Thursday, September 30, 2010

Understanding Shanghai Traffic: Lesson 4: Avoid Traffic - Take the E-bike! - Tripfilms

That's funny! :-)

Watch more travel videos at

Video Details

Uploaded: 09/29/2010
Filmed: August, 2010

When traffic gets a little too crazy in Shanghai (when is it not), just jump on your electric bike and ride like the wind! This video is dedicated to DiTraveling and her trusty companion Sparky (I think that last shot may be DiTraveling incognito in and judge for yourself.)

Understanding Shanghai Traffic: Lesson 4: Avoid Traffic - Take the E-bike! - Tripfilms

Shimano kit converts regular bikes into e-bikes - Springwise

Published on 16 September 2010 in Transportation

Much the way Sähköautot–Nyt — now known as eCars-Now — aims to facilitate the conversion of standard Toyota Corollas into electric vehicles, so Shimano has developed a kit to help convert traditional bicycles into electric ones.
The new STEPS (Shimano Total Electric Power System) component kit is designed to preserve the feeling of the traditional bike while adding the parts necessary for delivering electrical power. A 250W electric motor can take bikes up to 25km per hour, while a regenerative braking function focuses on recharging the 24V/4.0Ah lithium-ion battery, such as when riders travel downhill. The battery is removable for charging, requiring just an hour to juice up when empty, Shimano says; it can be recharged more than 3,000 times, or every day for roughly eight years. Electric switch buttons for riding mode, display mode and a light switch, meanwhile, are integrated into the 4-finger brake levers, and cables with slim 5mm plugs allow easy internal frame routing. A removable cycle computer, finally, offers a clear and quick overview of all e-bike functions, including riding mode, battery power, speed and odometer.
Pricing on the STEPS kit has not yet been announced, but it's expected to become available in December. Bike-minded retailers around the globe: one to offer eco-minded commuters near you...? (Related: Folding electric two-wheeler offers new take on urban cyclingLightweight electric bike targets urban commuters.)
Spotted by: Cecilia Biemann

Shimano kit converts regular bikes into e-bikes - Springwise

E-bikes take China's streets by storm

The Hindu : International : e-bikes take China's streets by storm

e-bikes take China's streets by storm Ananth Krishnan
They outnumber cars in cities
— Photo: Ananth Krishnan

Ubiquitous:e-bikes at a busy intersection in Beijing. The number of e-bikes has grown rapidly in China, from a few thousand a decade ago to 120 million today.

BEIJING: Last week, as the streets of Beijing were paralysed by a record 140 traffic jams, residents found themselves taking two or three hours to cover 10 km in their cars.Wang Meng, however, had no such problem. As Beijing's roads became sprawling parking lots, he zipped in and out of the rows of stranded cars as he sped to work on a battery-powered bike he bought for 1,000 yuan (about Rs. 6,700).

“There is no sense in owning a car in Beijing today,” he said with satisfaction and some smugness, watching agitated taxi-drivers yelling at each other in the middle of yet another endless gridlock on Beijing's Third Ring Road.

The electric bike revolution has taken China's streets by storm. Since ‘e-bikes' were given formal approval five years ago, their numbers have grown so fast that they now outnumber cars in many cities.With the fast-growing number of car-owners among China's middle-class increasingly straining the infrastructure, e-bikes are emerging as a cheap, practical and environment friendly solution for commuters.


Unlike the e-bikes marketed in the West and India, China's bikes are low-end and cost-effective. The cheapest range of e-bikes, which are essentially cycles fitted with a 12-36 volt battery, cost around 800 yuan (around Rs. 5,360), while a mid-range model costs twice as much.

How do e-bikes work? When the batteries are fully charged — they take around five hours to charge and can be plugged into a regular wall-socket at home — e-bikes can cover more than 40 km. Given that 40 per cent of all commutes in Beijing are less than 5 km, they have proven hugely popular. A decade ago, there were only a few thousand e-bikes in China. Today, by some estimates, there are 120 million.

Much of the explosion has taken place since 2006, when policies first began to support e-bikes, giving licences to more than 2,000 manufacturers.

“Only four years ago, were there hardly any electric bikes in Beijing, but today they are everywhere,” said Shi Zhao Hui, who owns the Huo Yan Niao (literally, Bird of Fire) e-bike store in Beijing. Could e-bikes catch on in India? Pawan Agarwal, director of Ebike India, which imports e-bikes from southern Zhejiang province and sells them in India, says there is a huge market potential, but not enough policy support.

Cycle lanes

One obstacle is the absence in many cities of cycle lanes, which local governments in China have been building with increasing vigour since the early 1990s. Another is high import duties. With 27 per cent, a 1,500-yuan (about Rs. 10,000) e-bike is sold for Rs.20,000 in India.

“The price in China is what people would expect here,” Mr. Agarwal says. The market is not large enough yet for bikes to be made locally. But with rising fuel costs, he believes more commuters in India will begin to consider the e-bike option.

The e-bike explosion in China has not been without its negatives. As the speed of e-bikes has grown with improved battery technology, from 20 km/h a decade ago to 45 km/h today, cyclists and pedestrians have voiced concerns at road safety.

The government last year put in place rules to register bikes whose speed exceeds 40 km/h and to reserve lanes for cyclists. However, with wide public opposition, they have not been enforced.

“Without cycle lanes, electric bikes do not make sense,” Mr. Shi said. “If they are unleashed on the roads,” he added, in a warning for urban planners in India, “they will definitely not help traffic congestion. They will only bring chaos,” he said.

UL Warns of Electric Bike Charger With Unauthorized UL Marks

NORTHBROOK, Ill., Sept. 29 /CHICAGOPRESSRELEASE.COM/ — Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is notifying consumers that the electric bike chargers identified below bear unauthorized UL Listing Marks. This product has not been evaluated by UL to the appropriate standards for safety for the United States and Canada and is not authorized to bear the UL Mark. It is unknown if these products comply with appropriate United States or Canadian safety requirements.
Name of Product:  
Number of units:  
Changzhou City Xintai Electric Fittings Mill
Changzhou City Xinbeiqu Electrons Zone 0519-5487263
Date of Manufacture:
Known to be Sold and Distributed at:
Daymak Company (Toronto)
130 Oakdale Rd.
Toronto, ON, M6N 1V9
Product Photographs and Identification: on the product: Photos available at
About Underwriters Laboratories
UL is an independent product safety certification organization that has been testing products and writing Standards for Safety for more than a century. UL evaluates more than 19,000 types of products, components, materials and systems for more than 66,000 manufacturers annually. In total, there are more than 20 billion UL Marks appearing on products worldwide each year. UL’s global family of companies and network of service providers includes 68 laboratory, testing and certification facilities serving customers in 102 countries. For more information, visit:
SOURCE Underwriters Laboratories