Bicycle industry embraces easy riding aboard the e-bike

The future of bicycling rolled toward a clear trend this week, gaining speed throughout the 34th annual Interbike Exposition in Las Vegas with only a light push of the pedals.

Once aboard the electric bike, that’s all the effort it might take.

Imagine you’re riding a bike, come to a hill and slow down as you climb. The e-bike’s sensors can tell you’re struggling. All of a sudden it feels like you have a hand on your back, pushing while you barely peddle.

That’s the new rage in biking, though some traditionalists consider an electric motor cheating. But the industry, which has seen bicycle shops in the U.S. decrease from 5,000 to 4,000 over the last decade, sees the e-bike as a product that could reverse the trend.

Three years ago, the trade show had 10 to 12 companies that sold the e-bike. An entire section was dedicated to e-bikes for this show, and for the second consecutive year a test track gave people an opportunity to sample the product.

“In the last three years, it has really started to take off,” said Justin Gottlieb, director of communications for Interbike. “Overall, the bike industry has been flat to slightly declining and segments like road bikes have been down for quite a while. The bright spot is in the e-bike world. They have been tremendous in Europe and Asia are just starting to come to a head here.”

The expectation is that millennials will appreciate bikes that can go up to 28 mph, compared to the 20 mph they might reach on a traditional bike. The biggest market, however, may be baby boomers, many of whom have trouble riding bikes because of problems with their knees, hips, backs and other ailments. On an e-bike, someone can go 12 to 15 mph without peddling much at all.

It’s going to change the demographics, said Ray Verheist, director of the Electric Bike Association, a 1-year-old Las Vegas nonprofit that educates consumers about e-bikes. Forty percent of the association’s attendees at seven expos so far this year were between 45 and 65, he said. Many hadn’t ridden bikes in months or years.

“This bike allows them to get back into a recreational mode and it takes the hills out of the ride, which helps if they have a bad knee or hip,” Verheist said. “If you have an ailment, after an hour’s worth of riding that’s debilitating. Electric bikes will take that out of the equation and allow you to ride longer.”

Verheist said 60 percent of consumers want e-bikes for commuting, many living less than five miles from their job. They can do 20 mph without peddling hard and without sweating, he said.

Verheist said he knows residents of Seven Hills in Henderson who use cargo-style e-bikes that have room in back to strap in their children. Parents will drive a mile or so to take their children to the front door of the school. By car, they have to drop them off along the street, he said.

The average person on a consistent ride does 10 to 12 mph on a traditional bike; on an e-bike they average between 15 and 17 mph, Verheist said. If the e-bike is in its top mode, the rider can go 20 mph without a problem. The bikes, with full pedaling and in top mode, are limited to 28 mph by California state law, the industry standard followed. New York City has banned the bikes because of accidents involving businesses using them for deliveries.

The e-bikes aren’t cheap. Many start at $2,000. German manufacturer Haibike, which touts itself as the pioneer of the e-mountain bike, touts its most expensive model at $17,000.

The e-bike industry recently found a home in Las Vegas with Electric Cycles moving here from Arizona. The company, which has five employees, develops and manufactures conversion kits that turn traditional bikes to electric ones. The kits sell for $1,500 to $2,500, said Mitch Hallstrom, operations manager.

