Why Pinkbike is Covering eMTBs This Week

Aug 21, 2017
by Brian Park  


Pinkbike, like much of the industry, has been grappling with the implications of eMTBs over the last few years. At times our approach has been scattered and nebulous, and we apologize for that. It’s a complex topic that deserves a nuanced, thoughtful approach.

Today we’re launching a week-long focus on eMTBs. We’ll be sharing reviews, news, and opinion pieces all week in addition to our unassisted coverage.

Part of the challenge for Pinkbike in developing a coherent game plan for eMTBs has been the huge diversity of opinion within our own office. The venerable RC has legitimate concerns about trail access and advocacy, while our Euro gunslinger Aston thinks they’re a riot and doesn’t see an issue; Vernon, Kaz, and AJ are all various combinations of skeptical, resigned, and curious; Kieran believes they’re a force for good in community development, while Levy doesn’t consider any sort of motor-assisted riding to be true mountain biking—not chairlifts, shuttles, nor eMTBs. Many of our photographers use them to create the content you see on a daily basis, especially covering the Enduro World Series. Tellingly, some of us have had dramatic shifts in opinion on the topic in the last few years.
SR Suntour
There are legitimate concerns that eMTBs may impact trail access.

Personally, I’m conflicted. In my previous role I was involved in bringing an eMTB to market, and I appreciate their hedonistic fun, their potential to bring new people into our sport, the futuristic leapfrog technology, etc., but on the other hand they still feel somehow off to me.

The truth is, it doesn’t matter what we at Pinkbike HQ think of of these bikes.

Demand for eMTBs has grown dramatically—nearly every major brand has an eMTB offering or is frantically working on one. Internal industry reports are predicting that within a few years a massive percentage of high end mountain bikes sold will be eMTBs. Especially in Europe. There will be significant consequences across our industry as bike manufacturers shift their investments from traditional mountain bikes to electric mountain bikes.

Rocky Mountain Altitude Powerplay e-MTB First Ride

The Specialized Turbo Levo engine.
Bosch Performance CX motor with a 500wh powerpack

Why Pinkbike is Covering eMTBs This Week
Nearly every mountain bike company will have an eMTB offering in the near future.

Will eMTB growth be a retail honeymoon followed by a crash back to reality? Will motorcycle companies come in and eat traditional bike manufacturers’ lunch as RC predicted several years ago? Will all mountain bikes be eMTBs in ten years? Will eMTBers soon quit the sport in favour of drone racing and e-sports careers?

We don’t know. None of us can see the future. Freeride was supposed to kill mountain biking. Fat bikes were supposed to kill mountain biking. Dropper posts were supposed to kill mountain biking. 29ers were supposed to kill mountain biking—hell, some people think they’re killing DH racing today! Even full suspension and disc brakes were predicted to kill mountain biking. Turns out that mountain biking is resilient.

But what we do know is that eMTBs are now an inextricable part of the fabric of mountain biking in many places. People are riding them and having fun. Manufacturers can’t keep up with demand from retailers—and shops don’t take risks without demand from their customers.
bigquotesWill eMTBers soon quit the sport in favour of drone racing and e-sports careers?

In short, eMTBs are here to stay—at least for now. So what’s next?

Pinkbike strives to be on the pulse of the sport, to lead the mountain bike world in news, photos, videos, events, trails, etc. We work every day to get people fired up on riding, and we’re working hard to spread that message globally. To do those things, we need to acknowledge eMTBs on some level. We can’t expand the tent of mountain biking while assuming that everyone under the tent wants to see the same stuff.

While we’re not going to give carte blanche to something new because of short term industry gain, we can't ignore something this big. Our role as a media outlet is to cover innovation, new products, and market trends. We’ve regretted being hesitant about developments like 29ers in the past, and don’t want to repeat those missteps. Regardless of our various opinions on electric mountain bikes, we feel it’s our job to report on them.

Here’s the plan:

1. We’re going to cover some eMTB tech and eMTB stories on Pinkbike, but not everything—only the best content and most significant news

2. We celebrate the diverse opinions of our staff and the Pinkbike community—we won’t shy from criticism

3. We’ll start by focusing most of our eMTB coverage on regions where they’re especially popular

4. We are considering several ways to minimize eMTB coverage for people who aren’t interested

5. We acknowledge the potential for eMTBs to cause trail access issues, and will monitor those developments closely—we won’t hesitate to hold eMTBs or eMTB riders accountable

6. Mountain biking continues to evolve, so we will regularly re-evaluate our positions on issues like eMTBs


Photo by Harookz
Count the Coastal Crew among the ranks of riders who were conflicted about eMTB.

This full week of eMTB content will be something of an experiment. It will engage and inspire some of you, while frustrating and mobilizing others. With the inevitable crush of eMTB launches coming up at Eurobike, we hope the opinion pieces, reviews, and perspectives we share over the coming days will help move dialogues forward.

While eMTBs will bring new people—and money—into the sport, our approach is not a cynical grab for advertising dollars. We feel strongly that eMTBs are a movement within our sport and are worth covering. And if you’re not interested, don’t worry, we’ll never stop covering all the other rad shit happening in the world of mountain biking.

How should Pinkbike treat eMTB coverage?



Must Read This Week

285 Comments

  • + 180
 Please make it like mtb-news.de and do a second website called epinkbike.com or so. This way you can separate it. DJ, AM, CC, DH, FR are all part of our MTB sport but for me it ends with a motor. That's somehow just not the same sport anymore in my opinios...
  • + 153
 I agree. I've said it before, but I see e-biking as a different sport. Sure, the bikes look really similar, but that little motor takes away part of the human powered element, and moves it into a different category, at least in my opinion. I'm sure that e-bikes and 'traditional' bikes can coexist peacefully in areas where they are both allowed, but the potential for access issues in the US is a large part of the reason I'm not a fan. I'm also a little selfish, and enjoy the fact that there are hard to get to trails that are inaccessible to all but the fittest mountain bikers - I don't want to need to start sharing those private stashes with the masses.
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: how do you feel about uplifts, chairlifts and heli-lifts? At least on an ebike you're putting /some/ effort in getting to the top...
  • + 4
 @mikekazimer: Exactly my point of view!
  • + 25
 They are inevitably going to cause access issues, and when that happens we don't want to get grouped in with them. I have no problem with people riding ebikes, but we should keep the communities separate and make it clear that eMTB is a different sport so they don't drag us down.
  • + 42
 @hungrymonkey: There's nothing wrong with chairlifts and shuttling. In most cases, the lifts were already there for skiing - might as well use them for something in the summer. E-bikes make it easier to get to places that traditionally didn't have much traffic - it's like building a shuttle road to the top of an area that used to take hours to get to, hence part of the reason there's a potential for access issues.
  • + 0
 agree. will have to shut down pinkbike and go back to MTBR.... I see myself out...
  • - 6
flag racerfacer (Aug 21, 2017 at 10:50) (Below Threshold)
 restrict e-bikes to shuttle/lift access trails
  • + 50
 @mikekazimer: So, I will be also selfish, why, after a cancer and a stroke ( I completely recover but it f*cked totally 3 years of my life), why I could not go to some places where before I was going? You know the south east of France, you how steep can be this place, you know how difficult it could be to reach some of these places, for the people who don't trust me, ask some worldcup racers of difficult the race around Valberg was for the Ews last year. I'm only forty, I cannot ride like before a normal bike, I try, I'm sweating blood to recover but I cannot. So e-bike are my new life and I enjoy it. It help me doing what I was doing before, I'm even racing again. My doctor told me I should have died, and I should not be able to ride anymore. So what? Trail access, I'm in Europe, I don't give a f*ck, no trouble for us. E-bike haters, nope, don't care. Racing on a e-bike is cheating? Yup, but I'm sure I beat you because I'm still fast and I enjoyed my journey more than you. What is my goal by racing on an e-bike? Still being in the 30 second behind the local riders who are vouilloz/barel/nicolaï/tordo/bruni/vergier/etc...
So yes, show me the interesting things on e-bike and not the shitty one
OH by the way, I prefer going on the top of the hills by pedaling, always done that, I'm against shuttling, and chairlift is good for downhill pilot, but most of the people who are chairlifting have maybe a worst fitness than me or some of my mate on e-bike.
And e-bike is really fun
  • + 17
 @iadesp06: You have earned your E bike the hard way ,no one could slag you off for riding one ,E bikes do have a place for less abled riders , Hope you get back to where you was before the cancer and stroke mate ,I think what pisses most bikers off is seeing lazy ass types who cant be arsed to put the work in and blow five grand on a easy ride . You still must be a pretty handy rider to keep Voulliouz/Barel/Bruni/ honest Smile
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: I dunno, man, kind of a made up argument if you ask me. Most people on ebikes might have the possibility to just do that, but normally the remote places have quite difficult/natural trails. So the average ebiker (for now) will not be able to handle that.
And I also think it is absolutely the same sport, you are still pedaling up the hill as fast as your fitness allows you to and your going down unassisted. Splitting hairs imo. On a side note: I am not a huge fan of ebikes for fit, young guys, but I don't get butthurt either.
And I'd like to see some important updates and developments on the main site, although I am going to be pretty alone with that opinion...
  • + 3
 @konacyril: yes, that's the challenge on our local races, stay in the 30 seconds. And some races are pretty hard, like the one in Dolceaqua this year. They are more relaxed on these races than the international ones, but they are still pretty fast. That's one of the reason I enjoy e-bike, it keeps the fighting spirit alive, and at the same time, I can share the ride with my mates. Something I could not have imagined 4 years before.
  • + 4
 Can understand why younger fitter riders don't like the idea of e-mtb. However, we all get old and knees/joints start to hurt at some point. Thankfully I'm not there yet but I've been riding for 20 yrs + so if it's a choice between this or giving up off road trail riding completely I know which one I'll choose when the time comes.
  • + 15
 @iadesp06:

Yea, you ride in France, I think any American rider would respect the fact that you can do whatever is allowed there. Just like you should respect that ebikes represent a major threat to trail access in the USA.

