The power’s in the basket.
That’s where a portable power pack plugs in for HOPR’s newly announced pedal-assist electric bicycle. The two-pound battery can be removed or used to give the traditional bike an electric boost. You can ride for 10 miles on the 180-watt pack and reach up to 15 mph.
The bicycles don’t require charging ports or other charging infrastructure because the power is in the pack, which can be removed and recharged in a regular outlet. The pack can also charge your electronic devices when not revving up your bike ride.
The power basket.
The removable power pack.
It’s the first e-bike from bike-sharing network CycleHop, and is designed to work within bike-share programs, like those that CycleHop runs. The bicycle will also work with the HOPR app the company released earlier this month. The app links all transit options in Chicago and soon Vancouver and Los Angeles, whether it’s bike-share, ride-share, trains, or buses. Plus, you can pay for it all within the app.
The bike will be available to ride starting this summer.
The inundation of bike-share platforms and e-bikes adds to the frustration of mobility service company Gotcha Group CEO Sean Flood. His company has launched 31 bike-share programs in cities and college campuses throughout the U.S. But he’s concerned about rushing to market with new bike tech, whether that’s a physical bike or a new app.
In a phone call Wednesday, he lamented a flawed business model that pumps out bike-based transit programs without establishing partnerships with city governments and transit agencies — and notably, little planning beyond cash infusions from VC investors.
“[That’s] the concern I have if there’s not thoughtfulness that goes into it,” he said.
HOPR’s new bike release comes as bike-share company Zagster, the startup behind the dockless, lock-to Pace bike-share program, laid off an undisclosed number of employees.
In an email statement, CEO Tim Ericson said the focus is all on Pace, with a goal to be in 35 states by the end of 2019.
“We’ve re-structured to accelerate expansion of Pace, with a heavier focus on building in-market teams to greatly expand bike fleets, drive higher ridership, and partner with local businesses to sponsor Pace parking,” he said. “We did have to let a number of people go with roles not aligned to our Pace strategy.”
The company announced earlier this month $15 million in funding for the bike-share platform.