Gear of the Show 2014: Stromer ST2
Unlike so many of its competitors, the ST2 is a purpose-made e-bike with next-gen features.
Everyone seems to have jumped on the electric bike revolution this year at Interbike. But unlike so many brands’ efforts, which are little more than bicycles with batteries tacked on, the Stromer ST2 is a purpose-made e-bike with next-gen features.
The pedal-assist, rear-hub motor supplements a rider’s effort with up to 500 additional watts, making long commutes feasible and short hops around town quicker than in a car. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery, which is built into the brawny down tube, provides a 90-mile range—almost 50 percent more than today’s industry standard—and a top speed of 28 miles per hour, the legal limit. There are even built-in running lights and a USB port for charging your phone.
But what truly sets the ST2 apart is its connectivity, including a digital user interface built into the top tube that shows mileage, speed, battery life, and other pertinent metrics. It’ll also pair with a smartphone app via Bluetooth.
From your phone, you can adjust speed and torque settings on the motor to optimize range, remotely disable the motor so that the bike is impossible to steal, and even track where the bike is currently located in case someone does make off with it. Stromer says built-in GPS mapping capabilities and fitness tracking are on the horizon with future firmware updates.
Cynics will dismiss the ST2 as too expensive and a betrayal of the fitness aspect of cycling. But the ST2 and other pedal-assist bikes, or pedelecs in European parlance, which require a rider to sweat it out in order to get the motor-assist, are ecologically far more sound than dumping fossil fuels into an automobile. And as for the price, like the yet-to-be-released iPhone 7, the Stromer ST2 is next generation technology—with the price tag to match.