How pinkbike wants to cover it is up to them...but I'm 100% on board with separate sites, I honestly don't want to see it here.
  • + 5
 im 68 with a fucked knee been mountain biking for 30 years and not giving up now emtbs rock and if you think it's an easy ride you not ridden one. It just lets you get out what you can put in
  • + 5
 I think it would totally suffice if people could turn off the displaying of ebike articles via their profile settings.
  • + 1
 @hungrymonkey: How do you feel about e-bikes on chairlifts? It's not uncommon sight here in France.
  • + 0
 @mikekazimer: Mate there is a role on PinkBike for the Content Editor just for you. They gave it to the work experience kid but within a month or two drove it into the ground and f*cked it up, But he is gone soon and they need a MTB professional back driving the premier MTB website, for fear of the brand damage and loss in readership/viewers looking for the original intent and mission.
  • + 2
 @ccrdave: So do bikes. Just not without the entitled Im gunna do whatever and f*ck up trail access for all attitude because I want to and coz manufacturers who is in it to make money allow, at the expense of the sport and its future
  • + 4
 @hungrymonkey: pointless. A ski lift affects only a small portion of land, also does shuttling. The comparison would be more like throwing a motor in every ski, so then the alpine stuff is aesily accesible for everyone.
  • + 5
 @mikekazimer: The only human powered element of my riding is walking back up the hill, and i hate it, i tried a Haibike DH bike at my local bike park recently and all i can say is i want one, loads more runs, loads more fun, end of.
I was with some guys there not long after, chatting half way up the hill when a guy on an ebike went past, the usual piss taking and mumbling ensued but then one of them said "Yeah, i've come 'ere to cycle innit", and proceeded to walk up the hill, again. I couldn't contain my need to point out the irony.

I just wonder what all the spouting is about Mike, we're all well aware of your opinion, just like everyone else that keeps bangin on about ebikes = bad because of reason A or reason B, like you're trying to, or think you're actually detering people from buying them, or trying to build up 'told you so' points for later, or is it simple virtue signalling.
Ebikes or ebikers can't hurt you or affect your life negatively in any way, not really, but you just keep saying the same things over and over again, none of them seem to be happening, and i just wonder what it is you're trying to achieve.
  • - 2
 Yeah, and ban bikes from PB that have disk brakes, electric shifting, electronically controlled suspension and dropper posts and Eagle and anything else that changed the sport for the better. Carbon, tubeless, clipless, camelbaks? Water should only ever be carried on the frame!
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: I'm of the opinion that the needs to earn that descent... That feeling of grinding to the top then reaping the fruit of gravity is something that almost true of life as a whole ... eMTB robs the rider of that ... I've also had this argument when I see guys training in the pool with flippers on... For the price of a good ebike one could just as easily buy a small adventure motorcycle... Where I have seen the use of an eMTB which I found quite intriguing was when they were being used to cover the Cape Epic with cameramen using them to cover the likes of Nino where dirt bikes just couldn't go and no mere mortal could keep up the top riders , however that's where it should end... Just my two cents worth
  • + 2
 So ebike uses don't take lifts? Chairlifts or heli lifts?? Ermmm right course they don't..... @hungrymonkey:
  • + 0
 Well said lad! @iadesp06:
  • + 2
 @Spark24: I don't like ebikes (for the record) but by your logic, you would not permit yourself to use a chairlift because you had not earned the right to descend?
  • + 4
 Pinkebike.com Pronunced Pinky bike...
  • + 12
 My "Cat Lovers Monthly" magazine, just announced that they are going to add Dog stories! As dog's also appear to be popular at the moment. And they are often sold in the same shop......... ..
  • + 3
 We have quite a few e-bikes where I live, it's mostly senior citizens riding fire roads and atv tracks to pick berries and get some fresh air. I seriously don't see the huge problem with it, but we don't have anything like dedicated mtb trails here either.
  • + 0
 @iadesp06: You´re a small minority. Rest is just...lazy
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer: Go and make a second PinkEbike-Site or Pinkmoped or whatever! I see that brands like the extra marketing exposure they get via this, the main site, but still....
  • + 3
 @ccrdave: Respect to you Dave. I'm 21 but I plan to be on 2 wheels way into my 60s and 70s. If they help you to get out and to ride further and with increased enjoyment then f*ck what anyone thinks about it not being real MTB. I can definitely see the argument from both sides however and I think responsible use of e-bikes is going to be key to the two coexisting peacefully. If they're tearing up ground and bringing masses of squids down trails they can't handle it's going to be an issue for sure.
  • + 2
 Alright, it seems some people have a hard time dealing with material they disgust. In a way I can get that. I'm probably a very sensitive type. Of course I need to read and understand the world news but I don't like to view graphic material of shredded bodies after another bombing. I'd either get traumatized or stumped off which is both not what I want. Now this is a very extreme example but I'm getting the impression that e-bike material for some isn't merely on the level of "not interested". More on the "digusting" level. Maybe even coming across such an article on the main page (without even clicking it) shocks them. If so, I can understand that if Pinkbike used to be a kind of "safe space" where everything was either "interesting" or "not interesting", it could be shocking to now come across material they consider "disgusting". According to the poll it may be a minority, but still a rather big one. So one more solution I could suggest (if technically possible) is that users can somewhere in their account opt out of some content (both adds and articles). So that could be uplift, e-bike, lycra, roost, 29" wheels, you name it. And this content won't show up on the title page when they log in. In a way you already have that on the title page, where you can choose what category you do want to see (health, racing, industry etc). So this would be a secondary individual filter. I can imagine this could be some work but maybe it solves a lot too. At least it places control and responsibility back in the hands of the offended instead of having you deal with conflicting requests.

Just a possible solution I thought of.
  • + 0
 @deadmeat25: awesome response, totally agree. Its my business what I ride and I'm not bothered what anyone else thinks. Used to the "cheat" comments as I ride by and it goes in one and out the other.
  • + 5
 @mikekazimer: my reject of eMTB is almost based on same reasons. I don't really care about existing and exprimented riders who, for some reasons (health, having a second bike to ride longer distances...), decide to buy an eMTB. I'm concerned about casual riders (and above them all, tourists who rent a bike for their holidays) who, thanks to electricity, will be able to reach preserved tracks.
I live in a touristic region and step by step eMTB are litterally invading our mountains, especially during summer. Trails that used to be only known by local riders are now reached by people who dont have "mountain culture" : I mean, taking care about the trails, about the fragile soil (erosion...), about the flocks of sheeps during the summer pastures etc...
Even here in France, MTB are just tolerated in some large nature protected areas where touristic frequentation is already at its maximum. The cohabitation with other trail users (especially hikers) is sometimes already difficult so with overcrowded trails it will be worse.
Thats why wide opening our sport to the crowd via the electric stuff is dangerous, in my opinion.
  • + 1
 @GeeHad: We don't have chairlifts down here, and shuttle days with a pickup are few and far between.. So every descent is earned... We don't get snow like you guys do ... Chairlifts were built for skiing and MTB was a convenient way to keep the money rolling in during the summer months
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: I don‘t see that much of an issue. you need good riding skills to get to these trails, not many have these.
as for pedelecs, they still need human power as well. the other throttle kind of bikes like EGO-kit etc I don‘t consider eBikes. these are eMotocross or eScooters.
  • + 2
 @iadesp06: totally agree. The US is probably the most MTB unfriendly country in the world. I habe no idea why they always think it‘s so great to ride there. it actually isn‘t.
  • + 1
 @ArturoBandini: totally agree. and this discussion will fade out in about 2-3 years. the wave is here and it is not going to stop.
  • + 0
 @dfishdesign: Hm, I believe eMTBs are a great chance to have the US rethink their trail access model. it is stone age.
their society needs to become aware, that trail access is a human right.
  • + 1
 @BlakkheimGW: I ride MTB since 35+ years, and have in this time contributed to many trails built in our region. I even developed 2 permanent DH trails. but I always ride epic alpine stuff too, hiking bikes to peaks and all that, riding down technical gnarly stuff then.
I do see your point, but we are a very touristic region as well, and we do have a lot of eMTBs coming in.
but I do not see much eMTBs on our technical, secret trails. and if I see one, it‘s hard earned as well.
I see a great overall chance to get more people into a active, healthy lifestyle. and this will reduce health insurance costs.
  • + 1
 @hungrymonkey: shuttle and lift access trails are purpose built for the type of bike and riding style being ridden on them.
  • + 0
 @mikekazimer: different sport for sure since UCI banned use of electric motors in competition, so only FIA applies for it.

