back to article Electric two-wheelers are set to scoot past EVs in road race

Visit Asia's emerging megacities and you’ll quickly notice that scooters and motorbikes vastly outnumber cars. Before long these fleets of two-wheelers will become battery-powered, always-connected, semi-autonomous machines that offer an even more potent alternative to their four-wheeled rivals. The reasons powered two- …

  1. RockBurner

    Yet more data grabbing

    "You can actually do a lot with the consumer data, like track the riding behavior, basically understand where they are going and leverage a lot of data monetization, and then do targeted campaigns."

    Oh, do please "go away", and take all of those ideas with you.

    1. Giles C Silver badge

      Re: Yet more data grabbing

      Nobody wants to sell you a product any more - just a means to advertise and get you to buy more products.

      I am glad that when I go and by a hammer there aren't options for cloud connected hammers - yet...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Yet more data grabbing

        I am glad that when I go and by a hammer there aren't options for cloud connected hammers - yet...

        Sad Thor noises

        (I'll be here all week; try the Cloud Nine)

    2. MrXonTR

      Re: Yet more data grabbing

      Mobile phones with preinstalled trackers tend to be cheaper because the data snakes effectively subsidise production. The cheapest phone tends to be most popular. It's clearly a winning strategy for Samsung. Now imagine using the same tactic to introduce a new class of vehicle to developing countries, all that creepy stalking could be a net positive, for the Earth that is.

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: Yet more data grabbing

        "The cheapest phone tends to be most popular."

        Yet, the people that mainly buy the cheapest phones are the ones with the least amount of discretionary cash.

  2. drand

    Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

    Modern cars care almost undriveable thanks to awful HMI (looking at you Golf mk8), the assist systems are not up to scratch, and they reset all your settings when there's a software update (VAG again). Bikes nowadays are coming with more and more gadgets they don't need. Just stop it. I don't want to be 'connected' on the bike.

    It's not really about navigation, or even about improving the riding experience, it's about collecting data and making money.

    1. Little Mouse

      Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

      I stopped reading at the point where smartphone integration got touted as a good thing.

      Seriously?

      You spend x-thousand on an e-bike/e-scooter, only to cripple it with a piece of shiny that's guaranteed to be obsolete within a year or two? And that's supposed to be a desirable feature?

      1. unimaginative Silver badge
        Flame

        Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

        Yes, it is a desirable feature - to the people who want you to sell you a new one.

        You EOL the software, it becomes unsafe to use the things, so people have to buy a new one.

        This is the most effective planned obsolescence ever. It is not just e-bikes and e-scooters costing thousands. It is cars costing tens of thousands (add zeros on the end for expensive ones) - and even more so given the stricter safety requirements in most places.

        Either that, or they will offer updates only if you subscribe to them (at least once the car is a few years old). Your car is five old? That will be a few grand a year for updates, or you have to scrap it, OK?

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

          "You EOL the software, it becomes unsafe to use the things"

          Or the manufacturer's consortium lobby the government for new safety requirements and older bikes will wind up being banned since they're too old to for updating as the parts must be supplied by the maker to meet the new regulations. The bikes will still be just as safe to use as they were when they first sold. Maybe the new ones are better or maybe they are only better in a very particular off-nominal event.

          1. Crypto Monad Silver badge

            Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

            Maybe. However, old cars which were manufactured without seatbelts, or even indicators, are still legal without modification.

            There are some things on the road which almost certainly wouldn't be allowed if they were introduced today. Motorbike-sidecar combinations and horses are two that spring to mind.

            1. MachDiamond Silver badge

              Re: Please keep this shit away from motorbikes

              "Maybe. However, old cars which were manufactured without seatbelts, or even indicators, are still legal without modification."

              Cars without seatbelts or indicators are collector's items now. With only a few of those still on the road and often what's left only being driven on special occasions, the likelihood of injury normalized by miles driven is close to zero.

  3. pdh

    What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

    Better acceleration for sure, and maybe more storage (bigger saddlebags). And higher top speed, but that may not be relevant in a dense urban environment -- electric bicycles that I've seen typically top out between 25 and 30 mph, which may be fast enough in the city. So really just better acceleration, right? Am I missing anything else?

