Once, only senior citizens rode them, now kids should use them too. When parents zip ahead on a bike ride, children often cannot keep up with them. Bike manufacturers are now appealing to a new target group with motorized bikes for children. At the Eurobike in Friedrichshafen from August 30 to September 2, two companies will present new e-mountain bikes for the next generation, ages 11 and above.
When the subject of e-mountain bikes for children and young people comes up, some people may ask: why are there e-bikes for kids? So that parents can further undermine physical activity in their kids, which is already under assault from computers, smartphones and television? In fact, the need for motorized bicycles for kids is an obvious one: Children often cannot apply enough force to the pedals and do not enjoy long ascents. With a little support, it is possible to eliminate this deficit.
For example, KTM is celebrating its premiere at the Eurobike with an e-bike for kids ages 11 and up, and relies upon small motors with reduced power. The Macina Min ME is an e-mountain bike (24 inches) with a steeply inclined top tube, whose support is limited to 20 km/h for safety reasons. The walk assist function has also been deactivated and when activated is initially in off mode. At the same time, the bike’s 19.3 kg (42 ½ lbs.) weight is not exactly minimal. “For the first time, everyone participating in a family outing can now ride at the same speed – adjusted to fit their personal performance and endurance. No one has it too easy or too hard – which makes it easier to keep peace within the family,” explains Laurenz Popp from the marketing department at KTM. “Furthermore, we hope that, with the Mini ME, we can also motivate sluggish kids to try mountain biking.” The model is available in a black and orange color scheme. Sport-loving families can expect to lay out about 2,000 euros for the bike.
Haibike is also bringing an e-mountain bike on the market for the first time, in the form of the so-called Four Series. “Children from age eight an up can ride with their parents, without differences in strength and range playing a role,” says Tom Specht from the Winora Group’s PR agency. The 24-inch model is available in four different configurations and neon colors combined with charcoal and silver. The motor, by drive pioneer Yamaha, provides support at speeds up to 25 km/h. The bike also weighs 19 kg (41.9 lbs.) on average, with a price of about 2,200 euros.
“Our experience in test rides and photo sessions have shown that kids have a lot of fun with the new e-mountain bike,” explains Laurenz Popp from KTM. The bike is not intended for day to day use, but rather for longer leisure trips with adults. This is also the view at Haibike. Their e-mountain bikes are “fun machines for vacation and leisure use,” says Tom Specht.