1. WE KNOW OUR STUFF
We’re not new the electric bike trend, we’ve been selling electric bikes for years. At the Bike Co-op, we are fervently non-elitist. We believe any initiative or innovation that gets more people pedalling is a good thing, so we’ve been quietly championing electric bikes for two decades.
We’ve built up knowledge, we’ve built up relationships with suppliers and we know what questions to ask you to help identify which bike is best for you. All this experience means that when you visit our shops, including our online helpline, we will be delighted to advise you on which electric bike model(s) in which size might best suit your needs.
If you want to discuss ‘Wh’ (Watt hours – governs run time per charge), torque (measured in Nm or ‘Newton meters’) and the relative benefits of different motor units in greater detail, you can be confident that you’ll be talking to someone well versed in electric bike technology.
2. YOU CAN BORROW AN ELECTRIC BIKE FOR TWO WHOLE DAYS TO TRY OUT
As with any bike on display in our shops, you can ask to take one of our electric bikes out for a quick spin. Better still, you can arrange to take one away for a full one or two-day demo so you can discover for yourself just what it’s capable of and how it would suit your lifestyle.
3. WE STOCK THE BEST ELECTRIC BIKE BRANDS
Kalkhoff is one of our most popular brands and is also one of the leading brands in electric bike loving Germany.
We don’t stock the cheapest electric bikes. We stock the best electric bikes, and we’re proud of that. After testing electric bikes from dozens of companies over the years, we are confident that our current electric bike range could not be bettered in terms of the attributes we look for in electric bikes – that is reliability, power, range, technical backup, value for money and, perhaps most important of all, grin factor.
- Whyte – trust the UK experts in bikes made to ride in the Great British weather to pioneer Shimano’s STEPS electric bike system, famed for offering the smoothest auto-transition between pedal and pedal assist mode. Our Whyte electric bike range includes hybrids, road and mountain bikes – all with electric assist.
- Kalkhoff – if you’re looking for an all-rounder electric bike that’s as capable on a rough track as it is on tarmac you should check out Kalkhoff electric trekking bikes – each one fitted with mudguards, rack, kickstand, LED lights and the industry’s longest life battery (good for over 1,000 charges compared with the industry standard, 500 charges).
- Specialized – One of the world’s biggest bike manufacturers are no strange to electric bikes either. Their range includes electric mountain bikes (including their famous Turbo Levo range), hybrids and road.
Other key brands we stock are Giant, Liv, Brompton, Tern and Riese & Muller.
4. WE KEEP YOUR ELECTRIC BIKE’S BRAIN UP TO DATE
New technologies require new maintenance skills. Be assured that our mechanics have the training, the experience and the tech required to run diagnostics on the major electirc bike systems (STEPS, Bosch, Brose, Yamaha and Impulse) so we can upgrade yours with the latest updates and ensure that the electronics are working at an optimal level.
5. WE OFFER A SPECIALLY TAILORED ELECTRIC BIKE SERVICE
Electric bikes, like any bike, have moving parts which demand care and attention. On top of that, the electronic parts need looking after. With all our electric bike expertise, we’re now happy to offer a specific electric bike servicing option which means we’ll get your e-bike working good as new. Read more on e bike servicing and repairs…
WHY CHOOSE AN ELECTRIC BIKE AT ALL?
ELECTRIC BIKES HAVE COME OF AGE
Electric bikes used to not be as nice to look at as their non-electric counter parts, they were extremely heavy (even heavier than the 20-odd kilos they are now), the range on the battery wasn’t great, and the electrics weren’t dependable. As long as you stick with reputable brands like the ones we offer, we’re delighted to say all of that has changed.
Try out any of our electric bikes and we defy you not to come back with a grin on your face.
THEY LOOK NORMAL NOW
With the motor integrated into the bottom bracket and the battery pack looking like it’s part of the frame, today’s best electric bikes look pretty much like regular bicycles. This is a good thing because other riders won’t know you’re enjoying up to 90Nm torque power assistance when you’re overtaking them.
LONG-RANGE BIG BATTERY CAPACITY
Electric bikes have benefitted from the billions of dollars ploughed into battery technology research by the likes of the mobile phone and electric car industries in recent years.
Today’s best electric bikes consistently deliver 30 miles in max (300%-plus) power assist mode in the most challenging conditions, and over 100 miles in 50% power assist in eco mode.
Such capacity pretty much banishes ‘range anxiety’ – the concern that the motor might run out of gas five miles from home, as was sometimes the case with first generation electric bikes.
A useful analogy is to consider how far high-power bicycle front lights have come on since the 1990s when you only got around an hour run time from the kilo-plus lead-acid external battery that powered the 100-lumen halogen lamp.
ELECTRIC BIKES MIGHT BE HEAVIER BUT THEY RIDE LIGHT
With its motor and a high capacity battery, an e-bike might be 6kg heavier than an equivalent non-electric bike (although with newer models, this weight difference could be quite bit less), but this weight penalty is barely noticeable when it engine bestows the electric bike with gravity-defying power, which makes the bike feel weightless whenever you point it uphill or into a headwind. Plus, many have walk-assist so even if you’re pushing it, you won’t feel the weight. Take out the battery and that also makes the bike easier to manoeuvre when not riding.
An electric bike’s power assistance means you really don’t notice the weight of anything you carry on it – shopping, touring panniers or your first-born.
Its cargo-carrying capacity therefore makes an e-bike more practical and useful for everyday riding than, say, a nice lightweight acoustic bike, which you might not be inclined to use as a packhorse.
If you need to carry more than a couple of panniers or one child – we also stock a range of electric cargo bikes – which are great options for both personal and business use.
Haven’t been on a bike in a while? Or is the purpose of cycling enjoyment, rather than getting sweaty and achey? That’s where an electric bike comes into its own. A leisure trip on local routes or on holiday is infinitely more fun and manageable knowing you have the added boost whenever you need.
Ride to work on one of today’s power assisted electric bike and you can arrive at your destination cool and collected, no matter how hilly the route or howling the wind.
The comparative lack of effort required doesn’t just make an electric bike attractive to people who never previously considered cycling. Today’s typical electric bike rider is as likely to be a regular cyclist who just doesn’t fancy a long, unassisted pedal every day as our Simon revealed here.
HIGH TORQUE FOR HIGH CLIMBS
Today’s 60 to 90Nm motor units have the turning power and acceleration required to boost you up the steepest inclines.
ELECTRIC MOUNTAIN BIKES
Bicycle shops on the Continent are reporting that e-MTBs now account for half their mountain bikes sales.
Why? Because when you can ride the long, grueling climb four times faster, you’re more likely to repeat that experience again and again.
An e-MTB opens up options for different kinds of riding.
You could ride three times farther and enjoy the same level of workout as you would on your regular circuit. Or you can get round your favourite circuit much quicker when time (and/or your energy level) is at a premium. Also, an e-MTB can be a great leveller if your riding buddies/partner are significantly faster or slower than you on a regular bike.
As Bob Dylan (who went electric in 1965) sang – the first one now will later be last. The grin on the face of the weaker cyclist when they drop a stronger rider is one of the irresistible pleasures of e-biking.
Our customers who like to initialise sometimes refer to Edinburgh Bike Co-op as The EBC. Such is the surge in interest in electric bikes, we wonder if one day the majority of our customers will think of EBC as the Electric Bike Co-op…