In the electromobility sector, we are currently witnessing groundbreaking developments on a daily basis. However, these primarily concern the area of electric cars. Since experts believe that space-saving vehicles with two wheels should be the preferred option in the future, especially in cities, it is good to see something happening in the area of electric bicycles. Now the start-up Honbike has presented an exciting new model. The corresponding crowdfunding campaign started at the same time as the presentation. The great thing about it is that the practical vehicle with cardan shaft is also to be launched in Europe.
It could hardly be more practical
E-bikes with rich performance usually also mean a high weight and bulky design. Honbike wants to prove that this doesn’t have to be the case with its new crowdfunding campaign. The bike is impressive even at first glance. Among other things, this is due to the foldable design. The 20-inch wheels are supposed to be able to be stored in a space-saving way. One look at the compact design, which logically appears even smaller after folding, makes it clear why the model is already successfully on sale in Japan. Now the electric-powered bike is set to make its way to the U.S. and even to us in Europe.
Modern drive in the form of a cardan shaft
Classic bicycles rely on a chain drive. Although this is relatively uncomplicated in design, it also has its pitfalls. Finally, the chain tends to wear and also threatens not infrequently to fall out of the suspension. Belt drives are better. After all, they require little maintenance and last much longer than their chain counterparts.
Honbike, however, wants to go one step further with its e-bike and relies on a cardan shaft. The big advantage is said to lie in its practicality. After all, the cardan shaft drive form does not require any oil to run smoothly. This modern drive also outranks its two competitors in terms of maintenance. Manufacturer Honbike promises that the installed propshaft should be able to run 40,000 km before it needs its first service.
For now, “only” a crowdfunding project
Honbike clearly doesn’t want to take too many risks with its release in Western climes. Given its status as a start-up, one can certainly understand this. Accordingly, the small company is not launching its electric folding bike in the usual retail stores. Instead, it is to be financed via crowdfunding on the Indiegogo platform. If sales go well, Honbike would also like to aim for a release on the traditional bicycle market.
However, as a potential customer, you must then also expect a correspondingly higher price. In this country, we can probably also look forward to the newcomer among the e-bikes. After all, Honbike has also explicitly announced a version for the EU. In view of the very different regulations on the subject of e-bikes in contrast to the USA, this is quite reasonable.
Folding bikes massively lose their practicality at the latest when their weight turns out to be too high. After all, this massively stands in the way of uncomplicated transport. Of course, Honbike has also taken this into account when designing its folding bike. The e-bike weighs just 20.8 kg including the battery. This is a very good performance in view of the pleasantly powerful battery. It is said to have a capacity of 216 Wh and can tickle up to 40 km of range out of it.
Once the battery is empty, it can be recharged quite quickly. After just 3.5 hours, the battery should be able to be charged from 0 to 100 percent. The e-bike’s performance is not without its own either. Honbike relies on a front hub motor that offers 250 watts and is thus supposed to reach a top speed of 25 km/h. Mechanical disc brakes should then be able to bring the vehicle to a halt quickly and reliably.
Always everything view thanks to LCD screen
Honbike is also obviously not lukewarm when it comes to the technology of its foldable e-bike. The start-up has installed an LCD screen that provides the most important data. In addition to battery status and odometer, the current speed can also be read here. As with many other e-bikes, you should also be able to set how much the motor supports your riding on Honbike’s latest model. You should be able to choose between five different levels of power. So that one is always good to see, the folding bike offers both rear and front matching LEDs.
Conducive to road traffic is also the bell, which just like the mudguards are already part of the overall package and do not have to be purchased separately. As is common with modern folding bikes, not only the frame can be made more compact. On top of that, you should be able to fold in the pedals. Those who regularly want to transport their folding bike by train will be happy to have a suitable stand to keep it from falling over. The Honbike should also have one of these.
Many sensors for customized support
The five different support levels are regulated thanks to integrated sensors. These include a cadence sensor, which registers the pedal revolutions per minute. In addition, the folding bike has a torque sensor, which registers the strength of the pedal stroke. But that’s not all. Honbike also integrates a gyroscope. This is supposed to register whether you are riding up or down a hill. The motor’s support can be adjusted accordingly.
In the absence of suspension, Honbike’s folding bike is primarily intended for urban use. So anyone looking for an off-road bike is unlikely to find what they are looking for here. The first information is also convincing in terms of connectivity. It should be possible to establish a connection between the e-bike and the smartphone thanks to an app. This should enable unlocking the folding bike, for example. Conveniently, the bike can also be temporarily lent to someone else via the app.
Price and availability
Anyone interested in the folding bike from Honbike can strike via the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo. Here, the version for the EU is available for just under 1,200 euros. Especially compared to the planned later retail price, the offer is quite attractive. After all, Honbike wants to offer its folding bike on the conventional market at a price of about 2,620 euros. Those who order now should be able to take a seat on their new folding bike from Honbike as early as June of this year.