Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Even Lower-Priced Electric Bikes (under $1000)

[Blogger disclaimer - this is a no-profit-whatsoever blog written by an overweight-financially-strapped-middle-aged guy who has never actually seen any of these bikes in person - except for the Razor. If you want ride reviews, go to the two EBR's: Electric Bike Review and Electric Bike Report. Both are excellent sites and invaluable to anyone shopping for an e-bike. Please Tell Pete and Court hello from the Mesquite Hugger!]
Ok, so you read the two Low-Cost Electric Roadster Bikes posts (1) (2) and thought to yourself This Mesquite Hugger bloke's been smoking too many mesquite beans! He thinks that $1500 is low-cost! Sheesh! Well, this post is for you, or at least it's closer to being for you. This post is all about e-bikes that can be bought for less than $1000. Some of these are even under $1000 with shipping! If this sounds more appealing, then keep reading. There's even one in here that's under $350 with shipping, but it's a little short on pedals.
Propella E-Bike Version 1
(Version 2 $799 for a limited time, normally $949)
The Propella e-bike is a very simple, single-speed e-bike developed in the Seattle area and very successfully Indiegogoed at $699. The first run is now sold, built, and delivered, but you can sign up to grab one of the Version 2 models for $799 (+ shipping). The new one will have a (physically) smaller battery, disc brakes, and a few other upgrades that improve the value of the bike. No word on shipping costs, but you can sign up to be in-the-know on their email list.  Basic specs: 36 volt 7 amp-hour battery, 250-watt front hub motor, 15-28 mile range, 20 mph, and it only weighs 35 pounds!

Sondors Original Fat-Tire Bike ($598 + $195 shipping)

Sondors E-Bikes is one company you may have already heard of. The Original is the bike that smashed sales records on Indiegogo a little while back and caused a lot of hoopla! When the dust cleared, Sondors did actually follow through and has earned a decent reputation (all things considered) for delivering a better-than-expected-in-this-price-range e-bike. Like the Propella, all of the Sondors models are single-speeds. There is also a custom version available that has longer range batteries and can have front suspension and/or an aluminum frame. A few stats: 36 volt 8.8 amp-hour battery, 350 watt rear hub motor. Around 20 miles per hour and up to about 20 miles of range. It's got some mass at 55 pounds. (Here's a long review for those of you who are Sondors curious.) (If you want something similar but much more powerful and better equipped, check out the RadRover, but it falls out of today's price range.)

An interesting sidebar: Sondors is now working at putting out a $10,000 electric car that looks pretty interesting.

Sondors Thin Skinny-Tire Bike ($598 + $195 shipping)

For those of you who fall into the speed freak side of things, there is some great news that came out today. Juiced Bikes just announced a less expensive model of the CrossCurrent - the CrossCurrent AIR. It's (barely) under $1000 and it still runs 28 miles per hour! And I am a big fan of their bikes - great prices, great reviews, quality components. In my low-cost roadster miniseries, the CrossCurrent is the one I am drawn to the most. So a version that is a full 33% lower in cost - sign me up! Since they just announced it today, I will add too many pics with details.

Free shipping for the first 100!


That's a whole lotta bike for the money!

Changing gears, are you that person who's still squealing at all the high prices, well check this out:
 I never expected myself to be such a big Razor fan, but (1) (2) (3).
Razor EcoSmart Metro Scooter Yep, I know that I am both weird and cheap, but at less that $350 I still see this thing as pretty viable transport in the right situation. Today's googling shows one at OfficeDepot.com with free shipping for $334. It runs 18 miles per hour and will do so for 40 minutes.

This is the coolest thing on wheel!

And then there's that other thing: the GeoOrbital Wheel. For the same price as Propella, you can pre-order a GeoOrbital Wheel and convert your favorite bike to electric in a matter of seconds. Stats: 36Volt 8/10 amp-hour battery pack, 500 watt motor, 20mph and 12-50 mile range. Expected delivery before April 2017. Shipping should be much cheaper than having a whole e-bike shipped to you, and the tire is flat-proof.

Why am I so interested in the GeoOrbital Wheel? As I bike more, I find myself wanting a few specialized bikes for different tasks. Specifically, I'd like 4 bikes -  a commuter bike, a cargo bike, a folding bike, and a mountain bike. Let's say I end up with all four of those bikes and then I were able to add a GeoOrbital wheel to the fold. Now I have eight bikes in the garage - four electric and four non-electric. With the easy swapability, a bike can go from electric to non-electric in about a minute. And I only have one battery to keep charged. And my garage isn't (too) overcrowded. And all that just costs $800 (+ shipping). Yep, there's a whole big world of possibilities out there!

Honorable Mention (so that I can squeeze in a cargo bike!)

Good news, Cargo Bike Lovers
(Yes, I know it's a bit out of the price range, but it's very inexpensive by cargo bike standards.)
The Juiced Bikes  ODK-U350: One nice piece of e-bike good news lately is the appearance of the new Juiced UDK350. By dropping down to a 350 watt motor (from the 500 watt version) and knocking $500 off the price, Juiced bikes have made electric cargo bikes more accessible. Then they offered it up with free shipping. You know the Mesquite Hugger gets excited when electric cargo bikes get down in this price range.
SnagIt, that's a lot of e-bike temptation in one post. I hope you find what you're looking for. Me, I need to go sell some of my old stuff.
May your budget, your desire, and your need for eco-friendly transport meet at the right intersection.