E-bikes won't look so clunky with 2020 motor, battery upgrades – CNET
Electric bike powerhouse Bosch has new equipment for the next generation of road, mountain and cargo bikes.
Bosch’s PowerTube 400 battery lends a sleeker look to 2020 e-bikes, while its handlebar-mounted SmartphoneHub shows basic riding data and offers a smartphone mount.
Most you’ll see on the roads and trails these days have bulky batteries on the tube behind the front wheel and hefty motors built into the hub where the pedals attach. But electric bike powerhouse Bosch is going for a trimmer look with a new suite of components that’ll debut for the 2020 bike season.
E-bikes rely on battery power to or give you a motorcycle-like throttle. Plenty of cyclists see them as something of an , but they’re steadily spreading as part of the . E-bikes cut down on the sweat factor on and extend your speed and range on the trails.
The battery and make them heavy — often 50 pounds for that more often weigh something like 30 pounds. And the electric components can be awkwardly clunky.
Bosch’s new 7.7-pound PowerTube 625 and 6.3-pound PowerTube 400 batteries are designed to offer a “slim and clean look,” Bosch said in announcing the products Tuesday. They have capacities of 625 and 400 watt-hours, and a pair of PowerTube 625 can be linked for 1,250wH.
Also new for 2020 are five motors from the German manufacturer:
Bosch’s new Performance Cargo motor will enable 2020 e-bikes that can handle a load (including the rider) of 550 pounds.
Bosch also announced a handlebar-mounted device called the SmartphoneHub that can link bike data to smartphone apps like Strava and give navigation directions. It has a display for basic information, but can link to phones with the Cobi.bike app. It’s got a mounting system for snapping phones into place, too.
Bosch also is modifying its software in an attempt to thwart tuning — tweaks that bike owners sometimes apply to circumvent speed restrictions.
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