Review: I tried a $6,000 electric bike intended to replace a car

Tech Trends

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – The increase in car break-ins in San Francisco has significantly made me rethink how I get around town.

I’ve always loved biking, but the hills and unexpected potholes in the city aren’t the easiest to navigate with my regular mountain bike.

As I try to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle, I’ve been turned on to electric bikes.

Civilized Cycles recently launched the Model 1 Ebike which is intended to replace your car, and I was lucky enough to try it out.

Civilized Cycles

“This is the only Ebike that brings the tuned mountain bike ride experience to the masses,” said Zachary Schieffelin, Founder and CEO of Civilized Cycles.

Schieffelin helped fuel the NYCVespa craze as the founder of Vespa Soho, the largest Vespa dealer in North America.

Model 1 looks like a premium bicycle, but it operates (what felt) like a magic carpet.

It’s the only bike in the world to feature an automated, self-leveling air suspension that adjusts to the weight of passengers while allowing the bike to glide over any terrain.

Model 1 can hit near 30 mph while carrying up to 400 lbs. It’s designed to seat two passengers and has a built-in trunk that can carry up to 50 lbs.

Civilized Cycles

There’s also an integrated brake light and turn signals. The powerful battery can last for 25 miles on a single charge.

The riding felt incredibly smooth, and I couldn’t feel any bumps. This made it much easier to focus on traffic and actually enjoy my surroundings.

“It’s very difficult for us to describe or communicate an experience. But universally, people who ride this bike, and part of our goal was to give you an actual air ride where you are not taking the punishment of the road,” Schieffelin said.

Although it’s pricey, the experience of riding it made it all worth it. I think it’s a great alternative to driving, especially for urban commuters.

The premium bike will retail for about $5,500 when it becomes available this fall.

You can also preorder it at CivilizedCycles with an early bird price of $4,499.

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