HPVelotechnik Scorpion fs 26 S-Pedelec e-trike


Lately I have found myself being challenged by one of the two guys I usually ride with. He just recently purchased an HPVelotechnik Scorpion fs 26 S-Pedelec e-trike. So trying to keep up with him is not possible as there is no way to compete against an electric motor assist. He is out there ZOOMING RIGHT ALONG! The other day while out riding on a local trail a “roadie” came whizzing by doing about 20 mph passing him like he was in sitting still. He let him get quite a way ahead and then decided to give chase. It took awhile but he caught up with him. His trike is capable of doing about 28 mph with the electric motor assist. When he came up behind the roadie he said to him “I thought you roadies were supposed to be fast?” And then he went zipping around him and went way on up ahead of him. The roadie didn’t know what to think. Of course, the roadie didn’t know that the trike was motorized as unlike most electric motorized trikes it is very quiet even at speed. And my friend didn’t tell him any different. 🙂 He just let him think that a tadpole trike passed him up going considerably faster than he was riding. It was kind of funny.

This trike is mighty quiet but it certainly is not cheap. I mean we are talking $7500 to over $8500 (insane cost) depending upon what you select in the way of the battery option. It has a dual battery setup  available which doubles the range the trike is capable of. The motor draws its power from a 36 Volt Li-Mn rechargeable battery with a 530 Watt Hour capacity. The recuperation function involving the motor working as a generator when braking extends the range through energy recovery. It takes 4 hours to charge the battery from an electrical receptical outlet. The trike comes with a start assist function as standard, which propels the vehicle to a speed of up to about 3.75 mph at the push of a button. I am told that you can set the controls on a negative number (-1 to -3) and as you pedal it will charge the battery. I am also told that when doing this it is difficult pedaling and will wear you out if you try this for very long. On -1 pedaling is slightly more difficult and at this setting the battery is being charged the least. On -2 it is a little harder yet pedaling and the battery charging is increased. On -3 it becomes far more difficult and tiring to pedal while the battery gets maximum charging.

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HPVelotechnik Scorpion FX26 e-trike 2

aluminum folding ramps with trike

As you can see the trike folds which is a good thing because it is quite large and won’t fit as easily inside some vehicles to haul it. In order to fold it it is necessary to remove the seat which is a bummer. Reattaching the seat is a bit challenging in my opinion. I have watched my friend do this and as far as I am concerned it is a real pain in the butt to do. I really like the trike designs which fold with the seat left in place. Evolve and Catrike offer this as does the Gekko model offered by HP Velotechnik. Also when the trike is folded and unfolded it seems to have a tendency to get caught/hung up on the handlebars. The mirror is in the way and has to be moved every time the trike is folded. I am not impressed with some aspects of the design engineering I see in this trike. The trike comes with a guard over the largest front sprocket (chain ring). On my friend’s trike this won’t stay tight and is constantly rotating around either falling down or backward right into the front derailleur. I think HP needs to redesign this mounting of this guard (perhaps copy the mounting method ICE uses on theirs).

The trike is full suspension … probably about as good as a trike suspension system comes as it works quite well.  It comes with a brake/tail light combination, headlight, front LED running light and an integrated computer. I need to qualify that about the lights. My friend’s trike came with these lights. I do not know for a fact that these lights come stock or are an option. The wiring going back to the taillight has plug in connectors which seem to come apart easily and can be difficult to connect back together.  On my friend’s trike we moved this wiring slightly upward following along the rear rack and secured it in place using plastic cable ties. Since then it hasn’t given any more trouble coming apart at the connectors.

The trike has hydraulic disc brakes on all three wheels.  The front brakes operate off of the left brake lever and the rear brake operates off of the right brake lever. It also has indirect steering but, unlike most trikes with indirect steering, it turns amazingly sharp. It is a very long wheelbase so this adds to the amazement. It has a choice of seats … mesh or hard shell molded. It is 27 speeds which surprises me since nearly all of the industry has gone to 30 speeds. Weighing in at 72 pounds it isn’t something you would want to pedal around much without the motorized assistance. It is also a bit much to manually lift in and out of vehicle you haul it in, especially if you are doing it alone.

Additional technical data:
Seat height BodyLink seat 29 cm (11.42 inches)
Seat height ErgoMesh seat 32 cm (12.6  inches)
Seat angle 32–41° adjustable
Bracket height 40–45 cm (15.75 to 17.72 inches)
Track 78 cm (30.71 inches)
Width 83 cm (32.68 inches)
Frame: Aluminum 7005 T4/T6
Rider height approximately 1.62–2.00 m(5 foot 3 inches to 6 feet 6.72 inches)

One thing about this trike … it is so quiet that most people would never know it is motorized. And since it is basically pedal assist it isn’t obvious as far as watching someone ride it. For me, I think the real attraction to a trike like this is in the climbing hills department.

Regardless of what you ride …

Enjoy the Ride!

