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Car and Motorcycle Companies Now Making Electric Bikes

By General Posts

Lee Iacocca with his electric bike in 1998. It had a lead-acid battery with a 15-mile range and a top speed of 15 miles an hour.

by Roy Furchgott from https://www.nytimes.com

They see branding opportunities as the pandemic and a desire by cities to curb traffic propel e-bike sales to new heights.

The transportation industry has seen the future, and the future is 1895.

That was the year Ogden Bolton Jr. of Canton, Ohio, was awarded U.S. Patent 552,271 for an “electrical bicycle.” A century and change later, electric bikes have gained new currency as car and motorcycle companies like Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Yamaha have horned into the market with their own designs.

While the pandemic has accelerated bike sales, the overriding attraction is that cities worldwide are beginning to restrict motor traffic. These companies are betting that e-bikes are the urban vehicles of tomorrow — or at least vehicles for good publicity today.

“In the past 12 to 18 months, you have seen a lot of new brands come into the market,” said Andrew Engelmann, an e-bike sales and marketing manager at Yamaha, which has been in the electric bike business since 1993 and claims sales of two million worldwide. “We in the U.S. have not seen this new energy toward cycling since Lance Armstrong won the Tour de France.”

Credit the coronavirus pandemic, which has ignited bike sales of all stripes, but none so much as e-bikes. While retail unit sales of bicycles from January to October last year were up 46 percent from a year earlier, electric bikes were up 140 percent. Measured in dollars, regular bikes were up 67 percent and e-bikes 158 percent — so don’t expect a discount. Those numbers, from the market researchers at NPD, do not include online-only retailers such as Rad Power Bikes, so sales may actually be higher still.

Ogden Bolton aside, there is a historical connection between bicycles and motorcycles. Many early motorcycles came from bicycle makers that simply clapped a motor on a bike, often retaining the pedals in the style of a moped.

The automotive industry’s bicycle connection is more recent, with the likes of Malcolm Bricklin and Lee Iacocca introducing electric bikes in the ’90s. Both flopped. Mr. Iacocca’s design, typical for the time, was hampered by a lead-acid battery with a 15-mile range and a top speed of 15 miles an hour. Many car companies, including Ford, Audi, Maserati and BMW, have gotten into and out of e-bikes since.

“No car company has had any success selling an electric bicycle,” said Don DiCostanzo, chief executive of Pedego Electric Bikes, who in 2014 licensed a bike design to Ford. “It’s fool’s gold. It can never replace the profit on a car.”

Yet car and motorcycle makers are being drawn in. “I think they are seeing a lot of the same opportunity we see,” said Ian Kenny, who leads the e-bike effort at the bicycle company Specialized. “But I think there is a very big difference between demonstrating you can do something and doing something very well at scale.”

However, changes in the way people get about, especially in Europe and Asia, are enticing motor vehicle companies that operate internationally. Overseas, in cities that manage pollution and overcrowded streets by restricting motor traffic, e-bikes often fill a gap.

“In Europe, the e-bike is more of a fundamental transportation tool,” said Dirk Sorenson, an analyst for NPD. London, Madrid, Oslo and Paris are among the growing number of cities restricting downtown traffic.

The pandemic has American cities testing similar restrictions. Boston, Minneapolis and a number of California cities have instituted Slow Streets programs, restricting motor traffic on side streets in favor of cycling and walking. It even has UPS, Amazon and DHL trying out e-cargo bikes in New York.

“There is a huge opportunity for e-bikes in the U.S., which is a huge untapped market,” said Rasheq Zarif, a mobility technology expert for the consulting firm Deloitte.

Some companies are preparing now for the possibility that “micromobility,” as the buzzword has it, will catch on here.

“Let’s imagine Harley-Davison is not a motorcycle company but a mobility company,” said Aaron Frank, brand director for Serial 1, which builds an e-bike in partnership with Harley. “There is a strong argument we can do for urban commuters what Harley-Davison did for motorcycles.”