From what I see around me, only a fraction of eMTBers are keeping and using their old bikes. Since eMTB are eating high end market fast, you can guess what will happens in the bike industry quite soon.
  • + 1
 @Mac-Aravan: here in the Pacific Northwest I've seen 1 ebike out on the trails, and it was being pushed.
  • + 0
 @mikekazimer let me preface this by saying I'm not an e-MTB owner, and I probably never will be. That said, have you considered e-MTB as a way to promote access rather than detract from it?

In Aus (Western Aus specifically) they have started to build single track in protected nature parks. The local government has stated that they want to include mountain bikers in preservation efforts rather than exclude them. Brilliant!

I believe that this is due to saturation levels of the sport, and the understanding that we are passionate about protecting the locations and environment we ride in. So why not try and find similar positives about e-MTB and use it to our advantage?

It has the possibility of creating greater inclusion in mountain biking. Which would create greater advocacy as our numbers grow. It also raises opportunity for better trail maintenance making single trail more sustainable through ease of access, just to mention a few.

I'm sure there's are many more benefits that could be teased out - emergency rescue, scientific research, increased funding for parks through higher visitation etc. etc.

Finally, I read the PB story on the difference between EPAC's and Electric mountain bikes, like the stealth, that can do 80kph. The key to making sure that the latter doesn't kill access opportunities is information! So keep up the good work guys, keep digging in to E-MTB it's a part of our sport. And weather we like it or not we'll likely be tarred with the same brush.
  • + 1
 @ccrdave: A bicycle lets you get out what you put in. An ebike lets you get out MORE than what you put in. Be honest, that's the whole point of the power source.
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer:

pinkmotorbike.com

If your legs are limp enough to justify motoring your PinkBike, we are sorry for you and you will be redirected to what you're looking for in a few seconds , if redirection doesn't work, please click here.
  • + 46
 create a second website like "epinkbike" so that everyone can choose what he wants to see on Pinkbike. Like mtb-news.de and emtb-news.de did.
  • + 3
 Thought the same in the same moment Smile
  • + 11
 Great idea. Can we get a 26pinkbike.com and 29pinkbike.com as well please. Perhaps a tealpinkbike.com would be nice as well, I hate teal. The more segregation the better!
  • + 0
 @dmop: that's one of the issues we're debating. Thinking back to the dawn of 29ers, it would have been a huge mistake to segregate them onto another site. Are eMTBs fundamentally different? Maybe.
  • + 5
 @dmop: the more segregation the better!!! Lol pretty sure that lines been used in history somewhere before! Lol

I voted neither way, it doesn't bother me in the slightest. Let them crack on...
  • - 1
 Apartheid for ebikers?
  • + 4
 Actually "pink" is a good name for e-bikes.So regular pinkbike should pick a more bad-ass colour.
  • + 2
 @dmop: you could also split the website by hub sizes, 135, 142, 148 mm o I forgot 130 Hope hubs
  • + 2
 @brianpark: Are you on drugs. Are eMTBs fundamentally different? Maybe. Yet you done this. Nice work.
  • + 9
 Seriously, people... Is it that hard to avoid an article you don't want to read? You don't even want to SEE ebike articles? Are you that fragile and so easily offended that you can't simply scroll past the article you don't have any interest in? You babies need to grow up and embrace personal freedom. Some people want to read about e-mtn bikes on their favorite mtn bike website. You don't? That's fantastic- don't open the article. See how easy that can be?
  • - 1
 @brianpark: Ofc, it has a motor...so not pedal assisted. 29ers race bikes of all other wheelsizes (and its a fair comp), but motorycles for obvious reasons don´t
  • + 7
 Oh boy, so strictly pedal power propelled then? No more pumptrack challenge, no more chainless race down A-line, don't feature that chainless winning run by Gwin? There is so much beauty to mountainbiking, it strikes me that it just seems to be the pedaling element to be defining.

It is silly in a way. When you watch videos of pro athletes training you see them ride motocross, road bikes and whatnot. It is when they see Hannah Barnes also use a mountainbike with pedal assist that people go ape shit in the comment section. Same with the Monday video thing. It starts with more regular mountainbike stuff though later also typically drifts into BMX, skateboard, snow sports, climbing and other outdoor material PB readers may or not be interested in. All fine. Then came the day it also included that Rocky Mountain e-bike video and people got mad about it.
  • + 2
 @vinay: Fully agreed. People are so bothered by this topic in general, it's laughable. If someone wants to use a means to get to the top of the trail other than that which is solely human powered (that means use an e-bike, chairlift, or shuttle) and they aren't preventing you from enjoying your biking experience the way you want, then so what? You ride your bike, let others ride their bike.
  • - 1
 @ka-brap: I do agree and each to their own. I just tend not to open the stuff I'm not bothered by. However, they do somehow marr the purity of the sport. Like an electric skateboard for example. I'm not against it as I can see it helping me in old age.
  • + 1
 @brianpark: The data in this 'poll' is useless as the options have disign to split the vote and skew the values from a definitive answer. Make it 3 answers. Want / Don't Care / Don't Want. The 'poll' on this article does little to you tell you what your audience wants.
  • + 2
 @brianpark: why not having filters? People who don't wanna hear about eBikes tick it off. And those who've read everything on normal (real? Wink ) bikes may tick it on again if they feel curious about it.
Already in the past (and maybe still now) you did some segregation with articles showing only in some parts of the world. So instead of using the reader's location, that could be a preference in our profile. eMTB: yes/no.
  • + 1
 Ebike Ghetto?
  • + 28
 Thought I'd chime in here. As a rider, I don't have a particular opinion on E-bikes at present. I've only ridden one of them a handful of times and am, frankly, coming from a position of ignorance on the subject. Or to be less eggheaded about this--I really don't have much working knowledge and experience to form a qualified opinion about their worth or lack thereof.

As a trail advocate, I am, however, concerned (like a lot of other riders) about the potential for a backlash on trails in areas of the United States where trail access is already imperiled. I don't get the sense that the bike industry has a clear and coherent plan for rolling e-bikes out in a way that proactively addresses a whole hornet's nest of possible problems (again, I'm just talking about the United States here).

However, my personal concerns aside, I think it makes sense for PB to cover Ebikes in some fashion. Why? Because Pinkbike is a news site. We are journalists. What we cover may not be life and death news, but we approach our jobs as reporters--and that means covering the news in an impartial fashion, weighing the pros and cons, and letting you, the reader, decide for yourself where you stand on things.

Sure, we have our editorial columns in which we give ourselves free reign to say whatever we want in as one-sided a fashion as we want, but the bulk of our job is to cover the news...and these days, the news is full of E-bikes. Our job, at least as I see it, is to cover it in a way that is neutral and fair. If I refused to report on E-bikes, I wouldn't be doing my job as a reporter. And if, on the other hand, I started gushing and fawning over E-bikes because they are being touted as the remedy for the bike industry's slumping sales figures, I'd simply be some kind of marketing shill.

In short, I think we'd be a crap website if we simply ignored something that is clearly happening out there in the world, simply because it didn't suit our personal tastes. What I think we need to do is cover E-bikes accurately. Moreover, I think our staff needs to have the freedom to say whatever they think about E-bikes. Some of us hate them...and we won't be shy about that fact. Some of us like E-bikes and I'm guessing those writers will tell you about it.

What we CAN guarantee is that you will be presented with both sides, with honest opinions and with enough food for thought that you can make up your own mind. Cheers.
  • + 4
 It may be news, but it's e-bike news. You could have a spin-off site, but you only get the big bucks if you give e-bikes space on the original and best PB. It's all about the Benjamins.
  • + 10
 Yes, you are journalists, and you provide a free service full of news, race wraps, tech insights, and trail videos. Seems like quite a broad and varied selection to me. Some articles I read, others I don't.

Kind of reminds me of a newspaper.

You have your headlines on the front page. Maybe some big world news, or some large sports event coverage.

Then you get into the more mundane news, national issues and the like.

Eventually there is a "lifestyle" section, or an "entertainment" section, and then finally "business" and "sports".

And how many people read the business section? Or the lifestyle section?

We all have a choice, and we can all self manage ourselves to either look or not. Just because someone doesn't have the same interests as yourself doesn't make them any less of a person. Maybe you're the lesser person for pigeon holing people in the first place?

The way I see it is that Pinkbike, as a journalistic forum, needs to present all sides of mountainbiking, and e-mtb is just another side.

I have very little interest in slopestyle, yet we have article after article covering it. Do I, and other like minded people, get all up in the collective Pinkbike face and say "stop doing these articles!! Those bikes don't even ride more than a few hundred metres and it's all downhill!! What a bunch of unfit losers!!".

It becomes my choice to click that link or not. And so it should be for e-mtb.

Pinkbike would do a huge disservice to mountain biking in general if they did not cover e-mtb in someway. They impact on everyone, just like slopestyle riders have influence on the whole mtb scene, so too does e-mtb, and XC racing, and World Cup DH, and home made POV riding edits.

Everything is one piece in a very large jigsaw puzzle.

There is so much to cover in e-mtb. Do it, and do it well, and don't pander to the small numbered, yet vocal, trolls. Perhaps they could just learn to get along with everyone?

Ride on.

