I can’t be quite certain why, but it seems like we’re in a whole new era of electric bikes. We’ve written about them before, and will continue to do so. It seems that designs have come a long way from trying to shove a small motor and battery pack onto a bike frame, and we’ve got stuff that purpose-built and looking more like a motorcycle than a bicycle. The latest, now going on Indiegogo, is the Ristretto 303.
To my eyes, the Ristretto 303 is quite a lovely machine. With the dual headlamps and fender up front, and then the long (not quite banana seat) saddle and dual-spring suspension in the back (along with another fender), you’ve got a nice bit of style coming at you. Of course, it’s still a bicycle (while still technically a motorbike, if you’re being pedantic), and you’ve got your feet resting on the pedals, and not foot pegs. By those pedals you’ve got the housing that packs the 3500W motor which allows you to hit speeds of 28 MPH (in street legal mode) and a fairly blistering 40 MPH in “race” mode. For a motorcycle, those speeds aren’t crazy, but in something as light (and narrow) as a bicycle, those speeds will feel plenty fast in my opinion.
So, why an electric bike? I see something like the Ristretto 303 coming in as something that might otherwise replace a small car (or even a motorcycle) for purposes of commuting or running errands. With the addition of the motor and battery pack, you can get to where you need to go without being soaked through with sweat. I’m all for a workout, but you don’t always want to have that heading into the office (particularly if there aren’t any shower facilities there).
The Ristretto 303 just hit Indiegogo yesterday, and it’s already blasted through it’s funding goals. Pricing comes in at $3,099 which is a discount off of the expected $3,920 MSRP. If you back one, you’ll get your choice of color, and then you should have yours showing up by October, just in time for some fall color rides. campaign page