Other companies see e-bikes as a gateway to sell their primary products. Though best known for its motorcycles, Ducati North America wants e-bikes to “potentially turn people on to Ducati,” its chief executive, Jason Chinnock, said. “And we’ve seen that with people at some events and with the media reaching out.”

E-bikes may be more expensive than bicycles, but are cheaper than cars or motorcycles. And improved motor and battery technology is bringing prices down. Low-priced e-bikes with a motor in the wheel hub — similar to that 1895 design — can be had for about $1,000. Prices for versions with more complex, geared motors at the pedals can reach more than $10,000.

“Spending $1,000 on a bike seems out there,” Mr. Kenny said, “but when you don’t look at it as a toy — when it becomes transportation — it becomes a very different conversation.”

Price isn’t the only hurdle. E-bikes confront a crippling hodgepodge of laws. Although the Consumer Product Safety Commission deemed “low speed” e-bikes (with a motor equivalent to 1 horsepower or less) a bicycle, states still decide where that bike can be ridden.

“It’s up to 50 states to define the use, and that’s been a big problem in the past,” said Claudia Wasko, general manager of Bosch eBike, a prominent manufacturer of drive systems.

The PeopleForBikes coalition drafted model state legislation to allow most e-bikes in bike lanes and parks. It suggests three classes of e-bike, with a top speed between 20 and 28 m.p.h. Twenty-eight states have adopted some version of the legislation.

Some companies may be less concerned with the future of mobility and more interested in getting some attention now.

“I think it’s a halo thing,” said Mr. DiCostanzo, whose company has produced e-bikes for Tommy Bahama, Ford and others. Halo vehicles represent a brand’s aspirations, like concept cars.

“I think that’s what it is for Ford,” he added. “They wanted it for window dressing, and that’s what they got. I think they sold 500 in the five years it ran.”

Mercedes, which is taking orders for its top-of-the-line Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team V11 e-bike at $12,000, said it was a chance to showcase its ability with high-tech materials from carbon fiber to paint.

“High-performance road bikes and e-bikes provide a great way to showcase such technologies into a range of consumer products,” said Damian Cook, a spokesman.

For some in the bicycle industry this all smacks of déjà vu. In the 1970s, a bike boom was thought to presage a new future for transportation in which cycling was central. But it failed. Though there were many contributing factors, roads weren’t made more bicycle-friendly and people didn’t want to arrive at work sweaty.

With the combination of Slow Streets programs, which address the first problem, electric bikes, which address the second, and a pandemic that has given people a chance to adjust to both, experts like Mr. Zarif find hope.

“When you give people a chance to try something, it reduces resistance to change,” he said. “As a society, the reality is we go forward — we don’t go backward.”

Shimano-Powered Ducati e-Bikes Reaching U.S. This Month

By General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Trekking, mountain or enduro – whatever your pleasure, Italian company Ducati has you covered this winter. The Italian company announced the arrival on U.S. shores, starting this month, of three e-bikes it developed over the past year.

Ducati joined the e-bike game not long ago after it partnered with THOK. Since then, a whole range of such two-wheelers has been developed, and is already available across Europe. Starting December, American customers will be able to enjoy them as well, provided they find the resources and courage to pay thousands of dollars for one.

The first to be made available at American Ducati dealers this month is the e-Scrambler, meant both for city use and trekking. It’s a pedal-assisted machine powered by a Shimano Steps E7000 motor and a 504 Wh battery of the same make. With the wheels wrapped in Pirelli Cycle-e GT tires, it can be rolled off the lot in exchange for $3,995.

The second arrival is the MIG-S, a mountain bike also powered by Shimano hardware (E8000 motor and 504 Wh battery). The two-wheeler is packed with high-performance parts, including Marzocchi Bomber Z2 fork, Fox Float TPS rear shock, and 12-speed SRAM SX transmission. It goes for $5,295.

The most expensive of the three is the TK-01RR, an enduro bicycle running a Shimano EP8 drive unit and 630 Wh battery that gives it 85 Nm (62 lb-ft) of torque with a maximum servo assistance ratio of 400 percent. This one will become available in February next year for the princely sum of $7,995.

