Eurobike Electric Bike Roundup – Part 2
Welcome to Part Deux of our 2016 Eurobike Roundup.
As you may have seen in Part One, the eBike has already reached parity with traditional pedal bike market in Europe.
This massive acceleration has been unlike anything I’ve witnessed in the cycling industry in the past 30 years.
Granted, every class of eBIke has benefitted from those 30 years of gradual improvements in bicycle design and production.
Here is more from the show floor.
One of the many Haibike eMTB’s on display. Haibike now has an enormous lineup. Interesting note: the home run sales growth Haibike has enjoyed from their eBike lines have given them the chance to offer an equally large lineup of traditional pedal bikes. They kind of did it backwards, in other words. When you got it, you got it.
Rows and rows of eBike models. This Cross model was a contrarian play to all of the plus-sized bikes (3″+ wide tires). If there’s a class of eBike, Haibike has a frontrunner model in it – and usually several.
One of my favorite marques from my youth was Miyata. They became Koga-Miyata, and now the brand is simply Koga. Known for making some of the finest trekking/touring bikes, they have gone equal part eBike. With Bosch, Magura hydraulic brakes, and strong wheels, this bike can make it to Africa and back.
Alright, this is not an eBike. It’s a Koga Beach Racer. I post this to show how the Europeans can start a whole new form of racing, in this case “Beach Racing” (born in the Netherlands – check it out, very cool) and cater directly to the riders.
POC of Sweden went nuts with it’s city line of casual cycling apparel. This company gets it. This clothing actually connects to an app on your phone and has lighting built in. Some items even have a way to display turn signals through the phone on the back of the clothing. POC is breaking new ground.
Not sure if it was the innovative POC helmet lighting that drew me in here or the little helicopter model.
Another reason to appreciate POC? They throw down stuff like this to demonstrate they are taking your body into account with their designs.
Eurobike is delicious, right there on site. Interbike? Well, Vegas may have incredible food, but the food at the Interbike venue is pathetic.
Bianchi. Another favorite and famous marque hopping on the eBIke train.
The Italians love to display their tricolore. Here is Benelli’s take on a beefy urban trekker.
Benelli showing off an interesting take on smaller wheel sizes. Who’s up for some 20” supermoto practice on the way home from the office?
Blackout. Yamaha powered Wheeler city bike ready for plug and play.
That’s not a motor, but the Pinion transmission with Gates Carbon Drive piques the imagination about what can be done with hub motor, back there.
BULLS Bicycles showed the world that when you mess with them they’ll give you some horns. That, and some Bosch powered, long-travel plus sized enjoyment.
That guy in your town with too much money who drives the vintage, mint Land Rover? He will be jealous when you roll up on this.
Fantic. I hadn’t even heard of them, but that’s par for the course at Eurobike. “We’re going to have fanatic fans. What should we name our company?”
Shimano sends the message: “We will not be left behind in eBikes.”
Water break with 10 miles still to ride to the show. Nextbike rentals were free, which was great, but three hours a day on this thing makes you want your eBike back (understatement of the show).\
Alright, yeah, this is one I really wanted to take home. You know the name, you know the color, you even know the passion behind it all.
Reise & Muller. These guys really “get it”. When you look at their line, you realize they are really going for it, too.
Yours truly posing in my fresch new Birkenstocks next to something special. I raced during this era, on bikes with full Mavic gruppos. Yeah, I’m a little old. Eat my dust.
Stay tuned for Part 3 with more new eBikes from Eurobike! And make sure you checkout Part 1 of the Eurobike eBike roundup.
P.S. Don’t forget to join the Electric Bike Report community for updates from the electric bike world, plus ebike riding and maintenance tips!
Don DiCostanzo/Pedego says
Thanks for showing us what is going on in the electric bike world in Europe. Some really nice designs with some really ugly ones but I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Rakesh Dhawan says
Great Job Pete! What is interesting in Eurobike is the fact that many companies are realizing that they are simply putting up with mid-drives and big companies like Bosch who have practically bought the Europe market with overwhelming resources.
End consumers are realizing that mid-drives are really ugly and painful and very costly in the long run. We could clearly see a shift in the market.
For the most part, it remains blind following the blind market place and most bikes still remain fairly ugly with a mid-drive.
Don DiCostanzo/Pedego says
I agree with Rakesh. Mid drives have been over promoted and are usually not the best option.
Paul Willerton says
“Usually not the best option” might be over reaching a bit. It really depends who the rider is, what the terrain is and what the objectives for the ride are. I have always given hub motors their due. For certain types of applications, the market is currently choosing mid drives. It’s about picking the right tool for the job.
I don’t think anyone is saying one is better than the other across the board.
Don DiCostanzo/Pedego says
Paul…There are plenty claiming that mid drives are “better” than hub motors, but it’s simply not true. Both do have advantages/disadvantages and the consumer will ultimately make the decision if given both options. Usually, pushing pedelec (pedal assist only) is part of the package pushing mid drive motor systems because throttle activation and mid drives are not typically compatible. Bottom line is if customers want a throttle, a hub motor is a much better choice, in my opinion.
Paul Willerton says
I would agree that if the consumer wants a throttle, the best option is a hub motor.
I am going to propose that I do an in-depth comparison and review of Hub Motors vs. Mid Drive Motors. If people would like to see that, go ahead and chime in, because this is still being debated, apparently.
Mid drives are winning the eMTB market for a few solid reasons that are difficult to dispute:
1. Using a throttle for any “trail” riding is viewed as a negative by environmentalists, regulators, etc.
2. Mid drives provide a LOT more grunt than hub motors at very low speeds up steep gradients. They do this with much lower wattage, as well. This is because they are running of the rpm at the bottom bracket rather than at the hub.
3. Mid drive’s position motor weight in the middle of the bike vs. near the end of the bike (hub motor). The mid drive rider notices very little change in the way the eMTB feels compared to their regular high-end MTB. This makes a huge difference for performance riding. The mid drive bike jumps, slides, corners and climbs more predictably. This would result in faster “lap times” using less power if on a circuit.
Similar arguments for mid drive kits on cargo bikes, too. Especially with point #2.
Frank Johnston says
I keep searching all your reviews for an electric recumbent. I’ll keep searching.
Here is a review of the TerraTrike Rambler with E-BikeKit.
Maybe one of the reasons Mid Drives are popular in Europe is because throttles are not allowed on e-bikes.
Bumper issue this week Pete, thanks. Australia, like USA slow to realise the potential. Loved the review of the recumbent too. Very thorough and still an exciting design in my humble opinion. Layout lends itself to further development. Look at the Outrider for instance. But visibility or actually, driver search-image will always be an issue. Market place here limited to a few brands, mainly those that look like bicycles. Test rode a Haibike xDuro and was engaged immediately. Now to pay for the wedding…Keep thos wheels turning. Regards, Woody.