and if there is any wind you are in big trouble. A kayak is a much better design for getting around on water. If you insist on pedal power, then it should be a recumbent design to minimize the affect of wind and to keep the center of gravity lower. I doubt you could pedal against very much current either.

    This makes as much sense as putting a kayak on wheels and paddling down the street.

    • I frequently paddle the intracoastal waterways (sometimes open ocean) and fight wake from ships/boats, tidal currents, and wind. This thing looks like it’d struggle with all of that. Three hulls in v-formation is A LOT of drag. It’s likely geared so low due to the drag, wind loading, and weight, that there’s probably not much speed (note it’s not listed).

      Even with the outriggers, it seems ridiculous having all your weight a good meter/3ft above the water line. It’s asking to capsize yourself. It’s simple physics, at a certain degree of angle, you’re going over with the center of gravity.

      If they wanted to spend money and pioneer, keeping the traditional monohull kayak would have made much more sense for efficiency and speed. Probably would have sliced their price in half, too.

      • And one wonders if they were so aero concerned for the riding position why the didn’t use a recumbent station which would keep the center of gravity low AND … give the rider a paddle option 😉

  4. Did SkyMall reject this as too unrealistic for even their customer base, which is why it’s now being launched on BR?

    “More affordable = €4000…” I suppose if you have the spare space in your mansion to store this friggin huge thing, then sure, €4000 for a paddle boat is reasonable. But unless you shell out for the 10 grand version, be aware that granny in a rental kayak is going to run rings around you.

    • I fully expect this to supplant the ProForm TDF Pro 5.0 exercise bike commercials during summer sports broadcasts. Piloted by a sweaty, attractive woman in a sports bra, natch.

  5. Just what I need! Lugging my heavy 29er onto my rack wasn’t cumbersome enough this will really allow me to train my upper body.

  6. So we’re gonna talk about the safety gear and just ignore the bars? This is an exercise paddleboat with UCI aero position. That and four quarters might get you a dollar.

  7. Keep the aerobars, replace the pedals with a treadmill, then you can do all three parts of a triathlon at once. lmao

  8. Looks like they were having a real hard time keeping a good spin going with all the lateral movement amplified up to their high sitting point from the small swell. Think it would take a long time to feel secure with the movement and just keep spinning.

  9. Well now that I’m almost asleep from the relaxing music…

    The body english on the rider looks similar to someone trying to spin up a monster technical uphill in granny gear, constantly having to ease up to adjust your balance point. If it looked like a normal person on a TT bike spinning at a normal smooth cadance while putting out some power (adjustable gearing) this thing would be kind of cool but that looks about as useful as the sharper image under desk spin foot stool thingy.

  10. What? No helicopter option? I can’t even believe there aren’t disc brakes on this pontoon thingie. Down with the ship!!

  11. If you want to get out on the water, I’d recommend renting a kayak or learning to sail over spending good money on this. Learn something new, go on an adventure outside your comfort zone, and just forget about the bike for a few hours. You’d probably be a better person and cyclist for it. Or get this thing and friggin’ own it, I guess. Looks like it would be no fun with swell, any substantial breeze, or strong tidal changes.

    • Dude, swell, breezes tidal changes….that’s why there’s a enduro version with boost outriggers and full suspension. And boardshorts because screw this lycra bro

  12. Will there be a tandem version?

    With a swan-shaped fairing?

    Me and the Misses would totally destroy on our once-a-year-romantic-paddle-boat-ride in Golden Gate Park.

  13. As a kayaker in addition to a cyclist, this is ridiculous. The completely upright position is why you need outriggers… nevermind it looks ridiculous, lacks storage, and definitely has more drag than a normal kayak. A decent pedal drive kayak is around $2000-2500USD right now. Granted what’s on the market is not the most ergo or efficient systems, but this is a ridiculous design. I’d like to see a bike company make a more efficient pedal drive system for existing kayak designs. That is the better way forward.

  14. Every moment of that video looked awkward. Loading and unloading from a vehicle, getting onto the craft, pedaling the craft, balancing in the waves. Notice how the pedaling clips only last 1-2 seconds? It hurt to watch.

  15. Best comments section this week! Gotta love the PFD disguised as a helmet, and the fins disguised as road cycling shoes! I would suggest Fluo colors for both to keep boats from dinging your drowned corpse! And battling the side-to-side motion of swells (let alone waves)? Likely akin to a stiff wind randomly and non-stop blasting you from either side while on your bike. Also looks very fast….not. Frankly, I would rather jog in chest deep water for the workout;-)

  16. would be nice to have a small back-up motor, e.g. a trolling motor that you power the rechargeable batteries by your pedaling so if you bonk, you’ve got a back-up-

  17. I tried it yesterday in Roses (Catalonia)
    The truth is that I first saw the video on YouTube and I did not like it …
    Then I found myself walking through the port of Roses with the technical center and they proposed to try it.
    And the feeling is very different than it seems!
    You feel as if you were cycling (a bit slower but not very slow, like a kayak would say)
    It is a product of very high quality (carbon fiber)
    I really liked both the treatment they gave me and the bicycle, it’s a pity that I can not afford it.

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