Tilting Motor Works Guide

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Early Development

Tilting Motor Works got its start in the early 2000s when Bob Mighell (pronounced like “mile”) wanted to have the cornering of a Porsche while experiencing the lean of a motorcycle.1 A former medical equipment executive, Bob understood prototyping and got to work on what would become the TRiO.2

To start, Bob focused on the core concept. Adding an additional wheel to the front of a motorcycle to provide better braking and stability while still being able to lean into a corner. Improved braking results from 70-80% of the bike’s weight transferring to the front wheels when stopping.3 Further, when a traditional motorcycle would lose control and slide out while going around a tight or slippery corner, a leaning motorcycle can drift out of the corner and remain upright.4


Bob borrowed his kids’ LEGO and pieced together the first scale-model prototype. He then moved on to multiple full size prototypes in 2005 when he refined the basic engineering design with local engineers and machinists.5

One of the central engineering challenges for this technology is retaining the ability to steer and lean at the same time. This challenge was ultimately solved by engineering a unique steering knuckle, which TMW holds a patent for. The technology features three total patents related to tilting.6

What resulted from all this work is a bolt on conversion kit that allows a motorcycle to tilt unrestricted with three wheels. Bob further proved the concept by setting the land speed record for a three wheel motorcycle with a TRiO.7

For a detailed history of building the prototypes, watch this video of Bob retelling the first few years of TRiO development.

Tilting Motor Works TRiO going around a corner

Sales and Growth

Throughout the 2010s, Tilting Motor Works expanded its capability to include Harley Davidson, Honda Goldwing, and Indian motorcycles.

In the mid 2010s, TMW introduced TiltLock technology, which automatically balances the bike. When the bike slows and comes to a stop, TiltLock will engage a hydraulic pump and motor to level the bike.8 Riders don’t have to put their foot down to balance with this feature. This is especially helpful with heavier bikes and for older and smaller riders.

Pricing and Availability

Pricing for the kit including TiltLock currently starts at $13,995 plus installation costs.9 A version without TiltLock is available. Current pricing is unclear for this model but historically started at $9,995.10 11

TMW has a network of dealers and installers in the U.S., France, Canada, Turkey, China, New Zealand and Peru.12


On January 25, 2021, Arcimoto announced it would acquire Tilting Motor Works for $9.25 million to $10.25 million in cash and stock. The primary purpose of the deal is to feature TMW’s tilting technology, which Mark Frohnmayer has called the best tilting technology on the market, into a new, micromobility vehicle platform.13

Bob Mighell and his team are a natural fit with Arcimoto due to their heavy emphasis on safe, right-sized transportation options while retaining the fun these vehicles can offer. Bob will lead the team that is designing the new micromobility platform, Platform 2. This will be the first product from Arcimoto to feature leaning technology.

Additionally, Arcimoto will continue selling the TRiO conversion kit while working to reduce costs. 14 Currently, they are selling a conversion kit every few days at a cost of about $15,000. Production of the TRiO will ramp up once the teams have finished integrating post acquisition.15

Version: 1.0.1

Last updated: 4/11/21

  1. Jay Leno’s Garage
  2. Bob Mighell’s LinkedIn Profile
  3. History of TRiO development video
  4. Tilting Motor Works Showreel
  5. Jay Leno’s Garage
  6. Bob Mighell’s LinkedIn Profile
  7. History of TRiO development video
  8. Motorcycle USA video
  9. Tilting Motor Works’ website
  10. TMW’s FAQ page
  11. JP Cycles article
  12. Rider Magazine article
  13. Acquisition press release
  14. JMac Investing interview
  15. 2020 Full Year Earnings Call