    1. Giles C Silver badge

      Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

      No need to pedal so if you are going more than a few miles it is easier.

      I remember seeing one system where all the batteries where the same type and you basically dropped a battery off for charging and picked up a fully charged one from a kiosk on the roadside (obviously you had to pay) but it saved charging at home.

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        " but it saved charging at home."

        We may be slow but we sure are expensive.

        Charging at home isn't a negative. I see it as an advantage for all electric mobility. I'd hate to arrive at the kiosk to find there are no batteries charged up, the ones that are show much reduced capacity or appear to be very beat up. The kiosk slots might not even show the health of the battery so it could be easy to get a duff cell and wind up pushing or pedaling the bike when it goes flat prematurely.

        1. Sampler

          Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

          Charging at home isn't a negative.

          Tell that to the people whose homes burned down due to faulty batteries..

    2. JimC

      Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

      Better brakes.

      1. pdh

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        Dual disk brakes are common on eBikes; they're capable of very very quick stops. And eBikes are much lighter than these eMotorcycles so stopping requires less force.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        Yeah, you could put the brembos from a triumph on an e bike, you will go over the front wheel. And the dinky pistons and disks don't hold a candle.

        Other things you get are proper road tires(or tyres, your preference), suspension that was intended to operate as speeds over 20 mph, blinkers that make it less likely people will kill you, a frame that lets you corner at speed without dying, and a saddle instead of a bicycle seat.

        All for about the same money as what they want for a mid line US market e-bike. At least if we are talking the reasonable ones available from overseas not the Tech-Bro suicide machine race bikes or 800lb couches on two wheels the insist on dumping on the US market. That said, I'd rather ride an electric bicycle, than a scooter of any variety, the suspension and wheel sizes to not favor keeping a rider in the saddle and the world wide accident statistics back that up.

        Speed and range may be nice, but they come at a cost of extra weight and charge time, so an ideal commuter bike will probably weight just a bit more than it's rider. That said I already have a Class M license endorsement, so there isn't a learning curve or a bunch of money for me to move up to a real vehicle with a license plate.

        I will close with the biggest things ebikes don't have that my motorcyle needs. Insurance and registration fees. So as much as I like a motorcycle, if you can get a reasonably priced e-bike with good brakes, it may still be the best price trade off.

    3. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

      So really just better acceleration, right? Am I missing anything else?

      Mostly the use case. Also, if a bicycle is really the best solution. There are pros, ie they're easier to fit paniers on and carry more stuff. Cons are they take up more space than an e-scooter.

      I'm increasingly tempted to buy one, instead of just tripping over all the rental scooters and bikes that get left strewn across the local footpaths. Most of my trips are <2 miles and I don't need to do any massive family shops. So pretty much every trip is fine with just a backpack or man-bag. Downside is really just lack of storage, ie secure bike or scooter racks at destinations. The train station has some bike racks, most retailers don't. Charge points would be nice, but not entirely necessary as they're much simpler to charge at home than an e-car would be.

      So I think there's still a lot of potential, with some probably simple tweaks..

      1) Make a hole in the e-scooter you can pass a chain/shackle through. Most aren't exactly convenient to lock up to <something>

      2) Make a folding e-scooter. Dunno if Brompton already has one, but thinking something more affordable.

      3) Combine this with gyros, and rental e-scooters could be summoned back to a home base, especially if they auto-folded. Would perhaps make for an even more interesting pavement hazard though.

      Just having a folding one would probably be the biggest benefit because it'd make it take up a lot less space when being stored or charged. Assuming they don't catch fire, of course..

      1. 897241021271418289475167044396734464892349863592355648549963125148587659264921474689457046465304467

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        > Just having a folding one would probably be the biggest benefit because it'd make it take up a lot less space when being stored or charged.

