The FLIT story

We founded FLIT in 2016 with a vision to change the way that we move around our cities.

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Our story

As a team of designers, engineers and cyclists based in Cambridge, UK, we’ve been inspired by the amazing cycling culture of our city.  We love the way that cycling makes Cambridge feel more human and connected, and the sense of freedom it gives you.

Dave and Alex (co-founders) met in 2015 whilst studying in Beijing. Electric bikes were their fast and fun way of zipping between lectures, and sparked their interest in how ebikes could be used elsewhere. Dave, as an ex-Jaguar Land Rover engineer, had always dreamed of developing his own electric vehicle, whilst Alex’s study of transport policy had convinced him that our cities could be happier and healthier places to be. Together, they wanted to create a product that made city travel effortless, whilst fitting neatly into your lifestyle.

They moved to Cambridge, the cycling capital of the UK, to begin the FLIT story with just a few ideas on a piece of paper. Since then, the FLIT team has turned those early pencilled sketches into a simple folding bike, designed from scratch to be electric.

Meet the team

Alex Murray, Managing director

With keen interests in cycling, technology and public policy, Alex is delighted to bring his experience to a project that combines all three. Alex leads the commercial side of the business so that the engineers can focus on what they love doing best: building great products.

Dave Henderson, Technical Lead

An automotive engineer by training, Dave is working on his dream to make electric vehicles of all types a reality. Dave has overall responsibility for product design and integration. His fluent Mandarin helps us build strong relationships with partners in Taiwan and China.

David Turpin, Designer

A designer with over 20 years of experience in product development in France, Hong Kong and the UK, David makes sure that our ebike always looks its best.

Gemma Moses, Marketing Lead

Having founded a small skincare brand herself, Gemma has lots of experience in building brand awareness. She is responsible for getting the word out about our ebike!

Matt Thompson - design engineer

Matt Thompson, Design Engineer

A degree in Manufacturing Engineering from Cambridge and professional experience in technical consultancy, Matt works to bring the fun and flexibility he finds travelling by bike to everything he designs at FLIT.

The story so far

2015

MAR

Dave & Alex (Co-Founders of FLIT) met whilst studying in Beijing

Dave & Alex at the Great Wall

Electric two-wheelers were booming in China at the time, and we saw a real opportunity to develop an ebike for European cities. We wanted to design a folding ebike that could be taken on trains, undergrounds and buses: giving people lots of flexbility when travelling through the city.

2016

JUL

We relocated back to the UK, to the cycling capital Cambridge to start FLIT.

AUG

David Turpin, an Industrial Designer, joined our team - turning Dave's engineering drawings into beautiful designs.

David Turpin

David designed the iconic 'pop phone'!

DEC

We were awarded the Department for Transport grant to build our first prototypes.

2017

JAN

We were accepted onto the Accelerate programme at the Cambridge Judge Business School (the best in Cambridge!)

OCT

We built our first prototype, which we presented it at the Hello Tomorrow Conference in Paris!

AM with Bike at Hello Tomorrow (Compressed)

Alex presenting our first prototype (you'll notice a huge difference to the current FLIT-16 design!) 

2018

FEB

Started the Design Council's Spark Accelerator programme.

JUN

Awarded a special commendation from the Design Council!

JUL

Began working with our manufacturing partner, a specialist aluminium frame manufacturer, in Taiwan

Alex, Dave and Joe at a specialist fork factory

NOV

Our first manufacturing prototype (which we named the FLIT-16, after its 16" wheels) was made!

Flit folding electric bike unfolded

Our second prototype - closer to the FLIT-16 design, but still lots to change!

2019

MAR

Initial mechanical testing and tooling complete.

MAY

Our first round of prototypes built on tooling: Marengo and Maya!

Flit lightweight folding ebike - flit-16 in marengo grey and maya blue

Meet Marengo and Maya, the look is mostly there now!

JUL

We launched on Kickstarter! 

SEP

Our launch campaign raised over 450% of its target, so we extended our pre-order offer to Indiegogo

OCT

Production begins with pilot manufacturing run.

Flit lightweight folding ebike - welding has begun!

Welding in the frame factory.

NOV

Pilot manufacturing run complete: meet Blaze, hot off production tooling.

Flit-16 folding ebike - design changes labelled

Here are all of the design changes that we've made based on test rider feedback.

2020

JAN

Mechanical frame testing complete and manufacture of frame parts begins.

Flit lightweight folding ebike - yokes boxed up

Parts of the rear frame manufactured and ready for assembly

FEB

Dave in Taiwan to visit the factory and help out with the manufacture of our first batch of FLIT-16s

Flit lightweight folding ebike - riding to the factory

Dave's ride to work - not too shabby!

MAR

Batteries complete!

Flit lightweight folding ebike - batteries boxed up

FLIT-16 batteries all boxed up and ready to go

Dave brings two demo bikes back to the UK for test rides.

JUN

Manufacture well underway - all CNC main frame parts complete

Flit16 ebike - headset

CNC-ed frame parts ready to go! This is part of the headset at the front of the bike. Not sure what CNC means? CNC milling is a process of gradually removing material from a solid block until you reach the desired shape. We have lots of complicated shapes in the FLIT-16 which CNC milling allows us to create.

JUL

Welding of the main frames begins

For some behind the scenes welding action check out our blog post here.

Flit-16 welding rear swing arm

Welding up the rear swing arm of the bike (the part of the bike that swings underneath during folding)

AUG

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dave is granted special permission to fly out to Taiwan so that he can oversee final assembly

Dave en route to Taiwan

Dave en route to Taiwan to visit our manufacturing partner

SEP

Painting and final assembly begins!

For a backstage tour of what happens during these final stages, have a read of our blog post here.

Hand-finishing marengo grey FLIT-16 frames

Assembly of first manufacturing batch complete!

FLIT-16 fleet begins its ocean voyage to the UK

NOV

FLIT-16 fleet arrives at our warehouse in Cambridge, UK!

Team + bikes

The FLIT team with the first FLIT-16 fleet

Quality checking begins - we check and test ride every single bike to make sure that it's perfect before sending to customers

DEC

Delivery of first FLIT-16s to customers!

Alex delivering bikes in Cambridge

What better Christmas present! Alex hand delivered bikes to some of our local customers

2021

JAN

All bikes from our first manufacturing batch delivered!

Happy customers all around the world.

FLIT celebrations, all FLIT-16s delivered

Time to celebrate! Thanks so much to one of our customers who sent this photo all the way from New York City

If you missed out on our first batch, don't worry, more FLIT-16s are on their way. If you'd like us to let you know when new stock is available, you can sign up here.

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