“The introduction of these e-bikes continues the Ducati tradition of creating exhilarating two-wheeled experiences and expands our product range into a growing segment,” said in a statement Jason Chinnock, Chief Executive Officer of Ducati North America.

“In addition to highlighting the connection between the world of cycling and the training regime of motorcycle racers the world over, including many of those on the Ducati Corse team, we’re looking forward to seeing our existing clients and those new to Ducati enjoy these new e-bikes, which are also part of a growing recreational segment.”

Meet Harley Davidson’s Mosh/CTY e-Bike

By General Posts

by Cristian Curmei from https://www.autoevolution.com

We have been warned that this was going to happen, and now it is. Harley has released preorders on four beautifully crafted e-bikes from the Serial 1 lineup, and this is the least expensive of the bunch.

Recently, the U.S. motorcycle manufacturer released a very special build known as the Serial Number One, where it showcased electric tech on a tribute bike resembling the oldest known Harley. From there, we got this new wave of two-wheeling ideas.

The first of these bikes from the legendary motorcycle creators is the Mosh/CTY. Now, it’s only first on the list because it’s the least expensive of the lineup and possibly the least capable, depending on how you see things.

Nonetheless, it still brings with it all the history and heritage of Harley Davidson. By now, most fans out there have already asked themselves, why the hell is Harley stepping into the e-bike game? It’s simple, really. It’s a market that’s becoming more and more motorcycle-like.

With advancements in technology, from battery capacity to motor power outputs, our ever-present bicycle is becoming more of a stepping-stone towards an electrified future. So, let’s see what the team has put together for us.

When first laying eyes on the bike, you are struck by a rugged and capable frame that doesn’t resemble any e-bikes. From the start, the frame instills you with a feeling of trust like that one special person in your life.

A lack of suspension means you’ll be feeling your urban terrains, but being made to smash around town, it doesn’t really need anything to soften your ride except the tires and your rubberized knees. Upon closer inspection, the frame includes visible welds. If for any moment you thought that was carbon fiber, now’s a good time to throw away that idea.

What we find on the Mosh, just like on the other Serial 1 bikes, is a hydroformed aluminum frame. But before you start getting upset about Harley’s choice of material, know that it’s the best material for what this bike needs to do and for the price of $3,399. So, relax and read on.

Now, like all things e-bike, the most important aspects are the motor and battery. For the motor, we find a hugely capable 250W Brose S Mag brushless rotor, set mid-drive to offer a perfect balance and center of gravity for the bike. Still, 250W sounds rather weak judging by what we’ve seen so far in the e-bike game.

However, this “half the power of my blender” motor somehow squeezes out 90 Nm (66 lb-ft) of torque, more than some of the biggest and best e-MTBs out there. True, it has a speed cap of 20 mph (32 kph), yet that can be changed if you’ve got the smarts for it.

Powering this sleeper is a 529Wh integrated battery that can also be removed. Now, the range with this set-up is anywhere from 35-105 miles (56-168km), depending on which of the four ride modes you use. Over 100 miles of range; that alone is worth every penny. Once out of juice, a 75% charge takes only 2.6 hours, with a full charge in 4.75 hours.

As for the drivetrain for this smashing e-bike, we find a single-speed freewheel with a Gates carbon drive belt. Top of the line, my fried. As for brakes, Tektro is the brand of choice with two-piston calipers with 203-mm (8-in) rotors.

For some reason, Harley chose to strap on some 27.5-inch wheels and tires. The reason is to ensure all-around control and comfort as 27.5s are highly used in MTB and Enduro biking for their ability to grip and climb while offering ease of maneuverability.

A few other perks like walking assist and internal cable routing are also found, as well as a Brose display and remote that connects to an app. Honestly, for this price, what you get is absolutely amazing. Check out the gallery and video below and then click here to stare at the billing screen.

Watch Video at https://youtu.be/GzP-fwPJNxs

 

 

Introducing Serial 1 eBicycles! Pre-Sale starts now!

By General Posts

The Serial 1 eBicycle Pre-Sale starts right now!

RUSH/CTY SPEED

Delivering Summer 2021

Full speed ahead! This Class 3 speed pedelec is the quickest way to navigate any city.

