Juiced Hyperscorpion ebike gets cheekily close to motorcycle territory
One of the most interesting and exciting segments of the emerging ebike market is the rapidly blurring border between ebikes and mopeds. These are not waters swum by passionate cyclists; these things are for practically-minded commuter types interested in genuine car replacement options.
The Juiced Hyperscorpion is a particularly beastly version of the Scorpion released in 2019, and it's as close to a motorcycle as anything we've seen. It's got suspension forks, hydraulic disc brakes, a preload-adjustable twin shock back end, a moped seat, headlight, tail light, 1A USB charge port, horn, mirrors, indicators, fenders and even a license plate holder. The tires are 20-inch puncture resistant jobs, 4 inches wide and looking every bit the part of scooter tires on their cast rims. There's a twist throttle, in case you were in any doubt, and the damn thing even runs cruise control.
It's less motorcycle-like at the motor, where you'll find a 1 kW Bafang rear hub unit, and it still has the accoutrements of a bicycle in the form of an 8-speed Shimano Altus gearset and a pair of pedals. Having now owned a mid-drive ebike for a couple of years and chewed through three chains and one rear cassette, hub drives are looking a lot more attractive to me these days, simply for the strain a mid-drive places on a flimsy bicycle drivetrain.
The battery is a big, juicy kilowatt-hour unit, running at 52 V with a 19.2 Ah capacity and offering ranges up to and above 70 miles (112 km) depending on how it's ridden. In addition to the twist throttle, the Hyperscorpion has both high-fidelity cadence and torque sensors to determine how fast and hard you're pedaling, to add electric assist. It's capable of speeds up to 30 mph (~50 km/h) on the throttle alone, although this is only for "off road" usage.
Indeed, in many parts of the world it's not legal for on road usage at all; hence, perhaps, the license plate holder, which would allow it to run as a moped in certain jurisdictions. Using the dash, you can reasonably easily switch between class 2, class 3 and unrestricted "race" mode depending on where you're riding it.
In terms of what's missing, very little really. I'd like to see some built-in locking systems, perhaps a motorcycle-style steering lock and either a key or perhaps even a fingerprint sensor or PIN to unlock and turn on the bike. An adjustable-height seat would be handy; you can get a seat riser accessory but it'd be better if you could pop the seat up and down if sharing it around with the family.
I think Juiced could take a page out of the RadRunner's book with this one and offer more custom-designed accessories like boxes, bags, kid seats, waterproof lockable containers and the like. At the moment, the accessory catalog is pretty thin. But the basic platform here is much, much sturdier, more fully featured and specced out. It's a pizza with the lot.
If you ask me, this is the kind of vehicle governments need to start finding ways to encourage instead of restrict: clean, quiet, sturdy and quick, with a big rear rack for carrying things up to and including passengers (with an extra seat option). Machines like these will take cars off roads, reducing congestion and throwing significant health and wellness benefits into the pot, and that's good for everyone.
The Juiced Hyperscorpion is on sale now at US$2,899, with deliveries beginning in August. Video below.
Source: Juiced Bikes