Electric bikes are all the rage these days, especially in Europe, but also here in the U.S. Not only are existing traditional bicycle manufacturers getting in on the trend by adding e-bikes to their product lines, but there are currently 83 projects related to electric bikes on Kickstarter as of this writing! Some may be wondering what all of the fuss is about.
The Los Angeles Times recently published an enlightening article titled, "Why are e-bikes all the rage? Because they're plenty of fun to ride". According to the article:
U.S. sales of e-bikes jumped to 120,000 last year, triple that of 2012. “That’s still five or 10 years behind Europe,” said industry pioneer Larry Pizzi, president of Simi Valley-based e-bike maker Currie Technologies, noting that 500,000 e-bikes were sold in Germany alone. “But we’re catching up fast. People love these because they’re fun. You still get a great workout, but you flatten-out the hills, which is the thing most people hate about cycling.”
Of course, none of this surprises us here at ElectricRideables.com; we've been enthusiastically and fully onboard the e-bike bandwagon ever since our inception! But we applaud the LA Times and other publications that are discovering the electrifying success of e-bikes worldwide!
Californian Christiana Crabbe rides an e-bike to work every day (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)
A great example of why e-bikes are all the rage is Christiana Crabbe, a 22-year-old barista from Irvine, California. An early adopter, she was inspired by seeing men in business suits riding their e-bikes to work. She bought her first e-bike in 2013 and has lived nearly car-free ever since.
According to the Times article, Christiana rides 30 miles round trip to and from work every day. With the cost savings and the extra fitness from riding, she was able to rent a nice apartment and drop her gym membership. She views her quiet, solitary minutes riding her e-bike as “taking me to a happy place."
The words “happy” and “fun” come up a lot with e-bikers. While it's true that electric bicycles are a very "green" alternative mode of transportation, it's the fun factor that attracts most riders. Whether a person rides to commute to work, run errands, go shopping, get some exercise, or just enjoy the beauty of the outdoors, people are loving the extra boost they get from that little electric motor under their seats. One enthusiastic e-bike rider said, "It gets me up the final steep hill to my house with no sweat. It makes you happy."
And as the Times article points out, since happiness is contagious, e-bikes often sell in pairs to baby boomers. It starts with the fit middle-aged cyclist type who buys his wife one so she can keep up with him, then comes back a month later for one for himself when he can’t keep up with her. Baby boomers and older retirees who have the time, money and motivation, currently account for 70% of the market for electric bikes.
If you are interested in owning an e-bike yourself, click here to browse ElectricRideables.com's wide selection of e-bikes. To read more of the LA Times article click the link below.