Bicycles

Pure Cycles gives two-wheeled cargo hauling some electric assist

Pure Cycles gives two-wheeled ...
The Capacita has a full cargo capacity of 350 lb, with a 350 W rear hub motor helping to smooth out hills and make hauling less tiring
The Capacita has a full cargo capacity of 350 lb, with a 350 W rear hub motor helping to smooth out hills and make hauling less tiring
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The Capacita smart cargo e-bike is the subject of an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign
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The Capacita smart cargo e-bike is the subject of an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign
The Capacita cargo e-bike features a step through aluminum alloy frame with integrated front and rear lighting
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The Capacita cargo e-bike features a step through aluminum alloy frame with integrated front and rear lighting
Powering on the Capacita cargo e-bike can be undertaken using a key fob, or a companion app
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Powering on the Capacita cargo e-bike can be undertaken using a key fob, or a companion app
The Capacita cargo e-bike has a GPS anti-theft system installed
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The Capacita cargo e-bike has a GPS anti-theft system installed
The Capacita has a full cargo capacity of 350 lb, with a 350 W rear hub motor helping to smooth out hills and make hauling less tiring
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The Capacita has a full cargo capacity of 350 lb, with a 350 W rear hub motor helping to smooth out hills and make hauling less tiring
Up to 175 lb of cargo can be placed on the Capacita's extended rear rack
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Up to 175 lb of cargo can be placed on the Capacita's extended rear rack
The Capacita's front basket is roomy enough to transport a "briefcase, a case of beer, or all the stuff for setting up Steve’s surprise party"
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The Capacita's front basket is roomy enough to transport a "briefcase, a case of beer, or all the stuff for setting up Steve’s surprise party"
The Capacita features a step through aluminum alloy frame with integrated front and rear lighting 
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The Capacita features a step through aluminum alloy frame with integrated front and rear lighting 
The Capacita has a 350 W rear hub motor and a removable battery that's reported good for 40 miles between charges
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The Capacita has a 350 W rear hub motor and a removable battery that's reported good for 40 miles between charges

When the weather's good, pedaling an e-bike is a great alternative to taking the gas-guzzling family car to work. But what about going shopping? Precariously balancing nasty plastic bags on handlebars isn't recommended, and that's where cargo bikes come in handy. Or in the case of the Capacita from California's Pure Cycles, a cargo e-bike.

Pure Cycles – the folks behind last year's Volta electric smart bike – describes the Capacita as "the next generation of cargo carrying e-bike perfection."

"Capacita is more than just a bike or a rider or a motor, it's the seamless integration of all things 'go' finished up with the features designed to make your two-wheeled life as simple and seamless as possible," said the company's Jordan Schau. "From taking your kids to school, to hauling heavy cargo, to riding 40 miles without breaking a sweat, to the peace of mind that comes from GPS security tracking – our Capacita's packed with perks to keep you happy in the saddle."

The full cargo capacity of the Capacita is said to be 350 lb (160 kg), with an extended rear rack reported capable of handling 175 lb of that total. The spacious front basket is reported to be roomy enough to transport a "briefcase, a case of beer, or all the stuff for setting up Steve's surprise party."

The cargo e-bike features a step through aluminum alloy frame with integrated front and rear lighting that power on when the ambient light sensor detects failing daylight, so you don't have to worry about returning to a parked two wheeler only to find that someone's walked off with your lights. The rear light also acts as an automatic brake light.

The Capacita has a 350 W rear hub motor and a removable battery that's reported good for 40 miles between charges
The Capacita has a 350 W rear hub motor and a removable battery that's reported good for 40 miles between charges

Pedal assistance comes from a 350 W rear hub motor with two power modes, while a removable 42 V/10 Ah Samsung battery located behind the seat tube should be good for 40 miles (65 km) of range per charge. If the battery runs out of juice while riding, the Capacita can be moved to Bike Mode where the motor is disengaged and the cargo bike can be pedaled home.

Elsewhere, the bottom bracket has an integrated torque sensor, there's a peace of mind GPS anti-theft system installed, Thickslick chunky tires offer a more comfortable ride, and disc brakes supply the stopping power.

The Capacita comes with an integrated smart lock, and can be powered on or off using an included key fob, or via a companion app. The latter also allows riders to set the performance mode, get security alerts, allow friends or family to take the cargo bike for a ride without setting the GPS alarm ringing, and more.

As with the Volta, Pure Cycles is making a crowdfunding production bid, but this time the project has launched on Indiegogo. Pledges start at US$1,399 (44 percent off the expected retail price) and, if all goes to plan, shipping is estimated to start in December. The video below has more.

