Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Electric Bikes Humming Along in Arlington
A new electric bicycle shop in Arlington, VA – Hybrid Pedals – is creating a lot of “buzz” (see their website here). Alan Levine’s showroom is crammed with dozens of electric bikes: special built bikes (starting at around $1500), custom rebuilds (also at around $1500), folding bikes (for the Metro), and very high-end bikes (what Levine calls the “Lamborghini” of ebikes, for around $15,000!). He is working on an order now for the Atlantic City Policy Department, who are buying 30 ebikes with very fat tires for riding up and down the beach.
Levine says that ebikes now make up better than 20 percent of bicycle sales in Europe, and he sees a similar trend here.
The idea behind electric bikes, if you’re not familiar with them, is that you can use them like regular bikes, in bike lanes, etc., but can switch on the power for help getting up steep hills or on long commutes. You can even go entirely electric if you choose, say to commute to work without working up a sweat.
The good news about ebikes – as with electric cars – is that batteries continue to get lighter and more powerful.
The electric bicycle is just one more development, along with bikesharing, that is making bicycle transportation a mainstream option.
Good luck to Hybrid Pedals!