Whatever that ride may be.
  • + 2
 I was thinking, wow not some trollish buffoon spouting off on why they are gonna destroy the sport and typically with zero experience riding one. And then I see it's Vernon of course. Everyone here can learn that it's OK to not know about something and NOT OK to sound like you know everything with zero knowledge on the subject. But I can type until my fingers are bloody and it will make zero difference. Thanks Vernon for the voice of reason.
  • + 1
 Yah that's fair Vernon. I trust you on that
  • + 2
 For me eBikes present a big concern on our heavily used multi user urban trail system. Just Sunday I was just getting to a short blind rock drop and I see a pregnant women hand holding her son down the drop. Had I blasted through the drop it might have not been pretty. I see the perspective eBike customers as new to the sport with little or no knowledge of trail access issues. Then the eBike get into the hands of someone who doesn't have bike skills, trail ethics and maybe some testosterone, we have a potent cocktail for access problems. I would like to see the issue of potential user conflict and retailer understanding what the local land managers policies are and communicating that to their customers. This is where pinkbike can bring these issues to the community and in turn educate.
  • + 5
 @Stinky-Dee: If you're new to the sport, how does the fact you have an e-bike make you suddenly that much worse at knowing about trail etiquette compared to the newbie on a pedal bike? Still the same person, and still the same, scared person coming up to a drop.

I feel that your argument is poorly constructed on that point.

Not to mention riders on pedal bikes who should know better after two or more years in the sport still being absolute knobheads. Knobheads gonna knob...
  • + 8
 As has been said elsewhere. Electric skateboards are a thing, but that doesn't mean that Thrasher magazine feels the need to cover them. They know what their sport is about.
  • + 5
 @vernonfelton: So, you are going to cover Donald Trump too, now? I mean, th e news are full of him, all over the world...

I don't see you covering BMX or Motocross - both two-wheeled, the latter even with engines, electric versions are out there, too...

What I'm trying to say is, you guys draw the line on what you cover and what you don't. You don't cover something, just because it's out there. And pedelecs are not MTBs, they are different, if that was not the case you would not have seen a necessity for this article... Decide whatever you like, but don't pretend you have no choice.
  • + 4
 @handynzl: it takes fitness to ride around pedal-assisted - so newbies won´t cover much ground. On an ebike anyone can ride as far as the battery goes. And therefore have more chances/time/distance to do harm.

Plus a motor makes bike riding more accessible, easier to start with -> so more average people will start doing it. Means more peps on bikes, i.e. again more chances to do harm.

Third: I think that the percentage of people who care about nature, etc is higher among current bike riders then what it is in general population. With ebikes being ridden by average joey, that´ll change imo.
  • + 8
 PB is an expanding business and it's just an economic calculation. How much more advertising revenue can we generate without alienating so many people that it's no longer worth the trouble? It's a tightrope walk, but it's consistent with PB's gradual transformation from a DH/freeride/DJ site to an all-embracing mainstream mtb site that is seeking to take a big chunk out of all of it's rivals. I'd wager that the PB staff are suffering due to this moral dilemma, but they've got families to feed so they're hedging their bets. If you're going to sell your soul, might as well go the whole hog...
  • - 4
flag ka-brap (Aug 22, 2017 at 2:10) (Below Threshold)
 @FuzzyL: Nice slippery slope fallacy. Let's try to stick to the topic at hand: mountain bike manufacturers making electronically assisted pedal bikes for mountain biking. This is a mountain bike website and as such they will cover what falls within the theme of mountain biking. Therefore, there is no need to cover BMX or MX or commuting or road or cyclocross or track bikes or any other form of non-mountain biking.

The reason for the article is that this is a touchy subject for the purists who want mountain biking to be how THEY definite it. The debate concerns mountain biking and mountain bikers, that's why @vernonfelton rightly thinks PB should cover it.
  • + 7
 @ka-brap: To me, an ebike is not a mountain bike, because it is not a bicycle. (The very first adjective in the Wikipedia definition of bicycle is "human-powered".)

But that's what I meant, PB alone get to decide how to define their subject, and what they want to cover. They just shouldn't make a statement that sounds like a lame excuse ("it's out there, we have to report it"), because that's not true. They can very well ignore everything about ebikes. And on the same grounds, they could also cover (electric) motocross bikes. (To pick up just one of the arguments made above: Some photogs and pros also use these to get to remote spots, and a lot of mountainbikers also ride motocross.)
  • - 4
flag ka-brap (Aug 22, 2017 at 4:09) (Below Threshold)
 @FuzzyL: But now you're using the dictionary fallacy- just because something is defined by a source isn't the end all be all definition of it. E-mtn bikes clearly aren't the same as electric MX bikes. You need to pedal an e-mtn bike, whereas you have a 100% throttle controlled motor on an electric MX bike with zero pedal capability. No one is confused about their purposes either- you wouldn't show up to a MX race with a Specialized Turbo Levo to race side by side a bunch of KTM Freerides E-SX bikes. These bikes are clearly not the same and PB would never cover the KTM since it is MX bike at heart.

Vernon should have probably qualified himself a little better, but I think it was pretty clear that he did not mean he would cover everything news worthy about two-wheeled transportation. I think he assumes that everyone here knows that this is a mountain bike website. As such, he should report on things happening in the mountain bike world and e-mtn bikes are certainly part of that world. They are a type of mountain bike, they are not a type of MX bike.
  • + 3
 "now you're using the dictionary fallacy"
Too much fallacio going on around here.
  • + 2
 @ka-brap: oK ka brap. how are they defined then and by whom? For example how does a land manager distinguish an e-mtb and a ktm E-SX ( and i mean that from both a policy perspective and the man on the ground). he might not know anything about either but somewhere in that spectrum he will be expected to draw a line. How easy is it for all mtb's ( E or otherwise) to get caught up in that? Or to put it another way, if we argue that E-MTBs are just the same as normal mtbs now, do we also get booted off trails when E-MTBS become E mx bikes?
  • - 2
 @Barrymay: Like all definitions, a consensus will eventually be agreed upon- one that reflects the reality of the situation. Like in my post above, you need to pedal an e-mtn bike. You don't pedal a KTM E-SX. One has a throttle, the other doesn't. At the very least, this is a major distinction that separates all e-mtn bikes from electric MX bikes. As long as this distinction (and others such as motor size, max speed, weight, etc.) are part of the definition, then you will not get stuck in the slippery slope that fears everything becoming the same as a KTM E-SX.
  • + 4
 @ka-brap: You wouldn't show up to a MX race with a Turbo Levo, but you wouldn't show up to a mountain bike race with one either.

eBikes aren't MX bikes, but they aren't mountain bikes either. We don't need to shoehorn them into some existing category of two wheeled vehicle. They're their own thing, and that's fine.

Whether pinkbike wants to expand the website to cover this new thing is the question. Personally, I don't think they should - eBikes are sufficiently different from regular bikes that they draw a different audience, and thus demand a distinct website. This wouldn't be all that different than what Vital already does; there's VitalMTB, Vital BMX, VitalMX, etc. The sites are related, but distinct.
  • + 1
 accidental double post, whoops.
  • + 3
 This is very telling of the not-so-gentle desire to cash in on that sweet sweet marketing dollar waiting to pay for access to PB North America.
Poll for PB leadership; A. Do you actually care about the e-mtb debate or B. Cannot refuse the money truck being backed into the door any longer ?
  • + 4
 @Barrymay: the land manager in the US says f*ck it, if I can't tell the difference, I close the trails to bikes. Period. Then what does specialized sell us?
  • + 2
 Vernon, how are you going to educate the MTB enemies here in the states who have always wanted to treat MTB like motorcycles. And we've always said, no we are like hikers in wheels. We're a nonmotorized, human powered sport. Now we say, well, except that 530 watts of Levo power. That doesn't count, because California. I expect the trail access he'll to break loose once the hikers start seeing these on the trails. I will never by an emtb. But I will by an Alta once they're affordable. I just hope there are trails still legal to ride.
  • - 2
 @toast2266: When is the last time you went to general "mountain bike" race? Races are organized by category.
You wouldn't show up to an XC race with a DH bike, see how that works?

All you've shown is that it is a different category of mountain bikes, not something completely separate from mountain bikes.
  • + 1
 @ka-brap: I'd ask you the same question: when was the last time you showed up to a race?

Race categories aren't organized by bike types, they're organized by age and ability level. If I want to go race dh on a hardtail, the race organizers aren't going to stop me, and I don't need to enter a different category. But if I show up on an eBike, they most definitely won't let me race. As they shouldn't, because it's a different sport. Sure, they could make a new category for eBikes at the race, just like they could make a new category for MX bikes.
  • - 3
 @toast2266: Seriously, man? While you CAN show up to an XC race on a slopestyle bike, you KNOW you are entering an XC race. You don't show up to a race wondering what kind of event it is because the vast vast vast majority of races are marketed to a target category. There are XC races ( i.e. UCI XCO). There are Enduro races (i.e. EWS). There are Downhill races (i.e. UCI DHI). They are categorized this way to let you know what the event is like and what bike to race on. Are there bike selection exceptions given the exact course? Yes, obviously. But races are organized by category, that's the whole point.

Ultimately this proves my point about categories- all of the aforementioned categories are 100% human powered, pedal-only categories and that's why you are generally allowed to race any style of pedal bike you want. An e-bike is not allowed because it does not fit that general category. And if there was an e-bike race, pedal-only bikes would not be allowed into it. And this is what happened at Sea Otter with the creation of an e-bike category.

