Lime doubles down on e‑bikes with new hardware, investment & plans for expansion
Photos credit: Matthew Reamer
Our latest generation e-bike features provides an extra boost for tough hills, a phone holder for navigation and swappable batteries compatible with our Gen4 e-scooter. We’re planning to bring e-bike service to 25 new cities in 2021, so riders have more vehicle options to serve trips under five miles.
With cities and their residents looking to get moving again, we’re stepping up to help with a new socially-distanced, open-air option to get you around town safely. Today we’re announcing a $50 million investment in e-bikes, including new and improved hardware and plans to expand service to an additional 25 cities this year. Our newest e-bike model will hit city streets this summer as we aim to expand our fleet globally. We’re focused on expanding globally, and aim to launch in new cities primarily in Europe and North America, with a handful in Australia and New Zealand as well.
“As we build out the Lime platform to serve any trip under five miles, e-bikes are a key piece of the puzzle, providing a perfect option for medium-length trips,” said Wayne Ting, CEO of Lime. “That’s why we’re making substantial investments to upgrade our world-class e-bike and bring it to more cities across the globe, giving riders a new and exciting way to leave the car behind. Shared micromobility is playing an essential role in getting cities moving again safely so we see this as a critical moment to double down on e-bikes as an open-air, socially-distanced transportation option.”
The $50 million investment in hardware upgrades and expansion is a result of achieving our first full quarter of profitability in 2020. We’ve been laser-focused on building quality, longer-lasting hardware, improving our operations across the world and building close relationships with cities and the communities we serve to ensure reliable, responsible and safe micromobility service.
Lime's E-bike of the Future
Our latest generation e-bike offers riders a top-quality bike that is simpler and more functional for everyday use. The new e-bike features significant upgrades that will immediately make it the best shared e-bike available upon launch, most impactful of which is its swappable battery, which is interchangeable with Lime’s Gen4 scooter. The interoperability of the battery is a game changer for the micromobility industry. It means we’ll be able to streamline operations across vehicle types and reduce the frequency of charging and rebalancing vehicles, meaning more more fully-charged vehicles on the street when you need them. The swappable battery also provides tremendous environmental benefits by cutting down car trips from our operations vans, further enhancing an industry-leading commitment to sustainable service that’s central to our mission.
Additional upgrades to the e-bike include:
- Increased motor power to help riders easily climb hills;
- A phone holder allowing riders to easily navigate and follow directions without having to stop and look at their phones;
- A new handlebar display that aligns with Lime’s scooters for a standardized display across vehicle types;
- An automatic two-speed transmission that eliminates the prior generation’s gears for an easier and smoother ride.
The investment comes as e-bike use surges around the world, with many city residents replacing traditional commutes with the open-air, socially-distanced option. Riders took more than three million rides on our e-bikes last year and we expect that number to grow significantly in 2021 as people are vaccinated and return to work, school, social activities and more. City residents are also changing their transportation preferences as a result of the pandemic, with Lime survey data finding they are more likely to take micromobility today as a result of COVID-19.
We’re excited about bringing e-bikes to more cities as we aim to offer multiple electric vehicle options to help riders make any urban trip under five miles. Since launching a new generation of e-bikes we acquired from JUMP in May of 2020, we’ve seen the addition of the e-bikes boost rides on our scooters in cities where both are available. In cities like Seattle, where e-scooters were added to an existing e-bike service, rides on both modes increased. This multi-modal approach helps attract new users to micromobility and improves convenience and reliability for our riders, who can count on more options being available and able to serve multiple trip types.
Partnership with the League of American Bicyclists
In addition to announcing our latest generation e-bike and expansion, we're also thrilled to announce a new partnership with the League of American Bicyclists, one of the country’s preeminent bike safety and advocacy organizations. The partnership includes an education campaign for our riders on safe cycling and scooting practices via a new safety quiz specifically tailored to individual cities and universities. We're also working with the League of American Bicyclists to create fun graphics with helpful reminders and tips about safe riding and parking like the one below. We're also planning to work with the League of American Bicyclists to leverage local bicycle clubs and our hundreds of thousands of riders across the country to advocate for federal, state and local funding and action to create healthier, safer streets for micromobility travel.
"The League of American Bicyclists knows life is better for everyone when more people ride bikes," said Bill Nesper, Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists. "We're happy to partner with Lime in our shared work to make biking easier, safer, and more accessible to more people. Today's announcement means more people will have the option to choose to go by bike, to trade car trips for e-bike trips, and to experience the joy of being on a bike. We are thankful for micromobility companies like Lime who see safety and equity as central to their mission both in educating riders and also in supporting the local and national advocacy to build the safe networks and connected communities that are the foundation of building a Bicycle Friendly America for everyone."
“We’re excited to work alongside the League of American Bicyclists to advocate for the funding and policy changes critical to improving street safety in cities across the country,” said Katie Stevens, Head of Global Policy at Lime. “As Lime expands its e-bike service to reach more riders than ever before, we’re focused on providing the safest service possible. This means not only providing our riders with a curriculum designed in partnership with one of the leading bicycle safety organizations in the U.S., but also working with our riders and the cities we serve to build more protected bike lanes and other safe street measures.”