Motoring

5 Luxurious Designer Electric Bicycles

Because a high net worth individual can do better than a run-of-the-mill electric bicycle and travel inter-city in true designer style while being eco-friendly

Jun 20, 2017 | By Jonathan Ho

As companies like Obike, Ofo and now Mobike invade our common spaces and deliver a fun and affordable way to travel intercity or make that last connecting commute back home from the metro station (aka mass rapid transit), it is perhaps time to ponder that with the increasing popularity of bicycles and ride sharing services, the day may soon come where there would be an increasing number of spaces where one can comfortably park their electric bicycles. More importantly, as these private firms start dealing with the uncouth reality of some Singaporeans, these bicycle parking facilities might become more secure with some of these commercial enterprises lobbying the government for more secure bicycle spaces. Thus we thought, given the terrible weight (and not so ideal design) of these commercial ride-share bicycles, it might be best to start considering some of the best looking, most luxurious designer electric bicycles for your own car-free commute in Singapore with the masterplan of being a “car-free city of tomorrow”.

The Cykno electric bicycle is pure vintage ‘Made in Italy’ swagger.

The Cykno electric bicycle is pure vintage ‘Made in Italy’ swagger.

5 Luxurious Designer Electric Bicycles

First up, we’d like to introduce the Derringer Electric Bike. It is the first e-bike from famed bicycle manufacture Derringer. Derringer’s claim to fame was derived from mimicking the aesthetics of vintage 1920s Board-Track racers while interpreting them with a twist of eco-friendly technologies. Available in 3 price points for different income brackets, each Derringer Electric bicycle offers performance proportional to the price tag – that is to say, the most affordable Derringer Heritage Series electric bicycle will be powered by a 37 volt 12.5Ah Li-NMC battery and street legal with a a 750W high-torque gearless hub motor.

The mid tier Derringer Signature Series electric bicycle is driven by a 52V 12.5 Ah Li-NMC battery coupled to a 2000W high-torque gearless or geared hub motor, naturally, it can electronically tuned to keep within legal power output depending on your region’s regulations.

Derringer Electric Bike is the first e-bike from famed bicycle manufacture Derringer

Derringer Electric Bike is the first e-bike from famed bicycle manufacture Derringer

According to eBikeSchool.com, a gearless hub motor is: a direct drive hub motor, the axle that passes through the center of the motor is actually the axle of the motor itself, with the copper windings fixed to the axle. This whole axle assembly is called the “stator”. The magnets are mounted to the outer shell of the hub motor. When electricity is applied to the stator a magnetic field is induced that causes the magnets to move. This in turn makes the whole shell of the motor turn and propels the ebike forward.

At the highest price point, the Derringer Bespoke Series electric bicycle is powered by a 63V 12.5 Ah Li-NMC battery driving a 2800W high-torque gearless hub motor. ‘Gearless’ essentially means that like a Tesla, you have all the power of 2800W high torque at your finger tips (that is until the Land Transport Authority or Police come and arrest your speeding butt). Unfortunately, the planned Derringer Electric Bicycle series never quite took off on kickstarter in 2011 but there’s a reason they’re on this list… read on..

5. Derringer Electric bicycle

At the highest price point, the Derringer Bespoke Series electric bicycle is powered by a 63V 12.5 Ah Li-NMC battery driving a 2800W high-torque gearless hub motor. 'Gearless' essentially means that like a Tesla, you have all the power of 2800W high torque at your finger tips

At the highest price point, the Derringer Bespoke Series electric bicycle is powered by a 63V 12.5 Ah Li-NMC battery driving a 2800W high-torque gearless hub motor. ‘Gearless’ essentially means that like a Tesla, you have all the power of 2800W high torque at your finger tips

Next up, this bike might not be classically styled like the Derringer but it can be considered the super-car of luxury designer electric bicycles. The current Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike is a high performance lightweight contender among electric bikes. Weighing 18.2 kilograms, it is one of the lightest carbon e-mountain bikes in the world.

High-tech ultra-lightweight carbon monocoque frame makes the Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike an ultra exclusive, high performance off-road designer electric bicycle unlike any other. Co-engineering with e-mountain bike pioneer Haibike, the Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike is powered by a street legal Bosch lithium-ion battery 36 volts, 500 Wh coupled with Bosch middle motor performance CX, 250 watts with max. 75 Nm output. Aesthetically, the sporting dynamic lines of matt black as well as glossy red and silver, were developed by designers of Audi industrial design in Munich.

The Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike an ultra exclusive, high performance off-road designer electric bicycle unlike any other.

The Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike an ultra exclusive, high performance off-road designer electric bicycle unlike any other.

With Shimano XTR Di2 11-speed digital shifting, the Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike hits up to 25 km/h with Pedelec e-support. It also shares a bit of luxury with its R8 relative, the same fine nappa seat leather dresses the Selle Italia Flite tekno flow saddle.

4.  Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike

The current Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike is a high performance lightweight contender among electric bikes.

The current Audi Sport e-tron mountain bike is a high performance lightweight contender among electric bikes.

When it comes to any list involving the words luxury and designer, you definitely have to look at the Italians. Enter Bicicletto®, an electric bicycle (but they call it a ‘vehicle’) with an innovative design that defines a new concept of personal mobility while blurring the boundaries between a motorcycle and a bicycle.

