Users of electric scooters made by “micro-mobility” company Bird’s will soon be able to sit back and take a load off on a bicycle built for two, as the US-based company adds a new Cruiser e-bike to its ride-share options.
Scooter-sharing and bike-sharing is being embraced in many cities around the world as an alternative to short trip public transport and cars, with tech startups such as Bird and Lime becoming a global (and sometimes controversial) phenomenon as their brightly coloured e-scooters have spread throughout the globe.
In the case of Lime, both e-scooter and e-bikes have been introduced and trialled in Adelaide, Brisbane, and Sydney.
But Bird have not until now had an e-bike option, and it seems it has decided to take a more laidback approach to e-bike sharing.
“Bird’s introduction of shared e-scooters spurred a global phenomenon and mode shift away from cars,” Travis VanderZanden, founder and CEO of Bird, said in a statement.
“To further accelerate progress on our mission to make cities more livable, we are providing additional environmentally friendly micro-mobility alternatives—including Bird Cruiser.”
The Bird Cruiser is a far cry from Lime’s bright green “pedal-assist” treddlies – with chunky tyres and a fat, padded seat that can accommodate two adults, it looks like it would make for a pretty comfortable (and cosy if cuddling up to a friend) ride.
Riders can choose between pedal-assist or peg according to riding preference, and hydraulic brakes ensure a smooth, safe roll to a stop.
With a 52V battery, Bird says the Californian design and engineered Cruiser’s custom motor is designed to keep momentum even when going uphill.
The company does neglect in its press release to clarify how far the bike can travel on battery power alone – riders will just have to resort to good old fashioned “bio-power” if the range can’t cover a ride.
Bird says the Cruiser will be rolled out to global partners starting soon (the US summer) – although there are not any mention in the press release of plans to bring Bird’s e-scooter and the new Cruiser to Australia, the company is currently seeking to fill management and operations positions in Sydney and Brisbane.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.