        It's easy to assemble a folding ebike - I did, using a UK legal 250W kit and a folding Dahon.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5cLAO47ADA

        ...that kit featured isn't legal, because it's has a 750W motor, and I put the battery on the rear rack instead of the middle, for easy folding. Takes under 2 hours to install... I get about 43 totally effort free miles over mixed terrain from the 19.2Ah battery, I'd get much more than that if I put some effort in. There's no hill it can't conquer. The law doesn't restrict how many amps you can use, just says that the motor must be rated by the manufacturer at 250W... The controller on mine is limited by (user changeable) firmware at 15A, and that gets my bike up to 22mph when derestricted. With controller set to 20A, and with a larger front chainring, it would go faster than that easily. Spare parts are plentiful and cheap for Bafang BBS01B, will be for years too. The batteries are generic, with no proprietary comms.

        > Assuming they don't catch fire, of course..

        If you don't use throttle and expect a cheap inadequate battery containing Chinese cells to do the job of providing high amps continuously, it won't.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Only downside...

          Folding bikes are eye-wateringly expensive. Electric folding e-bikes are as expensive as a good used motorcycle.

          Yes they are small but at least 3x-10x past a price that the extra manufacturing costs justifiy. Great as yet another passive-abusive flex like a 20k watch or 500 for a pair of bluejeans, but it isn't going to make the world a better place. We need sub 750 electric bicycles like they have overseas.

          I walked into a skate shop for the first time in 20 years, and walked right out when I saw the cheapest board they were selling would be close to 500 out the door. Bought a POS walmart board and threw new bearings on it. The bearings cost almost as much as the board, but I know have a adequate way to cover the 4 blocks from the parking structure to the basement while our campus is upgrading it's onsite parking. It also fits under my desk.

          But sound's like a nice ride you put together. It'd get stolen the first time I left in an unlocked room in my neck of the woods, but plenty of people here would use them if they were available for a more modest price.

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        "The train station has some bike racks, most retailers don't. "

        I'd want a bike locker where the whole bike is protected. Just having a hole to put a chain through means at some point there will be a bunch of chain rash from where the bike has been locked up. If you are traveling with panniers attached, a locker secures those too along with preventing people from nicking parts. Big retailers could have some lockers or a high street could have a few locker depots strategically placed so getting to the shops isn't much a walk. The lockers could have meters with a lock or a meter where you'd supply your own lock so a location doesn't have to maintain the locks, but can still charge a small fee to offset the cost of the lockers and their upkeep. The meters can also monitor how long they've been locked up so they aren't getting used by people long term.

      3. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        "3) Combine this with gyros, and rental e-scooters could be summoned back to a home base, especially if they auto-folded. Would perhaps make for an even more interesting pavement hazard though."

        Even easier is to add a charge to somebodies bill if they don't return the scooter/bike to a designated rack. If they just leave it lying somewhere, £30. Do it twice and person is also banned from renting for a month in addition to the charge. Third offense is a year ban, etc. If a person disputes the charge, the payment method/account they used is banned.

    4. lamp

      Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

      A higher price

    5. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

      Looking at the Weel video, just another opportunity for a naff design school concept bike. Which (naturally) doesn’t have the conventional attachment points or dimensions so no opportunity to utilise a the vast market in bicycle accessories such as planners, racks etc. because that would ruin the “design aesthetics”…

      Given the brief: a single person lightweight transporter capable of up to 20 miles that can be mass produced, and the massive amounts of experience in designing bicycle and mopeds/scooters I’m a little surprised at the amount of rubbish being offered.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What do these give you that an electric bicycle does not?

        +1 for the rubbish being offered part. Overpriced rubbish or outrageously expensive and over-styled with no standard parts. Or a 150lb version of a razor kick scooter.

        None of which can keep up with city traffic without installing tank trap.. I mean "road calming" devices that occasional kill people and cause permanent traffic.

  4. steelpillow Silver badge
    Boffin

    Lesson from history

    Back in 1920, the Gloster Aircraft Co introduced a luxury motor scooter called the Unibus. It had many features of the motor car - drive shaft, gearbox, metal floor pan and so on. In fact it cost nearly as much as a small car. Sales were pathetic and it did not last long.

