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EGO-Kits give downhill mountain bikes a boost

By

February 15, 2011

The EGO-Kit is an electric motor that can be added to downhill mountain bikes for powering...

The EGO-Kit is an electric motor that can be added to downhill mountain bikes for powering them up to the tops of mountains (Photo: EGO-Kits)

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While electric commuting bikes are currently experiencing a surge in popularity, electric mountain bikes such as the Conway E-Rider and the KTM eGnition are also showing up on tradeshow floors with increasing frequency. Most of these are designed as cross-country and/or trail bikes, with the idea that the motor can extend their range above the reaches of pure human power – of course, they might also appeal to couch potatoes who want all the fun of mountain biking, with a minimum of the exercise. The EGO-Kit, however, is an electric motor that can be added onto an existing downhill mountain bike, with the specific purpose of replacing a chair lift for getting bike and rider to the top of the mountain.

The high-torque brushless motor puts out 1200W of nominal power, and 2400W maximum. It’s fed by a 48V lithium-iron phosphate battery, that is carried in an included backpack. That battery charges in 1.5 hours, is good for 1,500 loading cycles, and provides a range of 40 kilometers (25 miles) – although that figure depends highly on the grade of the mountain that’s being climbed.

The motor mounts on the bottom of the down tube, near the bottom bracket. This midships low-center-of-gravity configuration is said to have little effect on the bike’s handling. Its output is determined via a control unit and throttle, mounted on the handlebar. All of the gear, excluding the rider-worn battery, has a combined weight of 4.4 kilograms (9.7 lbs).

The EGO-Kit is an electric motor that can be added to downhill mountain bikes for powering...

The kit is reportedly compatible with about 70 percent of downhill mountain bikes currently on the market. Riders can choose between completely forgoing the motor, using it to assist their pedaling, or using it on its own. At maximum output, it can manage a top speed of 70 kph (43 mph). It is also said to be able to handle inclines of up to 80 percent, although that depends on rider skills, motor temperature and soil conditions.

The EGO-Kit can be purchased through the company website for EUR1,870 (about US$2,520), plus shipping from Germany. A 500W version is also available for EUR1,650($2,225). Sales are slated to begin on April 1st ... no joking.

Via Engadget

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
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11 Comments

The best idea i've ever seen. I really hope to become truth. It's the most accessible idea. I even startet to ask about in the bike shop.

Facebook User
3rd March, 2011 @ 07:48 am PST

1200 watts of usable power...forget the max power of 2400 watts (google e-motors...max power)...and with 1200 watts its NEVER gonna go 70km/h...i have a 1200 watt bike and it will go 40km/h without any input from me and 50km/h with max input...the wind resistance becomes too much of an issue after that.

Range given by manufacturers of ebikes is almost always waaay overstated...unless the manufacturer can supply the results of an independent test...or i hear from people who have actually used the set up...the data given is misleading.

Almoto
29th May, 2011 @ 11:02 am PDT

i was on the expo bike in munich yesterday and i tried it and asked them a lot and it will go to 7o km/h its so perfekt and everything is really tied and fits perfekt looks also grat one of teh best and higehst performed produkts i've ever seen

Marc Morhart
22nd July, 2011 @ 10:57 am PDT

This is a really cool idea. Bravo!!!

Tony Spitz
25th August, 2011 @ 11:31 pm PDT

what's next, KERS on mountain bikes?

[Funny you should ask, Alex. See our article at http://www.gizmag.com/flywheel-bicycle-regenerative-braking/19532/ -Ed.]

Alex Cheng
14th October, 2011 @ 04:36 am PDT

Nice. But there are others out there for mountain bikes. More powerful and cheaper(if you do conversion yourself).

Check out http://www.hi-powercycles.com/category.sc?categoryId=26



telocity
14th October, 2011 @ 10:24 am PDT

Use a fairing system to extend range of electric bikes. Most places will require a motorcycle registration to go 50kph on the road.

Grant-53
16th January, 2012 @ 05:16 pm PST

Downhillers are well known to be aerobic pussies.

this merely agrees with that assumption.

Thomas Noll
24th May, 2012 @ 03:27 pm PDT

@Thomas Noll

everyone knows that the real pussies wear Lycra.

@everyone

hmmmmm..... my bike is 17.5 Kilos..... add the 4.4 kg's for the motor/throttle control.... thats 22kg without the battery or the rider. i'll stick to riding back up hills.

Patrick Coffey
19th September, 2012 @ 10:30 pm PDT

Clever, but I rather fancy that a high proportion of these will be sold to the relatively unfit or the 'more money than sense' subset, and that a lot will undoubtedly never see a real hill/mountain but if it makes the manufacturers money...

TheSplund
5th October, 2012 @ 01:42 am PDT

I totally understand how many will see this as a pussie device. But for me this would be a blessing. I have been severely anemic since age 12. Before that I loved absolutely nothing more than to go mountain biking. I still do, but now I have to take a break from getting absolutely winded every 80-100ft up a mountain. I am getting tired of this and it is very depressing to see myself, a 26yr old who loves exercise and fitness with all my heart despite my limitations, getting passed up by 50-60 year old guys going up a mountain without stopping... This is not just a pussie device, for some it's a blessing. Still too expensive, but it would be nice if there are alternatives.

Gavin Boothe
8th November, 2012 @ 12:19 pm PST
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