E-Bikes: The Hottest Trend On Two Wheels?
We speak to the team at MTB Monster to find out more about e-bikes and to learn why they have firmly cemented their place in cycling
MTB Monster explain just how far electric bikes have come in such a short space of time.
When did you first get involved with e-bikes?
Our introduction to the e-bike story started around five years ago. We have always only dealt with premium brands and when Bosch introduced their first offering of e-bikes in partnership with one of our brands, we knew it was the right time to get involved. They did not disappoint with the Cube Reaction, a hardtail e-bike that is still produced today with the latest and greatest that Bosch has to offer. Bosch have always had such a strong presence in the electrical market and a large proportion of our e-bikes feature Bosch motors.
From our first staff ride out, it was clear that these bikes were built for fun. Everyone calls it the ‘e-bike smile’. It’s that grin that pops up the moment you start pedalling. Going uphill becomes a breeze and it’s so much fun that you can’t help but smile. It totally changes the outdoor exercise game, making it enjoyable for all riders, on all terrains, which is lucky for us living in the Ribble Valley.
Over the last five years many different companies have brought to market their offerings, however, we have always stayed true to our belief in only working with quality products. We promote the leaders in electric bikes – Bosch, Shimano, TQ and Mahle Fazua (part of the Porsche brand). We deal with these brands because they offer reliable systems and provide the aftercare support – we need to always be on hand and service our customers well.
Just how far have e-bikes come?
In their infancy e-bikes were mechanical bikes with the addition of a motor and a bolt-on external battery. Their primary aim was to assist riders’ efforts by providing a boost of power making cycling easier and more enjoyable. You could select the amount of assistance, from no help, all the way up to ‘boost’, which provided 340 per cent of assistance. This was fantastic and encouraged so many people to get involved in cycling again.
Nowadays technology has moved on significantly and all aspects of the e-bike has been refined. With fully integrated, mid and high torque motor systems and significant weight reductions its often almost impossible to tell the difference between electric and mechanical bikes just by looking. In recent years attention has been focused on redesigning frame geometry to ensure bikes are perfectly balanced. The speed of the change in both technology and design has been incredible.
What would you say is the main appeal of electric bikes?
Electric bikes appeal to different people for different reasons and over the past five years of selling them we have come across such a wide variety of reasons why people get involved in e-biking, I couldn’t possibly recall them all. Some of the main ones include:
• Flattening the terrain for riders returning to sport after time out. Sometimes hills can seem too big to tackle. An e-bike can ‘flatten’ every hill making each ride relaxing and enjoyable.
• Speeding up the time for those with busy lives. Finding time for yourself is often difficult with work and family commitments. An e-bike means you can get out into the countryside and home in record timing.
• Change of sport due to injury. We often meet people who have been keen runners or athletes in other fields and due to wear and tear or injury, have been advised to try cycling as an alternative as it is less intense on your joints.
• Keeping up with friends or a partner. Many people now find themselves in the position whereby their riding buddies or partners are too fast for them either due to a gap in fitness levels or the fact that they have already invested in an e-bike. The only way to keep up is to get involved.
• Commuting to and from work on an e-bike is great. You can use boost functions in the morning, so you are not arriving at work tired and in need of a shower and then go for a ride straight from work and end up home. The perfect end to a day in the office.
• If you love the thrill of riding downhill but are not so keen on the getting to the top, an e-bike is your best friend, allowing you to enjoy plenty of downhill runs with minimum uphill effort. By selecting a lightweight e-bike you are guaranteed the most natural ride on the descents too.
Is the trend here to stay?
Yes undoubtedly! Whilst there is still a lot of love for mechanical bikes, and rightly so, e-bikes have so much to offer. For us the main factor that often gets overlooked, is that they significantly reduce the amount of motivation needed to get out and cycle in the first place. Even the fittest of people are not always in the mood to go out. An e-bike changes all that.
We are now in the process of putting together a demo fleet of e-bikes for hire and already have some models available and soon you will be able to book out directly through the website, but for now all you need to do is get in touch.
To find out more visit: mtbmonster.com call 01254 959345 or pop along to our showroom on the A59. Our friendly team are ready and waiting.
Fairfield Business Park
Longsight Road, Blackburn BB2 7JA