“The Tesla of the Bicycle World.”
I used to be a card carrying CTC (Cyclist Touring Club) member. Many an hour (actually half a day) touring the lanes and byways of Great Britain. I’ve owned and riden all sorts of bikes from sturdy hand-brazed Reynolds 931 steel touring rigs laden with front and rear side panniers through carbon-fibre framed mountain bikes with suspension forks and to bespoke hybrid bikes built to my specifications with hydraulic disc brakes and old-school carbon-fibre frame and forks.
I’ve also grown old and fat so the “engine” is not what it used to be; a little help would be welcomed. With advances in technology, electric motor assistance is now the rage. Range and battery weight are good enough to be practical. They call them E-Bikes now.
Strictly speaking, an E-Bike is a bicycle with two accelerators; the human pedalling and the motor. In the premier league of E-Bikes, in fact, the “Tesla of the Bike World” is the Riese & Müller brand.
About Riese & Müller (R&M); in their own words:
“It all began with two engineers, a good idea and a garage. But not in California, rather in the south of Hesse, Germany. In Darmstadt, to be more precise. In the parent’s courtyard. Immediately after the company was founded, it won the Innovation Prize in 1993 and has grown to become an internationally renowned premium manufacturer of E-Bikes and folding bikes. As previously, Riese & Müller manufactures the most innovative bikes of tomorrow with the passion of yesteryear – and still in Weiterstadt, not far from the old garage.”
They have 12 Pedelec models in numerous power and gearshift options, with pedal assistance up to 28 mph. There are 4 basic frame types depending on your riding needs: Touring, Mountain, City and Load Carrier. Then, you choose from two motors: Bosch Performance CX (32 km/h or 20 mph) or Bosch Performance HS (45 km/h or 28 mph).
The Delite eAdventure or Delite Mountain E-Bikes
As with any bicycle, its all about power output, torque transmission and endurance. Here is where R&M got it right. They use Bosch 36V motors, batteries and power control systems. The accelerator sensors are activated by pressure on the pedals — the harder you pedal, the more power is supplied. You can adjust the assistance modes via the control and “dashboard” unit.
There is even an assist mode when you are pushing the bike along. A pushing and starting aid helps your E-Bike up slopes even when you’re not in the saddle. The button on the external control unit makes your bike push itself at up to 6 km/h (3.7mph) or 15 km/h (9.3mph) on the HS models.
Personally, I seldom run uphill at 9mph alongside my bike! 🙂
The maintenance-free, brushless HET motor with up to 90% degree of efficiency have an electronic control unit with a 32-bit processor and sensors for power, pedal rate and speed. With 1,000 sensor measurements per second, its coordination is superb. The higher the power, the higher the torque and therefore the faster the acceleration. The combination of the motors with a derailleur gear enables a greater degree of efficiency than the combination with a hub gear.
Bosch lithium ion batteries with a 500 Wh energy reserve provide the power. There is the option for DualBattery in parallel for 1,000 Wh capacity. Range is between 24 – 215 km (15 – 133 miles) depending on assistance provided. Battery charge time to 100% charge capacity is 4.5 hours and if you are in a hurry, the charge time to 50% charge capacity is less than 2 hours. You have the option to charge from an external charging socket without battery removal.
Display Control Units
The Bosch Intuvia display provides information about the battery charge level, the range, the number of kilometres travelled that day, the total number of kilometres travelled, the riding time, the current motor output, the time and the current and average speed. On automatic E-Bike models, the automatic version of the display also offers an option for controlling the pedal frequency. A USB interface allows MP3 players and mobile phones to be charged while riding too.
The Bosch Nyon display is operated either via the external control unit or directly via the display using two five-way joysticks. In addition to the E-Bike control with four assistance modes, it features a navigation system, a fitness trainer and various smartphone functions. Its functions can also be extended on the Bosch online portal with new apps and updates. Via Bluetooth, the display notifies you of incoming messages on your smartphone. You cannot reply via the display, however – safety comes first.
The navigation system uses precise, GPS-assisted route calculations. All tour-related information such as the battery charge level, terrain or pedal assistance is updated in real time. This means that you’ve always got your eye on your range and you can extend it by many kilometres, for example, by reducing pedal assistance.
