We can barely keep track of the number of e-bikes that are making their world debut this week at the huge Eurobike Show in Germany. Only a few years ago, e-bikes were only an asterisk at this show, but now they’ve taken center stage.
Tired of getting your pants caught in your chain, or having that grease come off on your socks? Some new solutions, beginning with a whole series of Gates Carbon Drive equipped bikes, many of which are in display at Eurobike. Some of the designs are nothing short of startling, showing both new motors and new form factors.
Another way to keep your pants clean is with an enclosed chain system, like the one from Momentum e-bikes. Bike Europe is reporting that the UK based bike maker is showing off its “Upstart City” model, complete with USB charging port so you can juice up your mobile phone on the way to work. This bike has a step through design which makes it easy for commuters, women, and folks who just have a hard time getting a leg up.
The hills are alive with the sound of e-bikes. We’re talking about the hills of San Francisco and Berkeley, California. These cities across the Bay from one another can both be a biker’s nightmare. The view on the way down is gorgeous, but it’s hard to imagine an uphill commute that won’t leave you all sweated up. Now, according to the Cal student newspaper, a new bike sharing program has won a $1.5 million dollar grant from San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation Authority to kick off a trial campaign in 2014.
And just south of the Bay Area, in picturesque Santa Cruz, Cyclelicio.us, is reporting on a new cargo e-bike that looks like it could carry a heavy load, like about 100 lbs. The NTS works 2X4 electric assist bike was designed by Neal Saiki, who founded Zero Motorcyles after designing for Santa Cruz bikes. And yes, this week Neal is showing off his newest offspring at Eurobike. To make it EU compliant, it has a 250 watt motor, which may seem a little underpowered. It also uses the Gates carbon drive and an 8 speed Alfine internally geared hub.
If cruising is more your style, how about this e-bike from Electra, the Townie Go? According to TreeHugger, this simply designed $2200 bike is perfect for getting around the Big Town, in this case, we’re talking about that really big town, New York City, which has been trying to promote bike sharing, but still hasn’t caught up with the advantages of e-biking for improving the lot of commuters.
We’ll get back to the bikes in a minute. But first, you’ve really, really got to see this video. In Japan, where there’s never enough room for anything, they’ve come up with a way of keeping your bike out of harm’s way. It’s an automated underground parking system. No more chaining your bike outside an office building where anyone can have at it. This thing sucks the bike underground, parks it and retrieves it when you want it. Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto
There’s an App for That. The new GoCycle Connect App will allow you to use a mobile phone to monitor many of the functions on the new GoCycle e-bike. According to Mobile Entertainment, the Go Cycle App will allow the user to monitor the motor, but also to set up a personalized workout plan. The App is available for the iOS and Android.
And there’s an App for This Too. The new Besv Lion X1 from Darfon Technologies also has an app. The app will not only monitor the bike’s functions, it will tell it to change power profiles if conditionsd warrant, and it can plan your route in real time. The bike itself has some pretty cutting edge design features, making it look more like a high end mountain bike than something you’d expect to see in an urban environment. The bike won the 2013 Taipei Cycle d&i Award.
Checkout the e-bikes and e-trikes from RunAbout Cycles in Ft. Collins, Colorado. They have an interesting story and they are in the process of growing their US e-bike/trike business.
In the coming days, come back for what we expect will be a flood of e-bike news coming from Euro Bike in Germany.
That’s it for now, stay tuned for more e-bike news and reviews.