of social distancing has changed life across the globe in all sorts of ways,
with major impacts on nearly every industry. It’s the kind of time we won’t
soon forget, with people cooped up for weeks and months on end to flatten
the COVID-19 curve. It’s a time when (let’s face it) more than a few
of us have been going a little stir-crazy and keeping up with fitness has
become a challenge.
One of the sectors that’s weathered the storm the best has been eBike riding. According to a recent Electrek article:
“As government-imposed lockdowns spread around the US in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, small businesses have been suffering. With people stuck at home and tightening their purse strings, many feared that the hardship would be acutely felt by the scores of electric bicycle companies that have popped up over the last few years.
But as it turns out, the opposite is true. In fact, sales of electric bicycles appear to have exploded recently.“
— Here’s why electric bike sales have skyrocketed during the coronavirus lockdown by Toll, Micah, Electrek (website), May 1, 2020.
And as more and more cities loosen their stay-at-home orders, the sales of bicycles in general – and electric bike, specifically – have seen a continues, steadfast uptick. And it’s understandable to see why.
eBikes continue to be a cost-effective way to stay active, keep healthy and enjoy the outdoors in an effort to fend off that quarantine fifteen. Let’s look at a few of the reasons why the e bike industry just keeps on going, and what this sector of the economy is bringing to the world.
A big reason the eBike is still going strong is just how efficient a solution for health and fitness it is. You don’t need to be a dedicated Grand Prix cyclist or ultra-fit athlete to enjoy an eCycle. It’s a great way to make the transition into a more active lifestyle because:
fit can also stave off depression and anxiety and reduce a person’s risk of chronic diseases. eBikes are a major part of
a cycling market that puts these benefits within easy reach for people of all
ages, but there are still more specific reasons for their growing appeal.
has created major challenges for getting around. The basic guideline to stay 6
feet away from other people makes using public transit and footpaths harder.
That’s even more true if you’re in the heart of a city where paths tend to get
congested. Bike and vehicle sharing, which were growing models before the
pandemic, have fizzled.
eBike riders are
enjoying a practical solution to these challenges:
- Riding an eBike gives
you greater range for the same amount of physical effort as a standard
bike. That makes it easier to get out of crowded areas and enjoy a peaceful and
socially distanced solo ride.
- Car traffic is drastically lower than
usual, as INRIX notes. Cyclists can feel more secure
than ever with fewer cars on the road.
- eBikes are a small business boon. Cycling, in general, is cheaper
by far than operating
a car, and that goes for eCycles, too. With the eBike’s added advantage of
backing up your muscle power with motor support, they become an attractive
option for the fast delivery of parcels and food (a small business niche that’s
become crucial to keeping people supplied while keeping them off the streets).
unique benefits have created a thriving eBike economy. That economy is just
getting stronger thanks to high demand, ongoing research and development, and
lower costs passed on to the customer.
demand has made it possible for companies to bring down the price of a quality
eBike as the competition for customers heats up. Though it’s still possible for
eBikes to retail for upwards of $2,000, the price can run to as little as
$1,000 even for
a top-of-the-line model like the SWAGTRON® EB12 Road eBike. A short commute folding campus eBike
like the EB5 Pro Plus might be had for only $499. With a
financing plan, you can pay off the initial outlay for a basic eBike for as
little as $47 a month. That compares favorably with the cost of a monthly
transit pass in most cities.
continues to hold steady, which is to be expected for at least the duration of
the COVID-19 crisis if not longer, further reductions in price could be
possible. But that’s not the only factor driving down the cost of buying an
sales motivate companies to invest in research and development. That
makes for more cost-effective production of components like batteries, disc
brakes and motors. Battery prices alone are expected to drop by 50% over the next half-decade according to some forecasts. Just as
importantly, technology has revolutionized the
retail supply chain,
making it easier to ship and track products more efficiently and with less
ever-improving technology in play and growing interest from cyclists all over
the world, the outlook is good for eBikes to become even more affordable in the
years to come. Car and Driver expected worldwide sales of eBikes to hit forty million units annually within a
few years, even
before we fully understood what a disruptor COVID-19 would become. The real
numbers might well end up being higher as eBike riding continues to go