This is not as hard as you want to make it out to be.
  • + 1
 @ka-brap: Right. Like I said, they could make a new category for eBikes. Just like they could make a new category for motocross bikes, mobility scooters, dune buggies, and various other vehicles that aren't mountain bikes. At the end of the day, it's just vehicles being timed around a pre-determined course. But that doesn't somehow mean that eBikes are mountain bikes, nor does it mean that Pinkbike should be covering them.
  • + 0
 @handynzl: My argument is the barrier to absolute knobheads is now getting lower. Bike handling and fitness are acquired in tandem. With eBikes lack of fitness is no longer slowing the "Newbie" rider down. My former road racing experience with runners that were fit ride in the pack, but caused lots of crashes.
  • + 0
 @Stinky-Dee: Do you have the same argument for why people shouldn't use chairlifts or take shuttles? Cheaper and easier than buying an e-mountain bike in most cases... If what you said was true, then we would see absolute knobheads flooding the bike parks. Is that the case in your area?
  • + 1
 @Stinky-Dee: You don't need to be fit to have decent handling skills now does being fit mean you automatically have decent handling skills (take most roadies for example). Also e-bikes are only really faster on the climbs and that's only up to 15.5mph (if it's even powerful enough to do that), that's not really a challenging speed nor will an uphill bail at that speed cause much harm.

If anything it would end up making it safer for other riders as you wouldn't have the unfit ones getting off their bikes and pushing them plus they'd be more likely to do some slower climbing instead of just sticking to the faster descents.
  • + 0
 This is preeety preeety weak argument. It's news so we have to cover them, c'mon.
  • + 24
 "Demand for eMTBs has grown dramatically—nearly every major brand has an eMTB offering or is frantically working on one. "

That isn't demand. That's saturating the market to make it look like there is demand. ebikes are the new "standard", since they've done about every tweak to a traditional bike they can (and still call it "progress").

Demand, lol...
  • + 7
 There's definitely a risk of market saturation, it happened with fat bikes. I'm in the camp that thinks there will be a slowdown after the honeymoon and they will simply end up a segment of the market rather than taking over the market.

Keep in mind that the reason manufacturers are working so hard and yelling so loudly on this is because it brings new people (and money) into the sport. So while I agree there is no massive demand among core riders, that doesn't mean that there is no demand.

Anecdotally, I worked for a bike manufacturer that brought an eMTB to market, but didn't offer it to the USA. I think you'd have been surprised to see all the emails we received from riders who were mad they couldn't buy one.
  • + 13
 @brianpark: A friend was chatting to a guy in Nice (FR) with 3 bike shops recently - for every 'normal' MTB he sold, he was selling 9 eMTBs... that's demand, if you ask me!
  • + 6
 @hungrymonkey: Nice,as in Cote d'Azur,home of very wealthy retired people from all over? Seems adequate.
  • + 5
 local bike shop just put a bunch of eMTB's on clearance
  • + 2
 @nozes: I just came back from Chatel in France, and the numbers of eMTB I saw was big. And not "wealthy, retired people from all over" people on them. In Portes du Soleil they even have eMTB routes. And all kinda people on them Smile
  • + 1
 @nozes: Nice, as in Côte d'azur, like Valberg, Peille, la transvésubienne, or Vouilloz, Barel, Nicolaî, Barelli, Tordo, Dailly....
  • + 3
 @brianpark: "Keep in mind that the reason manufacturers are working so hard and yelling so loudly on this is because it brings new people (and money) into the sport."
.
They only think it will bring new people into the sport. I'm expecting it to turn out like Fatbikes and Plusbikes, a few brands will get it right, they'll sell a bunch of bikes and keep selling bikes over time. The rest of the industry will end up sat on piles of inventory they can't even sell at half price. High end E-bikes only truly appeal to people who want a high end bike in the first place, which is a smaller market than many brand managers would like to believe.
.
On that note I've been seeing E-Bikes about, they're almost all either a Haibike, a Specialized or Moustache. Two guys in their sixties went past me on Haibikes this weekend. Don't tell anyone but I thought they looked pretty nice too.
  • + 4
 Try to order one. Tell me the delay for the delivery.
  • + 4
 @iadesp06:
Vouilloz rides e-bikes because he is paid to promote them. Ebikes are like Botox and facelift and all this bullshit : spoiled superficial people use them because of their aging denial, and are ready to do anything to forget their fate. And that's selfish and stupid.
  • + 2
 @filsdanvers: As a Haibike dealer, the delivery times leave a lot of room for improvement. Can't really go much further into that for possible legal reasons lol
  • + 2
 @zede: funny thing, Nico ride his e-bike because he is really enjoying it, believe it or not, he is more often on his e-bike than his Enduro bike. You can meet him in the trails, and most of the time you will see him with the new Lapierre e-bike or the proto he made with the Shimano motor in place of the bosch.
  • + 2
 @zede: and by the way, if you have to choose, because of a condition, to quit biking or continue to ride, without the possibility of a normal bike, which possibility will you choose, I had to do a choice, I took it, and it's far from face-lift, laziness, aging or whatever. I had to choose between not being able to do more than 10km, or do my rides like before. I choose wisely and I'm enjoying riding again.
  • + 1
 Selling normal mtb almost the same price as e-mtb for example...
  • + 0
 @iadesp06:
When I hurt my knee, I stopped riding. That's as simple as this. If I'm not healthy enough to ride, I don't ride. If when I get 40/50/60 I can't ride up anymore, I will just stop; because if you're not healthy enough to pedal, you're not healthy enough to crash and come home alone.
  • + 3
 @zede: So don't worry, I will continue to ride during the time you will stay in your home moaning about how useless electric bike are. And I hope I will continue a long time. And by the way, I don't crash, because I ride at 80% of my possibilities, because with all my old health problem, it's completly forbidden for me to crash. And don't worry, with my mates, downhill, even with a 22kg bike, we will still be faster than you.
  • + 3
 @zede: And by the way, if 40 is old, so old that you have to stop riding, I think maybe 75% of Pinkbike's readers will be a little upset.
  • + 2
 @iadesp06: I'm so upset, I need a safe room.
  • - 1
 @iadesp06: not everyone ages the same way/speed, some are old and frustrated already at 40 and some at 80. You're faster than me when you're at 80%? Good for you dude, really
  • + 2
 @mikromakro: "E-Mtb routes" ? Now, that is cool, and something I'd consider participating in.
  • + 14
 Picture this: wattage war starts. Company A boasts 500w... then Company B boasts 550w and 20% more range. Company C drops 600w and a 10% reduction in weight. Why? Because horsepower numbers sell. Fire roads turn into drag strips. Climbs must have two lanes so ebikers can pass on the left. Man made berms will be filled with braking bumps because the newcomers will not have taken the time to learn to corner. And techy trails? They'll be just fine as it's more skill than motor.... besides, who wants to hike-a-bike with a 40 lbs sled? I should mention trail closures but that's been covered before. Pessimistic? Probably. Far fetched? Most of it except the upcoming wattage wars. We'll see what happens then.
  • - 5
flag voodoobike (Aug 21, 2017 at 17:38) (Below Threshold)
 High power it's a motorcycle, you can already buy an electric motorcycle now. Pedal assist is not about wattage. Try one eh.
  • + 2
 I agree, manufactures will be trying to out gun each other in 4-5 years time. And people will hack/chip/ jailbreak there motors for more power.

Do people think that Park Rangers an Police, will carry around a list of legal low power ebikes vs hyper power models? No, the authorities will just ban all bikes on trails, as it will be much easier to manage.

People who like riding Ebikes, actually just like riding low powered motor cycles. I have, and yes its kinda fun, but they are motor cycles .... Just really slow ones.

KTM currently make a silent 22hp Ebike, just without the pedals. Cant wait to test one ( Ktm freeride E-XC)
  • + 5
 @voodoobike: Fact: Pedal assist IS actually about wattage. It's how the MOTORs that assist the pedals are rated. I don't need to try one to understand as the MOTOR's power rating is part of the marketing spec sheet put out by the manufacturer. One need not look hard to be enlightened. For the uninitiated, this is straight from the Specialized website. Notice the emphasis on power and speed. The wattage wars are NOW. Shots fired. Come at me with some facts to tell me I'm wrong.

"Turbo Levo FSR

Hikers on Mt. Tam used to say we're crazy. Roadies called it a fad. Clunkers, tension discs— we left our eyes open, heads down, and kept designing. We kept evolving, and today, the Turbo Levo FSR embodies a design unimaginable 40 years ago—a trail bike with 530 watts of power on the climbs. A trail bike that gives you the power to ride more trails."

