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eBike News: Specialized, Gocycle, & Ribble Launch New E-Bikes, Aramid eBikes and Much More!

In this week’s news:

A busy week for the electric bike world with new bikes debuting from some of the better known manufactures from the US and the UK. Gocycle announced an update to their award-winning lineup with the G4. Meanwhile, Specialized’s Turbo Como SL packs quite a lot into a bike that weighs in at less than 40 lbs. Ribble also joined the lightweight e-bike news with their gravel bike that managed to stay below 30 lbs. In addition to bike announcements, there were some fascinating advancements in bike tech with noteworthy frame and belt innovation. Here’s a quick look at all of the biggest news of the week:

  • Specialized’s 17kg Fully Equipped Turbo Como SL
  • Gocycle Launch Lighter 4th Gen eFolder
  • 3V’s Aramid Reinforced eBikes
  • Eovolt eFolders 2021 UK Prices
  • Splittable Belt Drive Veer on Funding Drive
  • Tech Developments from Biketrax GPS and Bosch’s COBI
  • Plus all the latest eBike Law and Business News
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New eBikes & eBike Systems

New Specialized Lightweight City Bikes Announced

Specialized just launched their latest e-bike to utilise their own brand lightweight mid-drive, the Turbo Como SL electric commuter bike.

You can read more details in our full report here but in summary it is a Class 3 e-bike with pedal assistance up to 28 mph and weighs a claimed 17kg / 37.5lbs – that certainly is pretty light for an e-bike with 320Wh integrated downtube battery, integrated lights, rack system and fenders.

Prices start from $4,000 / £3500.

It’s lightweight but practical too – meet Specialized’s Turbo Comp SL

GoCycle Launch 4th Generation Model – New Motor and 1kg Lighter Overall

Gocycle say their new G4 range – G4, G4i and G4i+ – will ‘set a new standard for lightweight design, innovation and performance in the portable urban e-bike segment.’ EBR has a full report on the launch here.

The main new features of the range are the G4drive Electric Motor with more torque and standing start ability, lightweight Carbon Fibre mid-frame and single-sided Carbon Fibre front fork, MotoGP-inspired treaded tyre with silica compound for superior grip, integrated USB Port (1amp USB charger for phone charging on the go) and low energy Bluetooth ­for improved phone and Gocycle app connectivity.

Gocycle say the accumulated weight savings of the new developments amount to around 1kg. Prices start at $3,999 / £3,399.

The ‘iPhone of ebikes’ the GoCycle just got lighter and more powerful

Ribble

Yet another major brand launches a new line – this time it’s the UK’s Ribble, known for their excellent value, high quality and lightweight bikes and e-bikes. Their all-new electric gravel bike the Gravel AL e has a claimed weight of just under 14kg / 30lbs and features Mahle’s very discreet X35+ rear hub motor system. You are hard pressed to tell it’s an e-bike at all. Prices from £2699 / $3,100 (shipped direct from the UK).

EBR have more detail here.

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It’s light and you can hit the forest tracks on one – Ribble’s ALe

3V Claims World’s First Aramid Reinforced eBike

3V, now crowdfunding on Indiegogo, claim their Aramid-framed 3V Karbon e-bike is ‘3X stronger than a pure carbon fiber frame’ and ’66X stronger than a steel frame’.

You might be more familiar with Aramid through one of its brand names such as Kevlar, Nomex and Twaron and its uses in bullet-proof vests or Kevlar reinforced anti-puncture bike tyres. I’m no materials scientist, but it appears that Aramid alone has not been used in bike frames as, whilst shock resistant, it is not particularly stiff and doesn’t sound an ideal candidate for transferring pedal power to your wheels. Reading between the lines it seems the 3V frame is carbon fibre reinforced with Aramid.

More conventionally there is a 350W rear hub motor and a 500W Bafang mid drive motor option both paired with a frame-integrated 720Wh frame-integrated and removeable battery. Cable runs look nicely frame-integrated. Shifting is courtesy of a 10 speed Shimano Deore derailleur and there also Shimano hydraulic disk brakes.

Claimed weight is 20.5kg which is certainly not mind-blowingly light for an e-bike but not bad for one with a good sized 720Wh battery and front suspension and off-road tyres.

Early bird offers from $1699 and whilst shipping dates are recent there appears to be some updates on the site indicating delays to deliveries of key components (hardly surprising given the world shortage of e-bikes, bikes and bike parts). 3V’s website indicates a factory address in Shenzen, China.

With the use of Kevlar style fibers in the frame the 3V Karbon e-bike really can claim bulet-proof credentials

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Eovolt Expands eFolding Range

Bikebiz reports on Eovolt’s expanded range of e-folders. Eovolt are made in France but also available in the UK.

Exisitng 2020 models are still there – the City (which becomes the City One) and the Confort, with 16 inch and 20inch size wheels respectively. Compact and pretty lightweight, they stand out because of their battery-in-the-seatpost design.

2021 new models are:

Eovolt e-folders are lightweight and portable even when not folded

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eBike Tech

Spliced Belt Drive Now Crowdfunding

Veer markets itself as the first aftermarket belt drive for bikes and e-bikes and indeed all electric vehicles and works by using a split link design.

Veer say their ‘Split Belt Drive is intended to replace aftermarket metal chains and secure partnerships with LEV manufacturers. The groundbreaking technology removes barriers to entry by allowing belt drive to work with existing vehicle designs, making these alternative forms of transportation accessible to more people.’

Veer has announced the launch of its equity crowdfunding campaign on the Start Engine platform to raise funds that would be allocated toward boosting existing production and finalizing development of their new multi-speed belt drive.

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BikeTrax GPS Tracker Now for Brose

BikeTrax’s anti-theft GPS tracker is a clever little device installed in a motor compartment and ‘nvisible to thieves from the outside. If you you e-bike is disturbed the tracker sends a motion alarm to the associated PowUnity app.

BikeTrax manufacturers, PowUnity have expanded the range of motors the GPX tracker is compatible with; in addition to trackers for e-bikes with Bosch, Shimano and Brose motors for Specialized e-bikes, PowUnity has now also optimised BikeTrax for all other e-bikes with Brose motors.

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Bosch Adds More Functions to COBI App

The COBI. Bike App from Bosch eBike Systems now offers even more features according to several German language media reports. Among other things, the new free function “Rydies” is integrated, which helps in the search for the next public charging station. Thanks to the integration of Rydies, the app now displays the nearest public charging stations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland on a map and then navigates directly there.

Also new is the “SKS” module. This is a tire pressure calculator from SKS Germany, in which e-bikers can calculate the optimum air pressure based on data such as the bike type, the weight of the rider and the tyre size.

COBI is Bosch’s e-bbike to smartphone connection portal that allows you to safely scroll through screens on the COBI with options to show detail on things like e-bike metrics, fitness and weather as well as allowing you to remotely take calls.

eMicromobility

Lime Launches App-less eScooter Hire in Cities Worldwide

Micromobilitybiz reports on how ‘Lime scooters can now be rented in cities around the world without riders opening or downloading the Lime app’

There is still a smartphone involved – ‘Through Apple’s App Clips and Android’s Instant App features, riders can approach a scooter, scan the scooter’s QR code with their phone’s camera, open the app clip to confirm the ride and use Apple Pay or Google Pay to start a ride without ever opening the Lime app’ explains the article.

Zach Kahn, senior product manager at Lime summarises the benefits;

“With app-less riding, new riders can try out our service without the process of downloading our app, and regular riders can cut out several steps to quickly start a ride. We know our riders are on the go and we want to get them on their way as seamlessly as possible.”

eBike Law

Radical Shake Up of European Light Electric Vehicle Law on the Way?

Bikebiz reports on a seemingly semantic change involving the European Unions law making body, the Commission, and light electric vehicles ( a category often taken to include e-bikes):

‘LEVA-EU is celebrating a campaigning victory after the European Commission confirmed legislation governing light electric vehicles was ‘unsuitable. The Commission has acknowledged that the Machinery Directive, in place to ensure a common safety level for machinery placed on the European market, is not suitable for vehicles. LEVA-EU, which has campaigned for the removal of light electric vehicles from the legislation, hailed the landmark ruling, which it said would allow businesses in the sector, previously hindered by the legislation they must navigate, to reach their full potential.’

It might sound overly technical but it could have far reaching implications for EU riders who are keen to see e-bikes develop more broadly outside of the current 15.5mph straightjacket EU law imposes.

