Two wheels taking over from 4 with car companies

Why are there bikes, scooters, and motorcycles being displayed at the Motor Show in Paris?  Probably for the same reason that there are bikes, scooters, and motorcycles all around, on the streets of the city.  For many, these vehicles are economical and practical alternatives to the automobile.

The idea to place vehicles like the eBike and the eScooter by Smart on exhibit at the Motor Show is a strategy to gain a way to an automotive brand.  The manufacturers of the eScooter and the eBike have admitted as much.  They also say that they want to offer alternatives to the automobile lifestyle.

The eBike, which Smart describes as a hybrid, has pedals.  As the rider pedals the bike, it generates electricity and stores it in a battery near the crankcase.  When the bike comes to points where it needs extra power, like on hills, the power is shifted to a motor at the back hub of the eBike.

Smart says its bike is an entry point product because it requires no driver’s license to operate.  The motor will produce a high speed of just over 15 miles per hour.  This keeps the eBike from being categorized as a scooter.

The eBike and the eScooter are integrated for smartphone.  In fact, the eBike is unlocked and engaged by placing a mobile phone into a cradle located at the handlebars.  If the phone is taken out of the cradle, the motor locks up.  The phone also acts as a heart rate monitor and speedometer for the eBike.

The eScooter is a category ahead of the eBike in that it has a more powerful electric motor and can attain speeds of 28 miles per hour.  It can go a little over 60 miles on total charge and such a charge takes about 5 hours.  The eScooter also employs solar panels to help generate electricity and features a few other innovations as well.