RUSH/CTY STEP-THRU

Delivering Spring 2021

An all-access ride to wherever you want to go, loaded with features and exceptional style!

RUSH/CTY

Delivering Spring 2021

The sophisticated commuter. The easiest, most intuitive way to get anywhere, without breaking a sweat.

MOSH/CTY

Delivering Spring 2021

The ultimate urban playbike. It’s quick, nimble, and an absolute ripper!

Inventory is limited and will start delivering Spring/Summer 2021. First purchases of each model get a special Serial Number 1 Tribute medallion. Serial 1’s debut line-up of pedal-assist eBicycles all feature mid-mounted motors, integrated batteries, belt drive, intelligent sizing, integrated LED lighting, and even more features that make these the easiest and most intuitive way to experience fun, freedom and adventure on two wheels. Delivery for most models will start in Spring of 2021, but quantities will be limited so to insure that you get one, consider buying yours today!

Harley-Davidson Announces New Electric Bicycle Brand

By General Posts

from https://www.benzinga.com

by Ronan Glon from https://autos.yahoo.com

Many auto companies are making the move to an electric future. Harley-Davidson Inc, the company best known for loud, gas-powered motorcycles, is starting the electric journey in a different category.

Harley-Davidson announced its new brand as the Serial 1 Cycle Company, which will produce electric pedal bicycles. The name is an honorable mention to the first motorcycle produced by the company, simply named “Serial Number One.”

In statements provided to Electrek, Serial 1 Cycle Company’s brand director Aaron Frank said the project began with a small group dedicated to make an electric bicycle worth of the Harley-Davidson name. The first models will be available in March 2021. The current pictures shared are more of a concept, and the final design has yet to be revealed.

Harley-Davidson has created a sub-brand named Serial 1 Cycle Company to enter the e-bike segment. It hopes offering smaller and cheaper products will allow it to increase its profits by reaching younger buyers.

Every mobility start-up needs a utopian slogan, and Serial 1 is no exception: it aims to “change the way the world moves.” It was founded by a group of cycling enthusiasts employed by Harley-Davidson, and every member of its executive team has previously held a top-level position at the motorcycle manufacturer. There’s no word yet on whether its products will be sold in Harley stores, or if they’ll be distributed in brand-specific spaces.

Regardless, the first Serial 1 e-bike is a retro-styled model that draws design inspiration from the 1903 Serial Number One, which is the oldest-known Harley-Davidson motorcycle. It rides on white tires, its frame is painted black, and the rider sits on a brown seat propped up on a set of vintage-looking polished springs. Powertrain specifications haven’t been published yet, but it’s interesting to note the rear wheel is driven by a belt rather than a chain. Gold decals create another visual link between the bicycle and the original Serial Number One.

Additional details about the company and its products will be released on November 16, 2020, and American deliveries are tentatively scheduled to begin in the spring of 2021. Pricing hasn’t been announced, but e-bikes are rarely cheap, and nothing suggests the members of Serial 1’s design-led range of models will be an exception.

Why e-bikes?

Harley-Davidson enjoys a 117-year-old reputation in the motorcycle world, and its name resonates all over the globe, so what’s the point of building electric bicycles? In one word: profitability. It pointed out the e-bike segment was worth about $15 billion globally in 2019, and it’s expected to grow at an annual rate of over 6% between 2020 and 2025. Meanwhile, the motorcycle sector became hostile and unpredictable environment after the Great Recession, and its recovery stalled during the 2010s. COVID-19-related lock-downs were another punch in the company’s gut; retail sales in the United States fell by 10%, while motorcycle revenues dropped by 12%.

While every motorcycle manufacturer faces these challenges, Harley’s problems are compounded by an aging target audience. It’s having a shockingly difficult time luring a new generation of buyers into showrooms. Affluent 30-somethings may not be as interested in vacationing on a hog as their parents (or their grandparents) were, but Serial 1’s big bet is that they’ll be open to the idea of riding an Instagramably retro electric bike around town.

