Back in 1985, Frog Design chief Hartmut Esslinger took a break from his work concocting sleek boxes for Apple Computer to pen a modern take on the motorcycle. The resulting Rana – also known as the frog FZ750 – caused quite a stir and became the inspiration for the Honda Hurricane. Now, as the Rana is inducted into the SFMOMA, the firm has revisited two-wheeled transportation and released a sequel concept, the Rana2.
Like the original, which was based on the Yamaha FZ750, this new design is an evolution, rather than a revolution. Indeed, we have seen many of its elements already incorporated in other electric motorcycles. For instance, the main body of the bike puts us in mind of the Brammo Enertia and we've previously seen a hub motor, albeit less fantastical looking, successfully implemented in the Australian road-racing Catavolt. Even the lane-marking light system is currently incorporated in the square scooter from Boxx.
It does have it charms and interesting elements though. It boasts a trinity of cylindrical swappable batteries – one question: on the other side, is all we see plus signs? – and the projected display would be pretty neat-o on a night ride. (Of course, the Mission Motors solution of installing a tablet to serve as an instrument display is likely more functional, but hey).
All things considered, we're happy to see designers taking a crack at imbuing green transportation devices with desirability. Was Frog effectual in that goal with the Rana2? We'll let you tell us in the comments but for our part, we've already returned to our what-is-MotoCzysz-bringing-for-2012 mode.