Once ready for production, the bicycle will include no metal parts, even the brake mechanism and the wheel and pedal bearings will be made of recycled substances, although Gafni said he could not yet reveal those details due to pending patent issues.
cardboard and other recycled materials could bring a major change in current production norms because grants and rebates would only be given for local production and there would be no financial benefits by making bicycles in cheap labor markets.
"This is a real game-changer. It changes ... the way products are manufactured and shipped, it causes factories to be built everywhere instead of moving production to cheaper labor markets, everything that we have known in the production world can change," he said.
Elmish said the cardboard bikes would be made on largely automated production lines and would be supplemented by a workforce comprising pensioners and the disabled.
Elmish said the business model they had created meant that rebates for using "green" materials would entirely cancel out production costs and this could allow for bicycles to be given away for free in poor countries.
Producers would reap financial rewards from advertisements such as from multinational companies who would pay for their logo to be part of the frame, he explained.
"Because you get a lot of government grants, it brings down the production costs to zero, so the bicycles can be given away for free. We are copying a business model from the high-tech world where software is distributed free because it includes embedded advertising," Elmish explained.