    Roll forward a century to a new generation of smart e-bikes hung about with bells and whistles and small-car price tags. That'll go down well, ri-iii-ii-i ... oh.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Lesson from history

      Not sure why you got the downvotes. It seems to me that electric bikes equivalent to proper motorbikes, mopeds and/or scooters are an ideal way to go with electrification and I'm wondering why they've not already gone mainstream/mass market, especially in the Asian countries mentioned in the article. It seems like a no-brainer to test and develop the power train technology on a smaller and cheaper scale than with cars. The whole "connected" and "self-driving" stuff is superfluous to the requirements of the vehicle, things which can be added at a later date when the tech has matured. Currently, the few electric motorbikes all seem to be high end, large, expensive things that few people seem to want and, in the markets referenced in the article, unaffordable. Maybe what the world actually wants is the equivalent of a Honda 125 with an electric motor in the hub of the rear wheel, batteries where the engine, gearbox and fuel tank currently sit and the option to add "power panniers" for extra range. No connectivity, no autonomy, not even self-balancing unless it can be done cheaply. Just simple, basic and easy to produce in numbers. The tech even already exists. Just scale up the current "throwaway" e-scooters that are clogging up pavements the world over!

      1. LybsterRoy Silver badge

        Re: Lesson from history

        To all those who think these are a good idea I would like to point out that in the UK we have this strange stuff called RAIN. Most cars are specifically designed to keep the RAIN outside.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: Lesson from history

          Cars insulate you from the weather, carry large heavy and sizeable loads, and can carry several people, as well as providing some protection from impacts and people of criminal intent.

          A friend of mine with a young family died at the weekend, having suffered unfortunate coincidence of circumstances on his motorcycle. I’m really looking at mine these days and considering if I really want to use it any more. Those poor kids.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Lesson from history

            Really sorry to hear that. I drive a lot and try to always be hyper-aware of bikers.

          2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: Lesson from history

            It's almost as if cars and motorcycles address different use cases.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Yes, and you can have both, it's not an either or proposition.

              I can ride (something) in to work most of the year. The rain ups the stakes, and you have to ditch the rain gear when you get to work, but it's the heat that makes an e-bike scooter no fun most of the year. I'd have to take a second shower at work and the battery would eat itself before the season turned.

              That said the better solution is to stop making most of us go into an office.

              1. MarkTriumphant

                Re: Yes, and you can have both, it's not an either or proposition.

                Why would you have to have a second shower? Surely the solution is only to shower once you get to work. No need for the "usual" shower at all. That is what I used to do when I cycled to work.

          3. Pete Sdev Bronze badge

            Re: Lesson from history

            <quote>Cars insulate you from the weather, carry large heavy and sizeable loads, and can carry several people</quote>

            All true. However, 99% of the cars stuck in traffic that I cycle past on the way to and back from work seem to have only one person in, i.e. the driver. Nor do they seem to be carrying any load. Which is terribly inefficient. Clive Sinclair had some right ideas about the future of transport if you ask me.

            I also like the expression "there's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing". For the record, I commute with the bike for 12 months of the year.

          4. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

            Re: Lesson from history

            A house is even better at all the you mentin and it also isnt a prison like a car. Most car trips are a waste of time, eg commuting to the work office when you could have saved that time, pollution by working from home.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Lesson from history

          "To all those who think these are a good idea I would like to point out that in the UK we have this strange stuff called RAIN. Most cars are specifically designed to keep the RAIN outside."

          I did try to emphasise the geographical location where it would be a good idea as per the article. There are towns and cities across Asia where motorbikes/scooters/mopeds are the standard mode of transport for millions of people commuting, delivering, even taxiing etc within those towns and cities and immediate surroundings. I would imagine few of those millions doing enough miles to make range a significant issue :-)

        3. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: Lesson from history

          "To all those who think these are a good idea I would like to point out that in the UK we have this strange stuff called RAIN."

          There is also something outside the UK known as SUN which can sometimes lead to an effect known as HOT outside. Could be a foreign concept to some, but it happens.