If the Commission follows through and overhauls the law we might just see far more speed pedelec machines with higher assisted speeds, larger and more capable e-cargo bikes and light cargo electric vehicles and more personal mobility devices such as powered skateboards. This doesn’t mean a free-for-all with no regulation of such vehicles – just regulation suitable for them. As the Light Electric Vehicle Association for the EU points out, the Machinery Directive was never intended to cover light electric vehicles and new updated laws that take account of technical developments are badly needed.

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eBike Biz

Bikebiz again, this time reporting on how Knaap Bikes UK distributor JDM Products is to open a 100,000 sq. ft. distribution facility in Milton Keynes.

The beach bike style e-bikes appear to be rapidly taking off in the UK and cycle stores that are interested in becoming partners with Knaap and JDM’s wider brand portfolio can reach UK country manager Steven May on 07546 931642 and [email protected].

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

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eBike News: Calbike’s $10 Million eBike Affordability Campaign, Specialized Turbo Levo 2022, UK Budget eBikes and Much More [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • Calbike Campaign for $10 Million from State Funds to Ensure eBike Affordability
  • 2022 Specialized Turbo Levo Announced
  • New eBikes from COBOC and GT
  • Airless Tires from NASA
  • New Book on World’s Best Cycle Routes
  • More Low Priced eBikes For the UK
  • Rad Power Bikes eBike Exercise Test
  • Plus All the Latest eBike Biz and Legal News

Headline News

Calbike’s $10 Million Affordability Campaign

‘E-bikes are the greenest electric vehicle. They deserve the same state support as electric cars.’

So states Calbike’s latest campaign, for e-bike affordability. 

Calbike point out what they see as the inequity of California giving a $7,000 rebate to people who buy electric cars, on top of federal tax credits, but zero to people who want e-bikes.
[Read more…] about eBike News: Calbike’s $10 Million eBike Affordability Campaign, Specialized Turbo Levo 2022, UK Budget eBikes and Much More [VIDEOS]

eBikeNews: Kent Kid’s eBike, Gazelle Family Cargo, Eunorau AWD & Lots More! [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • Kent’s $498 Children’s eBike
  • Gazelle’s New Family-friendly eCargo Bike
  • Moustache 28mph Pedelec with Dual Battery Option
  • Eunorau Defender S All Wheel Drive Crowdfunds
  • Speed Pedelec Helmets and Tyres
  • Plus All the Latest On eBike Finance, Infrastructure and Industry

New eBikes and eBike Systems

Kent’s $498 Kid’s eBike Now in Walmart

Kent’s kids’ eBike has a BMX feel but also sports front suspension

Kent Bicycles is a long established and well-known name in the bike world and they have just launched their first kid’s e-bike, the Torpedo. 

It has 20″ wheels, is pedal assist only (no throttle) and comes with front suspension and V-brakes with power cutout triggers for when the brakes are activated, ensuring power is cut immediately.  It also has a 125 Wh capacity battery which Kent says should take you  15 miles in the lowest power setting.

Walmart is currently selling it for $498

Note that low power e-bikes like this are generally legal for children to ride in many US states and in most European countries, though in the UK you need to be 14 to ride an e-bike. If you want to check the precise laws for your own state check out People for Bikes excellent state by state guide to the rules on e-bikes. 

Gazelle’s New Family eCargo Bike the Makki

Gazelle’s Makki is aimed at safe family cycling

Gazelle’s new Makki family cargo bike puts child comfort and safety first, according to the Dutch bike maker.  Add in a bundle of accessories and it all means ‘you can dare to replace your second car with a Makki’ according to Gazelle. There is comfortable looking bench seating, storage drawer and a rain hood.

Gazelle designed the bike after getting real world feedback from Dutch cycling families using bikes for everyday use, so that it incorporates easy to use features like an easily accessible kickstand and adapters for car seats and child seats inside the very capacious box.

Spec is solid as you would expect from a manufacturer with a reputation for durable and high quality manufacture;  Bosch Performance Line motor, 400Wh or 500 Wh battery, hydraulic disc brakes and a low-maintenance belt drive.

UK prices from £4,199 with availability from September.

Moustache Announce New Speed Pedelec

28mph assist, dual battery, full suspension, Nyon display – Moustache’s latest offering has an all-encompassing spec and of course a high price tag

Speed pedelecs or class three e-bikes can assist the rider up 28mph but there are as many models out there due to the fact there are usually on where you can ride them – many bike paths and trails are off limits for example (check out our article on speed pedelecs here for more info on why many people do find them very useful though).

So it’s always encouraging to see new speed pedelecs come on the market and the French brand Moustache have just announced the Friday 27FS Speed with a dual battery option.

Both models come with full suspension frame, Bosch Performance Line Speed motor. This offers a maximum torque of 85 Nm and it can get you up to 45km/h. Magura disc brakes and a Shimano XT 11S drivetrain.

There are two battery options, 625Wh and the dual battery system of 1125Wh and a choice of Kiox and Nyon displays and dropped top tube frame on the single battery options.

Retail prices are €6,299 for the single battery version and €7,199 for the dual version. Both are out in early April.

Eunorau Defender S – an All Wheel Drive, Full Sus eFat Bike!

Eunorau’s forthcoming e-fat bike sports front and rear hub motors

Eunorau have been making e-bikes since 2010 and claim to output around 50,000 units a year with a global reach. They have taken to IndieGoGo to launch their new dual motor, full-suspension electric fat bike, the Defender S. The great news is the starting price of $1999 for dual motor model (most all wheel drives or AWD e-bikes are a few thousand bucks more). There is a single motor version too. The not so good news is te projected fall delivery date.

The Defender S Pro features two 750watt rated Bafang hub motors in front and rear wheels and a frame-integrated 672Wh battery which can be upgraded to an 816 Wh battery, and riders can also add on a second 816 Wh battery for a stagggering 1632Wh of power – of course two powerful hub motors will certainly get through your battery quickly.

At this price other components won’t be top of the line won’t be top of the line but they don’t look bargain basement either – there’s a color LCD display, hydraulic disc brakes, and a 9-speed Shimano Alivio derailleur plus RST hydraulic front fork and rear DNM air shock.

Once funding is completed via the company’s Indiegogo campaign, production is expected to begin in May with shipping slated for October.

Endura’s Speed Pedelec Helmet

Bike Rumour carries news of a new speed pedelec helmet from Endura. It is certified to speed pedelec standards (designed for greater speed impact and covering more of your head than a regular helmet) and features tilting visor and Koroyd Core honeycomb structured shock absorbing material.

The Endura Speed Pedelec Helmet is covered by Endura’s Crash Replacement Policy, comes in three sizes (S-M, M-L, L-XL) and retails at £159.99.

Continental’s New Speed Pedelec Tire

According to the UK’s Bikebiz Continental has just launched the e-bike specific tyre the eRuban Plus, certified for S-Pedelecs.

It is described as having a ‘=chunky width and knobbly tread pattern bu ‘unlike MTB tyres that drop off speed when faced with tarmac, a fast-rolling, energy-saving centre area enables the Ruban and eRuban Plus to comfortably switch terrain without compromising on capability.’

Weight starts at 790g per tyre and ETRTO sizing is between 54-584 and 65-622 (27.5 x 2.1 to 29 x 2.6)

eBike Finance

Washington State eBike Sales Tax Exemption Makes Progress

Electrek reports that House Bill 1330 passed Washington state’s House of Representatives last week and has is now in the Senate.

The bill would mean the removal of sales and use tax on e-bikes and related cycling equipment. With the maximum exemption set at $200, Washington’s 6.5% sales tax rate means e-bikes priced up to around $3,000 could be purchased without paying any sales tax, if the bill passes.

The idea of the bill is to provide extra incentives to purchase e-bikes (note the bill does not apply to pedal bicycles) in the hope they will replace cars and car journeys – in other words it’s designed to be an environmental piece of legislation.

It’s certainly a welcome move from the Evergreen state. Tax incentives on e-bikes seem to be the legislative flavour of the day – witness the proposals for a nation-wide 30% saving on e-bikes.

Infrastructure

Is Canada About to See Huge New Bike Lane Program?

The Canadian government’s website recently announced $400 million over five years to help build new and expanded networks of pathways, bike lanes, trails and pedestrian bridges – the first federal fund dedicated to building active transportation through Canada. The new $400-million fund is part of an eight-year, $14.9-billion public transit investment outlined by Prime Minister Trudeau and Minister McKenna on February 10, 2021.

