Hello!! And welcome to the first Electric Bicycle Company blog!
This is where we are going to be bringing you updates with anything happening here at Electric Bicycle Company and in the world of e-bikes. We want to keep on top of all things e-bike so that you guys don’t have to!
So expect to see some exclusive test rides and get the latest from the industry’s most innovative manufacturers. Not to mention a few general musings on our experiences riding, selling and flying the flag for electric bikes!
It’s been a long road for us to get to where we are, so to kick us off, I thought I’d let you know how we got here.
Sometime around mid 2008, my dad and I tried out an electric bike for the first time. Dad was convinced immediately and decided he wanted his own. I, on the other hand, was a little sceptical.
“Ok, well that was fun, but I already ride a bike everywhere” I explained.
This was true. I was just out of university (therefore I was skint), I hadn’t learnt how to drive and if I needed to get somewhere, I’d ride a conventional push bike. “You should be doing the same!” I scoffed at Dad. He kindly reminded me of his bad ankle that he busted while ice skating at my younger sisters birthday a few years earlier. This had stopped him from being able to ride a bike for more than 10 or 15 minutes at a time. “’Oh yeah,” I receded, “well, that’s fair enough”.
So Dad got an e-bike, and went everywhere on it. Literally…everywhere. During the week, he had substituted his car and used his e-bike for his 17mile round trip to work. Then at the weekends, he was notching up another 30 miles or so just for fun. Now, although I thought they were a lot of fun and I could see how great it had been for Dad, I still wasn’t totally convinced that they were going to common place in the future.
Then I got a job in Brixton. This was not close to me at all and it wasn’t ideal, but at the time, the job market wasn’t great and I reasoned with myself that a huge population of Londoners made a similar commute. It’s was a 30 mile round trip, 1 and a half hour drive (always longer in rush hour) and 1 hour and 15minutes each way on public transport (if there are no incidents). I cycled in a couple of times, but I struggled with doing a full day at work and then spending the best part of 3 hours cycling too (not to mention turning up to work super sweaty!) After using the tube and bus for a couple months, I was already deflated due to the commute. I felt it was really wearing me down.
I wondered if an e-bike would help. Then, I saw an opportunity. Dad went on holiday for a couple of weeks and I told him I’d “look after” his bike for him while he was gone. Surprisingly enough, I just wanted to try it out on my way to work and see if it was any better than the mundane monotony of my current commute. So I saddled up and as soon as I started off on a brisk morning, I knew almost instantly that I was converted. Not only was it more pleasant than public transport, I was actually enjoying it. Then there was the fact I was making record time and I could still feel that I was getting a good dose of exercise without having to expend all my energy before work. The sense of smugness I felt left an almost perma-grin slapped across my face.
So, after doing a few sums to figure out if I’d actually save money on travel (turns out I’d save a lot), I bought an electric bike almost instantly. Problem solved.
Myself and Dad had also become unofficial spokesmen for electric bicycles. Singing their praises to anyone who would listen. Unintentionally, we were doing some of the best market research we could by listening to people’s opinions and what they deemed pros and cons. We could see that our enthusiasm was rubbing off and people were buying bikes based on our recommendations. A light bulb went off. We realised that we could sell them and put our efforts into something we really believed in. So we did our homework, took a research trip to e-bike factories in the Far East and made connections with the best manufactures in the U.K. From there, we developed in to what we are today…Electric Bicycle Company.