Electric bikes/mopeds - definitely the way forward

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by adrianmark, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. adrianmark

    adrianmark New Member

    Hi guys

    I am Brit who has been living in Beijing for 7 years now and witnessed first hand the massive explosion in terms of electric bike/moped sales.

    I bought a Yamaha electric moped yesterday in Beijing for 200GBP.

    I have a number of electric bike/moped contacts here in China and with the very high prices that these sell for in the UK coupled with the ever increasing cost of petrol, surely there must be a way of me exporting these from China to the UK and making some money along the way.

    Does anyone have any first hand experience of exporting these EVs from China or do they not comply to UK standards?

    Does anyone else agree that there is a business opportunity here? If so, please feel free to contact me.

    Adrian
     

  2. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Perhaps.

    I have one question though and it can be summed up in one word:

    Batteries.

    The details needed are what kind, how much, discharge time, charging time, number of lifetime cycles?
     
  3. adrianmark

    adrianmark New Member

    Batteries come with the price of the bike, last for 50km when fully charged, take a few hours to charge with a guarantee for 2 years.
     
  4. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Details.

    These are SLA batteries? What is the voltage and how many in number?Replacement cost? and when you say "a few hours to charge" that means how long exactly?
     
  5. skyl4rk

    skyl4rk Guest

    I can't speak for the UK but in the US, most electric bicycle parts suppliers seem to be sold out. The market here is more in kits and parts to convert existing bicycles to electric bicycles. From what I see on the net, the Americans tend to want to take a high quality bike with suspension and gearing and turn it into a high power electric "motorcycle" and are spending thousands to do it. There are some exceptions there but thats what I see when I visit forums like

    http://www.endless-sphere.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=3
    or
    http://visforvoltage.org/forums/electric-rides/bicycles-and-pedelecs

    The problem seems to be the difficulty in obtaining high power hubmotors like the Crystallite brand at this time, since the dealers seem to be sold out. It could just be the season. This dealer is rumored to be the US distributor for Crystallite:

    http://www.electricrider.com/index.htm

    In my opinion, this dealer makes selection of a kit somewhat difficult. It takes some time and knowledge to understand how to put together a kit that meets ones needs and most people have not reached the stage of electricity knowledge to be able to work through the choices provided.

    There is an almost desperate demand for Lithium battery packs in the range of 36V-20aH, 48V-20aH, and 72V-??aH. If you find a supplier that can provide LiFePo battery packs in these sizes and sell them in a package with battery management systems and smart chargers, you could have a very brisk business going. Most suppliers today are located in China, working on ebay, have very minimal English skills and poor websites. It is a very big leap of faith to pay in excess of US$500 and sometimes US$1000 for a battery pack being shipped from China, and if you could improve on this perception, many risk averse customers would be created by having the impression that they are dealing with a reputable company. Most Americans expect a very high level of customer service which many foreign dealers do not understand.

    There may also be demand for complete electric bicycles and mopeds. Some major retailers are selling low power electric bicycles for extremely low prices. Generally a start up business is not going to be able to compete in that market. I think that there is also a mentality in the US that slow, low powered vehicles are for old, handicapped persons. Add that to the distances that we have to travel and there is a big break between the low power, low cost, low performance electric bicycles/mopeds and high power, high cost high performance bicycles/mopeds. There is also a mindset that people have that they want to play mad scientist and build their own machine. I'm not sure that is prevalent throughout the society but at least the current group at the leading edge are definitely mad scientist in the laboratory types.

    Americans tend to ignore legal limits on ebikes, so don't use current regulations to decide what to market. Many are working on projects for environmental reasons, and because it is apparent that we will be dependent on other countries unless we change our fuel consumption. So it is a passion for many people and they are willing to pay extra for electric bikes to try to improve security, their own financial security, environmental preservation and national economic security.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 17, 2008
  6. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    I am in agreement with what Skyl4rk has said. A good quality hub kit would be more of an ideal seller, than a complete bike. If these could be imported at a good price, without batteries to reduce weight, then that may be a good business deal. BUT, in MY opinion, to get a QUALITY kit , from China, is a roll of the dice !
     
Loading...