The announcement also tells us that since 2015, the Government of Canada has invested in almost 400 miles of active transportation trails, bike and pedestrian lanes, and recreational paths. Projects include the Grouse Mountain Regional Park trails in North Vancouver, the Flora Foot Bridge in Ottawa, a bikeway extension in Corner Brook, and a new cycling path along the Mine, Notch and Kingsmere corridor in Chelsea, Quebec.

Any doubters that well designed and connected bike lanes work should check out this CBC article on how pandemic bike lanes have increased the accessibility of Canadian cities and how moves are afoot to make the lanes permanent. Several cities, including Moncton, Kitchener, Ottawa, Montreal, Vancouver, Victoria, Toronto, Calgary and Winnipeg have extended their bike lane networks since the pandemic began.

Minnesotans Lobby to Keep Their Slow Street

Streetsblog reports on how one Minnesota street – currently closed to through traffic as part of SFMTA’s “Slow Streets” program – has been a big hit and how a group of local residents and advocates is pushing to keep it that way.

“A number of slow streets have been temporarily set up but Minnesota is one of a few streets that have garnered particular support, a sizable petition/survey, and a number of volunteers and events,” wrote advocate and local resident Peter Belden in an email to Streetsblog.

They’re urging people to take SFMTA’s slow streets survey for Minnesota and to ask for it to remain after the pandemic. And they’ve set up a petition and ‘call to action’ of their own.

eBike Biz

US eBike Sales Grew 145% in 2020 Compared to 2019

The New York Times reports the findings of market research firm NPD Group, that sales of e-bikes grew 145 percent in 2020 compared to 2019, with sales of all bikes being up 65 percent.

Whilst this may only confirm in precise figures what many knew to be a fact, the article is also interesting as it details the success of e-bike share during the pandemic – after many had initially assumed all share type services would see a huge decline in use. ‘Covid did not kill bike-sharing’ proclaims the article’s byline, detailing how ‘In the early days of the pandemic, bike-share usage stalled as those working from home stopped commuting. For essential workers who needed to travel, bike-sharing became an alternative to buses or trains, where they might be exposed to the virus by other passengers. Lyft, which manages bike-share fleets in nine cities — including the largest systems in New York City and Chicago — gave about 30,000 essential workers free yearly passes.’

With 28 percent of bike-sharing systems incorporating e-bikes in 2019 (the last year for which statistics are available) according to the North American Bikeshare Association ,it seems 2021 could well see e-bike share grow even further. NABA’s 2019 figures also found e-bikes were used some 1.7 times more than traditional bikes.

Cannondale’s Adventure Neo Goes High Profile

Cycling Industry News reports on how Cannondale’s Adventure Neo e-bike has taken high visibility billboards taken in London, Berlin, New York and San Francisco.

The ad campaign has thus far made brief appearances in New York’s Times Square and will soon return to the SoHo area of NYC next month.

Van Moof Expanding Global Reach

VanMoof, manufacturers of sleek city e-bikes, recently announced plans to expand their physical presence from 8 to 50 cities.

‘The global rollout will see VanMoof open a network of state-of-the-art Service Hubs and certified partner workshops over the next six months….It comes at a crucial time for VanMoof, with e-bike sales more than tripling in the last 12 months. To date, VanMoof has over 150,000 riders globally. That’s a fivefold increase in riders since 2019, a growth that calls for smarter measures – both online and offline – to achieve truly next-level service. VanMoof’s goal is to offer on-demand and on-the-spot service at all times to all riders, no matter where they are’ said the company press release.

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

Swytch Electric Bike Conversion Kit Review – 2021

Electric bike conversion kits don’t really get the attention they deserve on many e-bike review sites; the best ones offer an economic and easy way into e-biking and a way to keep riding an existing bike, possibly your old-time favorite, that could do with a lease of life thanks to electric assist. I tested the Swytch Universal eBike conversion kit to see if it really did prove to be as easy and effective as it looked on paper.

Last Updated: March 17, 2021
Review and photos: Richard Peace
Tested By: Richard Peace

Swytch are a UK-based company and since their formation in 2017 has been on a mission; to produce the most versatile, lightweight retrofit electric assist system out there. They have chosen a straightforward-looking system of front hub motor ready-spoked into a rim, handlebar-mounted battery and controller and a pedal sensing disc to provide motor power when the rider starts pedaling (there is also a throttle option, not tested here).

Swytch’s big selling point is the very wide range of bikes that their kit will convert to electric assist; in fact, they boast they can convert any bike to electric assist with the exception of those whose front wheels feature hub brakes or thru-axles, both relatively unusual designs. They even say the kit can be made to fit most recumbents, trikes and tandems though they request you contact [email protected] to discuss exact details of how it will fit your particular bike if it’s a relatively unusual design like these examples.

It also claims to be the world’s smallest and lightest electric assist kit. Whilst there are a few other kits out there that would contest this claim it certainly is one of the lightest electrification options out there.

Our bottom line on the Swytch retrofit system: Should convert the vast majority of ‘unpowered’ bikes out there to electric assist relatively simply and, if you order in advance, should do it at a great price.

[Read more…] about Swytch Electric Bike Conversion Kit Review – 2021

eBike News: Ariel Rider’s Budget Rideal, CSC Fat Tire and eCargo, Boulder’s B-Cycle Go e and Much More [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • Ariel Rider’s Rideal New $999 Model
  • Motorbike Outfit CSC Expand eBike Range
  • Ruff Tease New eBike
  • Are Auto Firms Really Serious About eBikes?
  • Boulder B-Cycle Share Gets Bosch Powered eBikes
  • Universal Charging Dock Pilot for Paris
  • Solid State Battery Tech Takes a Further Step
  • Chinese Boom and Bust Fear Holds Back Factory Expansion Plus Other Business News

New eBikes & eBike Systems

$999 Ariel Rider Rideal Available for Pre Order – Late May Shipping

Ariel Rider’s Rideal offers plenty of bang for under a thousand bucks with a 750W rear motor and a big capacity 672Wh battery.

Ariel Rider’s new Rideal town and commuting e-bike looks to deliver a lot of e-bike for the money, including 750W rear hub motor with throttle power up to 20mph (class 2), LED lighting, basic derailleur gearing and kickstand (though you will have to pay extra for fenders and a rack).

CSC Launch Two More eBikes

 

CSC’s e-bike range is now up to four models with these new step-thru fat tire and cargo bike models

Californian-based CSC may be better known for importing motorbikes but they have recently launched their own brand range of e-bikes, starting with two fat-tire models last year. Now comes a step-thru fat bike, the FT750ST and a ‘longtail’ e-cargo bike, the Vista Cruiser.

Both use a 750W-rated Bafang rear hub motor (20mph throttle on demand class 2) and 7 speed derailleur set up with the step-thru carrying a 672Wh in-frame battery and the Vista Cruiser packing a huge dual battery setup of 672Wh and 696Wh. They retail at US$1888 and US$2488 respectively with stock expected this month.

Ruff Cycles Team Up With Paul Teutel Junior

Ruff Cycles, makers of motorbike-inspired e-bikes, have announced that they have signed an exclusive partnership agreement with Paul Teutul Jr., one of the best known custom motorbike designers in the world and star of the popular TV show “American Chopper“.

The first result of the collaboration, designed by Paul Jr. and handcrafted by Ruff Cycles in Germany, will be presented on March 24th, 2021.

eBike Opinion

Are Car and Motorbike Companies Serious About eBikes?

The technology on Audi’s take on the e-bike sounds amazing but the bike has never been commercially available

This very interesting piece in the New York Times points out the historical connections between bikes and motorbikes – in short many early motorbikes were bikes with motor added. Companies diverged and bike and motorbike companies specialised over time making the two things totally distinct. However, in more recent times motorbike and car manufacturers have been launching their own e-bikes – Porsche’s new ultra-high priced models were featured in our recent news and Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Jeep and Mercedes-Benz are just some of the names that have dipped a toe (or more) in the e-bike water.

But are these companies really serious about e-bikes? Certainly Pedego’s chief exec Don Di Costanzo doesn’t thing so according to the article – “No car company has had any success selling an electric bicycle. …It’s fool’s gold. It can never replace the profit on a car.”

The fate of Audi’s Worthersee model and General Motor’s Ariv suggest Di Costanzo is right. In Audi’s case they have never attempted serious commercialisation of their e-bike project, using it simply as an object to show their technical expertise and to gain media coverage and social media attention. The case of General Motor’s Ariv e-folder is rather different – a commercial roll-out was attempted and whilst initial signs may have been promising the start of Covid and the allied car sales slump and factory closures prompted GM to kill off the project last year, as related by the Verge.    

