BikeCommuters.com

Tag Archive: electric hybrid bicycles

“Urban Commuting” and E-Bikes at the Big Shows…

Well, Eurobike — Europe’s largest bicycle trade show — kicked off yesterday, and as many of you know the U.S. equivalent Interbike is coming up in a few short weeks.

A few of us are signed up and ready to go for our annual coverage of Interbike for Bikecommuters.com and our sister site Mtnbikeriders.com…this will be the first year that I get to join RL and Moe and the other folks from Mtnbikeriders.com. Now that we’re signed up to attend, we’ve been getting bombarded by dozens of previews, press releases and invitations to vendor meetings at their respective show booths. It’s a great “sneak peek” at what we can expect at the show.

Overwhelmingly, the press releases for both Eurobike and Interbike focus on so-called “urban commuting” bikes (less racy, more practical) and electric/electric-hybrid bikes. Supposedly, this is the big year when E-bikes reach a sizeable market penetration into the U.S. They’re already wildly popular in many Asian countries and there is a decent market in Europe, but currently they still hold a tiny percentage of the U.S. interest. That’s fixin’ to change, if the PR is accurate…

What do YOU think? Are E-bikes going to take off here in the U.S.? Are there still too many skeptics here? Rest assured, we’ll be taking a look at the offerings at Interbike and sharing our thoughts with you…and will hopefully get to report on some promising technologies. Stay tuned!

Returning to Bike Commuting: My choice of bike

I was intrigued by the new so-called Electric Hybrid bicycles. These bikes are supposed to assist you pedaling, are supposed to be lighter than an electric moped and are supposed to look like regular bikes. We asked Torker Bicycles to let me test their T-450 E hybrid bicycle; this bike meets the claims mentioned above.


The Torker T-450, a very “regular” looking bike

The T-450 is a very nicely equipped bike with a rear rack, full fenders, a full chain guard, 700c tires and a Sturmey Archer 5sp Twist Grip drivetrain.


The rear rack houses the polymer lithium battery and it is ready to hold my panniers.


Protanium aluminum front motor


Sturmey Archer 5 speed internal hub.

Why an Electric Hybrid? Although my 7 mile commute can be considered short, I need to ride my commute in about 1/2 hour. Coming back from shoulder surgery, I’m in no shape to ride at a constant 15 mph and arrive sweaty to work. My plan is to ride with the electric motor on my way to work and turn the motor off on my way back so I can benefit from the exercise that bike commuting provides. I will put the T-450 through its paces and I will keep doing updates and a full review in about 2 months.

In my next post, I will “accessorize” the T-450 for my commuting needs and I will also list some of the stuff that I like to use to clean myself once I get to the office. Stay tuned!