Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Electric Bicycle or Motorcycle?

Electric assist bicycles are certainly a growing market with potential to explode in upcoming years.  You can see evidence with the number of bicycle companies getting behind the idea.  I'd just as soon see people pedaling their bicycles because one of the benefits to our society is getting a bit of exercise and promoting a more healthy lifestyle.  On the other hand, is putting an electric motor on a bike just a quieter version of a motorcycle with all of the extra safety considerations they demand a good idea?  In watching the speed of this electric bike design it certainly is a question worth asking.

One thing is certainly clear from the design...the saddle to pedal position is not very efficient looking.


Bill S said...

That bike looks like it's pretty fast! I'd guess we'll see more hybrids like this as gas prices stay high and the economy continues to grind along so slowly.

Here in Carson City there is a guy with a very unusual bike hybrid. I've seen it twice, both times driving and wasn't able to get a picture of it.

This one looks from the back like a standard mountain bike except maybe just a smidge longer. There's a small, maybe 50cc gas engine mounted just where the downtube joins the bottom tube. There's a small, tear drop shaped fuel tank up on the top tube. So, is it a scooter? Motorized bicycle? I don't know but it looks homebuilt and it scoots right along.

Anonymous said...

I ride an old Specialized Expedition with a motorized front hub. My commute is very hilly. I get a great workout even with the motor -- I just get to work faster since I can get up the biggest hills on my big ring. So while some variations of e-bikes may resemble motorcycles, mine is most definitely still a bike, if a heavy one. But I ride 3-4 days a week now compared to <1 day a week pre-e-bike...