Motorbike companies perhaps show more promise – in particular the Harley Davidson spin off Serial 1 is due to start shipping its interesting and unique designs this spring. With prices starting at US$3399 they are no bargain basement offer but are clearly aiming at a quality mid-market that does exist – not the rich man’s toy / concept e-bike market which many auto makers have stepped into. As a sign of their intent to make an impact on the e-bike world Serial 1 have recently opened a new HQ in Lehi, Utah as the area is becoming a nucleus of high tech industry.

If large venture capital investments in e-bikes like the ones seen at Rad Power recently continue, and if Serial 1 succeed big time, will other motor bike or even car makers see e-bikes as part of their electric future?

eMicromobility

Boulder’s First B-Cycle eBikes Arrive

The famed Boulder B-Cycle is now going electric with high quality ‘Bosch bikes’

Boulder’s well-known B-Cycle bike share now has 100 e-bikes available and they are powered by a Bosch crank drive system.

As this newsletter tells us, ‘Trek’s BCycle Electric bikes feature a best-in-class Bosch motor, Shimano brakes for safe and reliable performance in all seasons and front & rear integrated lighting for safe and visible riding. They are Class 1 ebikes with smooth pedal assist…’

Lime Introduces eScooters to Richmond…Again

Richmond Bizsense reports on how Lime has introduced 300 e-scooters in Richmond recently, some two years after launching and withdrawing. There are plans to increase the number of scooters in Richmond to 500.

Lime operates in more than 140 cities in the United States and around the world. In Virginia, the company also operates in Norfolk and Roanoke, according to its website. Lime acquired Uber’s electric bike and scooter operation, Jump, last year.

Duckt’s Universal Charging Docks Pilot in Paris

Micromobilitybiz reports that ‘infrastructure innovator Duckt has been awarded a pilot project for the installation of 150 dock, lock and charge points across the Paris Rive Gauche. The project aims to demonstrate how universal charging infrastructure can accelerate micromobility use to reduce climate impact in the city.’

Battery Watch

Solid State Battery Announcement

Nikkei Asia reports that ‘Hitachi Zosen has developed a solid-state battery boasting one of the industry’s highest capacities and tolerance for a wide range of temperatures, making it a candidate for use in satellites and industrial machinery.’ A solid state battery is one that uses a solid electrolyte, as opposed to current electric batteries that use a liquid or gel (as those used on e-bikes do). The electrolytes you drink to balance your body chemistry are not the same thing!

Apparently the battery has a capacity of 1,000 milliamp hours, some seven times as much as the Japanese company’s prior models. It can also operate in a temperature range from 100 degrees to minus 40 degrees Celsius.

Despite solid state batteries being hailed as the next big advance in battery safety and energy density, the article points out ‘While the new solid-state battery has reached a capacity milestone, it still trails far behind its lithium-ion counterparts. Those used in smartphones offer a capacity of thousands of milliampere per hour.’

As this Car Magazine article points out not only are solid state batteries currently too expensive for commercial use, there’s still a lot of work to be done in finding the right atomic and chemical composition for a solid electrolyte that has the right ionic conductivity to deliver enough power for an e-bike or electric car.

In summary, solid state benefits still look some years away.

eBike Biz

Delfast Raise €2.8 Million for New R&D Centre

Delfast is perhaps best known for its claim to have made the e-bike with the longest range ever, setting the Guinness World Record. It also makes a very solid looking heavy duty delivery e-trike aimed at businesses.

Now, EU Startups reports that ‘Ukrainian startup Delfast has closed the first round of its crowdfunding campaign on Fundable, raising €2.8 million from local and foreign investors, surpassing its initial goal of around €2.4 million. ‘

What Have Chinese Share Bikes to do With the Current eBike Shortage?

The e-bike shortage caused by a Covid-related bike boom is well documented. But this interesting article at Bicycle Retailer and Industry news (BRAIN) digs a little deeper and puts reticence to build new bike manufacturing facilities down to the previous boom and bust experience of the unregulated expansion of dockless e-bikes like Mobike and Ofo.

For more background on the Chinese dockless bike share boom and bust check out the following China uncensored video.

Accell’s Strong Sales Growth

Bike-EU reports that Accell Group – well known for e-bike brands such as  Haibike, Koga, Batavus and Raleigh – reported a 17% increase in net sales in 2020. The company also reports an operating profit of €74.7 million compared to €60.0 million in 2019.

A breakdown of the results shows sales growth for e‐bikes and cargo bikes up 15% and 43% respectively, while sales of traditional bikes declined by 10%.

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

eBike News: New Lightweights from Trek and Coleen, eBike Bargains, Battery Sustainability & More! [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • Trek’s New Superlight eMTB
  • Coleen’s Carbon Fiber Framed Speed Pedelec
  • Porsche eCar and eBikes
  • Great Deals on Rad Power’s RadRunner Plus and Chrisson’s eOctant
  • POC’s Batteryless Helmet
  • Mody Camping-Caravan Trailers
  • Alpen’s Tern Compatible Storage Comes to North America
  • Seattle Gets Food Deliveries With the Help of eCargobikes
  • Lime’s Huge New Investment and a New eBike
  • Can the EU Makes Battery Production Sustainable?
  • Insight from Dutch Battery Repair Specialists
  • Eurobike Plans to be Back in Person for 2021

New eBikes and eBike Systems

Trek Launch New Super Light eMTB Range

Trek’s E-Caliber range have short travel suspension at 120mm front and 60mm rear and so look good for cross country style riding and general mtb trail use.

Trek recently launched a superlight range of carbon-framed eMTBs, the 2021 E-Caliber line all powered by the lightweight and removable Fazua assist system. The highest-end version of the pricey e-bike line is claimed to be the lightest full-suspension eMTB on the market. The E-Caliber is based on the non-electric Supercaliber mountain bikes Trek launched towards the end of last year.

The top end E-Caliber 9.9 XX1 AXS is claimed to weigh 15.75 kg 34.72 lbs (12.45 kg / 27.45 lbs without the motor drive) – that may or may not be the lightest emtb in the world but either way it’s mightily impressive. The Fazua mid-drive is not as powerful as the bigger, heavier mid-drives from the likes of Bosch, Shimano and Yamaha and the battery is smaller than average at 250Wh, though Trek claim is will achieve 43.5 mi / 70km range.

More on just who it is for can be seen here directly from Trek:

Prices are not cheap as you might guess; Trek is a leading, high-quality manufacturer and this is their top-of-the-line lightweight full-sus emtb range. They range from US$6499 to US$12,999.

French High-End Brand Coleen Announces Carbon Fibre Speed Pedelec

French e-bike manufacturer makes some beautiful looking e-bikes and are known for their lightweight, high quality, minimalist design and for being manufactured in France.

The Coleen Speed is a carbon fiber-framed speed pedelec with assist up t 28mph

Coleen have just developed what they claim is the first speed pedelec (28mph assist capable) in carbon fiber with a pedal axle-mounted Pinion gearbox, named the Speed. It weighs between 22,5 and 24,5 kg / 49.5-54 lbs according to Coleen.

The 750Watt rear hub motor combines with 6 Pinion gears based around the pedal area, making for an ultra-low maintenance e-bike. There is also a 6 speed option.  The removable battery requires no physical key and Coleen say ‘One full charge takes a record time of 2h30, with 50% of the battery recharged in 1h. Coleen opted for a battery with built-in microprocessors, to manage each cells level, optimizing the ergonomics design and energy efficiency. Its BMS (Battery Management System)
is inspired by the same technology as the one used in aeronautics to ensure up to 8 years of battery life. The Pinion gearbox is said to be good for around 375,000 miles.

Coleen’s innovative design includes a cockpit style, high visibility, HD transflective display. It shows the speed according to the selected assistance mode, battery life, as well as incoming calls or text messages. An integrated GPS tracker alerts the user if any suspicious movement is detected, on a dedicated app.

Prices for Coleen’s current range of standard build e-bikes e-bikes are €7960 to €9990 but there are also many options that can be specified individually via Coleen’s website for buyers to get the spec they require with numerous options available and prices starting at €6860.

Porsche New Car Launch Accompanied by New eBikes

Porsche recently launched their most expensive version of their first electric car, the Taycan 4 Cross Turismo whose retail price starts at £79,340 (around US$110,000) – launched at the same time were the Sport and Cross e-bikes. They cost a little less but are still at the very top end of the e-bike scale at $8,500 and $10,700. Both weigh around 22kg or 48lbs – certainly not astonishingly light for e-bikes.