Sources: Pure Cycles, Indiegogo

CAPACITA - The Most Affordable Smart Cargo E-Bike

5 comments
Daishi
I think this is a pretty good design and this is a good use-case for ebikes. I'm not sure I like that the frame is just a single tube though. It uses a 350 W motor and 42 V/10 Ah battery where the Radpower bikes RadWagon uses a 750 watt motor and 48V/14Ah battery. The capacita is cheaper but you still have to add shipping where the RadWagon offers free shipping so it comes out a bit cheaper even comparing against capacita Indiegogo pricing. The Juiced Bikes Scrambler went live on Indiegogo today too.
david743
The bike has a front wheel hub motor, not a rear one, how can someone make such an obvious mistake? [Although the bike in the photos does appear to have a front hub motor, the Indiegogo page repeatedly states that the motor will be in the rear -Ed.]
Doodah
350W motor on a cargo bike is most definitely not going to be enough power if one has hills of any kind to tackle, which would be the reason why radpower (based in hilly Seattle) has 750W. 500W motor would maybe work, but 750-1000 is really what a cargo e-bike needs as a minimum unless you’re riding along mostly flat. And yes, this needs to be either mid-drive or rear motor, not on the front.
Paul Anthony
How is this a cargo bike? So if I add a front basket and rear rack then my bike is a cargo bike?
michael37
Great comments all around. Michael here from Pure Cycles. Please see my replies below so that you are all well informed! @Daishi & @Doodah: It is important to notice these features below that the Capacita has over Radpower: *Integrated and automatic front and rear lights. The lights will turn on automatically when it gets dark outside and your rear light will act as a brake light when you slow down (just like a car). *Bluetooth, GPS tracking, and custom Pure Cycles phone app so you can always know where your bike is. These smart features will also allow for software updates to the Capacita that can come via an app update (ex: add different riding modes). *Capacita is approx. 20 lbs lighter than the Radpower Wagon. The design of Capacita is unique and designed in such a way to hold a lot of cargo but still be light weight so that it doesn't require such a large battery and motor. The lighter the bike, the less power you will need from your electric system. The weight difference will also make it so Capacita rides more like a normal bike. *Torque sensor vs. Cadence sensor (Radpower) --> the torque sensor will help to deliver power to the rider when it is necessary / when you actually need it. With a torque sensor, the more pressure put on the pedals, like going up a hill, the more power you will receive. This differs from a cadence sensor which gives you more power the faster you push the pedals. *Included front basket - Radpower does not come with a front basket *Beautiful, clean, and unique design with hidden wires. I also want to mention that the Juiced bike is a heavy mini motorcycle. The "toy" looks sweet but it is not in our same category - is not meant to pedal or be used for any actual transportation needs. If you are looking for a cargo e-bike that is smart, beautifully designed, and offers a powerful and fun ride then Capacita is for you! @David743 & @Doodah: Sorry for the confusion with the video. Please see full explanation below! We have been developing this bike for past 3 years and there have been many samples made and specs changed to better the ride and performance of the bike. Since we made the video 6 months ago, we have made the following exciting changes! *Rear hub motor (previous design had a front hub motor). The rear hub motors provides better control and a better feel of the power coming from the system. We also added a slightly larger battery to power the 350W motor. *Front and rear disc brakes (previous design had drum brakes). Disc brakes giving superior braking performance that is required when using an electric bike (especially one that is built to carry a lot of cargo!) *8 speed Sram trigger shifter gearing (previous design was a single speed bike). The combination of the 8 gears and the pedal assistance from the rear motor means you can always find the most efficient gear and pedal level to carry a lot of gear and go the distance! *Fat 24” x 2.35” WTB Thickslick tires. WTB opened a custom mold just for the Capacita and these fat tires are going to add a great look to the bike and make the ride extremely comfy. *Removable foot platforms. The foot platforms will allow for kids on the back of the bike to comfortably rest their feet. The platforms will also help with securing rear pannier bags. *Extended rear rack. This new design will allow for the rider to carry more gear (or children)! *Extended wheelbase. This new, slightly longer wheelbase will allow for larger riders to be comfortable on the bike. *New headtube design. The new headtube design now hides all motor cutoff cables and brake cables for a nice, clean look. @Paul Anthony: What makes Capacita a cargo bike is it's ability to carry a lot of cargo! The bike was designed to have a longer wheel base (49") than a traditional bike which gives the rider more stability when carrying heavy loads. The longer wheel base also allows for an extended rear rack to carry kids, attach a large box, or use extra large panniers. Capacita also makes use of the extended wheel base by adding removable foot boards which non cargo bikes do not traditionally have. The removable front basket helps you carry more cargo as well! In total, the Capacita can hold up to 350 pounds! So to answer your question... "if I add a front basket and rear rack then my bike is a cargo bike?" --> Yes, sure, but it won't be as comfortable or functional as the Capacita and it definitely won't be able to haul as many kids, cargo, chips and guac, etc... The Capacita was built to haul!