Just How Many E-Bike Companies Are There Anyway? We just Hit 199 – UPDATED

After viewing endless advertisements from obscure e-bike companies I began to wonder: Just how many e-bike companies are there anyway? The answer is shocking. And ever expanding. Folks, the brands just keep coming and I’m not even counting the big guys! 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 (but I probably should). The e-bikes being pitched on crowdfunding sites…

Opening Trails To Class-1 E-Bikes Opens Trails To All E-Bikes – UPDATED

E-bike designations (Class 1, 2 and 3) were written by a trade organization to do three things: (1) open previously non-motorized trails to motorized vehicles, (2) evade enforcement, and (3) sell more e-bikes. This class definition is being adopted by state and local legislators who don’t understand that opening a non-motorized trail to any class of e-bike, virtually opens the trail to all e-bikes. Here’s why. THE CLASS DISTINCTION Class-1 and Class-2 electric bicycles have less than 750 watts and cease to provide power when the bike exceeds 20 miles…

National Bicycle Dealers Association To Address E-Bike Fire Risks In Webinar Series UPDATED

The National Bicycle Dealers Association (NBDA) just announced four webinars dealing with e-bike fire potential. The series will be aimed at retailers but I would imagine that any e-bike owner could benefit from the disseminated information. The first webinar took place on May 24th and addressed e-bike explosions, fire safety and product third-party certification. Comments from a New York City Fire Department official were very enlightening as were all the topics covered by the panel members. You can watch this webinar by clicking here. The second webinar takes place on…

Recall: Santa Cruz Heckler 9 E-Bike Dropping Its Battery Like A Bomb

Santa Cruz Bicycles has recalled their Heckler 9 e-bike after customers report of the battery falling out of the bike’s frame, creating both fall and fire hazards. Santa Cruz explains that, “The latch mechanism that holds the battery in place can malfunction, causing the battery to dislodge from the frame and fall to the ground, posing a fall hazard to the rider.  Additionally, the latch spring can cause additional wear on the battery housing over time, posing a fire hazard.” Riders should stop riding the recalled bicycle and should remove…

E-Bikes Add Speed To San Luis Obispo’s Emergency Response Squad

This is cool news out of the San Luis Obispo Fire Department. In an effort to improve rescue response times, the SLO fire department has added a secret weapon. E-bikes! “It is amazing how much faster our paramedics can reach patients on our city’s trails,” said Fire Engineer and Paramedic Ryan Mason, who led the department’s new e-bike program development. “What used to take 45 minutes to an hour to reach an injured hiker or mountain biker can now take us less than 10 minutes.” The City’s fire department partnered…

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…

Battery Fires Create Concerns For Every Electric Bike Owner (UPDATED)

Bike Europe, a publication claimed to be the “leading trade journal for the bicycle, e-bike market” recently published a courageous story on the dangers of Lithium-Ion batteries used in the majority of electric bikes (e-bikes). The publication had a fire safety engineer and battery safety professional examine the aftermath of a fire ignited by an unattended charging battery in a bicycle shop (video footage of the shop fire has been removed). His observations are frightening. The expert is quoted as saying that Lithium-Ion batteries are, “rather unreliable, rather explosive. You…

Human Powered Solutions Offers Tips To Guard Against E-Bike Fire Disasters

After being labeled an alarmist and dismissed as an anti-e-bike zealot (for the record, I love riding quality e-bikes), I feel vindicated. It may have taken them over 3 years to echo my concerns, but a respected bicycle retailer consulting group known as Human Powered Solutions (HPS) recently published “Safe Lithium-Ion Battery Storage and Charging Procedures.” You should substitute “e-bike” for “Lithium-Ion” in their title to make the story more honest and understandable. The article builds on a story I published that remains one of the most-read articles to appear…

Specialized Bikes Warns Of Possible E-Bike Fire Hazard

If you own a 1st generation Specialized Levo (either the FRS or HT model) or Kenevo FSR, you’ll want to move it out of your garage, home or storage shed and away from any flammable material (including a forest). Then,  hit this link that explains what needs to be done to your bike to prevent what Specialized calls a “thermal runaway event” (I call it a fire). I have tracked numerous e-bike fires and recalls. Up until now, these recalls and fires were traced to home-built, DIY project e-bikes, e-bike conversion…