Design-wise, the Bicicletto electric bicycle pretty much follows in the same vein as Derringer, inspired by classic motorcycles or café racers. The Bicicletto electric bicycle borrows much of the design cues and aesthetics of these vintage motorcycles but gives them a unique Italian flair. That said, the brand feels it is difficult to categorise Bicicletto®, nor do they consider it a simple pedal-assisted bicycle.

High tech features blend with vintage inspired elements on the Bicicletto electric bicycle.

High tech features blend with vintage inspired elements on the Bicicletto electric bicycle.

The front light detail is a signature of the Bicicletto electric bicycle – a modern reinterpretation of early automotive headlamps, its unique shape projects a subtle emblem of manufacturer, the SPA logo, set back from the front light. A high tech touch sensor toggles the light on and off. While it might appear as if it is integrated into the bike frame, the headlamp is actually removable and can be used as a hand held torchlight.

The carbon fibre frame of the Bicicletto electric bicycle is freestanding and its innovative design conveys that rare sense of sprezzetura. As a result of high tech carbon, the design of the Bicicletto electric bicycle may look heavy but it’s actually quite light – only 17 kg. The false “gas tank” may look like where the battery is housed but it’s actually a bluetooth speaker which allows smart devices to connect to it allowing music and phone calls while conveying that vintage motorbike look which when complete with saddle, sells the classic “born to be wild” appeal despite its contemporary design. Prices range from €9,200 for the 250 W Engine with max speed of 25 km/h on 36V 15A battery and 90km range model to €12,200 for the 250 W Engine empowered (think bicycle turbo 350 W) with throttle set up for max speed of 48 km/h on 36V-20A Battery  capable of 70 km autonomy. [Shop Bicicletto electric bicycle]

3. Bicicletto electric bicycle

 The Bicicletto electric bicycle borrows much of the design cues and aesthetics of these vintage motorcycles but gives them a unique Italian flair.

The Bicicletto electric bicycle borrows much of the design cues and aesthetics of these vintage motorcycles but gives them a unique Italian flair.

Still keeping to the heritage Euro-style with Italian design influences, the Cykno electric bike is a collaboration project between Bruno Greppi alongside designers Luca Scopel, Gianpietro Vigorelli and Italian advertising guru Riccardo Lorenzini. The result is that the the Cykno electric bicycle is pure vintage ‘Made in Italy’ swagger.

Backed by a 250/500 watts lithium polymer battery
 with capacity of 360 wh or 60km autonomy and a charge time of 4 hours, the monocoque carbon fiber frame, and aluminium parts (produced in Italy) cut down the weight some but it is still a heft 26 kg (the heaviest electric bicycle in this list). It also carries a torque control Pedelec system which helps you to achieve 20-25kmh easily.

2. Cykno electric bicycle

A lot of leather can be found on the Cykno electric bicycle giving the bike stylish appeal but drawing a lot of criticisms from biking enthusiasts for their impractically weather-wise. That said, saddle leather like the ones used for horses are designed and cured to resist rough weather conditions.

A lot of leather can be found on the Cykno electric bicycle giving the bike stylish appeal but drawing a lot of criticisms from biking enthusiasts for their impractically weather-wise. That said, saddle leather like the ones used for horses are designed and cured to resist rough weather conditions.

Top on our list of 5 most luxurious designer electric bicycles is this entry – the Vintage Electric Bikes The Tracker. We considered it to be the spiritual successor of the now defunct Derringer. More importantly, the demise of Derringer seems to have allow the fates to give us Vintage Electric Bikes in gorgeous WWI-era motordrome racer aesthetics in 3 other different flavours aside from the Tracker; they are the Cruz, the Scrambler and the Outlaw.

Topped with Brooks leather saddle, you are seated on a modern electric motor with rear-hub-mounted drive with two settings: a 750-watt mode for tooling around at 20 mph and a 3,000-watt mode that’ll let you zoom down country roads at 36 mph. Naturally, the 3,000 watt mode isn’t a street legal spec but we’ll get to that in a moment. Each vintage electric bicycle takes two hours to charge with a range of 35 miles.

Top on our list of 5 most luxurious designer electric bicycles is this entry - the Vintage Electric Bikes The Tracker.

Top on our list of 5 most luxurious designer electric bicycles is this entry – the Vintage Electric Bikes The Tracker.

Race mode

Race Mode is an optional upgrade for the Tracker electric bicycles, it basically utilises a 3,000 watt rear hub motor can accelerate the rider to 36 Miles/Hour (58 Km/Hour). The battery outputs a steady 60 amps at 52 volts; Remove the Race Mode key to switch back into street legal mode to comply with your region’s regulations.

Regenerative Braking

Another cool feature, more likely found on modern cars than electric bicycles is the Tracker’s regenerative braking. The rider can smoothly decelerate while re-charging the battery with a simple tap of the regenerative braking button. The heart of the Tracker’s drivetrain is a 3-phase brushless electric motor which recoups energy that is typically wasted in brake use. This maximises the range of the vintage electric bicycle, ensuring you’ll go 35 miles on a charge, further with efficient braking. A sophisticated computer located in the battery box provides smooth anti-lock braking so you don’t skid out.

1. Vintage Electric Bicycle’s The Tracker

The heart of the Tracker's drivetrain is a 3-phase brushless electric motor which recoups energy that is typically wasted in brake use. This maximises the range of the vintage electric bicycle

The heart of the Tracker’s drivetrain is a 3-phase brushless electric motor which recoups energy that is typically wasted in brake use. This maximises the range of the vintage electric bicycle

 
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