City Levies $50 Yearly License Fee On E-Bikes

The JT-TC Journal Gazette & Times-Courier reports that the Mattoon, Illinois, City Council voted to require an annual registration/license fee of $50 for “motorized bicycles in the city limit.” The article says the ordinance defines motorized bicycles as electric and gas powered bicycles that are in use at less than 20 miles per hour. Confused? Me too. City officials claim to be responding to concerns about motorized bicycles running stop signs and creating dangerous situations in traffic. The paper reports that a motorized bicycle rider was recently charge with gun…

A List Of “Rare” E-Bike And E-Bike Battery Charging Fires

The e-bike industry and its trade organizations are often quoted as saying e-bike fires are “a rare occurrence” (if they comment on the issue at all). These organizations are more apt to use the sanitized phrase “a runaway thermal event” that is code for “the bike’s battery blew up into flames.” The list of e-bike factories, retailers and owners who have experienced meltdowns is indeed a small percentage of total e-bike factories, retailers and owners. That shouldn’t make you feel a lot better if you have an e-bike charging in…

Husqvarna, Not KTM, Launches Extensive E-Bike Line In USA – UPDATED

UPDATED August 3, 2020: Spoke to a buddy with inside knowledge of the KTM motorcycle/bicycle split and it makes more sense than my earlier speculation. The result is still the same (an awesome new brand of e-bikes), but how the story unfolded is more clear. There are a few lessons to learn here for any young business major.  June 28, 2021: KTM Austria used to offer a line of KTM bicycles along with their motorcycles. When KTM went bankrupt, the bicycle brand was sold off to one group and another group…

Prolific Action Sports Photographer, John Ker, In Recovery Mode

Hall of Fame member (both Mountain Bike and BMX) and all-round great guy, John Ker, is in the hospital following hip-replacement surgery (following a cycling get off). John’s recovery has not gone smoothly and he is in a lot of pain. Rehab is going at a snail’s pace. John can use some encouragement so take the time to drop him a get-well email. His email address is johnk@hi-torque.com. I know he would love hearing for friends, old and new.

Just How Many E-Bike Companies Are There Anyway? You’ll Be Stunned

It was after viewing endless advertisements from obscure e-bike companies that I began to wonder: Just how many e-bike companies are there anyway? The answer is shocking. And ever expanding. I went down the rabbit hole and haven’t hit the den yet. I skipped the obvious, big-name players. You should already know that every major bicycle company (like Specialized, Trek, Giant and Cannondale) offers e-bikes. There is also an ever-increasing number of motorcycle and automobile companies jumping into the e-bike game. I haven’t counted them either. The e-bikes being pitched…

An E-Bike So Stealthy Only Your Legs Will Know The Truth – UPDATED 7/29/2021

Update July 29, 2021: While compiling a list of e-bike companies, the name Zeitgeist popped up. Hitting their updated link, I found a bike that appears to be a big improvement over the model I uncovered in 2018. And this time the front wheel quick release is adjusted correctly! Now that’s an improvement. You can check out their bike by clicking here. Hidden speed: You are looking at an e-bike capable of 28 miles per hour. Zeitgeist does a commendable job of hiding the normally bulky components of an e-bike.…

Bicyclist Sustains Serious Injuries From Landing On Alligator – UPDATED

I hate falling off my mountain bike, road bike or motorcycles. After reading of the rider who fell on top of a female alligator, I have even more reasons to stay “on two wheels.” You can read the gruesome account of the crash and attack from the TCPalm website. Here’s wishing for a full recovery to the rider. Slippery when wet: Wooden bridges used on many mountain bike trails can have slick surfaces due to weather and foliage conditions. It is a great idea to use extra caution and stay…

Espin Doesn’t Practice What They Preach

I commended espin, an electric-motorized bicycle company, for their article packed with useful electric bike battery health tips. Too bad the company ignores their own advice. Their website’s main page shows their e-bike on the beach next to the ocean. This image breaks two of their tips: “Keep away from salt” and “Avoid water.”  The only saving grace is the image is so poorly photoshopped that most people will be able able to tell it is fake. Still, why fake a photo by positioning your product in a place you advised…

Sophisticated Scam Courtesy Of Facebook Marketplace

A ‘Sponsored” link on Facebook Marketplace directs unsuspecting people to the most sophisticated scam I’ve seen so far. The link delivers you to a legit-looking website where Trek is holding a “Flash Sale.” This is where the scammers blew it. I’m not going to point out how they screwed up because it might help them improve their scam in the future and I certainly won’t link you to the scam. Facebook is complicit in this crime. The posting is “sponsored content” meaning Facebook accepted money from the scammers and in…

The Pave 01 Is A Motorcycle, Not An E-Bike

I assume the term e-bike was dreamed up by a clever marketing team who wanted to confuse, mislead and obfuscate consumers while giving manufacturers wiggle room in describing their products. Instead of calling them what they are, electric-motorized bicycles or electric-powered motorcycles, e-bike is a cute, fun-sounding, non-descriptive-blanket term that gets tossed over a wide range of motorized vehicles. Case in point, the Pave 01. The misleading ad on Facebook’s marketplace says, “The Only eBike with…” and is linked to Pave Motors. Pave Motors is taking pre-orders on the Pave…