"Turbo Bikes

Whether you're riding trail, speeding up your commute, or just having the time of your life out on the road, our Turbo electric bikes give you the power to go farther and faster then ever before. On the road, these e-bikes are capable of achieving 45 Km/h while you pedal, and on the dirt, they give you the power to ride more trails. Think of it like superhuman strength, only it's more like a superhuman is helping you as you pedal."
  • + 13
 As a commuter tool it is already proving to be a game changer. A fat guy that normally would probably own a SUV to commute to work passes me every day on the climb up the bridge. At first I was all "f u e-bike guy". Then I realised if 1000 people who aren't inclined to pedal to work every day got on an e-bike commuter instead then that would take 1000 cars off the road in rush hour. I'll share the bike path to that. I think most of the bike companies know that's where the money is. E-MTBing might be getting the attention but the world wide e-bikes could be one of the most important revolutions in commuter behaviour.
  • + 16
 PB forgot to add a "i am able bodied an have no interest in mobility bikes"
  • + 12
 I skip plenty of articles on here that I'm not interested in, and whilst I fall in the "concerned about trail access/like the idea of widening the community/don't get them myself" category, I think as a MTB news business you should cover them (I want your here for years to come!). Anyone who throws a tantrum about you covering them, because they simply don't want to scroll past an article they aren't interested in reading is not the sort of long-term readers/supporters you need or deserve.
  • + 11
 Come on. Even pornhub doesn't have a separate site for other "categories".

I don't care about eBikes, slopestyle or even XC. But I'm glad they're there for those who do and when I do eventually want to check them out.

If you don't like it, don't read it.
  • + 9
 Can we just let the new tech do its own thing. No need to pigeon hole it all. If you hate them don't read the article if you are interested read on. Choice is everyone's gift. Maybe we should all stop being dicks about the things we don't like.
  • + 9
 I know there's gonna be haters and lovers on both sides but I think it's a great thing having more choice out there. Personally I ride both and emtb and "naturally aspirated" mtb. I do have a meniscule tear and chronic ACL deficiency but emtbers shouldn't need an excuse to ride one whether through injury or age. They are immense fun to ride and you learn more things on them. You can do double the distance and in my experience work actually harder than on a normal bike. The levo I have only gives me what I put in so if I don't work then it doesn't. Genuinely I urge you to ride one, at your full pace and see the results. Don't cry before you try
  • + 8
 If you bring a motrized bicycle to Tour de France, it's considered cheating and they'll kick you out. I don't see any reason why should motrized mountain bikes be seen differently. That's like a bodybuilding site making a poll asking whether they should review steroids.
  • + 7
 The Tour de France is a race... mountain biking (as a whole) is a leisure activity. Totally different.

Ever been on an uplift?
  • + 2
 @hungrymonkey: dud, I could almost garante you that 98% of the people who ride bikes never ever used a uplift or any thing like that. I've been riding for more than 20 years and never used one.
  • + 5
 @t-stoff: you are missing out
  • + 5
 @t-stoff: a majority of content here is gravity-based, so yeah I would totally see that as a valid argument. Imho a trail-e-bike is a more "normal" mtb than a full on dh bike. I´ve ridden all kinds of bikes and with a dh you are limited to a shuttle / lift. You CAN pedal an e-bike without battery uphill just like a normal bike, its pretty shitty but possible
  • + 2
 @daweil: but if they want to climb walls and be rubbish on the decent just buy a damn MX bike if you're not up to the challenge, its so easy, I just don't get it why do they have to recreate a sport that already exists?
  • + 1
 @t-stoff: Assisted mountain bikes can descend just as well as unassisted ones, even better in some cases due to the extra weight. It's also not just about being able to climb stuff that you couldn't before (though that is a lot of fun), it's about not killing yourself on the climb but still doing it as quick if not quicker and leaving more time and energy for the flats and descending.

A motocross bike is completely different especially in the way it handles, it doesn't give you much opportunity for exercise, and it really will destroy trails which is what a lot of people assume and complain about with e-bikes (they don't).
  • + 3
 @TheRan24: if a motocross bike doesn't give you an opportunity to exercise then why mx and supercross athletes are super fit?
  • + 1
 @JoseBravo: Because they're competitive athletes and being fit gives them a better chance of being the best. Chances are they do supplementary exercise, just like a lot of the best cyclists. Riding for the same amount of time you'll be able to burn more calories riding a mountain bike, or even an assisted mountain bike, compared to a motocross bike. I'm not saying that it doesn't take any effort at all just that it doesn't take as much.
  • + 1
 @t-stoff: using the same base, can probably estimate 96% haven't ridden their bike up and back down a mountain.
  • + 1
 @Varaxis: cycling was invented in the 19th century I bet you plenty of people learned they're way up and down since then. And you can search the amount of countries who have chairlifts vs the number of people riding bikes. We're talking about a couple of thousands vs millions.
  • + 7
 @TheRan24: ha, ha you have obviously never ridden motocross in your life.
  • + 7
 @TheRan24: Try doing some laps on an MX bike, one of the most intense full body workouts out there!
  • + 1
 @Losvar: We're not talking about riding a track for hours at a time, we're talking about riding a motocross bike on a mountain bike trail. Yes I get that it can be quite a workout to chuck a MX bike about round turns and off jumps but there won't be much of that happening on a MTB trail.
  • + 1
 @hungrymonkey: Uplifts are usually part of bike parks and ski resorts where you don't have any uphill trails, I don't have any uplifts in my local forest (so the answer to your question is no).
  • + 8
 "I’m interested in some eMTB coverage, but show me only the most interesting stuff"

I dont' believe there are that many votes for this option. Say what you like, I just don't believe it.

Also disagree with pinkbike's stance, and can't believe they would adopt it. I won't quite mountain biking, but I will frequent this site less and less, the more and more e-bike content shows up.

Great suggestion on separate site. If E-bikes are so strong, there should be no problem building a community around it, rather than tainting this one.
  • + 9
 We only have to put up with it for a week. If you're not interested, don't read the articles. Pinkbike will be tracking the number of times an article has been read. If there's not enough interest, why would they waste resources in catering to it. If there is enough demand then, as you and others have suggested, it's easy enough to launch a sister website, or add an 'e-bike' tab to the main site. Personally, the only thing that would tempt me to read these articles would be a disability, or if age just gets the better of me. I will not be adding to the click stats for this experiment.
  • + 3
 Alex Jones says the Germans are hacking the Pinkbike poll. I am telling you people!!! I am scared to say this, Kurt from Cube warned me! Damn right, my account can be banned, online connection suspended! But hell, I live for the truth! I mean the truth, not that thing those shills are telling you about space alien e-gears from Shimano and Hope swaet shops in southern Surrey! No, the truth! Oh my God I am scared! No! No, listen! Specialized Turbo Levo will win The Pinkbike Trail Bike Award on Christams 2017!!!
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns I'm innocent!
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Alex Jones, what does a hot Welsh TV presenter have to do with Germans or E-Bikes?
  • + 1
 @Fix-the-Spade: you think Alex Jones is hot? Naaah
  • + 12
 The fact you are having to defend this says it all really
  • + 7
 Pinkbike, first of all thanks for being transparent this time. The e-bike articles didn't bother me. What does get annoying is that the respective comment sections are being drowned with the same discussion and getting a very negative vibe going.

What's important is that people know what to expect. So if the article contains e-bike material, give it a clear tag on the title page. People who would be offended or simply not interested in the content won't click, those who are interested do. Your stat counter will probably give you a good impression of how popular the topic is. The thing now is, those who are offended currently only click to regurgitate their arguments against them. So my suggestion here is, don't click if you're not interested. Really, all arguments and counter-arguments have already been said numerous times. If you really want to keep the discussion going, do so here.

I personally clicked "indifferent" in the poll. It is up to PB to determine the style, identity and content of the website. You can't be "leading" and yet at the same time appeal to the widest audience. Because new/different/"leading" has most often proven polarizing in mtb-land. And quite simply if you're "leading" then you don't need an audience to tell you what to do. And the more people you try to cater for, the more will be complaining about content that doesn't suit their interest. It is like people complaining about the content on tv or radio. There are more channels to choose from. And if there really is nothing to keep you captivated, excellent. You're free to go out and ride your bike.
  • + 2
 Thanks @vinay, your comment from a previous article (maybe the new Turbo Levo? I forget) was one of the catalysts for this piece. This is uncharted territory and we appreciate the support!
  • + 10
 Let's just leave it at the poll then!
  • + 1
 I think you'll be surprised on the end vote!
  • + 1
 @lee-vps-savage: why's that then?
  • + 9
 @lee-vps-savage: well, after brexit and trump, who can be surprised of the results ?
My guess is that people will choose laziness over exercise, trail damage over trail maintenance, short term business over long term.
  • + 8
 treat them as the separate use type they are, maybe have a dedicated menubar link, but maybe don't post e-bike coverage on the main page.
  • + 7
 I'm only interested because I have to sell them, therefore reviews and different opinions are useful to me. I agree with the other comments though, make a separate site for them.
  • + 7
 I will see coverage of e-bikes as a move by pinkbike to get ad dollars. I have stopped buying from shops/manufacturers that sell e-bikes, and stopped following media that covers them.
  • + 6
 Not on the North Shore trails. That's for sure. We don't need the extra pressure and community negative feedback from other trail users could cause long term crippling effects with land owners.
  • + 1
 Are building wooden features ten-, fifteen-feet off the ground fitting in with the natural surrounds though? Just a question, and wondered if the same sort of e-bike/anti-e-bike logic is applied to these "trails"?
  • + 9
 I own an e-bike. Still don't want to see the content on pinkbike.
  • + 1
 Me too and I think I know all I need to about them. Yeehah!
  • + 4
 Where's the line drawn in the other direction? CX, gravel, rigid, fat bike? There's talk about rigid and fat bikes on the forums. There's also talk about emtbs. They're still bikes aiming for a similar experience, with similar power output--an average sized male averages 200W (over 400W peak), while the motor has 250W nominal assistance to add on top of that, some of which has to be used to carry its extra 5kg/10lbs+ of weight.

