Velomobiles making a splash in U.S.

Missourian Jeff Kline is a velomobile driver
Wired News has an interesting article about the rise of the Velomobile in the U.S.:
It's January and very cold in most of the northern hemisphere, but some innovative and persistent cyclists have found a way to keep pedaling even in the foulest weather.

The human-powered vehicles they employ are called velomobiles -- fully enclosed recumbent bicycles that usually have three wheels, a chair-like seat and a standard bicycle drivetrain. The modern velomobile is the closest that anyone has come to building a truly practical all-weather, human-powered vehicle.

These vaguely egg-shaped vehicles may never become a common sight on the world's roadways, but with increasing gas prices and never-ending gridlock, short-distance commuters are starting to take them more seriously.

Their origins can be traced back to early 20th-century France, but modern velomobiles bear almost no resemblance to those pioneering designs with their steel-tube frames and wooden bodywork.

Contemporary machines have carbon fiber or fiberglass monocoque chassis, full suspension and integrated lighting. Electric power-assist systems driven by rechargeable batteries are increasingly popular and will continue to be a design focus for these vehicles, which can weigh 65 pounds and up.
See also the previous article from Wired on 80MPH+ human-powered vehicles.

And don't forget Missouri's own velomobile rider, Jeff Kline.