For commuters who want to ride to work without arriving in a pool of sweat, eBikes offer a nice balance of exercise and battery-boosted assistance. For those looking to jump in the e-saddle, the good news is motors and batteries are becoming lighter and more powerful. The new E-P3 from Polini weighs just 2.85 kg (6.3 lb), but is able to put 70 Nm through the crank to make hills a sweat-free breeze.
With 250 watts of power and 70 Nm (52 lb-ft) of torque, the E-P3 exactly matches the performance of the recently released Shimano STePS MTB. Both units boost the rider's performance by augmenting the power they're putting through the pedals, and both cut out once the rider reaches a certain speed.
The way power and torque cut in can be modified, allowing riders to choose between different degrees of assistance. There's also a dedicated walking mode, which runs the motor up to 6 km/h (3.7 mph) without any input from the pedals.
Power comes from a 400 or 500 Wh battery pack, which can be easily integrated into the frame for a smoother, more seamless finish. It's attached to an aluminum mount, and there's still a mounting point for the requisite bottle holder on the battery pack. Compared to Shimano and Bosch, both of whom strap a bulky battery pack to the frame without much consideration for the way it looks, the sleek Polini design looks more refined.
The E-P3 will be come in four different models, designed to fit road bikes, hardtail or dual-suspension mountain bikes or a less specialized "universal" version. Thanks to the motor's compact size it can be used on bikes with a short chainstay, and can be combined with pedal axles of three different lengths to suit different sized wheels.
Check the Polini E-P3 out in the video below.