For most of us NYC dwellers, the electric or e-bike conjures up the image of take-out food being delivered on a banged-up bicycle with a big ugly battery attached. As bicycle commuting has become more popular however, so has the market for e-bikes and there is a new breed of sleek, hip and sexy models available. Some may think it’s cheating to have an electronic assist while pedaling, but this extra boost of power is optional and comes in the form of pedal-assist, where the motor kicks in depending on how hard you’re pedaling, or a throttle-only mode, where you opt to let the motor do all the work. This motorized burst of energy is there for you on long commutes or when arriving sweaty at your destination is not your preferred look. Check out these 7 bikes and our picks for the coolest e-rides around!
Shown above, the futuristic looking Alva+ features both pedal assist and throttle power on demand. With its stylish frame, disc brakes, and suspension fork for added comfort, the Alva+ is guaranteed to turn heads as you zoom by. The 500w battery provides up to 40 miles of power assist, a top speed of 24 mph, and recharges in 3-4 hours.
The chic monochromatic Marton-E bike fuses sustainability and convenience with fashion and design. The bike can be ridden manually on the traditional Shimano 3 gear system, or through a hybrid combination of pedaling and battery operated power that provides speeds up to 16mph. The battery, which sits where a water bottle would go, gives up to four hours of consecutive use, is fully removable, and easily stowed in a backpack or purse. The Marton-E is offered in both womens and mens models, in signature red and black as well, and weighs only 45 pounds, less than most on the market.
Yes, it’s a mountain bike, but we had to include this titanium beauty. Built with premium materials and technology, and weighing in at a feathery 31.8 pounds, the Titanio 29er provides pedal assistance with a high-end torque sensor. It delivers a fast two-hour charge, 18-25 miles of riding, and is loaded with premium high-end components such as Avid Elixir XO Hydraulic Disc Brakes, a RockShox SID AIR PushLoc Fork, and Continental Race King 29 x 2.0 tires.
Many have been waiting for the venerable Specialized to enter the e-bike category and the Turbo-S does not disappoint, combining speed and style with an innovative motor, advanced electronics, and sleek design. The racy but rugged alloy frame offers Performance Geometry designed for riding fast at top speeds of 28mph, with custom Formula R1 hydraulic brakes for stopping fast too. The Li-Ion battery provides maximum power for quicker acceleration and improved battery life. An illuminated Joystick interface unit provides control over the Turbo riding modes and an extremely bright Supernova E3 front light and saddle-integrated rear light add extra illumination on the road.
Nominated E-bike of the year 2014 by the cycling organization RAI, Vanmoof calls the ultra-stylish Electrified the world’s first intelligent bike, featuring modern day technologies to improve your daily commute. The motorized front wheel is powered by a battery integrated within the frame and when fully charged, provides an average of 40km of assistance. The bike’s onboard computer monitors cycling output and adjusts the bike’s electric power accordingly. A built-in GPS tracks your bike if lost or stolen.
Cannondale brings high performance to the e-bike category with innovative electronics and unique suspension on a lightweight frame. Seamlessly integrating Bosch’s instinctive drive system, the mid-mounted engine provides maximum efficiency. An advanced on-board computer has its own remote control and offers the rider the option of four different modes and levels of power assistance.
The Electra Townie Go is an easy to use, automatic pedal assist bike with a surprising boost of power in a cool cruiser design. The motor monitors pedaling power and speed, and automatically delivers an extra boost when needed. 30 miles is the average distance on full charge, with a maximum assisted speed of 15.5 mph.