Felt Charges Up for 2015, Expands E-Bike Line

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If there’s anything currently more polarizing than the use of the term “Enduro,” it would probably be the rise of e-bikes. As electric bike technology continues to improve, it makes sense that the bikes are getting more popular. Pedal assist models like the Bosch equipped Felts offer power only when you pedal, meaning these aren’t basically electric motorcycles with a throttle. While certainly not for everyone, electric assist bikes have the potential to open cycling to those who never saw it as an option, whether for commuting or fitness.

Felt has sold e-bikes in Europe for 3 years now, and for 2015 the California based company is expanding their electronic offerings both stateside, and across the pond. Charge past the break for more…

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Officially names Felt Electric, the line of e-bikes will still be split between Europe and the US with slightly different options for each. New to the existing line of European e-bikes is the new Lebowsk-e and the Dual-e. We got a chance to check out the new Lebowsk-e at Sea Otter, which is an incredibly capable fat bike equipped with the Bosch mid-drive motor.

The Dual-e is an aptly named full suspension 29er which uses a linkage driven single pivot rather than the Felt Equilink system. The two bikes join the current offerings in the Verza-e, QX-e and Nine-3 ebikes.

For us here in the US, Felt will be selling the Lebowsk-e fat bike ($5699-5999) , Dual-e 125mm full suspension 29er ($4999-5499), and Nine-e hard tail 29er ($4499-4699) in addition to the new Sport-e ($3999-4199). Sold as a traditional frame, or a step thru, the lifestyle oriented Sport-e is a versatile city bike designed for commuting or cruising about town.

All of Felt’s e-bikes are equipped with the Bosch Mid drive motor and battery pack which will assist riders up to 25 kh/h 20mph/32kph.

feltelectric.com

Comments

Ilikeicedtea - 05/19/14 - 3:13pm

Please stop with the e-bikes. Not all e-bikes, per se, but the ones that are designed to be ridden on trails.

They are a detriment to mountain biking access, which in turn, is a detriment to your business.

Gunnstein - 05/19/14 - 3:25pm

@Ilikeicedtea Speak for yourself :) Greetings from the land where free access to the forrests and mountains everywhere is a right granted by law, regardless of the land owner’s wishes, including with non-motorised vehicles, and where pedelecs are, legally speaking, non-motorised. Not that I want an E-MTB, but I’m glad the option is there for those who do.

Matt F - 05/19/14 - 3:26pm

Oh come on, E-bike mountain bikes?!? That’s f-n’ ridiculous

vectorbug - 05/19/14 - 3:27pm

Hah. The group I was pacelining with last Thursday (24mph, not hammering but nothing to be ashamed of) was passed up by a commuter on Specialized’s e-bike. When he rang his bell to pass us I was expecting a pot bellied WASP on a Pinarello to challenge us to a sprint, only to be caught at the next light, like usual but the dude hauled ass away from us. Good for him I thought. One less car.

Ilikeicedtea - 05/19/14 - 4:30pm

@Gunnstein

Er, what?

Bikes with motors are legally non-motorized? Ok then…

wheel-addict - 05/19/14 - 4:44pm

I have no problem with motorized bikes, but please keep them off trails designed for mountain biking. Where I live, ‘e-bikes’, will almost certainly result in loss of trail access for mountain bikers.

Mindless - 05/19/14 - 4:45pm

Yes, bikes with motors under a certain power and top speed are legally non-motorized.

I would certainly get one once I am too old to ride a normal bike – and from what I understand, you can legally ride them in wilderness and elsewhere as it would be considered a mobility device under ADA rules.

Gunnstein - 05/19/14 - 5:18pm

@Ilikeicedtea Yes. The limit is 250W power, no assist above 25 km/h, and you have to pedal to get any assist. Within those limits it counts as non-motorised, at least concerning access to bike paths and the wilderness. It may not be entirely sane, but the rules are clear.

(A prejudiced person might say that the typical e-bike rider’s power output, pluss 250W, is still considerably less than what a normal MTB rider can do alone, and if so, damage to trails or scaring pedestrians is a non issue.)

Ilikeicedtea - 05/19/14 - 6:22pm

I can’t ride my bicycle in “The Wilderness” (per USFS regs), as more than half of the mountain range in my backyard is designated as such, and bicycles and hang glides are just not allowed.

You’re claiming, via ADA, that someone can get in there with a motorized mountain bike?

I’m highly dubious. Highly pissed off, if so.

Eric E. Strava - 05/19/14 - 6:44pm

Nice to see Felt has not given up its long battle against relevancy. eBikes for the commuter set are fine, and a good idea, even. But eBikes for the trail could ruin trail access in this country. It’s immoral.