          Don't look for a sliver-bullet drop in replacement. If you can offset a bunch of your car usage on days where it's not raining and it's not blistering hot making you arrive at work or the shops drenched in sweat, yuck. Wet from a bit of rain isn't yuck. From time to time I rent a truck to move things if it's cost effective, but there's no point in my having my own full size pickup and small pickups are a thing of the past and very expensive if one can be found on the used market in good condition. An eBike isn't a good fit for me. The distances are too far and I mostly do bigger shops when I'm out rather than lots of runs for just a few things.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Lesson from history

            "An eBike isn't a good fit for me."

            ...and don't forget, I'm talking about EV equivalents of everything from a basic Honda 50 moped up to a Harley hauling a trailer or with a sidecar fitted, not just a standard pedal cycle with electric assist, which is what most people envision when you say "eBike" :-) Something for everyone :-)

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Lesson from history

          Entirely doable, a half decent bike will easily cope with Rain and Snow. I used to ride a lot and I found that the main enemies are ice and wind.

          There is no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing - Alfred Wainwright

        5. Allan George Dyer

          Re: Lesson from history

          Many of those Asian cities where motorbikes are so popular also have weather that really deserves the capitalisation. The riders wait out the worst of the monsoon RAIN under bridges and flyovers.

        6. Tom 7

          Re: Lesson from history

          At least with rain you have a chance of hearing them coming. The death rate from these things will make the IoM TT look like a picnic!

        7. Jan 0 Silver badge

          Re: Lesson from history

          RAIN: when you get out of your car you will need rainwear. On a Motorbike you just wear it for the whole journey.

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: Lesson from history

        "Maybe what the world actually wants is the equivalent of a Honda 125"

        Something more like a Trail 90. Even a 125cc is a pretty large motor for an urban scooter. A big complaint with the scooters that companies have littered cities with have been collisions with people. An even more powerful bike would be an even bigger menace. High acceleration is fun, but not a requirement for a motorbike to be useful.

        For many, super basic transportation is first and foremost. All of the 'features' are just added weight and cost. If the makers could look back at the Ford Model T factory, maybe it would give them ideas on how to optimize production without needing to add spyware to support the sales price. Henry Ford went too far with the Model T assembly line and specialized so much that it wasn't adaptable to new models or variants. I'm guessing there wasn't any thinking that they'd want to build anything at that factory or that car models would change very frequently. That approach might be valid for an eBike with the outcome of a really high build rate and low build cost.

  5. xyz Silver badge

    Except England obviously

    Everywhere I go on the planet there's 2 wheeled e-things in the cities being "driven" by nutters. But AFAIK, ol' brexitland does not look kindly to losing rail revenue by allowing assorted unwashed to go zinging about the place, so I can't see the 21st century arriving soon in the land of warm beer and "spring" turnips.

    Also, what is fun on a sunny day in Barcelona is a right PITA on a wet Wednesday in Mile End.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Except England obviously

      There are no rental scooters in these parts, and that's the way we like it.

      In fact I don't recall ever seeing any electric scooters at all around here. A few of the ICE sort, mostly classics – old Vespas or the like. (I have no objection to Vespas, or even to privately-owned electric scooters, I suppose, as long as the users obey traffic laws.)

  6. mark l 2 Silver badge

    "BMW offers a smartphone cradle that brings navigation to the cockpit. Apple, however, has warned the vibrations produced by the German manufacturer's machines can damage its iPhone."

    So does this mean Apple are going to slip into its T&Cs that any damage to an iPhone from using it on a cradle on a scooter/bike will not be repaired under warranty? As if not then they may want to re-evaluate their phone designs to stop damaging from happening from vibrations.

    1. DJO Silver badge

      ...they may want to re-evaluate their phone designs to stop damaging from happening from vibrations

      They well might. Or, just speculating here, they might develop a vibration sensor instead. Actually the existing accelerometer, gyroscope, linear acceleration sensor and rotation vector sensor between them could do the job a treat so a little firmware update and repairs are ruled out if the phone was subjected to "excessive" vibration.

      1. DS999 Silver badge

        It is exactly those MEMs devices that sense acceleration etc. that can be damaged by prolonged vibration.

    2. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Almost all of that vibration comes from the internal combustion engine. Motorbikes rev high and are usually one or two cylinders.

