So what is it that has made eMTB such an important part of my life? Why would I choose Electric Mountain over a normal Mountain Bike? Why are eBikes for EVERYONE?
So i’ve been riding eMTB since March 2013, but in the last months have ramped up my riding and have lost two stone of new dad weight. (My son is now 3 1/2 and I shamefully blame him for my eating habits over the last few years). Well if the weight loss element wasn’t enough then here are some other reasons I love electric mountain biking….
It is 100% Still Exercising!
So I just got back from an hour ride up Beachyhead and reached 189bpm on my Polar H7 heartrate monitor (which was logged as I cycled through my Bosch Nyon head unit). The fitness screen also told me in real time when I was merely ‘maintaining fitness’, ‘improving fitness’ (the level I aimed to keep for most of the ride) and it even told me when I was ‘over-reaching’ and in danger of hurting myself or at least over working to the detriment of my health! I can testify to the fact that you can still get ‘thigh burn’ when pedalling harder and you can still ride to the limits of your fitness. The difference is you have less shock on your joints, you can pedal more consistently and up steeper climbs. You can travel further, see more and do it in a quicker time frame. What isn’t there to like? Think Gym equipment that actually helps you whilst you exercise: I still prefer the power suit analogy… yes I am a comic book geek.
The power assistance is only based upon your efforts. So what does this mean? Well it means that 1,000 a second your power measurements are being taken and power is being kicked out almost instantly! So you push hard on the pedals you get more power from the motor. Therefore the fitter you are or the harder you push yourself the greater the exhilaration as the motor assists you. Well you know what Spiderman says: “With great power comes great responsibility.” That is true when riding an electric mountain bike, you will feel like a superhero, and in many ways riding an ebike emulates the effects of wearing a power suit. There are some cool pointers for emtb trail users on the Haibike website about being a responsible ebiker, I promise to write something about it soon!
You Ride More!
I ride more often, also I am tackling much steeper hills (that means even more descents!). So I can practice a downhill section up to 10 times that previously I could only ride back up a couple of times before being too tired to motivate myself to do so again. The more downhill runs has improved my downhill speeds (I am certainly not the fastest downhill but I’m faster than I was) and ultimately I have better control and abilities. There isn’t a better tool for getting you riding more, exploring further afield and accomplishing great things off road.
So the bikes themselves are upgradeable, as are all mtb’s but the coolest thing is that with a quick software update you can get FREE upgrades to your bike!!! For example since buying my Haibike eMTB I have had free updates to get even more power assistance (look at our other article with details on getting even more from custom ride modes too), even better battery efficiency, service reminders, new free open source maps, an upgrade to allow off-road course plotting, the list goes on! Bosch have realised that in supplying a system that is updateable they can tweak their product and give their customers the best value for money and therefore longevity from buying their system. Another great reason to buy an eMTB and if possible choose a Bosch Performance model.
Upgrades don’t just stop at the Free software updates though, you can also purchase a custom ride modes feature for £4 from the Bosch Connect smart phone app, only usable on bikes with Bosch Nyon fitted. This tweaks your system to deliver up to 10% more power (a great increase on a 275% assistance system!) I have also updated the hardware on my bike from the original Intuvia head unit it came with to the newer colour display of the Nyon. So a major hardware upgrade that would cost you just £500 including fitting and reprogramming. This then gives you access to satnav, gps, Bluetooth, wifi, updates over your home wifi! ride information, fitness app, the list goes on! Sorry if I sound excited, but this is genuinely the best bike I have owned and it still blows my mind that it is an electric bike. To me it is the most obvious technological progression from a normal bike, and what’s more it is MORE FUN than a normal bike!
This isn’t all hype, I genuinely love riding eMTB (as if you hadn’t noticed!) and all of my customers would agree that there is nothing quite like an eMTB ride.
What to say when a cycling purist says “eBikes are cheating!”
Perhaps a ‘purist’ shouldn’t subscribe to technology, they should be walking. So many cyclists think that their version of ‘subscribing to technology’ is the right one. But actually progress in technology is about making things better and the sale of eMTB’s over normal high end models of mtb is proof that people want progress. If you are a cycling purest you are really saying you are a re-enactment enthusiast. In other words you only mountain bike on old fashioned technology. Like saying you will only fight by sword, or cannon instead of machine gun, or you are a running purest and you will only run bare foot! The list goes on. Once upon a time winning Tour de France road bikes were not carbon fibre, mountain bikes had no suspension, no hydraulic brakes… The same is now being said for eMountain. Your mountain bike is now old technology, eMountain is the new defining technology.
Thanks for reading!
Bosch eBike Expert