They were developed in collaboration with German e-bike manufacturers Rotwild and both feature Shimano’s latest and most powerful mid-drive the EP8.

The Sport is described as a road bike but has a full-suspension carbon fiber frame and  integrated front and rear lights,

The Cross is clearly off-road specced with large disk brake rotors, dropper seatpost and a large 12 gear derailleur gear range.

eBike Deals

RadRunner Plus Limited Edition Available Again in Europe

Rad Power’s RadRunner Plus Limited Edition ebike is back and available at €1599 for European customers.

The basic RadRunner design combines a step thru cargo bike frame and relatively small 20 inch wheels plus a 54kg / 119lb rated rear rack – a rare combination and one that is proving very popular due to its huge capability and small footprint. second its rear rack is rated to carry a mighty 54kg. It also packs a powerful rear hub motor and large 672Wh battery.

The limited edition version of the RadRunner Plus comes equipped with the Espresso Passenger Pack (including matching seat, passenger seat and grips) and Premium Headlight. At only €100 more than the RadRunner Plus, you save €137 according to Rad Power Bikes.

Chrisson eOctant – Well-priced, Lightweight Belt Drive

It’s always of interest to see what is on offer in mature e-bike markets like the Netherlands and Germany; because sales numbers are so phenomenal customers are well-experienced in what to look for and will know what is good value and such intense competition can produce surprisingly good value models.

The Chrisson eOctant is a lightweight and affordable single speed, belt drive e-city bike

Chrisson’s eOctant is a lightweight city e-bike with some great low maintenance and high performance features; Aikema rear hub motor, Gates carbon belt drive, inbuilt LED lighting, good capacity 360Wh battery all add up to a claimed weight of around 17kg / 37.5lbs. The belt drive is currently priced at €1449.

New Cycling Accessories

POC’s Omne Eternal – the Helmet with a Batteryless Light

POC’s Omne-Eternal helmet is self charging via innovative solar energy

There are numerous bike helmets on the market with some kind of integrated lighting but nearly all of them rely on batteries that need to be replaced or recharged so for both there is a level of inconvenience and lack of sustainability.

Enter POC’s Omne Eternal, described as ‘the world’s first self-powered helmet’, using a technology called Powerfoyle, a kind of light-harvesting material distinct from silicon-based photoelectric solar panels. Unlike regular solar panels, Powerfoyle can convert any light source, indoor or outdoor, into electrical power. A rear light is built into the back of the helmet and it’s automatic and self-powered, so there’s no need to remember to turn it on or charge it before a ride.

The company behind the Powerfoyle technology, Exeger, appear a little reluctant to comment on it’s actual efficiency, nor have POC released figures on how bright the light is, or its runtime.

The Omne Eternal will cost €250 ($302 USD) and be available online from June 2021.

Caravan Campervan Camping by eBike Anyone?

eBike caravan camping anyone?

If you fancy caravan camping and e-biking the Mody range of what are described as miniature caravans from Germany will let you do just that. As this New Atlas article points out, previously there have been a number of these types of vehicle but often they have been one-off hobbyist creations or they may have involved an element of ‘putting up and taking down’ every night like the Scout or the B-turtle.

The ‘pod’s’ body is made of fiber-glass (or can be upgraded to carbon-fiber) there are three versions based on the type of terrain the rider expects to encounter – the Touring (paved roads), the Trekking (dirt roads) and the Outdoor (rougher, looser terrain).

Modys are still at the prototype phase and Mody say they currently weigh around 50 kg /110lbs but they expect production versions to weigh from 40 to 45 kg / 88-99lbs.

Modys comply with the German Highway Code and so come with lighting systems at the front and rear, and reflectors to the sides. They also include Shimano disc brakes and an overrun brake.

Interior measurements are 208 x 86 x 102 cm (82 x 34 x 40 in) and standard features include roof vent, door ventilation, LED interior light, gray fabric wall paneling, lower corner leg supports, and a single window as part of the standard package with options for stowaway kitchen, exterior solar panel with interior battery and an awning.

Fiberglass Touring and Trekking models are estimated to launch at at €4,999 (approx. US$6,025), with the carbon fiber variants starting at €6,999 ($8,450). The Outdoors models run €500 ($600) higher.

Tern Bring Alpen Bike Storage Capsules to North America

Tern Bikes recently announced a partnership between Alpen Storage and Stile Products, Tern’s North American distributor and branch office. Alpen bike capsules will now be available for sale through the Stile website and at independent bike shops across the U.S. 

Tern say ‘The Alpen capsule provides a simple and innovative solution to lock your bike up, whether you’re storing your bike on a corporate campus, in your apartment complex, or in your backyard. The lockable capsule is commercial-grade, weather-protected, can be bolted to the ground for added security, and compatible with all of Stile’s flagship products, including Tern’s GSD electric cargo bike and HSD electric commuter bikes.’

Get Inspired

Food Deliveries for Seattle with the Help of eBikes

Bikes and e-bikes pressed into service for food deliveries in Seattle

Bicycle Retailer and Industry News (BRAIN) has recently detailed the work of  Seattle Pedaling Relief Project – created in the early days of the pandemic, when layoffs and job losses caused a sharp spike in demand for food assistance, the project has enlisted more than 450 volunteer bicyclists to deliver 176,000 pounds of goods over the past nine months, mainly to low income neighborhoods in the area.

Looking at the pictures in the article they use a mixture of regular and electric pedal power and it’s clear they are helping not just deliver food where needed but to fight the spread of Covid –  ‘By delivering food directly to homes….it eliminates the need for people to visit food banks and risk contracting or spreading COVID-19’ says the article.

It also gives an insight into the thought processes of two key staff on the project, Maxwell Burton and Mike Lang. Burton and Lang came up with the idea for Seattle Pedaling Relief last spring while collaborating on plans for the next Disaster Relief Trials, a competition where cargo bikes are used to deliver heavy supplies as part of a mock disaster such as an earthquake. “When COVID-19 hit, we realized we had a disaster on our hands and this was no longer a trial,” Burton says.

eMicrombility

Lime to Invest US$50 Million in Its Share eBikes by 2022

Lime hopes its new share e-bike will lead to further success

Lime has announced it plans to invest US$50 million in its e-bike fleets with the goal of doubling the amount of global cities it operates in by 2022.

Most of that 50 million will head to Europe, where Lime are looking to introduce e-bike share to 15 new cities in France, Germany, the UK, Italy and Spain.

Lime has also revealed plans for their new share e-bike due to appear during the summer, which they are calling a ‘game changer’. It features swappable batteries with a claimed range of 25 miles which will hopefully lead to a drop in trips being made by the firm’s operations support vans.

The new ebike features an automatic two-speed transmission and a more powerful 350 watt / 20mph max capable motor plus phone holder so users and integrated rear hub lock.

Last November Lime detailed its first quarter of profitability, despite a huge drop in revenue at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Battery Watch

Tips on eBike Battery Repair and Replacement

There is some great insight in this Bike EU article about Dutch e-bike battery repair and refurbishment specialist Heskon.  The company ‘has been working with lithium-ion batteries for about ten years and has a thorough understanding of the ins-and-outs of the refurbishing process’ according to the article.

It covers everything from types of battery management system to the ins and outs of spot welding and cell replacement.

Can the EU Makes Battery Production Sustainable?

With the use of electrical batteries looking set to skyrocket over the coming years the EU Commission published a proposal for a new Battery Regulation in December last year looking to promote the sustainability, safety and recyclability of batteries throughout their entire life. It’s all part of the European Green Deal and its zero-pollution ambition.

The European Commission proposed raising the 45% collection rate for portable batteries to 65% in 2025 and 70% in 2030 – as the Commission estimates Europe’s battery demand is set to increase fourteen fold this decade it seems vital recycling of batteries becomes as widespread as possible

There were also proposals that producers of rechargeable electric vehicle and industrial batteries sold in Europe must disclose their carbon footprint from 2024 and comply with a CO2 emissions limit from 2027.

This all sounds highly positive (though these are only proposals at the minute and not laws), but light electric vehicle trade association LEVA-EU has recently criticised the proposed legislation. To be classed as ‘portable batteries’ (which, presumably, will have less onerous laws attached to them) such batteries need to fall within a fairly strict definition according to LEVA-EU:

‘The idea is that sealed LEV-batteries of less than 5 kg will be considered portable batteries, but only on condition that they are used in wheeled vehicles with a seating position, with a motor of less than 750 W to be powered by the motor alone or by a combination of motor and human power.’