The Yamaha Civante is the company’s first 28mph e-bike in the US

By General Posts

by Napier Lopez from https://thenextweb.com/

Yamaha might be best known for its instruments and motorcycles, but it was also the first company to introduce modern e-bikes, way back in 1993. While it may not be as big in the modern e-bike world as the likes of Bosch or Bafang, the company’s motors have made their name with brands such as Giant and Haibike, and the company has recently been expanding its own first-party line-up too. Today, the company is taking a big step forward in the e-bike world by announcing its first 28mph (Class 3) e-bike to available in the US market, the Yamaha Civante.

Previous Yamaha e-bikes in the US Market were Class 1 bikes, limited to 20 mph like most e-bikes. While that’s good enough for many users, some feel safer being able to keep up with faster traffic, and riders with longer commutes want to arrive at their destinations more quickly. Of course, others just have the need for speed.

The bicycle is certainly built for speed. It has an aggressive geometry and omits fenders, racks, or a kickstand – though there are mounting points should you want to install them later, and front light is included (Yamaha‘s rear rack has an integrated rear light). It also comes with flat-resistant, e-bike rated tires, mid-depth wheels, hydraulic disc brakes and a Shimano 10-speed drivetrain with a double chainring. Importantly, it’s actually fairly light for an e-bike, coming in at 43.4 lb on the medium frame despite the high-power motor and battery.

The bike uses Yamaha‘s 500W PWSeries SE Motor, capable of of 70nm torque and supporting cadences up to 110rpm; Yamaha promises that even if you exceed the motor’s baked in speed-limit, it won’t just cut off power suddenly, instead providing a smooth transition for your own pedaling power. The bike includes four assist modes ranging from a 50 percent boost on Eco mode to a 280 percent boost on the high setting. The bike also comes with a removable 500 watt-hour battery.

Yamaha doesn’t provide a range estimate, perhaps because it can vary dramatically with your riding speed, assist level, weight, and terrain, but a 500Wh battery with a mid-drive motor should have no trouble dealing with most commutes. If I had to guess, I’d put it in the ballpark of estimate 30 to 60 miles for an average weight rider in higher assist modes, but I’ve reached out to Yamaha for more information. And as with all e-bikes, you can always ride them like a (heavy) normal bike should the battery run out.

I also appreciate that Yamaha‘s high-speed charger can fill up the battery to 80 percent in just one hour — great for longer trips. Most e-bike chargers are painfully slow — more of an overnight affair.

he bike is available in three frame sizes and one color(white with black and blue accents), and is priced at a $3,399. While certainly expensive, that’s actually on the lower end of the price spectrum for a 28mph e-bike with a high-end and high-torque mid-drive motor. Moreover, Yamaha provides a 3-year warranty on the electronics, compared to the 1 or 2 years offered by most competitors.

The bike will be available “this summer” at Yamaha dealers throughout the states.

The eRockit Hybrid Is an Electric Motorcycle You Have to Pedal for Speed

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by Elena Gorgan from https://www.autoevolution.com

Who said you have to choose between an electric bicycle and a motorcycle? A German startup is offering a solid and very fun compromise they like to call “the human hybrid:” eRockit.

The eRockit is part bicycle, part motorcycle and all fun. It’s an electric motorcycle that promises good performance and decent range but also uses the pedals found on the regular bicycle instead of throttle. To put in much simpler terms, this bike requires some leg work in order to move around: the more the faster you want to go.

Falling under the 125cc motorcycles classification, the eRockit has already been tested on the Autobahn by stunt rider Sebastian “Satu” Kopke, and he says the fun of having to do light exercise while overtaking cars is something he’s never experienced before. “I have never experienced such a mixture of physical activity similar to cycling and this incredibly good acceleration. It’s doubling the fun!” he says.

The makers are equally generous in showering this little thing with praise: “the most extraordinary electric motorcycle of today” is able to deliver an “indescribable, magical driving experience” and, at the same time, top German quality in terms of the materials used, performance and safety. It’s almost enough to make you want to go out and buy one right away.

