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.
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!
Lots of folks are into electric motorized tadpole trikes. One option is the Ridekick trailer pulled behind a trike. It has the battery and motor on board and can push the trike along.
Most definitely anyone considering one of these units would do well to read the review as the list of pros and cons is interesting.
Here is a YouTube video of this product and here is the description of the video: The Ridekick is a bicycle trailer with built in motor that pushes the rider like an electric bike. It’s easy to connect and disconnect, learn more in this review and interview with the CEO of Ridekick.
The approximate price is $700. The top speed is about 19 mph motor power only. The standard lead acid battery is good for about 12 miles (45 minutes) of riding while the lithium battery is good for about 25 miles (2 hours). The lithium battery version is about $1359. The unit weighs in at about 43 pounds with lead acid battery and 38 pounds for the lithium battery version. Battery replacement is $125 for the lead acid and $795 for the lithium battery. Charge time for the batteries is 5 hours for the lead acid and 3.3 hours for the lithium. The batteries can be recharged an estimated 400 times for the lead acid or 1,500 times for the lithium before degradation.
The trailer has a cargo volume of 41.8 Liters and can haul up to 75 pounds of cargo.
I am sure it isn’t everybody’s cup of tea, but some may like it. For sure you need to know the rules where you are riding. On our local trails here where I am at motorized vehicles are not allowed. It is lesser money than most electrice trikes. Extra batteries could be purchased and extend the time and distance the trike could be ridden. Of course, pedaling will also increase the time and distance. And pedaling is the whole purpose … exercise!
tadpole trikes … bring out the kid in ya’ 🙂
A FREE GIFT awaits you!
[Update] Ridekick trailers are sold out through the end of 2014. The company is refining the product and working on the next iteration. All existing warranties are being honored and the company is still in business.