• Biking Lake Garda

    Lake Garda in northern Italy may be a bit out of the way for the long-weekend, but highly recommended if you are anywhere nearby. It’s not far from Milan or

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  • Specialized Creo SL Expert EVO

    Bam! and they’ve done it again. Specialized has created a genre-busting ebike and done it incredibly well. They have engineered their own motor and battery system (Creo in Latin means

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  • The Beginners Guide to Buying an eMTB

    Outside of the main cities, eMTB is the hottest ticket in ebikes. If your goal is to be able to go up any mountain in sight (Queenstown), ride longer and

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  • Choosing an e-bike

    Your first e-bike is a big investment. Someone will probably say: “But you could have bought a car for that money!” So it’s worth getting it right. Also see “You

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Black ATB – the SUV trend continues

There are internet forums dedicated to Black helicopter sightings, and our whole nation whips itself into a frenzy over black jerseys and black caps, now here is the Black ATB to get behind. Black is the new home brand by Electrify, and the ATB is a mid drive all-terrain bike. Michael Tritt from Electrify explained it as the bike that

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Biking Lake Garda

Lake Garda in northern Italy may be a bit out of the way for the long-weekend, but highly recommended if you are anywhere nearby. It’s not far from Milan or Verona, and lies in the southern end of the Dolomites. Ski areas like Val di Sole — home to MTB World Cup races — and Mt Baldo are nearby. It

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Specialized Creo SL Expert EVO

Bam! and they’ve done it again. Specialized has created a genre-busting ebike and done it incredibly well. They have engineered their own motor and battery system (Creo in Latin means ‘create’). It is stealthily integrated and also nicely compatible with their Mission Control app, allowing infinite tune options. The clevers in Switzerland have added only 3.7kg including battery, allowing the

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The state of the women’s bike market with Liv

Liv is the women-specific sub-brand of Giant bicycles. I had the pleasure of catching up with Nikki Jan and Cassandrou Chou from Liv based in Taichung City, Taiwan. They were in Aotearoa to better understand our market, meeting dealers and Liv ambassadors around the country. We started with a passionate explainer from Nikki about why they have the Liv brand.

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KTM Macina Kapoho 2973

You may recognise KTM as an Austrian boutique motorcycle manufacturer, the sort that teenage boys of my generation had posters of in their bedrooms. The bike manufacturer shares these roots, but today is a separate business, still manufactured in Austria. The Kapoho is a burly eMTB featuring 160mm of fore and aft suspension, and in intentions is definitely not a

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Zurk Model X

I try to review bikes that are a bit different to provide some interest for you the reader (and for me the rider), so when Nelson from Zurk Bikes asked me to review one of his I thought “Heck, why not?” It sure looks different and I had been wondering what’s it all for. I was hoping for the Peter

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Electric Trikes

I was quite excited about doing a review on an e-trike, having seen a good few in Hawkes Bay and the fact that they seemed to be a good option for mobility impaired riders. The trike in question looked nice in red (reminded me of the trike that I had as a child and my kids did too) and was

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Specialized Turbo Como

The Como is Specialized’s ‘cruiser’ ebike, built on the same electric platform as the Vado and Levo, with frame geometry from the Roll. It is simple to use, friendly to ride and more versatile than you might think. There is no front suspension to worry about or maintain; instead the long curvy forks and balloon tyres soak up the chatter.

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Training for Tour of Northland

I have asserted before that riding an ebike regularly keeps you fit. It’s true, I am quite fit. But am I fit enough for a 4-day cycle race? That’s an interesting question… My Challenge I have entered BDO Tour of Northland, a 4-day stage race over 360km going Whangarei-Russell-Paihia-Opononi-Dargaville-Whangarei. Apparently it’s fun, but my bike won’t have a motor. Eeek!

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West Coast Wilderness Trail

The trail is part of the Nga Haerenga/NZ Great Rides network going between Greymouth in the North and Ross in the South, taking in Kumara, Hokitika and Cowboy Paradise in between. It has a diverse mix of trails, from roadside, coastal, gravel rd, tramline and even sections of singletrack. You can find more including places to stay on their website.

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Wisper Wildcat Carbon

High end bikes are almost all made from carbon fibre – not just for light weight – but because it gives the designers more flexibility to get exactly the ride characteristics they want. There is no reason why this shouldn’t apply to high-end ebikes too. In this case, it does lend lightness – it was noticeably lighter than the Levo

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Napier by ebike

One of the best ways to discover a destination is to take a bike tour, an ebike tour is even better. You can cover a lot more area. For around five years, Brian from Fishbike in Napier has been taking tourists out on bikes from his base on Marine Parade. When I last looked three years or so ago there

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Two years of commuting – costs and benefits

A year ago I wrote a retrospective. That first year involved lots of learning and discovery. The second year has been more of a ‘business as usual’ period, but I still enjoy every day as much. For me the benefits are fun, no frustration, fitness, friendliness (of other riders), freedom. Maybe financial too. Summary: f’ing good. Lately the bottom bracket and

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Chatting with Riese & Müller

While outside Aucklanders were rushing around in their cars in increasing numbers, getting frustrated with traffic, yelling at cyclists, and generally getting stressed, I was learning about the future… and that is eMobility. I met with Catrin and Timo visiting from Germany — who look after international markets for Riese & Müller. They were visiting Maurice from Electric Bike Team, their dealer in New Zealand. The company was

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Bottecchia Newton

When the Italians do the handling and the Germans do the electronics, you have it the right way around. Add in cycling brand history dating back to 1924 — including the fact that Greg Lemond won the 1989 Tour de France on a Bottecchia — mix in the model name Newton from the guy who invented gravity(*), and you’ve got