Speaking strictly numbers, though, the eRockit is basically a faster commuter electric bicycle at a much higher price. It has a top speed of 90 kph (56 mph) and a range of 120 kilometers (75 miles), with the latter largely dependent on weight of the rider and weather / road conditions. Peak power is at 22 HP from a permanent magnet synchronous motor, while the 6,6 kWh Lithium-Ion battery achieves a full charge in 5 hours.

The eRockit may be all sorts of fun, but it’s also not cheap. It will retail for 11,850 euro ($13,100), with a 250 euro ($277) deposit needed to place a pre-order.

 

Wary of public transport, coronavirus-hit Americans turn to bikes

By General Posts

from https://auto.economictimes.indiatimes.com

The coronavirus pandemic has sparked a surge in bike sales across the United States, according to a major manufacturer and a half dozen retailers interviewed by Reuters.

“I’m 51 and healthy, but I don’t want to get on the subway,” said John Donohue, a Brooklyn-based artist who bought a bike two weeks ago. Donohue, who doesn’t own a car, says he’s not sure when he’ll be comfortable on mass transit again.

The coronavirus pandemic has sparked a surge in bike sales across the United States, according to a major manufacturer and a half dozen retailers interviewed by Reuters.

Many of the purchases are by people looking for a way to get outside at a time of sweeping shutdowns and stay-at-home orders aimed at containing the virus: Even the worst affected states are allowing people out to exercise.

Still, a portion of the sales, especially in urban areas, are to people like Donohue who also want to avoid the risk of contagion on buses or subways.

He plans to use his new 24-gear hybrid for journeys such as regular visits to a printing shop across town that he normally travels to by subway. A key feature, he said, was the bright red panniers he added to carry his artwork.

To be sure, bikes remain well down the list of U.S. commuting preferences.

About 870,000 Americans, on average, commuted to work by bicycle in the five years through 2017, or about 0.6% of all workers, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The rate was higher in urban areas, at about 1.1%, and about 20 cities with at least 60,000 residents had rates of about 5% or more.

A more recent survey, though, showed a higher percentage of U.S. workers using a bike to get to work. Private research firm Statista Inc.’s 2019 survey showed 5% rode their own bike, while another 1% used a bike share service, an increasingly common option in larger cities.

Running Out Of Stock

The government has declared bicycles an essential transportation item, so many bike shops remain open despite the widespread business shutdown. Many, though, have modified how they operate, no longer letting buyers test bikes and handing them over on the curb rather than inside the store.

According to the National Bicycle Dealers Association, roughly three-quarters of U.S. bike sales are through big box stores. While many of the outlets of large specialty sporting goods chains are closed, general merchandisers like WalMart Stores Inc, the largest seller of bikes, remain open. Walmart did not respond to a request for comment.

Kent International Inc., which imports bikes from China and also makes them at a plant in South Carolina, said sales of its low-priced bikes had surged over the past month.

Kent is already out of stock on five of its top 20 models and expects that to rise to 10 by the end of the month, chief executive and chairman Arnold Kamler said. He noted supplies were flowing in from China, which has reopened much of its manufacturing base over the past month.

Kamler said sales at most of the major retailers he supplies were up 30% last month and are up over 50% so far in April, with the surge in demand forcing him to change shipping arrangements.

He normally imports bikes to ports on both the East and West Coasts. But with many retailers asking for more bikes, he’s now directing all shipments into West Coast ports, then transporting them across the country. That adds to freight costs, he said, but can cut weeks off delivery times.

Low Prices

Mark Vautour, who manages a bike store near the Boston University campus, said he had sold bikes to anxious commuters – including at least one medical worker who wanted an alternative to using the subway.

“We’ve joked for years that trains are like a petri dish,” Vautour said.

Mostly, though, his sales have been children’s bikes, “because parents don’t know what to do with their kids.”

One indication that people are buying bikes for more utilitarian uses like commuting is that many of the purchases are low-priced bikes, several bike retailers said.

Joe Nocella, owner of 718 Cyclery & Outdoors in Brooklyn, said his normal “sweet spot” was bikes that sell for $1,500 to $2,000, used by city dwellers for touring.

“Now the average bike has turned to $500 to $800,” he said.

