Green commuting with e-bikes and scooters

A better way to get around

As traffic begins to build up once again, the daily drive to wherever you need to go is starting to become counter-productive. It shouldn’t come as a surprise as most commutes in the city average between 8-12 kilometers. That may seem far, but it’s actually short when you think about the time it takes to travel.

Some drivers report commute times of as long as 1-2 hours for a distance of just 10-12 kilometers. If you average that out, it means you’re traveling just 10-15 kilometers an hour in a car that’s meant to cruise at 80-100 km/h. Isn’t that an awful waste of fuel? By comparison, making that commute on a e-bike or electric scooter may take anywhere from 30- to 45-minutes. This is because these smaller vehicles take up a smaller footprint on the road, don’t get stuck in traffic, and can take advantage of bicycle lanes. In addition, many of these vehicles are electric. As such, they only requiring electricity from an outlet that costs about as much as your average TV to run as opposed to pricey fossil fuels.

It's a revelation I came to realize when testing electrically-assisted bicycles and electric scooters from Popcycle Ebike Center, a retailer of personal mobility commuter vehicles with stores in Taguig and Quezon City.

Popcycle started offering electrically-assisted bicycles but has since expanded to offer more handy commuting vehicles like electric kick-scooters and electric scooters.

Which of the two to choose from is all a matter of what you want to get out of your commute.

A healthy way to work

For those that want to squeeze in a little workout while on their way to work, the best solution is likely the Fiido line of folding electric bikes that Popcycle offers. This model is an electrically-assisted bicycle that can also be folded into a more compact form. This means it can be both for commuting an leisure as the folded form makes it easy to store in a vehicle’s trunk or carry aboard a train. Being a bicycle, there’s no license or registration needed, just a safety helmet.

As the name suggests, this models electrical assist. What this means is that the built-in electric motor and battery work to make pedaling easier. Riders will notice that it’s much lighter to pedal, even when going up inclines. This also helps extend the battery life as you’re also doing part of the work, but won’t give you as much of a sweat as in a conventional bike, making it perfect for a work commute.

The Fiido D4S retails for just P38,999, comes with a helmet with every purchase, and can be easily charged at any wall socket.

A fast and quiet commute

Those looking for a faster way to get to work should check out the Sundiro Honda S07. This is a fully-electric scooter capable of reaching 50km/h and up to 70-km on a full charge. This scooter falls under LTO’s Category L1b, and therefore does not require a license or registration to operate. It does require a helmet rated for motorcycles. Nonetheless, it’s allowed on most roads and some bike lanes.

The Sundiro is powered by a lithium ion battery, making it very light while still offering very usable range. It has full LED lighting, making it very visible at night with bulbs that draw very little power from the battery.

The Sundiro is pretty easy to ride, even for those new to electric bikes or scooters. It’s got light weight and offers a lot of torque from the get-go, letting you pick-up speed quickly. There’s a digital display in between the handlebars offering a speed and battery level readout.

It’s got more than enough pep for most commutes, even for hilly areas. Chances are, you’ll hardly hit its top speed of 50 km/h. The combination of disc and drum brakes are more than enough to bring it to a stop as the bike is very light to begin with. Thanks to its long range of 70 km/h. You’ll likely get 3-4 round trips to your place of work without needing to recharge. When the battery is low, there are also pedals that can be attached for you to pedal your way back home.

Best of all, the battery is swappable. This means you can purchase a spare for your home that’s fully-charged and ready to swap in while the used one is being charged. Once at home simply pull out the battery and recharge at any regular wall outlet. No need to bring the entire bike inside.

The Sundiro Honda S07 retails for P79,9999 and comes with helmet with every purchase.