This is making the rounds on the interweb, and this is the pertinent info: developed by 3 engineering students in Chile, and it’s a lock that’s also happens to be a bike.
The upsides are that you’ll never be without a lock (unless you forget your key), and that if they break the lock, they break the bike, making it unridable. That’s the important part. I’m sure that integrating the lock into the bike has been done before, but making it integral to the functioning of the bike as a bike (and not a lock) is genius.
The downsides? You buy your bike based on the lock. If you want the security, you have to have the bike it comes with. Maybe they expand the line-up if this takes off, but that depends on the other potential downside not being too much of a downside. The bike gets heavy and flexy. Frames shouldn’t have undue flex – that makes them handle like poo (literally, come to think of it…). Good locks are heavy. In this case, the part of the lock that would traditionally be cut (the bar/chain) wouldn’t have to be very tough, because the security isn’t in how easy the lock is to cut, the security is that the lock will be cut, and of course, the lock is the bike. So, this part of the lock can presumably be made lighter. The part that really needs to be strong is the shackle. In this case, that’s the entire down tube, so yeah, the bike will presumable be super heavy. There are no details that I’ve seen that describe the actual locking mechanism, so I’ll presume that if you damage one part of the shackle, it won’t re-insert into the other part, and you will still end up with a bike that can’t be ridden. So, if the shackle being damaged in any way makes joining it back up impossible, then this bike really is unstealable. Well… I suppose it can still be stolen. I guess it would be pointless to steal. Unless thieves steal them out of spite…
These aside, it’s still a really intersting idea. What do you think?