Example of pinkbike emtb thread: www.pinkbike.com/forum/listcomments/?threadid=190615&pagenum=1
  • + 4
 I'm not an Internet troll, but definitely a trail troll. Do my best to take the piss out of e-bikers. Should I not care less? Maybe. But they just annoy me to the core, go and get a motorbike and stop clogging up my trail head. One day I'll grow up.
  • + 6
 Switzerland doesn't allow any motocross in the Alps. Please show me how to hack the motor so I can E-BRRAAAP my ass up the mountain. Then I might be interested.
  • + 4
 @kurzbach: I was actually being sarcastic. We have enough chairlifts and the Post Auto Bus.
  • + 3
 @Boardlife69: My bad, hard to interpret sarcasm in text form. I think it's just become an automatic response due to people constantly asking me for ways to do that in the shop.

Just to be clear, I don't support this trend. I only sell them. Nothing more! tup
  • + 1
 @kurzbach: eat a dick
  • + 6
 Any of the groups I am riding in would never want an eMTB rider to join us. NEVER!!! Period. So I will probably ride alone in ten years from now. At 68. On an eMTB.
  • + 10
 Or you can keep riding a real bicycle and live healthy until 100 or more
  • + 1
 It's funny you say that, the Surrey hills are renown for their rough terrain and steep decents on short hills. But, loads of ebike guys all around there, no real requirement for them, fit young people too? It makes no sense!!!
  • - 1
 @cunning-linguist: it makes perfect sense, you use the same amount of effort but get to go for longer and further for it.
  • + 1
 @PaulFarley: obviously I do understand that much, I'm not still wet behind the ears. But these guys look as though they'll be able to ride further on a normal bike than what it'd take to wear the batteries out on the ebikes. Unless they were borrowed from mates - shoe for a laugh... or just have too much disposable income?
  • + 2
 Ten years from now, I'd say you chances of riding an electric powered vehicle offroad in Germany are very slim (even in the states were mountainbiking is legal), I expect so-called eMTBs to be outlawed long before that.
  • + 1
 @PaulFarley: that is correct, full body workout and riding for 3 to 4 times longer. Oh make that 6 or 8 if you've a second battery stashed in the car (or backpack - it is possible)
  • + 3
 Have you seen the New KTM Freeride Electric bike... Full moto frame and suspension...No shifting, no clutch, back brake on the handlebar... Advert with Danny McAskill... If you're gonna E-bike just do it properly like this: www.ktm.com/e-ride/freeride-e-sx-1
  • + 0
 Yeah, but that is clearly not pedal assist. Totally different beast.
  • + 3
 If 12 speed isn't enough for you you should really look at yourself. Come on. Pedal the thing! Ebikes no. Not in the woods on mtb trails. In towns and cities though I think they should be compulsory for everyone. I appreciate how two faced I am. I don't really care though. I don't really understand my own contradictions to be honest. I think the purity is lost and that something that draws me to mountain biking. Without it then the activity as a whole is chaged and I don't get that. If I got it in the first place I'd be riding a dirt bike in the woods. But I'm not, so I don't get it.
  • + 3
 See, you got downvoted by the people who clearly couldn't care less about the spirit of the sport, that's what gives me sadness, much more sadness than anger. What would envolve some degree of sacrifice, struggle, and win now is all cut loose by an engine! And it's not even a breakthrough, there's tons of sports that do the same with a f engine. I just dont get, it.. What's next "running" a marathon on a segway "cause my heart problem"? dji.
  • - 1
 @t-stoff: As long as someone isn't using the motor to cheat in a race then there's no problem. "Running" an actual marathon on a Segway would be wrong because it gives you an unfair advantage over your competitors, using a Segway as a replacement for going on an evening jog is perfectly fine as it's not hurting anyone else, whether it be for medical reasons or because you just don't want to run.

I always thought the spirit of mountain biking was about having fun and if someone has more fun on an e-bike then that's great as far as I'm concerned. Are you against other people having fun?
  • + 5
 @TheRan24: whats the purpose of "running" a marathon if you're not running? tell me. There TONS of challenges you can do and can commit if your body cant handle the marathon, or you just don't like to run. Running a marathon is... running, that's it, why change the rules, why is it so importante to meddle in someones sport and change it on their very basic rules?
Mountain biking is all about pedaling, on your own, I couldn't care less about lifts, and most of the people never been to one, and MTB and cycling as as SPORT (it's a sport not a drag race) wasn't built and isn't living and breathing on that, maybe here around pinkbike some think it is, but its not. I'm not against people having, fun, maybe someone can have fun dropping some nails on the trail, or trying to overtake me on a MX, hey "they're just having fun!".
I'm not against ebikes, I'm just sad, utterly sad by the way some try to shove down our throats what's suppose to be MTBiking and cycling all about, it's all about this type of fun, no effort, no challenge, no peddaling, just speed, and they're dead wrong, they're basically describing MX. They're not TOTTALLY into it, but they will get there, "more power", "uphiling walls", "who cares about weight, there's speed and we're having fun", "gasoline or electric, you have to power it down", etc. And don't say it's as difficult as it is with a real MTB, every other comment is all about disabled and health problems, how can you say you can push it the same way?
The message is clear and it is atrocious, don't train, don't push hard, just buy an ebike. It is sad.
  • - 3
 @t-stoff: I've tried my hardest to be nice here but I can't do it any longer, you're a f*cking idiot.

Mountain biking is about having fun, unless you're racing in which case it's about being faster but e-bikes aren't for racing so that's irrelevant. What people find fun is not for you to decide and you need to understand that some people find e-bikes to be more fun. Some people don't find killing themselves on climbs to be fun, if they can find a way around that and it doesn't affect you then why the hell do you care? Seriously, in what way could e-bikes possibly harm you? Why does their existence offend you so much? Sure someone might find throwing nails on a trail fun but guess what, it harms other people. I bet murderers quite enjoy killing people but it's pretty obvious why it's a bad thing.
  • - 1
 @t-stoff: EMTBs can be a very strenuous depending on what power lever you have it set to. You have to pedal to make one go which is obvious if you bothered to even ride one, because clearly you have not. Maybe golf or motor racing is not a SPORT then. Tell that to anyone using a motor, which likely you've used to get to the ride, eh. And nobody is forcing you to ride one either. Besides, they are coming anyway so best to not be so stressed out about it. Perhaps North Korea is more worth worrying about.
  • + 1
 @TheRan24:
"What people find fun is not for you to decide and you need to understand that some people"

I don't decide, but can I have my opinion? Or I just have to fully commit on yours?
I really think you're not aware what's an opinion, and an argument is. you see that insult is just as lazy as your ebike, you just stop the effort and go straight to the jugular. Ah, btw, It seems like in the end of your post your asking the same questions that me and others with the same opinion have answered before.
  • + 1
 @voodoobike:
"Maybe golf or motor racing is not a SPORT then" you're missing the point. I'm a fan of motor racing, and there's plenty of motorized sports around, you don't need to go and pick MTB and try to motorize it also, what you are looking for it has been covered by a ton of other sports.
Sports have rules and principles and if you try mess with the most basic of all, you get a backlash from the fans and community who see that the sport they cherish is suddenly disappearing. What made the sport is now at risk on become something much more different. That's it. It's like covering the wheels of an open wheel, it's like playing golf with a bat, this is not a new discussion and there are hundreds of similar dilemas in other subjects. Things can be talked and discussed, it's not only "who cares, just leave it" this is not Soviet Union.

And btw.
"Perhaps North Korea is more worth worrying about."
The world doesn't end and start in the USA and their foreign policy, and caring about North Korea doesn't distract me from other subjects that I also care, I'm sorry to say.
  • + 0
 @voodoobike: or the other one across the water?
  • + 0
 @t-stoff: What is your opinion? That e-bikes aren't fun? That's irrelevant when you're not the one riding them. Is it your opinion that you need to suffer on the climbs to have fun? That's fine, but don't expect everyone else to feel the same way.
  • + 5
 Very timely! As I'm on the lookout for a new bike, this week's coverage will be very helpful in deciding which brands NOT to buy.
  • + 2
 Going to be very hard to find a bike manufacturer who isn't making an eMTB in the near future—or who belong to a parent company with another eMTB in their portfolio.
  • + 2
 @brianpark: That's called market portfolio management and full suit of offerings. You know this. Has very little to do with the best interest of the sport, sport.
  • + 1
 @brianpark: Might be hard, but I think it's definitely worth the effort. Bikers only get a say in what makes it to the market by voting with their wallet.
  • + 3
 I'd like to see Pinkbike not have ebike content but if it's a business decision it would be great to keep the ebike site/content in it's own subdirectory.

ebikes might be big and ok in European recreational areas but in other places like North America there are tons of questions/issues about their use.

The questions/issues are easy to identify for North American recreational areas but the ebike industry is using a shotgun approach to marketing and selling a new vertical market. Sadly the industry has not addressed the questions/issues with vehicle regulations, government land managers, private property, club membership, club trail maintenance, trail use and much more. The only thing that is certain about ebikes is that they wouldn't be included in UCI events nor Olympics.

