Smart e-bikes are expensive?

Smart e-bikes are expensive?

Anyone who buys a decent e-bike is spending a lot of money. How expensive will the “iPhones” be among bicycles? Anyone who compares prices here wonders and asks: How can this be? I’ll talk about it in the weekend column.

Thanks to the confusion of the coronavirus and any travel warnings, I am currently and for the next few weeks in my old village house. But since I didn’t want to do without a “ride” on my bike for so long, I had to buy a bike. For fun, I also looked at any offers for e-bikes and found out about models and equipment – after all, the ride on an electric speedster can add to the joy. The uphill “turbo mode” in particular was a source of amusement when renting out on vacation. However, I already knew: I don’t really want to spend that much.

Smart e-bikes: the price surprise

Actually, because of course I also fell on the so-called “iPhones among e-bikes” – smart bicycles. Anyone who thinks they cost more than a normal electric bike is wrong. These wonderful things that can be controlled via app do not cost much more or are even cheaper than the competition from the bicycle construction kit. The VanMoof S3 from the Netherlands and the Cowboy 3 from Belgium stand out in particular. The smart bikes from the Benelux countries start at around 2,000 Euros. There is then not only smartphone control but also specially developed technology such as integrated lighting that does not look like “tinkered with”. Chic and not even expensive. Not yet.

A smart bike can be set up quickly:

VanMoof S3 & X3: This is how it is set up (manufacturer video)

The marketing trick à la China smartphone

Given the attractive prices, the providers of smart bikes cannot save themselves from placing orders – congratulations. However, this is also a sign of any future price increases, because why not just ask for more? In general, if you look at the service offered, you cannot avoid the suspicion that someone is buying the market and the customers here. We know the tactics from the smartphone industry. Companies like OnePlus or Xiaomi initially offered extremely inexpensive models – high-end at a budget price. In the meantime, however, there are already price adjustments and the era of mega bargains is over. Something tells me that it will be the same with smart e-bikes. An indication: the Belgians from Cowboy are charging 300 Euros more than the previous model. A trend that in the end will not stop at VanMoof and Co.

In summary: Smart e-bikes are currently not expensive, but prices will slowly rise. At some point, you have to earn money. If you are currently getting empty, the local specialist dealers are by the way, because you orient yourself towards Apple and Co. – means direct sales without detours and dealer margins. A development that not everyone will enjoy.

Note: The opinions expressed in this article represent the views of the author only and are not necessarily the viewpoint of the entire CGH editorial team.

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