Those lower prices are one reason many bike retailers are struggling, despite strong sales.

Andrew Crooks, chief executive of NYC Velo, a three-store chain in the New York area, said the drop in average selling prices meant revenues had fallen at a time when he was still paying rents, salaries and other costs.

“So we could keep our doors open and still end up with a business that’s not viable,” he said.

Still, some new buyers say they are switching to bikes for the long term.

Having been stuck at home in Baltimore, Kaitlyn Lee bought a $550 bike this weekend so she could get outdoors safely and avoid public transport when she gets a job.

Lee will finish a graduate degree in public health at the University of Maryland this spring and has applied for jobs at the Centers for Disease Control and the Health Resources and Services Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Her plan is to commute by bike to a future job, if possible.

“I mean, it’ll never completely vanish,” she said of the coronavirus. “Rather we will learn how to live alongside of it, just like with other viruses.”

Ultra Carbon Looks Like a Motorcycle But Is Really an Electric Bike

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by Elena Gorgan from https://www.autoevolution.com/

We know, electric bikes are a dime a dozen these days, as are fat-tire bicycles. With the ongoing conversation on the climate crisis and the need for urgent action to reduce exhaust emissions, various alternative, greener mobility solutions have sprung. E-bikes are among the most popular, and the offer is so varied anyone can find something to like, depending on budget and preferences.

Italian maker Moto Parilla knows that too: with e-bikes, you really have to think outside the box in order to get people to notice you. So, it’s trying to carve a separate niche of the market for itself, offering a pedal-assist bicycle that works just as well in the city as it does on the most difficult trail, but which was designed with the latter in mind.

Ultra Carbon represents an improvement over the Carbon range from Moto Parilla: it’s powerful and reliable, designed to be taken out on the bumpiest road, but it’s also fully customizable. Moto Parilla even goes as far as to call it a work of art because it will be hand-building each bike according to its new owner’s specifications, with every detail hand-finished.

Based on photos alone, you have to admit: the Ultra Carbon packs a punch. It’s sturdy enough to fool the untrained eye into mistaking it for a motorcycle, but it’s elegant at the same time.

“Starting from the Carbon line, the Ultra goes beyond to highlight the concept of uniqueness,” the maker says. “Every Ultra is designed around the biometrics of the rider. The aluminum frame is obtained by a single aluminum block. As a sculptor, the numerical control machine removes the aluminum excess to find aggressive shapes and lines, to indulge the engine power, the speediness and the personality as well.”

What this actually means is that there are no two Ultra Carbons alike and each design is patented before it’s shipped to the new owner. The base model features a carbon and CNC aluminum frame, front fork and rear suspension, shock absorbers, LED light package and Bluetooth connectivity. The leather seat is handmade and, much like the color of the bike, can be made to the owner’s liking.

The extra-large handlebar is fitted with Velo grips for maximum control and stability. The 8-caliper Alligator disk brakes are custom-made and can be found on this bike only, Moto Parilla says. The tires are Vee Tyre Apache and will easily help you conquer even the most difficult terrain, no matter how bumpy or steep.

Each Ultra Carbon bike weighs around 112 pounds and comes with a 3000W brushless engine powered by a 72V lithium-ion battery churning out 148 ft-lb of torque and a maximum speed of more than 50 mph. Moto Parilla doesn’t say anything about range for a single charge.

The Ultra Carbon is a limited-edition product, with prices starting at $7,300 and going up to $10,000+. With so much focus on how it’s a “work of art” that will do what few other mountain bikes are able to do, it couldn’t have been cheap. For this kind of money (which is nothing to scoff at, we agree), Moto Parilla promises an unparalleled biking experience, thanks to a product whose design combines attention to detail and performance in equal measure.

“Dream it. Bike it. Love it,” Moto Parilla says of its new, limited-edition electric bike. “The Ultra Carbon is a totally customized e-bike working in synergy with his rider. Every detail has been studied to find the rider uniqueness in order to merge the souls.”

Whether said merger and / or the promise of an electric bike that truly stands out is worth so much money, well, that’s entirely up to you.