Las Vegas union members voting to authorize the right to strike
Thousands of Las Vegas union members voting Tuesday morning to authorize the right to strike. A “yes” vote would give the union negotiating committee the power to call a strike anytime after June 1 at the resorts that fail to reach an agreement. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Small businesses struggle to find qualified candidates
A 2018 survey found that over two-thirds of small businesses in Nevada find it somewhat to very difficult to recruit qualified candidates. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Nevada secretary of state website offers little protection against fraudulent business filings
Property developer Andy Pham tells how control of his business was easily seized by another person using the secretary of state website.
Caesars may be going solo in its marijuana policy
Several Southern Nevada casino companies aren’t following Caesars Entertainment’s lead on marijuana testing.
How much is the Lucky Dragon worth?
Less than a year-and-a-half after it opened, the Lucky Dragon was in bankruptcy.
Gyms and discount stores take over empty retail spaces
Grocery stores used to draw people to shopping centers. But many large retail spaces have been vacant since 2008. Discount stores like goodwill and gyms like EOS Fitness are filling those empty spaces, and helping to draw shoppers back in. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Funding source of Las Vegas stadium for the Raiders is sound, expert says
The stadium is funded in part by $750 million of room taxes, the biggest such tax subsidy ever for a professional sports stadium. Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and The Lincy Institute at UNLV, says that is a good use of public funds. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas needs light rail, expert says
Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and the Lincy Institute said he is afraid of a "congestion mobility crisis." Las Vegas needs a light rail system, he said, to accommodate the city's growing number of attractions. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Three takeaways from Wynn Resorts' Earnings Call
Matt Maddox came out swinging in his first earnings conference call as Wynn Resorts chief executive officer, boasting of record Las Vegas quarterly revenues and applicants lining up for work.
Star Wars VR Comes to Las Vegas
Sneak peak at the new "Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire" VR experience at the Grand Canal Shoppes.
Elaine Wynn continues her fight to change Wynn Resorts board
Elaine Wynn, the largest shareholder of Wynn Resorts Ltd., is seeking to kick a friend of her ex-husband Steve Wynn off the company’s board of directors. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Zillow is getting into house flipping in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Review-Journal real estate reporter Eli Segall says flipping houses has waned in popularity after the housing bubble burst.
Ellis Island Buys Mt. Charleston Lodge
Ellis Island, which operates a casino, brewery and hotel just off the Strip, purchased the Mt. Charleston Lodge in early April.
Casinos to be penalized for allowing drug-impaired customers to gamble
Nevada Gaming Commission Chairman Tony Alamo talks about an amendment making casinos subject to the same disciplinary standards of preventing people to gamble if impaired by drugs as they are for letting them play while intoxicated by alcohol.
Terrible Herbst to open large travel center in Southern Nevada
The 50,000-square-foot commercial travel center will include 96 fuel pumps and the third White Castle restaurant in Southern Nevada. Wade Tyler Millward reports.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Hooters owner talks about room upgrades at his hotel-casino
George Ruff, founder and senior principal of Trinity Hotel Investors L.L.C., owner of Hooters Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, talks about recent room upgrades at the hotel. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Passengers Discuss Allegiant Air
Allegiant Air passengers voice their views on the airline at McCarran International Airport on April 16, 2018. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Longtime Las Vegas attorney John Momot dies at age 74
Criminal defense attorney John Momot, who represented mob figures and even played himself in the movie “Casino,” has died.
Trump Slams Amazon for Not Paying Enough in Taxes
Trump Slams Amazon for Not Paying Enough in Taxes Trump tweeted his concerns about the company on Thursday. This isn't the first time Trump commented on the issues via Twitter. August 2017 December 2017 Amazon did hold back on paying state taxes in 1995, but the company has been routinely collecting state sales taxes since then. In 2016, the company's report from the Securities and Exchange Commission confirmed it paid $412 million in taxes.
David Copperfield in court after man injured during magic trick
The attorney for a British man who is suing illusionist David Copperfield said his client suffered serious injuries after being called on stage during Copperfield's show at MGM Grand.
eyecandylab CEO shows augmented reality during NAB
Robin Sho Moser, CEO and co-founder of eyecandylab gives an augmented reality demonstration at his booth during the National Association of Broadcaster Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Trends in access to capital for local black business owners
Denette Braud, owner of Braud’s Funnel Cake Cafe, talks about what owning her own business means to her.
Sir Richard Branson announces purchase of Hard Rock Hotel
Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, has acquired the Hard Rock Hotel with partners and plans to turn it into a Virgin-branded property by the end of 2019.
Calvary Christian Learning Academy, “There was no fair warning.”
Samantha O’Brien, whose three-year-old daughter attended the Calvary Christian Learning Academy daycare, found out Monday night when her daughter’s teacher called about the school closing.
Adobe unveils #HackTheBracket application for March Madness
Adobe unveiled their #HackTheBracket application at the Adobe Summit trade show at Sands Expo. People can use data from Adobe Analytics to make their bracket for March Madness. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Adidas Signs Yankees' Star Aaron Judge
Adidas Signs New York Yankees Star Aaron Judge The slugger is set to don a new set of stripes this season after signing with the apparel company. Aaron Judge Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The deal includes branding on his batting gloves and wristbands. Judge, the AL's reigning Rookie of the Year, was previously under contract with Under Armour since 2014. Judge won the American League Rookie of the Year award last season after setting an MLB record for most homers in a rookie season (52).
Esports athletes are sponsored, too
Meet Red Bull-sponsored professional esports player Daryl S. Lewis, better known by his in-game name Snake Eyez. Nicole Raz Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Bettor Investments turned into a bad bet
Bettor Investments formerly operated a Nevada-licensed entity betting operation. The company promised “conservative growth, profits and stability for our investors.” Matt Stuart, who ran the fund, shut it down in late 2016 and never made good on an agreement with shareholders.
Starbucks Will Give You $10 Million for a Better Cup Design
Starbucks Will Give You $10 Million for a Better Cup Design Get your thinking caps on because the company is looking for a new cup that's easier to recycle. The $10 million grant challenge sees Starbucks partnering with investor group Closed Loop Partners for the project. According to CNN Money, Aside from the new cup design challenge, Starbucks stated it will test a cup with an inner lining made from plant fibers to prevent hot liquid from leaking. Will you join the challenge for #Bettercups?
News Headlines
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like