WannaBeSTi - 05/19/14 - 7:10pm

I’m not worried about e-bikes being on the trails for one reason. If you’ve tried to ride an e-bike off road, you’ll soon realize the added weight from the batteries make the bike really difficult to maneuver.
Try adding a 10lb weight to your bike near the rear wheel and bunny hop over a small long…

Mindless - 05/19/14 - 7:13pm

@Ilikeicedtea:

http://www.americantrails.org/resources/accessible/OPDMD-DOJ-requirement-basic.html

From what I can parse from this, if I have “mobility disability”, I can ride “other power-driven mobility device” (like a Segway, or e-bike) anywhere on open public lands, unless it was specifically prohibited for listed reasons.

Mindless - 05/19/14 - 7:16pm

“Who is to be allowed to use the other power-driven mobility devices?

The DOJ rules say anyone who has a mobility disability. A person using an other power-driven mobility device may be asked to provide a “credible assurance” that the mobility device is required because of the person’s disability. That credible assurance can be showing a valid, State-issued, disability parking placard or card, or other State-issued proof of disability, or if the person doesn’t have any of those with them, they may simply say that the other power-driven mobility device is being used for a mobility disability. A person may not be asked if they have a disability or anything about their disability.”

dimples - 05/19/14 - 8:08pm

My mom got an e-bike last year so she can ride the 15 miles to her work without having to drive a car. How is this a bad thing? Why is everyone so entitled here? Nobody seems to be knocking bike parks and there is far more waste bringing you to the top, just so you can coast down. Get over your ego’s everyone, e-bikes make sense for some people.

Ilikeicedtea - 05/19/14 - 8:25pm

Does your mom ride on singletrack, dimples?

Rob - 05/19/14 - 8:57pm

Please make this a e-mtb zone.

04fuxake - 05/19/14 - 9:02pm

“those who never saw it as an option, whether for commuting or fitness”

How the f**k are you going to get fit if you rely on a motor to get yourself around?

Flip - 05/19/14 - 9:05pm

@dimples – Did you actually read any of the comments here before posting?

Rico - 05/19/14 - 9:32pm

I saw a guy riding a fast e-bike on the road the other day. He was buzzing along at like 30, riding one handed smoking a butt. He had on a james Dean type outfit with a popped collar. It was pretty funny and looked like fun to be honest. But I can imagine that guy getting totally stacked if even a bunny rabbit darted out in front of him, never mind a car. I think the manual effort and momentum, the understanding of physics you get from real riding, it gives you a better perspective on danger than e-bikes, motorcycles and so on. I am sure there will be some gnarly e-bike crashes soon.

Evolvo13 - 05/20/14 - 12:42am

I have an a-bike, and a b-bike set up in the pits in case I have a mechanical during the race. I feel sorry for anyone running their e-bike! Bad luck or maybe they need to hire a new mechanic? Someone give them a post race beer!

German - 05/20/14 - 1:04am

Wake up America ! Welcome to e Bikes ! It’s normal in Germany and it dosen’t hurt ,

RAMBIS - 05/20/14 - 1:12am

I always start with my e-bike. Then if I must I go to d, then the c, then the b,, then the a-bike. I seam to do better in the race doing it that way.

Bazz - 05/20/14 - 1:28am

Please stop featuring e-bikes. They are MOTOR bikes. I have already canceled one MTB mag subscription because they keep featuring them.

dimples - 05/20/14 - 9:07am

Ilikeicetea & Flip:

Yes, my mom rides a short 3 mile section of singletrack to connect her route and avoid a major throughway. She pedals all of the flats and uses the motor to help her on the ups due to heart issues.

magnuson - 05/20/14 - 9:37am

for all of those against E-bikes, guess what. They’re not for you! Don’t blame the bike for shutting down trail access. Blame the person who rides like a jerk. Guns don’t kill people, the people behind the trigger do, same as e-bikes. They don’t tear up the trail anymore than a regular bike, unless it one of the 1000Watt throttle e-bikes, which these are not!
Well done Felt on getting to the trend before anyone else in the US, and doing it right!

Jdog - 05/20/14 - 10:37am

E-bikes have the power to get more people on bikes. More people on bikes is a good thing. I haven’t ridden a e-bike on singletrack but the few I have ridden have been pretty fun on the street. They are coming. There is no stopping them . The Bosh motor is really neat. I welcome e-bikes as long as they are durable, light and efficient. When people figure out that they can do a 5 mile ride to work much faster on a bike and not get too sweaty.. they will buy these.

dutchburrito - 05/20/14 - 12:36pm

@ Dimples – Good for your mom. She knows what’s up. Down with metal commuter-coffins!

chasejj - 05/20/14 - 1:48pm

Have any of you ever seen a KTM Ebike?

http://www.ktm.com/us/freeride/freeride-e/highlights.html#.U3uVE01OXIU

I could seriously see shredding some of our local MTB trails on one of those and lovin it!

