When e-bikes first started to appear on the scene, they were mostly commuter bikes, mountain bikes and fat bikes. Here in Australia it has taken just a few years for them to gain huge popularity - and in some markets e-bikes are now outselling traditional bicycles.
One exception to this embrace and acceptance has been the ‘serious cyclist’, who rides light-weight road bikes, dons lycra and shaves their legs (or MAMILs as many are calling them :)). They take pride in their fitness and ride long distances at high speeds. They have also frowned upon the idea of an e-bike and often don’t even consider them to be ‘real’ bikes - and have often commented that electric bikes are ‘cheating’.
Well how times have changed - today, companies like Orbea, the oldest bicycle company in the world, are leading the charge with their high pedigree road e-bikes – and gaining acceptance from their target market in great numbers. With these ‘serious’ riders now realising there is indeed a benefit from a little bit of motorised assistance - and the mindset is changing fast.
The first generation of e-bikes weren’t always easy on the eye with bulky frames, batteries bolted onto frames or racks and visible wires strapped onto every frame tube. They have now evolved and look good, but with their road e-bikes, Orbea have lifted the game to an entirely new level.
With the Gain range of road e-bikes, Orbea’s aim was to make an e-bike where all of the electrical parts are concealed - and they have completely nailed it. They also said that they wanted to create a road e-bike, which enhances the ride, rather than dominating it. Just take a look at the Gain Carbon M20 e-road or the Gain D30 e-road to see how they right they've got this!
Everyone knows e-bikes are heavier than traditional bicycles. They have to be as they have to house the motor, the battery and associated control systems. Due to the power they provide, this extra weight is not an issue.
With their road e-bikes, Orbea have also produced a range of e-bikes which are ridiculously light.
At a mere 11.3 kg, the carbon frame Orbea Gain D30 or M20 road e-bikes are a revelation and will command the respect of every cycling purist who dares to try it on for size.
In some ways it can be said that the circle is now complete and all riders have come to see the clear advantages that e-bikes can offer. It will only be a matter of time – and not a long time at that – when the majority of all bikes sold will be e-bikes, because simply put, they make sense.