LEVA-EU point out this would exclude both more powerful light electric vehicles but also smaller forms lacking seats, such as e-scooters, e-monowheels and e-hoverboards.

Hopefully more detail and clarity will emerge as the legislation progresses.

eBike Biz

Eurobike, held in Friedrichshafen every year, has just announced that more than 800 exhibitors have signed up for the 29th edition of one of the world’s biggest bike trade shows, which is scheduled from 1 to 4 September 2021. Eurobike show manager Stefan Reisinger reveals how the international bike trade show landscape is changing and they are confident of holding the 2021 show.

There will also be an earlier and smaller event in Frankfurt-am-Main, 24 to 26 July.

Last year’s ‘physical’ show was cancelled due to Covid and virtual events held in its place.

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

 

eBike News: Great New Californian Off Road Trails, 8.5kg eBike, Yuba, Montague & More! [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • New trails plan for Northern California’s Sierra Buttes
  • 8.5kg HPS eBike Claims World’s Lightest Tag
  • Montague’s New Full Size eFolder
  • Yuba Electrify Their Most Popular Cargo Bike
  • New Security and Storage Options from Hiplok
  • Resurrecting UK’s 1930s Cycleways Gets Official Backing
  • Halfords Petition to Legalise eScooters in the UK
  • The Dutch eBike Trend Continues to Boom

Headline News – Major Trail Project in Northern California Gains Pace

SBTS hope their new Trails Master Plan will bring economic benefits to northern California

Great news for lovers of e-bikes and the great outdoors; home to hundreds of miles of maintained multi-use trail, the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship (SBTS) is creating a Trails Master Plan, laying out a world-class multiple-use trail system, providing an economic recreation asset for severely disadvantaged communities across Plumas, Sierra and Lassen counties in the Lost Sierra region of Northern California. All the more impressive is that this is a volunteer-driven vision and one that SBTS say ‘is an example all can emulate, and support by donating time and resources.’

A fuller title is Trails Master Plan (TMP) for Connected Communities. The Lost Sierra Route, which covers 300 miles of breathtaking views in its most preserved form, is accessible for a variety of multi-use activities.  A key component to the Connected Communities Trails Master Plan is the proposed “Lost Sierra Route” which SBTS say ‘traverses 300 miles over breathtaking topography, jagged peaks and high alpine meadows similar to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) and the John Muir Trail (JMT). But unlike the PCT and JMT, this new trans-Sierra Nevada and Cascade Range route allows for all dirt trail travelers including hikers, mountain bikers, moto riders, equestrians, trail runners, hunters, fishermen, wildlife, grandmothers and babies in backpacks.’

Small towns located along The Lost Sierra Route will feel the direct economic benefit, as the proposed trail will bring travelers directly into town. Fiscal support for these rural communities and small businesses is the backbone of the TMP, creating a deeper connection with the land and communities surrounding the Lost Sierra region.

Since its founding in 2003, SBTS has built over 100 miles of new trail and maintained 1,200 miles of the existing trail while employing a full-time Professional Trail Crew and contributing over 100,000 hours of volunteer labor.

New eBikes & eBike Systems

HPS Domestique Claims to be ‘World’s Lightest eBike’

The HPS Domestique uses a bespoke carbon frame to house the motor system

The HPS Domestique makes the bold claim of being the world’s lightest e-bike at 8.5kg / 18.74lbs according to the company’s own website. Note Guiness World Records records a designer from TU Dortmund university has made his own one-off 6.9kg / 15.2lbs e-bike. Still, anything under 10kg is mighty light for an ebike.

The Watt Assist Pro motor system developed by HP is claimed to add 1.5kg / 3.3lbs to the weight of the bike, with the motor incorporated in the seattube of a bespoke carbon raod frame, driving onto the bottom bracket area and using a small 85Wh ‘water bottle’ battery (a larger 193 Wh option is also available). It claims a modest 20Nm of power. Power level controls are on the handlebars and link wirelessly to the motor system.

The Domestique Watt Assist Pro is priced at €12,000 and the first production run will be limited to 21 bikes.

If you want to see a first hand account of riding this super pricey e-bike check out this Cycling Tips video, including some comments comparing it to the previous (now defunct) Vivax Assist system.

Montague Launch ‘Full Size’ Folding eBike

The Montague is unusual as it boasts full size wheels, a mid-drive and it folds in two

Montague describe their M-E1 as ‘the world’s first full-size performance foldable e-bike…..for both urban riding and trekking.

It features the highly-regarded Shimano Steps E6100 mid-drive, 418Wh battery, Shimano Deore derailleur gearing and front suspension and Montague say it ‘folds in seconds with a single quick release’. It can be rolled along when folded and folded size is 38″x38″x13″.

It rolls and it rides!

What’s more it is fully kitted out for all weather riding, day and night, with LED lights, mudguards, pannier rack and kickstand.

It retails for US$3599.

Yuba Electrifies Their Most Popular Cargo Bike

 

Yuba’s Kombi has always been an extremely versatile load carrier and now it has electric assist

Californian-based Yuba recently launched an electric assist of their most popular cargo bike the Kombi, the Kombi E5. Yuba describe it as ‘a “compact” longtail cargo bike — designed principally for flat terrain riding — that is nimble, snappy and able to handle big cargo loads.’

The Kombi E5 is a relatively small for an e-cargo bike, using 24″ tires, but will carry plenty

It combines the Shimano Steps E5000 mi-drive, 418 kWh frame mounted battery and Shimano Alivio hydraulic disc brakes. It also features LED lights, sturdy central kickstand, fenders and Shimano derailleur gear shifting. Yuba also sell a huge range of carrying accessories. Yuba say the total payload is 200kg / 440lbs.

It retails at US$3200

Cycle Accessories

Hiplok’s New Jaw Bike Holder and Ankr Mini

Hiplok are know for locks of course but also make bike storage solutions

Hiplok recently announced two new products, the Jaw compact wall-mounted bike rack and the Ankr mini, a micro anchor point for locking bikes and scooters. The Jaw is described as having a one size fits all design featuring an adjustable ‘grabbing’ jaw, making it easy to store multiple bikes in a small space.

The Ankr mini can provide a locking point for scooters and bikes

Both retail at £19.99 / US$24.99

eBike Finance

Californian eBike Grant Program Starts to Roll in the Bay Area

Streetsblog California reports on how Clean Cars For All is starting to roll out a program of incentives to low-income people to surrender their older, polluting vehicles by helping them buy a clean electric vehicle – the latter including e-bikes.

Although the program has been on the books and officially authorised for some time, it seems it is only now the incentives are being rolled out in earnest. It’s all about getting old polluting combustion engines off the road and new clean electrical transport on it. As the article says:

‘The e-bike grants are for $7,500 and can be put towards one or more e-bikes plus necessary bike accessories, with any remainder used for transit passes in the Bay Area’s pilot program. Participants have to qualify by both income (at or below 400 percent of the current Federal Poverty Level) and residence (they must live within a zip code that has been defined as a Disadvantaged Community). See here for specifics on who qualifies. The vehicle to be exchanged for these grants must be fifteen or more years old, functioning, and currently registered to the applicant for at least two years. These vehicles will be scrapped.’

Whilst it’s good news the article also describes how it may take a while for other Californian regions to follow the example of the San Francisco Bay Area which is the only area where e-bike grant applications appear to be being accepted.

Get Inspired

Resurrecting UK’s 1930s Cycle Lanes a Step Closer

A longstanding Kickstarter initiative to put back into use many of the fully segregated and high quality cycle lanes built in the 1930s in the UK (300+ miles were constructed – many still there but just neglected) now has official backing from the Department for Transport. 

For more on the background to the project take a look at the Kickstarter launch video that dates back to 2017.

eMicromobility

Halfords Launch Petition to Legalise eScooters

The UK’s Halfords are calling on the UK government to make eScooters legal so the UK can ‘catch up with the rest of the world’

Currently, e-scooters can only be used on public roads and prescribed paths in the UK if part of an authorized public share scheme. The UK’s main bricks and mortar bike and e-bike retailer, Halfords, are looking to change this having  launched a petition calling for a law change to allow electric scooters on UK roads.