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Alec Tang’s ebike eventures

I spend a lot of time zipping around Auckland on two (self-powered) wheels.  I am a daily cycle commuter covering around 30km a day to and from work, doing an extra-long loop in the mornings to spend a bit more time in the saddle.  My weekends also generally involve at least one outing on a modern velocipede.  So what would

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ProUser Diamant eBike Rack

The ProUser Diamant is a high quality European rack that can handle ebikes (or any bikes for that matter). What separates high quality from the rest is its compactness, ease of mounting to the vehicle tow ball, built in lights and number plate holder, and all-round quality of the materials used. It can handle 60kg all-up. Two 25kg ebikes are

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Europeans continue to meddle with ebike regulations

The European Union styles itself as “The Masters of Regulation” and continue to over-regulate and under deliver on ebikes. In New Zealand, we are largely free of such political meddling and will come up with our own sensible approaches. I’ve often heard people say: “Why do we need our own regulations for ebikes? The Euros practically invented the ebike, make

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Scott e-Silence SE

There are not many Euro-spec 45km/h bikes available, but NZ importers are slowly waking up to the fact that commuters want speed, and that 25km/h is just too slow. This is evidenced by the number of dongled bikes being sold (a dongle tricks the bike into thinking it is going slower than it is, typically limiting speed at twice the

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Moustache Lundi Urban Explorer

This is a guest post by ElectricMeg. The Moustache Lundi (Monday) is intended to be a city bike; well engineered and more versatile than it looks, handling roads, paths and gravel with ease. From initial looks I thought that this would be a quirky bike that compromises for form over function, and dismissed it as a serious modern bike because

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Smartmotion Pacer GT Preview

I was lucky to be able to preview the new Pacer GT – an update to the Pacer with a mid drive motor, belt drive and Nuvinci continuously variable gearbox. The bike I rode is a prototype so details may change when it goes to production. The first batch are rolling out more-or-less as tested. Smartmotion explained they are looking

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What’s New in NZ ebikes

It looks to be interesting times in the ebike world with most manufacturers launching new models. I attended EV World recently where a few wholesalers were showing their wares, and a Specialized product launch. I’ll be covering these in some more detail with actual reviews including my now famous hill climbing mega test! Here are some impressions. Smartmotion – the

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Why we do what we do on our way

I don’t often get abused by motorists (thanks Auckland!) but it does happen, and I know there are frequently head shakes and tut tuts going on. If we can establish two things as fact: (a) the infrastructure we ride on is mostly not well designed for us, often hostile; and (b) the laws favour motorists and typically treat cyclists as

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Twin Coast Trail, Northland

This trail–part of Nga Haerenga–has been a long-time coming. The first sections opened in 2013, the final ones in early 2017. Wrangling over access slowed it all, but happily for us it’s all done now and quite successfully. Let me say that I haven’t ridden this on an ebike, and you probably don’t need to either. If you go from

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Specialized Turbo Vado 3.0 – The tech-savvy younger sister

The 3.0 version of the new Vado is the ‘City-tune’ version in the Vado range. That means it is optimised for range, assistance up hills and everything you need up to 32kph (20mph). It has been a while in gestation – around 2 years in development and 9 months since announcing to the world that Specialized’s European team were having a new baby, we now have one we can buy and ride.

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Thoughts on NZ ebike Legislation

I believe we deserve a better and more liberal regulatory framework for ebikes in New Zealand – one that perhaps leads the world in its progressiveness. My Bias Let me get it out there – I dislike slow ebikes on the road. They mean that you are forced into being a slow bicycle, even in situations where on a regular bicycle

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Reid Urban+: A great bike nobbled by its speed limit

The Reid Urban+ is a nicely put together ‘street’ bike featuring the Shimano STEPS drive system. It’s a quality-built bike with smooth welds on the main parts of the frame, a svelte grey colour scheme with subtle highlights and a nice parts selection. The geometry is ‘racy street’ bike (think NY City messenger) with rigid forks and fairly narrow handlebars – good

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Torque Sensor vs Cadence Sensor – which is better?

Ask almost anyone in ebike sales and they will tell you ‘torque sensors are more sophisticated/ more expensive/ more better’. It is partially true (i.e. not an overt lie) but it doesn’t mean that a bike with torque sensor is the best for your needs. Anyway, what’s the difference? A cadence sensor detects if you are pedalling, tells the controller, which then

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Ebikes of Vietnam

ElectricMeg and I recently spent a holiday in Vietnam, a country that was known for bicycles but is now well known for motorcycle chaos. What we did notice was the number of people riding ebikes and escooters. Mostly it is high school girls riding them, because you need to be 18 to get a scooter licence but anyone can ride

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Specialized Turbo

This is my bike. I love my bike. I bought it because it’s faster than everything else and because it doesn’t look like an ebike. Cyclists are weird like that. [Edit: this model is no longer made – you might still find one in a dealer or second hand. ] The first thing anyone who rides this bike feels is

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BH e-motion Evo 27.5

I rode this bike in Hamilton where ElectricMeg and I were working at the Mercury try an ebike days. Bikes International distribute a range of BH bikes mostly through the Bike Barn chain and Waikato/Online retailer Evolution Cycles. They are all geared rear hub designs and mostly with a battery integrated into the down tube. Painted in yellow for Mercury

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Mercury Hamilton Promo weekend

ElectricMeg and I spent the weekend in Hamilton as part of a promo that Mercury is doing around ebikes. The idea is to promote electric bikes as a good thing to do with electricity. I agree with that! Mercury has bought 20 ebikes – Smartmotion eCity and various BH bikes and are running events around the region so that people

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