WHEN A JOKE BECOMES A PREMONITION BECOMES A REALITY
The electric tide continues to turn at Eurobike By Zap
Another year and another year reporting on the growth of the e-bike market from everything I learned at this year’s Eurobike show in Germany. Unfortunately, as exciting a time as it was with so much new technology and new companies displaying their wares, I can’t help but feel like a broken record, going round and round but playing the same tune.
Yes, it’s been a year since I last reported from Eurobike, and I have to admit that I’m not the least bit sorry to say, again, the e-bike market continues to blow up and show nary a sign of receding. The big difference this year is that, unlike every previous show where the growth was most evident with the arrival of new brands slapping Bosch motors into a mass-produced frame, this year marked the arrival of proprietary frame and power-supply designs and technologies.
From bikes like the Rocky Mountain Altitude and Pivot Shuttle to the Focus Y-Bike concept bikes and many more, the wave of new and wholly individual bike design and technology has begun.
Here’s a sampling of just some of what we saw.
In addition to their carbon fiber Steamer mountain bike, the Austrian brand Simplon was showing off a svelte carbon-concept hybrid bike. www.simplon.com/en
By far one of the wildest bikes found in the aisles was this radical Cafe Racer from a new Swiss builder, Düsenspeed. The 62-pound bike is powered by your choice of either a 500- or 1000-watt motor. www.duesenspeed.com
Just as they did last year, Brose had a wild carbon fiber concept bike on display to showcase their motor and battery designs. The German company also had a new 28-mph motor on display. www.brose-ebike.com
Riese & Muller had an expansive booth that was brimming with a wide variety of commuter e-bikes. The German brand has a definite knack for unique frame shapes. www.r-m.de
Folding bikes remain extremely popular in Europe, and as such, nestled among the rows of pedal-assist commuters and mountain bikes was this belt-driven KTM folder. www.ktmbikeindustries.com
Scott remains one of the more popular brands throughout Europe, and they have been on an accelerated pace in promoting their line of e-bikes. The Shimano-powered e-Genius 700 is their latest model, borrowing from the popular full-suspension Spark. www.scott-sports.com
Straight out of Bavaria, Corratec has jumped into the e-bike market with real gusto. From mountain bikes to commuter and city bikes, they are definitely bringing some unique style to market. www.corratec.com
The famous Italian design house Pininfarina had a few different concept bikes on display, each with its own sense of style and elegance. www.pininfarina.com
Of course, with electric assist comes enough power to bring a friend along on your next ride.
Like many others, Moustache Bikes has tried to make their e-bike look more like a “normal” bike. Their Hidden Power frame design does a good job minimizing the bulk of the Bosch battery. www.moustachebikes.com
Did someone mention descending? This year’s Haibike headliner was the Xduro DwnHll 10.0. Thanks to its high-end spec, this impressive bike would easily qualify as a pro-level downhill rig.
As usual, e-bike pioneer Haibike had an expansive booth that was filled to the brim with a large variety of e-mountain bikes offering different levels of suspension travel for everything from trail riding to hard-core descending.
The business end of the aluminum Xduro finds a Bosch Performance Line CX motor and heavy-duty Fox suspension. www.haibike.com
As usual, there were e-bikes of all shapes and sizes.
BMC used to own the Stromer brand, but they have since parted ways. The Swiss brand is now entering the e-bike fray with a lineup of their own. www.bmc-racing.com
Mondraker brought their top-of-the-line carbon e-Crusher RR+. www.mondraker.com
A strong contender for winning the Most Bike for the Money award would be the Moto Parilla from Italy. Two versions of the handcrafted, Bafang-powered bike, which are the equivalent of a Hummer SUV, are available with either a 500 Wh or 750 Wh motor for the asking price of $5000. www.motoparilla.it
Of all the city bikes at the show, none were as technically advanced as the M1 Schwabing. Featuring a full-carbon frame, the wild-looking city bike uses Magura disc brakes and a Nuvinci running gear with your choice of either a 250- or 500-watt Clean Mobile motor. The German bike is available in two sizes. www.en.m1-sporttechnik.de