It states ‘Our petition calls for the Government to legalize the use of all-electric scooters on public roads and for the UK laws to catch up with the rest of the world. They are legal and allowed on the streets of many countries across Europe and the rest of the world. Any new regulations should deliver safer roads and ensure that electric scooters road users behave responsibly and with due care and attention, but the current blanket ban on electric scooters does not offer this.’

Halfords recently launched their own-brand e-scooter for sale in their shops, despite e-scooters current illegal status.

eBike Biz

Bosch Training Course Now Online

Bosch has just made it’s latest two training courses available online for dealers and they are bang up to date  for 2021 models. There are two options:

  • Basics: The Bosch eBike system (duration approximately 110 minutes)
  • Model year 2021: New Features (duration approximately 45 minutes)

The Basics course will provide an overview of current products and includes many service topics including details on the Diagnostic Tool.

The Model Year 2021 online training will focus on the new Nyon on-board computer, the Performance Line CX 85-nm software update and Bosch eBike Systems connectivity solutions.

Both training courses are free of charge and available on the Bosch dealer portal at www.bosch-ebike.net.

Booming Netherlands eBike Sales Show No Sign of Stopping

Bike-EU reports that ‘At least 9% of the consumers in the Netherlands expect to buy an e-bike this year. According to recent market research by Multiscope this will result in a market volume of some 1.2 million e-bikes. That’s a major hike on top of the already successful market last year.’

Knaap Looks to Celeb Power To Further UK Success

The UK’s Bikebiz reports that ‘Knaap Bikes has partnered with global DJ and producer Nicky Romero, as it celebrates reaching over 120 dealers across the UK. The brand has created some content with Romero, which it will show and share in the upcoming weeks. “Of course, a bike is primarily a transportation object,” said Romero. “But to be honest, I use my Knaap Bikes to relax, make a tour and get things off my mind. Going to my studio, to see friends or just drive around: I absolutely love it!”

Originating in the Netherlands, Knaap bikes retail at £2,299 in the UK and in November 2020 they announced they had passed 75 partner deals in 75 weeks in their UK rollout.

Are they following in the path of Super 73? Knaap’s motorbike styled e-bikes and celebrity endorsements are certainly two things they have in common with the US brand who recently revealed a $20 million equity capital investment.

Bafang to Establish New Battery Factory in China

Bikebiz reports that ‘Bafang is investing in a new facility for the development and production of high-end battery packs. To meet its growing development needs and clarify its business layout, the e-drive systems manufacturer will soon establish a third subsidiary in China…..Bafang New Energy will serve as an R&D and production base for Bafang’s lithium-ion battery packs.’

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

eBikeNews: Pivot’s New Carbon, Revel NY eBike Subscription, Futuristic eScooters and Much More! [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • Pivot’s First Drop Bar, Carbon eBike
  • Crow Crowdfunds eGravel Bike
  • Revel’s New Subscription Only eBike
  • Dragon Hyperscooter a Step Closer?
  • More eMobility for Scotland
  • Will Michelin Minimise their Carbon Footprint with Windpower?
  • LEVA-EU’s Radical Zero Emission Vehicle Proposals

New eBikes & eBike Systems

New Carbon-framed eGravel Bikes from Pivot and Crow

Pivot’s E-Vault is carbon and high tech…..

The new Pivot Cycles E-Vault  is a carbon-framed dropbar eBike packed with high end tech including hollow core internal molding technology on the frame, Fazua mid-drive motor system that Pivot say ‘disengages completely so you can pedal without resistance at the push of a button’ (and the battery and much of the motor can be quickly removed if you want a ‘regular’ cycling experience) plus there is electric shifting and wireless data connectivity.

It’s described as being at home on city streets, gravel roads, rocky pavements or hardpacked singletrack. To keep it true to Pivot’s style, this new EVault is available in one build only: the top build. If you are a fan of high tech fitness riding the E-Vault sounds right up your street as Pivot say ‘Riders can customize their electric shifting experience, power output, integrate all their personal, fitness and bike data in one spot, allowing riders to extract more performance from their bike than ever before.’

The RRP of US$9,999 also marks the bike out but for that you get the world’s first gravel-specific electronically shifting drivetrain, the GRX Di2 with carbon wheels build meaning a claimed weight of circa 29lb / 13kg (with the battery and drive unit removed it is claimed to weigh 22.63lbs / 10.25kg).

Crow’s first ever bike is an eGravel bike with removable Fazua mid-drive

Crow are a startup whose high-end carbon gravel eBike is about to start crowdfunding. Like the Pivot, it uses the removable Fazua mid-drive and also packs carbon fiber forks and ‘proven top-of-the-line components from Shimano, SRAM and Ritchey, and hydraulic disc brakes for exceptional stopping power.’ Sign up to the crowdfunding launch if you want to learn more details in the near future.

Fancy a US$99 eBike?

Wing makes these e-bikes for New York based Revel and they are available for US99 per month

OK, it is too goo to be true as this is a monthly subscription price and you have to be a resident of New York City, all as reported in this Verge article.

Revel, the company behind this move, started life as a moped hire company and this move marks its first adventure into the e-bike world. As The Verge points out, it’s aimed at getting urbanites to use a Netflix type subscription model for transportation. Clearly Revel believe it will appeal to time-poor urbanites as they receive one of the e-bikes pictured above, manufactured by NYC-based e-bike company Wing delivered straight to their door plus a service package.

The Verge add ‘The price also includes complimentary maintenance, including flat tires fixes, loose chains repairs, or brake upkeep. Service requests can be submitted via Revel’s smartphone app, and Revel says a repair technician will respond within 24 hours. The company will also supply a bike lock and educational material to help subscribers navigate New York City’s less-than-bike-friendly streets.’

And of course, the more average e-bike prices head upwards the more offers like Revel’s will be regarded as an affordable alternative.

The Steeron – Half eBike, Half eScooter

Cologne start-up Steeron has just presented two new e-bike style e-scooters, or possibly e-scooter style e-bikes – the C20 and C25 models are said to fit easily into the trunk of a car and are available in more than 30 colors.

The front hub motor and battery look to be straight off an e-bike manufacturer’s drawing board whilst the rest of the spec signals that the new models are a step up in comfort and stability compared to their predecessor models as the C20 and C25 models have larger wheels with pneumatic tires, longer wheelbase and optional suspension seat post  (though there is also some folding capability).

Both models have a 500 watt rated motor and a removable battery with claimed range of around 30 miles and a top assisted speed of 12.5mph or 15mph.

The C20 model comes without a seat and is approved as a small electric vehicle meaning that, under German law, it can be ridden on roads and bike paths without a helmet. The C25 comes with a seat and (as it has no pedals) is legally equivalent to a moped. In addition to German roads it can be ridden on cycle paths marked as “moped-free” but requires registration, insurance and driving license.

Deliveries are planned to start in April 2021 with RRPs starting at €2999 though there are early bird discounts.

New eScooters

Meet the Futuristic Dragonfly Hyperscooter – Is it Really on the Cusp of Reality?

Although publicity for it has been around a while, the premium-priced Dragonfly Hyperscooter is said to be just months away – according to Dragonfly’s website that is.

The Dragonfly Hyperscooter claims to take safety to the next level, with stability coming from either three or four wheels, automotive-grade headlights and turn signals, pavement projection lasers and on-board acoustics for pedestrian awareness and audible navigation. Add front and rear braking and suspension, puncture-proof tyres and an anti-rollback and you can see why it claims to put safety first. Top speed is quoted as 25mph but the website notes that some jurisdictions limit e-scooter speed to 15mph.

Although the Hyperscooter has been a regular in future transport type articles for the last couple of years, Dragonfly’s website says ‘We have pre-production arriving in January 2021 and we anticipate production deliveries to start shipping in April 2021.’ On price, they say ‘Dragonfly will have a sales price no higher than $3,900 to $4,500 depending on your choice of 3 wheel or 4 wheel version.’

Get Inspired

Scottish eBike Projects Get £600,000

Bikebiz reports on how the Scottish Government has awarded over £633,000 to support 45 e-bike projects across the country.

‘Through the latest round of the eBike Grant Fund, delivered through Energy Saving Trust, schools, hospitals and community groups will establish projects to adopt e-bikes, adaptive bikes and e-cargo bikes as an alternative to car journeys.’ says the article.

For example in Golspie, Cycling UK Scotland will work with key workers to provide access through a new pool of eight e-bikes whilst in Glasgow and Edinburgh, Simon Community Scotland is being provided with a grant of almost £16,000 to support its outreach work in helping vulnerable people through the assistance of e-bikes.