      So it's not a problem on an electric motorbike.

  7. Steve Button Silver badge

    Where's the power coming from?

    Same as for cars and heat pumps. You're gonna need the electricity from somewhere, and in the middle of December when the wind ain't blowin' that can only come from nuclear (or fossil fuels).

    So, we need to build more nuclear. LOTS more nuclear. (and then you really don't need all the windmills any more - and there isn't enough copper and cobalt on the planet to make the things anyway, plus it will all need to be rebuilt in 40 years or so, so you will need all that copper and cobalt + other metals AGAIN).

    1. rafff

      Re: Where's the power coming from?

      "in the middle of December when the wind ain't blowin'"

      As any sailor will tell you, the wind is much better in winter than in summer. Now if you'd said "in the middle of August when the wind ain't blowin' " ....

      1. Steve Button Silver badge

        Re: Where's the power coming from?

        You can easily get a 2 or three week period in December when the wind hardly blows. I know generally you get more storms in the Winter, but there are definitely periods when you get very little wind in December. And if you are relying on wind and solar during those times, you are completely screwed.

        Also, when you get Autumn and Spring storms it can often be too windy for the turbines, and they have to shut down. Again, not ideal.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: Where's the power coming from?

          When wind isn’t blowing in a particular place it will be blowing somewhere else. Power is transmitted on a grid, so you don’t even know where it comes from.

          If my nearest power station is offline for any reason, I won’t know because the electricity can be generated elsewhere.

          So “the wind doesn’t blow for a couple of weeks” is a very parochial statement.

          1. Richard 12 Silver badge

            Re: Where's the power coming from?

            Full-UK doldrums of a week or more happen quite often. Equally, storms often mean the turbines must be shut down and feathered to prevent them from being destroyed.

            The international interconnects are very expensive to build, so are currently quite small.

    2. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

      Re: Where's the power coming from?

      Another mental giant.

      There are many examples where wind is used to for example pump water back up stream behind a dam, so the dam serves as a battery for later release.

      1. Richard 12 Silver badge

        Re: Where's the power coming from?

        The UK would need to flood pretty much the entirety of Scotland to meet demand that way.

        While those currently around Westminster might find that idea attractive, most people don't consider that to be an appropriate "solution".

        The UK has in fact already built pumped storage pretty much everywhere it's possible.

        1. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

          Re: Where's the power coming from?

          Except thats not what i said, i simply stated there are many options, unlike our original post that believes wind must be constantly blowing to get power from a system that includes wind as its source.

          Secondly most people are idiots, need i give more examples than our friend from the original post ? Perhaps i can refer you to vaping or Kim K, religion, Muskites ?

          1. Richard 12 Silver badge

            Re: Where's the power coming from?

            That's exactly what you said.

            The OP has some idea of the actual scale of the problem.

            Sadly it is very clear that our politicians - and greenies - do not have even a vague understanding of how much energy is needed to meet our current needs.

            The only even vaguely plausible option is to build a LOT of nuclear plants. We need to double generation capacity simply to cover transport.

            Then double it again to cover heating.

            1. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

              Re: Where's the power coming from?

              The original post questioned where does one get power when theres no wind. Thats only means one thing, there is nothing there that mentions there are other sources of power.

            2. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

              Re: Where's the power coming from?

              A significant portion of energy is for commuting.

              If half the workforce stops driving and catching trains for hours a day, thats a big chunk of wasted energy saved.

              Therea re plenty of options problem is people are fools.

              Millions of people commuting to an office for hours a day to sit at a computer when they could do the same at home is pathetic.

  8. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Coat

    That Yamaha...

    seems to need an awful lot of oil filters for an electric motor!

  9. A. Coatsworth Silver badge
    Big Brother

    The future does suck

    Why "electric" can't simply mean better range or more power? Instead it always means slurping every scrap of data about the customers marks. It is not sufficient that the makers charge $$$ for the machines themselves. They need to monetize every movement andaction of the people.