The fitness trainer shows a summary of your personal achievements in real time. Sensors in the motor measure your pedalling frequency and pedalling force up to 1,000 times per second. Coupled with an optional chest strap, the fitness trainer can also be used for heart rate measurement and targeted health training.
City bikes are supplied with hub gears and even automatic gear shifts.
Riders who are often on tour and cycling through hills need a broad range of gears, as offered by the Rohloff 14-speed hub gear.
Touring, sport, GT, mountain and super mountain E-Bike models are equipped with a Shimano 9, 10 or 11-speed derailleur gear.
Combined derailleur / hub gear
E-Bikers who are at home in the hills need lots of gears. The ideal solution comes in the form of the SRAM 27-speed Dualdrive, a combined derailleur / hub gear with a high degree of efficiency and shifting comfort.
Control Technology with full suspension, Fox 34 FLOAT 120 mm CTD Performance Boost air suspension fork / Fox FLOAT CTD Performance air-sprung element.
X-fusion Glyde R-PV steel/oil suspension
A steel spring is combined with an oil damper. The special valve technology inside the suspension element prevents any pedal-induced movements from activating the suspension element. As such, any small impacts caused by the road or surface are compensated. The highly efficient suspension element can be adjusted using an easy-to-operate adjustment mechanism which regulates the shock speed. By changing the spring on the rear suspension element, the suspension can be adapted to the rider’s weight, comfort preferences and preferred riding characteristics.
FOX FLOAT CTD Remote air suspension
The air suspension combines low weight with superb functionality and allows maximum chassis control. The suspension fork and suspension element can be set at three levels using the quick adjustment mechanism (Climb, Trail and Descend mode) to match the terrain requirements. A remote control on the handlebars allows the front and rear suspension coordination to be operated.
The X-Fusion O2 air suspension element with oil damper offers maximum suspension comfort. The air pressure allows the suspension to be very finely adjusted to the rider’s weight or preferred riding characteristics. The oil damper ensures excellent shock-absorbing properties.
The road illumination is excellent from IQ-X headlamps by busch+müller. They provide over 100 lux with wide-sweeping and homogeneous large-area illumination of the street. They are operated via the Bosch display, while the energy is supplied via the battery. The Tail Light from Supernova makes you very easy to see from the rear. It is discreetly mounted on the rear disc brake.
The hydraulic disc brakes from Tektro deliver maximum performance, no matter what the weather. The large brake discs allow the braking effect to be distributed most effectively. They don’t produce rim wear and impress with their consistent and predictable braking performance, without snatching.
Mountain bikes have hydraulic Shimano Deore XT disc brakes for safer riding.
Racktime snapit adapter — Load up, set off
Baskets, panniers and child seats can be secured quickly to the carrier with the “snapit” system from Racktime.
The Delite eAdventure and Delite Mountain E-Bike MSRP Range: $5,599 – $7,868
There are three frame heights and 27.5” wheels. You choose the suspension package most suited to your needs.
The Delite is nearly maintenance-free; an absence of complex parts and the concealed hub gear makes life simpler. Choose the right gear with the easy-to-twist handlebar gear shifter. Without gear jumps, the reliability and comfort of the bike are enhanced.
The Control Technology with full suspension and mountain bike tires ensure more traction for the brave.
Author’s Biography: Melvyn Teillol-Foo (MTF)
Dr Melvyn Teillol-Foo is a contributor on AlphaLuxe web-zine.
He is also a moderator on PuristSPro.com horology discussion fora. He blends his scientific medical objectivity from the pharmaceutical industry with purist passion, in his musings about watches, travel, wine, food and other epicurean delights.
His travelogue ‘Lazing’ and feasting ‘Grazing’ series of articles have now passed into “mythic legend” on the original ‘ThePuristS.com’ website. Those were the halcyon days when he was “rich and famous” that he remembers with bittersweet fondness.
Dr Teillol-Foo is a quoted enthusiast on the watch industry, appearing in feature articles and interviews by Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Sunday Times (London), Chronos (Japan), Citizen Hedonist (France) and other publications. He has authored articles for magazines like International Watch (iW) – both U.S. & Chinese editions, ICON (Singapore), August Man (Singapore), Comfort (China) and The Watch (Hong Kong).