All the Moto haters….guess what? We are coming to a trail near you.

Von Kruiser - 05/20/14 - 3:08pm

I have lots of bikes from road to MTB to dirt jump… In fact just got back from riding the North Shore in BC to weeks ago (I’m a bike freak for sure). I just purchased an FS ebike since it is so damn fun to blast around. However I’m not going to ride it on our sacred off road trails. I use a mountain bike for single track. However I will use as transportation around town instead of a car. Here’s the cool part… urban assault riding on a full suspension ebike is insane fun. So instead of driving my car (transportation not cycling), I’ll ride my FS ebike and have flipping blast (again fun transportation instead of a car). People will not be riding these bikes off road and if they do, they will not be cyclist and would be nervous on single track. Quit worrying about a non-issue folks. Real off-road cyclists who rip single track would not be caught dead on an ebike… but an older or non-experienced person who likes riding offroad would do well on an MTB ebike. Doubt it will be on sick single track though. Just chillax.

chasejj - 05/20/14 - 4:41pm

VonK- You are very wrong. Old..yes. HC MTB rider …yes.
Put me on an Ebike like a KTM or some sufficiently powerful other model and single track will be the first ride. You are naïve to think otherwise.
I don’t see the beef anyway. I ride in Idaho with Moto bikes all the time . No issue.
It just shows the ridiculous elitism that exists in this activity. You may hate them but I can easily see they are coming. Some rich kid around me will be the first to get one and the race will be on.
The way I see it MTB riders will be forced to get onboard with these Ebikes as they things make no noise or emissions…hard to seriously classify them and harder to catch as well.
If the bitter old silver tails make a fuss about them they will include all of us, as they want you off the trail anyway. Don’t you already see that?

Von Kruiser - 05/20/14 - 6:44pm

Chasejj – Thanks for calling me naive. Obviously you have not ridden an ebike aggressively offroad correct? So the way I see is it, you’re the naive one with your opinions based on zero experience. Sounds like you’re lobbying on behalf of bitter old silver tails on the possibility of reckless rich kids attacking and pillaging the mountain bike trails. You continue to worry about this big future problem of ebikes ruining trail access because they sooooo much faster and dangerous then current mountain bikers… by your reasoning non-electric bikes are no comparison off road in handling and speed which is incorrect. Have fun taking a +50lbs ebike w/ power in tight single track at speed… they do not handle, have power/torque like a dirt bike so they do not tear up anything on the trail. Oh I forgot, you have no idea since you have not ridden one or have even seen one yet on tight single track… and if you do, it will be no big deal. All I was saying it’s not a problem since real MTB riders will not smashing up the trails on ebikes. They most likely will be on fire roads and they will not be offending anyone.

chasejj - 05/20/14 - 7:44pm

VK- I will stand by my naivete statement. Do you really think development of these machines will remain stagnant? They will be sufficiently powerful as the market demands them to be. I have ridden some of the Moto style versions and aside from the lack of range they are entirely adequate for single track use. I am awaiting for the KTM to be developed and marketed in the US and may pull the trigger soon. That is the highest performer that will be available soon as is all their products.

Von Kruiser - 05/20/14 - 9:48pm

Chasejj – What is moto style KTM? Are you talking about electric motocross? Yes, this is a motocross dirt bike, not an ebike. I have a full dirt bike and an electric bike… they obviously do not compare. If you’re riding a electric motocross on mtb trails then you pretty much hamming the trails… however this is not even close to an ebike. You’re just being sensationalist if you are comparing a motorcycle to a bicycle. So if we are talking about the theory of future development that ebikes will be super insane high performance dirt ripping machines and ban regular mountain bikers off trails then I’m pretty sure you are again being sensationalist and over reacting to what does not exist. However if you’re not talking about electric motocross then explain what moto style KTM is referring to.

chasejj - 05/21/14 - 11:36am

VK- Sensationalist?…..a little.

But the line between Ebicycles and Moto Ebikes is excruciatingly thin. I am not sure the people who manage access to trails will bother to discern the difference. You may be able to draw that line with a thicker pen, but I can see ahead that others will not.

To be honest E bicycles have almost zero appeal to me. If it has a motor Electric or not , I want the one with the most HP/Kw and best chassis so I can have fun on the trails with it. Going to the store is just fun , but not why I would buy one.

Kirk Bailey - 09/09/14 - 9:25pm

To all that really haven’t done your homework…. Felt’s bike is a pedal assist only. They have no throttle. And yes they have a motor but it will only work or engage when you pedal. Sounds like when snow boards came out and the ski slopes wouldn’t let them on the snow… hummmm it’s kinda changed now hasn’t it..??

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