    And under the guise of "intelligent", people swallow it. It is beyond ridiculous. And this is not just me being a luddite. In all seriousness how much of this hyperconnection actually helps the users, and how much is there only to exctract more profit out of the people?

    1. devin3782

      I think not wanting the data slurping and being concerned about the data use means you're oposite of a luddite

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "In all seriousness how much of this hyperconnection actually helps the users, and how much is there only to exctract more profit out of the people?"

      When "things" don't work at all because some non-essential part has failed is when you know you are being screwed over. The most obvious to us El Reg readers is the multi-function printer where the scanner stops working when the ink/toner runs out. Yeah, came across this AGAIN on a customer site just yesterday.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Also, when "things" don't work at all because some essential part has failed because it was designed to break and not be replaceable… HP Officejet multi-function printers being just one such example…

  10. Eclectic Man Silver badge
    Flame

    FIRE!!!

    https://twitter.com/LondonFire/status/1659096364414894080?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet

    OK, so it is an e-scooter, but, well, crikey!

    Flame icon, obvs.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mobile auto incendiary devices

    Let’s fill crowded cities with them.

    Forget the risk, just look at all the lovely data!

    1. David 132 Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Mobile auto incendiary devices

      Well yes, but now when the lithium battery on your e-bike combusts and burns your house down, you will instantly get micro-targeted adverts for fire extinguishers, smoke detectors... and of course, a new e-bike.

      Isn't the 21st century great?

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Mobile auto incendiary devices

        This is why I don’t keep my motorcycle in my house. It has a tank full of petrol.

  12. jollyboyspecial

    "Apple, however, has warned the vibrations produced by the German manufacturer's machines can damage its iPhone"

    That iPhones apparently can't cope with the vibrations from two wheelers (powered or otherwise) show what a joke Apple are. Their advertising shows people enjoying an "active lifestyle" with their iProducts, but apparently not so active that it involves two wheeled vehicles.

  13. jollyboyspecial

    The article seems to conflate motorcycles and scooters into a single group of PTWs. Which is a mistake.

    It must be over thirty years ago I first heard the term PTW bandied about. It was used by some British industry group as some kind of sales/political pitch. The idea was it seems to try to convince the buying public and politicians that bikes were a lovely friendly and dull mode of transport. Convincing politicians was important as there has been a lot of anti-motorcycle legislation in the eighties mostly coming from a place of simply not liking dirty smelly motorcyclists and their dirty smelly steeds.

    It was not unlike the old "You meet the nicest people on a Honda" advertising from a couple of decades before.

    In some parts of the world, particularly east Asia, a scooters are pretty much a commodity. In many parts of the word a motorcycle is a luxury toy. That only comes out on sunny days. The two are very different things from the point of view of their use, even though mechanically they may be quite similar.

  14. EricB123 Bronze badge

    Good Grief

    Having lived in 3 SE Asian countries, I find all this talk of navigation apps, heads up displays etc. to be laughable.

    The average salary in this part of the world is several hundred dollars a month. While I'm quite sure the average Vietnamese motorbike driver would certainly appreciate a Dolby Atmos stereo in their helmet, most are concerned more about earning enough to feed their families.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Good Grief

      I don't see any need for built-in SatNav on an eBike. If I'm going somewhere in town on my bicycle, I know where I'm going already. A bike delivery person might need one, but they can get a handlebar clamp/holder and use their phone. There's no need to add tech to the eBike which will be obsolete in a year.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I love the rental system where I live. I drive and ride bicycle too. The great thing about the rental systems is that you can use them for one-way trips. Cars, particularly older ones require maintenance, and to be able to get to and from a garage quickly, easy and cheaply is a boon. It's also quite handy to get to the railway station. It's £12.00 per day to leave my car there and bikes get stolen. New racks with cctv probably help but I haven't used them. It's very rare to need to walk more than a mile from my house to find a scooter.

    I'm sticking with the scooters for now. They might be slow, but they certainly do help when hills are involved! Ebikes have literally only just arrived into the scheme, so I haven't tried one yet.

  16. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

    Morons. One day people will never actually get anywhere, or go home because their entire life will be travelling around and around in traffic.

