Anyone toying with the idea of getting an e-bike need not look further than the Super 73 from California’s Lithium Cycles, already fully funded on Kickstarter. We took the electric bicycle out on the streets of NYC to test the brand’s product claims and learned a few things along the way. The 1000-watt engine, monitored by a thumb throttle, can carry the bike up to 20mph on its own, especially on the flat city streets, but with some human pedaling power, speeds up to 35mph can be reached. That’s under the speeds required for a license, but more than enough power to make a ride much easier—especially useful after a long day at the office or a workout at the gym. All of this is monitored by an LCD screen. Further, the 4.25 inch wide tires mean the bike can handle trickier locations than city bike lanes. The additional features—a USB charging port, bottle opener, cup holder, rear lights built into the battery—make the experience that more functional.
The vintage-inspired steel frame also piqued our interest. According to founder Jon Akers, “You are used to seeing bicycles that are effectively a two triangle design. This is a trapezoid basically. It’s a design that’s existed with mini-bikes, but those combustion engines are much bigger and fill up all that space.” Further, he explains nostalgia factors in. “We are getting a lot of response from 45-year-olds who remember it from their childhood. Who knew people who had mini-bikes. I hear so much, ‘My uncle had one of those when I was growing up!’ But then we are also getting the 20-year-olds, bike commuters, who appreciate the [uncommon] vintage design.”
Score Super 73 online for $1,895 if you can pick it up in California, or $1,900 if you’d like it shipped to other states and select countries. Delivery is expected in October 2016 and eventually, retail pricing will be $3,000. Frames are available in 20 different color options.
Images courtesy of Lithium Cycles