In the past few years, electric bikes have made some surprising inroads in the bicycle industry. Between May 2017 and May 2018, e-bike sales increased by more than 80 percent and accounted for about 10 percent of all bicycle sales in the U.S. Soon, electric bikes could become even more popular as some major manufacturers begin producing e-bikes of their own.
General Motors, for example, just announced that they will start selling two electric bicycles in 2019.
The company has been designing the bikes at GM’s engineering and development center since 2015 and they’re nearly ready to hit the streets. It might come as a surprise to see a well-established vehicle manufacturer like GM getting involved in the world of bicycles, but it shouldn’t be much of a shock to anyone who’s familiar with the company’s early history.
Several of the companies that comprised the GM brand in the late 19th century actually got their start as bicycle companies. Additionally, Louis Chevrolet, who helped found the iconic GM Chevrolet brand in the early 1900s, was a well-respected bike racer in the late 1800s.
GM hasn’t revealed too much information about their electric bikes yet, but based on photos of the e-bikes that have been released, it appears that one of them will have a folding design. The bikes also appear to be powered by motors designed and built by GM. Several other automakers including BMW and Ford are also reportedly preparing to join GM by releasing e-bikes of their own in the near future.
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