 

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About Steve Newbauer

I have a few current blogs (tadpolerider1, navysight, truthtoponder and stevesmixedbag) so I am keeping busy. I hope you the reader will find these blogs interesting and enjoy your time here. Feel free to email me at stevenewbauer at outlook.com

Posted on May 19, 2014, in tadpole trikes, trike reviews and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I am interested in your longer term experience. I purchased one for my wife so she could keep up. After one year the brakes failed, Tektro Hydraulics, there is play in the handlebars and the spring holding the front chain tube broke causing the tube to enter the front derraileur and get chewed up. During the year the brakes jammed on once and the electric assist required a full power cycle to start working again.
    The brakes are the worst disaster and I have bled them a couple of times and now waiting for replacement pads. This trike is expensive and I was not expecting these problems. Tektro hydraulic brakes have a mixed to poor reputation on the web.

    • I am sorry to hear of all the problems you have experienced. As you stated, as much as the trike costs one would expect very high quality and trouble free service. All I can say to anyone is I wouldn’t buy one even if I had money to burn. I just am not impressed with them. Of course, I have never been impressed with Mercedes Benz cars either. I think German engineering is highly over-rated.

      • My grasshopper has held up well including some long distance touring. My wife’s Scorpion FX has also held up well both are relatively straightforward designs and were made a few years ago. I tried a Scorpion FS and the front suspension fell apart so I should have known better! My wife loves to ride but the hills were a significant challenge so I looked for an electric assist. The LBS do a electric conversion but it was messy so I purchased a Scorpion Pedelec. Just one year of casual riding and it’s a basket case.

  2. I use a BionX system on my old Catrike and it has worked great for over two years and 3800 miles.

  3. I purchased a Scorpion Pedelec 26 for my wife a couple of years ago. I find it easier not to fold it, it fits inside a VolvoXC70 wiith no problem and I can fit a regular Scorpion FS or Tricon next to it. Folded there is no sensible way to support it unless you carry some foam pads and tie it down.
    We have ridden up around Quebec, the Niagara Loop, Great Allegheny Passage and several local rides.
    The base trike has held up very well as has the Pedelec unit. The bad spot are the hydraulic brakes. They are by Tektro and they failed completely. Bleeding them was not effective, this thing is heavy and needs good brakes. I finished up scrapping the hydraulics completely and installing BB7’s mechanicals. The concept of a single lever for both front wheels is a good idea, maybe retrofitting with hydraulics from Avid or Shimano would have worked OK but I abandoned that idea and decided that mechanical was the way to go.
    On weight, this trike without the electric motor is quite quick, I put that down to the larger diameter rear wheel. I’ve test ridden it a few times and with no assist can easily hit 20mph on the flats, it’s as fast as the FX and faster than the Tricon (which I got rid of but that’s another story).
    So except for the brakes and the price! it has held up extremely well in common with the other HP’s I own.

  4. I have been test driving tadpole trikes past few months; whenever it is possible. I am researching various brands and models around the globe. I believe that frames of most of these vehicles are made in Taiwan and majority at Pacific Cycle’s factory. One has to understand that they use bicycle components; so expect that they are basic (even if proprietary or involving new technology) bicycle components. It is not like automobiles. These manufacturers are micro companies compared to traditional bicycle giants; their sales volume by number is very small therefore cost per piece is going to be higher, so expect to pay more and get less comfort. This is not our full replacement of cars when it comes to long rides and touring. Plus side is that components are cheap as most are standard bicycle components that you can get most bicycle shops around the world and most of us can replace or repair ourselves.
    In my opinion HP is one of largest and most successful tadpole manufacturer and in test rides; I found it the most comfortable and safe to handle and easy to ride. I have not tried S-pedelec version but I had Scorpion Plus 20″ with pinion. It was a blast. As soon as I sat on it; I felt home. I also tried seating on Gekko 20″ which has seat height up to 9″ lower then Scorpion Plus 20″ but once in my seat; I felt the same. Other brand that I like is Green-speed (Australia). Green-speed trikes are also very stable. Seat heights are adjustable up to 19″, it has drum breaks that are long lasting. Its wheels are easy to remove; you do not need any tool. You have to remove seat when you fold it but folded length and volume is much smaller then most folding trikes. I see on their website that it accept larger then 2″ tires so that is a plus. You can easily convert it to fat tire trike.

    Most important thing to watch for in tadpole trikes is it frame because in a scenario that your leg slips while riding at full speed; you could be hurt badly if cross bar is at 90 degree. Here HP Scorpion Plus trikes are lot safer in my opinion.

    In recumbent bicycle market nobody offer all components (and accessories) as standard. What you look for is what you need. Among all brands; Triot trikes are value for money but they are not foldable. However, Triot trikes are almost maintenance free. It offer option to make it compatible for future electric motor installation at some extra charge. This is the only trike that has covered drive chain and crank. It comes with full suspension, best seat in the market, Gates Carbon Belt drive and NuVinci hub gears. check it out ( http://www.triot.com ).

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