Infrastructure

Mobility Hubs Heading Scotland’s Way

Staying in Scotland and still with Bikebiz who say ‘mobility hubs’ are set to ‘revitalise’ city centres in Scotland.

According to Bikebiz ‘Mobility hubs are particularly common in Germany and Austria and other countries on the continent as a way of “revitalizing” city centers….Hubs bring together public transport stops for buses, trams and trains with bike share schemes, car clubs, e-scooters, electric vehicle charging points, bike racks and shared taxi rides, as well as community facilities such as cafés, fitness areas, green space, package collection points and wifi and phone charging – all with covered waiting areas, real-time journey planning information, walking areas and disabled access.’

Sustainable Tech

As an e-bike fan you might well know the name Michelin but are probably not familiar with French firm Neoline. Now the two could be teaming up in the future to help Michelin decarbonise its shipping operations, as reported by Cleantechnica.

Apparently Michelin Group recently signed a transport commitment with Neoline with the aim of using the latter’s planned decarbonized shipping service which relies on clean and renewable wind energy as the main propulsion for its 136m long cargo ships with 4200 m2 of sails, claiming to reduce by 90% the CO2 emissions related to transatlantic maritime freight transport.

A first concrete step is for the Michelin Group to use the Neoline pilot line from Halifax (Canada) to Saint-Nazaire – Montoir de Bretagne (France) by 2023 the article tells us.

eBike Safety

Streetsblog USA bring us disturbing news:

‘As part of its 2020 Cycling Deaths project, journalists at Outside Magazine analyzed media reports about 697 fatal cycling crashes and found that more than a quarter (26.3 percent) of drivers who killed a cyclist last year fled the scene of the crime. The official federal statistics about hit-and-run rates won’t be released for approximately two years, but the magazine noted that the data, which was analyzed with the assistance of information scientists at BikeMaps.org, is likely a strong representative sample of a death toll whose “total is likely significantly higher.”

If that’s true, 2020 may be among the worst years on record when it comes to dangerous drivers leaving their victims to die.’

eBike Law

LEVA-EU’s Radical New 30mph Call for Reform to EU Commission

LEVA EU want a new class of ZEVs with their own legal and safety standards to stop discrimination against them and promote their use

The  trade body for light electric vehicles in Europe, LEVA-EU clearly think that well-developed cycle lane infrastructure can handle larger and faster electric vehicles – they have set out a radical agenda for ZEVs – co-called Zero Tailpipe Emission Vehicles.

They give an example to show how very similar machines are currently discriminated against by current legislation with only a modest increase in power and weight making a vehicle effectively a ‘non’ e-bike and also highlight what is a more important criterion for classifying vehicles, kinetic energy; a pedal assisted bike 25 km/h – 250W develops exactly the same kinetic energy as that same vehicle with, for instance, 300W. However, the first is excluded from type-approval, comes under the Machinery Directive and has the same status as a conventional bicycle in all EU member states. The 300W edition is an L1e-A, needs type-approval and does not have a clear status in most member states. The first one is selling by the millions, the second one is virtually non-existing.’

They conclude:

“LEVA-EU insists that speed and weight limits must be set in consultation with the ZEV sector. Because the voice of the sector is drowned out by the voice of parties who consider ZEVs an existential threat, from which they must protect their business, the Commission has not yet entered into an in-depth dialogue with the sector. LEVA-EU calls on the Commission to no longer postpone that consultation.”

In the document, LEVA-EU also calls for all infrastructure, such as cycle paths, cycle streets, cycle highways and cycle parking, to be renamed as ZEV infrastructure. Traffic signs, it says, should also reflect ZEVs, a measure it believes would improve cyclists’ and motorists’ perception of ZEVs.

LEVA-EU proposes to add an article to Regulation 168/2013 (the EU law defining what is and what is not an e-bike), excluding ZEVs with a maximum design speed not exceeding 50 km/h / 30mph and to also exclude all ZEVs from the Machinery Directive. As a result, this simple legal intervention would exclude all types of electric cycles, cargo-cycles, e-scooters, monowheels, e-hoverboards, self-balancing vehicles and any other Zero Tailpipe Emission Vehicle not yet mentioned explicitly in law today, from the current legal framework, which is totally inappropriate and inaccurate.’

Instead, LEVA-EU proposes to transfer ZEVs into a new horizontal Vehicle Regulation. This European law would specify essential safety requirements, to be complemented with harmonized standards and possibly, for certain ZEV-categories, type-approval procedures. In any case, LEVA-EU believes that the form of the legislative framework needs to be decided in consultation with the ZEV-sector.

The measures, which also include a new way to regulate speed and a simple categorization based on speed and weight only, are detailed in a position paper the body has submitted to the European Commission. LEVA-EU Manager Annick Roetynck said bringing in the concept of Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEVs) would finally set them apart from vehicles such as petrol engine motorbikes and mopeds, when it comes to the lengthy, inaccurate legislation manufacturers must navigate.

The full position paper on the review of Regulation 168/2013 is available here.

The position paper on the review of the Machinery Directive is here

Bafang Mid-drive Certification is a ‘Green Light’ to Enter North American Market

On February 9, 2021, Chinese-based Bafang Electric was awarded the UL 2849 certificate, the first mid motor UL certificate in China.

The move has been described as a ‘green light’ to enter the North American market and beyond by Bafang who say the UL-certified mid motor will be launched together with the new DIY M625 and M325 drive.

It’s an interesting development that might signal a weakening of the hold of European and Japanese based companies on the mid-drive market and one that might put pressure on them to bring down mid-drive bikes that tend to cost significantly more than hub drive bikes – up until now Bafang’s true area of expertise.

eBike Biz

Super 73 Lands $20 Million Investment

Super73 which specialises in fat-tired, throttle powered e-bikes which it sells online has announced it has landed a $20 million investment via Volition Capital, a Boston equity firm. The funding comes two weeks after Rad Power Bikes announced a $150 million investment.

Super73 was founded in 2016 with a Kickstarter campaign. It is based in Irvine, California, with European headquarters in Amsterdam and is known for its distinctive moped-style design and list A-list celebrity endorsements.

“Super73 has all the ingredients to become a great consumer brand – fanatical customers, insatiable demand for its products, and a distinctive design philosophy,” said Larry Cheng, Managing Partner, Volition Capital. “It is one of the fastest growing companies we’ve ever invested in, and are poised to build a great new American brand as it leads the e-bike market for years to come.”

With e-bike sales heading ever upwards in most countries expect more investment news like this!

Gocycle to Open Euro Subsidiary

The last five years have seen phenomenal business growth for Gocycle based on its wholly original design

Owing to increased demand folding and demountable e-bike manufacturer Gocycle has begun the formation of a European subsidiary to support further growth say the company. The new Gocycle EU division, a Netherlands-based European subsidiary will include localized EU wide fulfilment from a central distribution centre in Germany. The warehouse will stock and distribute Gocycle products and accessories, fulfilling the brand’s orders across the European Union.

The news comes on the back of 25% sales volume increase in each of the last five years and a 50% rise in 2020.

Stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews and thanks for reading!

Rich

eBike News: Federal Tax Credits, Bergamont eFolder, Gocycle Teaser and Much More! [VIDEOS]

In this week’s news:

  • US Bill Giving Tax Credits for eBike Purchase Starts it Way through Congress
  • Frikar – the Latest eBike Car Announces Prices
  • Bergamont’s Funky Looking New eFolder
  • Gocycle Teaser Info on Brand New Model
  • Magic Tour Mode for Bosch Mid-drives Announced by Moustache
  • eBike Workstand
  • eBike Inspiration from How to Buy and eBike Video
  • UK’s Halfords Launch Own Brand Scooter
  • All the Latest EMicromobility and eBike Biz News

Headline News

Financial Federal Incentives Heading eBikers’ Way?

eBike tax Incentive legislation has just begun to make it’s was through Congress but it may be weeks or months before we know the final outcome

People for Bikes have been in touch with the news that the process has begun to introduce Federal legislation that would mean a tax incentive for the purchase of e-bikes by US citizens in the US, saying ‘An Electric Bicycle Tax Credit would relieve 30% of the cost of a new electric bicycle (up to $1,500 credit per bike, for bikes less than $8,000). Stay tuned for more information as we work with our partners in Congress to introduce legislation.’
[Read more…] about eBike News: Federal Tax Credits, Bergamont eFolder, Gocycle Teaser and Much More! [VIDEOS]

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