Feature-packed e-bikes have been around for several decades. The designs keep evolving, along with battery technology, control algorithms and construction materials, all of which help the e-bikes go faster, better, longer. Today, boaters who want to carry e-bikes on board are benefiting from advancements intended to make the cycles powerful enough to replace cars in urban areas.
That’s the goal of the company Fuell, which says it has developed the longest-range e-bike in the world. The aluminum alloy Fuell models called Flluid 2 ($5,995) and Flluid 3 ($5,495) have reported ranges from 110 to 225 miles at speeds as fast as 28 mph.
“We used the knowledge gained from our initial foray into the electric bike market with Flluid 1 to develop a superior urban-transportation solution, making sure that Flluid 2 and 3 are true and viable alternatives to cars,” said Erik Buell, Fuell’s chief technology officer.
Buell is best known as a motorbike racer who founded Buell Motorcycle Co., which later merged with Harley-Davidson. In 2019, Buell partnered with French financiers to create Fuell, focusing on e-bikes. The pandemic slowed production, but more models are now rolling out, following a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. As of early June, it had raised more than $1.1 million.
What sets these new models apart from the initial Flluid e-bike design, according to the company, is not just range (which is achieved with two removable battery packs) but also a Valeo Cyclee Mid-Drive Unit with automatic and predictive gear shifting. This system adjusts the flow of power to the bike, including on uphill climbs where other e-bikes can have trouble with the incline. Riders on Fuell e-bikes can still shift gears manually, but the technology is designed to smooth out the power use.
The tech on the new Fuell models also includes features that boaters use regularly to prevent onboard theft, such as geolocating, remote locking and an alarm. All of those features can be accessed through the e-bike’s app, which also keeps track of usage statistics and other rider information.