  17. david 12 Silver badge

    being connected will be an urgent requirement

    Still nothing about connecting Traffic Lights to the system.

    All this work going into making motor vehicles aware of the surroundings and nothing new on making roads aware of the traffic?

  18. The Dogs Meevonks Silver badge

    Bought E-Assist Bicycle Last Year

    I got an electric assist bicycle last year, and it's one of the best purchases I've made in a long time.

    Total cost was about £1500 with a few extras, pannier, bags, lights, better saddle, handlebar riser, ergo grips. It's got a basic computer built in. 8ah battery good for up to 40 miles.

    Between the start of July 2022 and the end of August, I covered some 400 miles on it. I work from home anyway... so it was purely exercise and enjoyment use. I'd do at least a 12 mile ride every day, with longer ones a couple of times a week. That 12 mile ride was 98% flat, so eco mode was used and would give me between 39-44 miles per charge.

    My car use dropped, only used it to do a big grocery shop every 10-12 days, or visit my sister which was a 60 mile round trip. I filled the car in June and never filled it again until Late Sept when I moved 250 miles away nearer the coast.

    Due to DIY on the house and winter... I've only done 350 miles on it since Oct. But weather is getting better and not quite as much DIY to do... but enough that a daily ride is out of the question, and my mum came to live with me so I'm also the local taxi because she's used her electric assist bike I got her at the same time... once in 7 months. So I'm doing longer rides each time but only twice a week, and the terrain is much hillier around here. I have a found a nice flat route once I get out of town that runs alongside a river to the sea. 4 miles is hills at the start/end the next 14 miles is pretty flat... and if I venture through the woodlands to the actual beaches rather than the estuary, it adds another 4 miles of hills in total. So battery is giving me 34 miles. I can do that route once and then do a shorter (but even hillier) route closer to town that's about 10 miles.

    I try to ensure I don't drop below 10% battery because when it does... it locks in eco mode and you really need to boost the assist level to 2 or 3 with some of those hills. Especially when you're disabled with a wrecked knee and ankle on either leg, a spinal problem and some early onset arthritis due to old football injuries sustained 20yrs ago.

    I highly recommend getting one... leave the car at home. I even do mini top up shops with it on my way back home. I can cram 2-3 days worth of supplies for 2 people into those pannier bags and even added a coolbag for chilled stuff.

    Car use dropped from 6000 miles a year (since I started working from home) to around 3000 now.

    Haven't done the math but seeing as diesel prices were through the roof for 12 months. May only have done around 800 miles on the bike so far... But combining that with shopping stops saves a further 12 miles twice a week. So the savings have been in the £300 range just in the last 8 months because fuel was so expensive. If I can get back to an average of 50 miles a week again... and take my mum out and show her a few places she can go... inc the shops. I could probably cut my car use even further and increase savings further.

    Reckon that bike could almost pay for itself in fuel and maintenance costs in 2yrs.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Bought E-Assist Bicycle Last Year

      "I can cram 2-3 days worth of supplies for 2 people into those pannier bags and even added a coolbag for chilled stuff."

      That sounds like a good way to make the bike work. I'm very unconvinced about "15 minute cities". For one, it isn't a concept that is going to get implemented in just a couple of years. There's also the problem with local planning/permissions boards that are already doing all they can do to prevent it. It used to be that most shops on the high street would have the owner living in flats above or there would be some for let, but mixed use has been rooted out in many places even though it's awesome for small shops, creatives, independent professionals, etc. I was impressed with so much of the thinking that went into Larry Niven's "Oath of Fealty". While his planned city cube goes over the top, skimming off some of the more plausible ideas and implementing them on a vacant ghost mall could work. Something that was part residential and part retail/office under one roof could be quite nice for some people. If it straddled a train/underground line, had a bus depot and basic auto service shops around the perimeter, many people wouldn't need they own vehicle but would just rent one from a service located at the archaeology. Given a certain scale, food could be ordered and delivered by robots since they'd be inside the building and within a secured residential block.

  19. Motoebikes

    www.motoebikes.com

    What are the key factors to consider when choosing an electric e-bike for commuting in a hilly area?

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