Note- I'm a retired 65 year old who is PWD and has been mtn biking since 1985 on and off. Even though I struggle in the climb, I not supportive of seeing mtn ebikes if/when legal mixing with mtn bikes on the current trail systems.
  • + 2
 You cannot expect "the industry" to manage itself, since basically the market is about capitalism. That said there are many industry related people and groups working on a federal (USA) regulation. Land managers also are putting up notifications, the most common is the no ebike sticker to fit on a Carsonite sign. So I would say at least in the USA I know of quite a bit of advocacy going on and it can be found if you look for it.
  • + 3
 Show us the money... How can PB afford not to cover E Bikes with every single bike manufacturer in on the E game?

I've tried one and getting a hand up the hill was nice. It just doesn't feel like a proper bike - i.e. human powered transport. I've also owned road and off road motorcycles and while it doesn't feel anything like that there are similarities. Tales of hop ups abound too. I'd love one, but its not the same sport as MTB.

Then there's the price. All they will do is get more rich people into the sport - they are unaffordable for most. Its strange that they are so popular in the EU, home of lift accessible trails all over the place. Why do you need an EMTB when you can access the slopes in a chair?

There is also the social media aspect. I'm not a climber, but there are plenty who are and if I was on an EMTB I'd claim some KOM'S. Its also going to make descending an undulating trail potentially faster too.

We can't stop the march of progress and the tech is fascinating, but to me its a different category of activity to MTB.
  • + 3
 Bicycles are a brilliant, simple invention that let's you do fairly dump and seemingly useless things. Like struggling over mountain passes in heavy rain/fog/sleet, getting soaked feet for hours by crossing streams and rivers. Drying those same feet by the fire in some crusty bothy, mountain hut or by a trailside bonfire. Arriving at the bottom of a 10 hour desert epic, skin covered in red dust, Beer that taste better than.. whatever. All in all pretty stupid and selfish stuff compared to more important ways of spending your time like predicting the next finacial crisis or formulating that one true ethos for the cult of the 26" wheel . BUT! remember one very important thing. It's all done under own power. Fueled by two burning legs a thumping chest, and an idea that something genuine comes out of the absurd enjoyment of proper doses of pain. Arriving at the top of any steep hill and harvesting the reward that is to ride down that same steep hill in a wiggly line on your own, without aid. It's kind of pure. Doing it with a motor.. i'm sure it's fun but is it pure? Really i don't give a marmots butt. Doing it dumb and pure all the way is what matters.. Artificial motor aid ads a certain calculating sense of pragmatism that i just can't combine with putting force to pedals and letting the scenery pass. it seems just as dump but in a way more arbitrary way. like figuring out a formula for getting more drunk by drinking less IPA. AMA bikes seems to add to the idea that you can arrive at the same ends by lesser output, which is to miss the objective completely. Who would ever drink less IPA if they could avoid it?? Pure bicycle riding keeps you thirsty (obviously). It has a sense of pure nonsensical logic that only reveals itself after you've put in the turns. (BY THE WAY: Objective view only. My own dad is in a wheelchair. Of course the sense of purity depends on your life situation. For some E- bikes are what opens up the world for them again. good on them!)
  • + 3
 EMTB AND MTB CAN NEVER COEXICST FOR ONE SIMPLE REASON:

Due to the uphill rider having right of way it will be an absolute nightmare to be going down a trial that an emtb is going up because they are not riding at a normal pace uphill, they are riding literally twice as fast. So what happens when the downhill rider comes around the corner to an uphill rider going 15-20mph with no time to stop. Whose fault is the crash?! This will be a F&%^ing nightmare! I have already seen emtb on trails at park city and the rich a*sholes don't give a shit what you think. While we are at it let's make every car the brightest LED lights possible because technology is always good in every way, Right?
  • + 3
 There will be significant repercussions from promoting eBikes on pinkbike. I would suggest first and foremost covering issues regarding trail access, liability, land use agreements and the decades of hard work by trail builders and organizations to legitimize mountain biking...eBikes pose risks to all of it. To kick off coverage with eBike launches at Eurobike is irresponsible. Talk to the people that are the backbone of the trails and the sport, not the companies and that profit from it.
  • + 3
 I used to be against them but have had a dhange of heart. My wife has started ridding and she loves it but does not have the strength/energy to ride for more than two hours and I think an ebike would be perfect for her to fall in love with mountain biking.
  • + 1
 it will, but perhaps keep the "ridding" to the bedroom..... :-)
  • + 3
 I'd like to think of e-mtbs as "leg empowering mtbs". In this sense, i'd like to see less motor power and less battery. Just a help for the hardest climbs, at the expense of 1-2kg weight max. Set your personal max power output, and the bike will help only over this threshold.

As they are now, I think the help level is too much.

This said, I just ordered one e-fully. Why? Because I'm horribly out of shape now (compared to a few years ago). In my area, climbs are hard and unforgiving. In this way, I'll be able to enjoy epic rides while progressively getting back in shape.

Once back in shape, we'll see... I suppose a 20kg e-fully won't be able to be as fun as my 12kg enduro weapon.

But I'm open to new things and I'm going to use the e-mtb respectfully of people and environment, same as the normal mtb.

Regarding the website, simply add a couple of preferences to the user profile: no e-contraptions, just interesting e-news, all e-news. And filter the content based on this.
  • + 3
 the only one reason for Pinkbike not having a separate site, I'm affraid, is advertising. E-bikes (mopeds) are being produced by the same companies producing the stuff advertised here. A separated site would have way less traffic, cause only the genuinely interested ones would visit it, instead of the whole mtb community, who is the actual target of e-bikes.
  • + 3
 Thanks for letting us know. I've set my homepage to Vital MTB and a reminder to switch is back in a week.

C ya next Monday when normal programming resumes

(although I may be back to LOL at some comments in a coffee break along the way)
  • + 6
 Unassisted coverage? Screw that. You meant real mountain biking coverage right?
  • + 6
 Maybe I hate them because I hate the thought of being beat up a hill by a motor?
Nah.
It's just cos they aren't real mtbs.
  • + 4
 Fairly grey area...handicapped riders, seniors, etc... I think there is a place for it. The last people we need involved is government!
  • + 2
 I think that after you try one you understand that they are still very much a bicycle and not a motorbike. The motor assists just means you'll get where go are going faster, it will hurt just as bad you just got there faster. For me this would mean more laps of the fun stuff while still getting the same workout.


My gripe with them is weight, they really dont feel like your current bike with all that extra weight. Also the motor/battery is a reliability concern that is way to high currently, because when they fail you'll really feel how much of a pig it is to haul around and from working at a shop I would say the failure rate is a bit to high for it to be enjoyable to own.
  • + 1
 Not all EMTBs ride the same. Some handle poorly and some ride pretty well. Reliability is not really an issue either. The category is fairly new, yet many brands have recently solved the problems you mention. Many early full suspension models just last year were pretty bad.
  • + 2
 All i can say about ebikes is this. I did the turkey day ride (26 miles in Marin) with a group of 70 year olds on ebikes. I'm 32. We kept the same pace all day (going up). It let the group of guys just ride like they were 30 again! Going down it's just regular bike handling. Some day that's going to be me, and I'm gonna be stoked on my ebike. Until then, I'll grind on my enduro rig.
  • + 1
 Same here, though I'm a little closer to "that day" as I am a decade older than you.

Looking in retrospect though, had e-bikes been around when I was racing XC in my late teens (18 & 19) and early 20's, then I would have beaten any e-bike up a hill - lived for the hills back then. Yes, I would be buggered at the top of the hill because I would have exerted myself, but damn, if that wouldn't have been a challenge worthy of doing (to beat an e-bike).

Today, I get passed going uphill by e-bikes, and normal bikes alike from time to time too (seems more often though than I'd really like - oh how I must have pissed off the older guys when I used to rocket up the hills, but now I am wearing their SPD's...). We all slow down, for whatever reason, eventually. I'd like to think I'll still be riding in my 90's if I am lucky enough to live that long, but I am wise enough to know that it won't be on my current enduro bike!
  • + 1
 Great. ride them as much as you want where they are allowed. Problem is people are taking them on non-motorized trails. The argument about disabled people using them to access remote areas they couldn't on a normal bike is fine if nororbikes are allowed! So i have bad knees and im getting older. By some people's rationale I should be able to rent a helicopter to access remote areas. E-bikes are fun and here to stay. KEEP THEM OFF NON MOTORIZED TRAILS
  • + 0
 Why shouldn't they be allowed on the same trails as unassisted bikes? Are you one of those people that believes an extra 250w is going to tear up trails like a motorcross bike would? Or is it because you don't like the higher powered bikes being on them (which is fair enough and I agree with) but where you live doesn't make any distinction between them and lower powered bikes? I only know the law here in Europe, which is that that anything over 250w is classed as a motorbike so would actually be illegal on a trail.
  • + 1
 in a few more years when all the knockers take there heads out of there assholes and they have become the normal cycles that they actually are we wont be debating weather they are good or bad we will just be doing what we have all ways done hanging out having fun and shredding trails it just means those of us who had to give up our miles of meditation for health reasons or just old age can get out and have some fun again!!!they may be expensive now but it opens up the outdoors to everyone and most good all mountain rigs are expensive but if you want the cookies in the jar you save your pennies and go buy them...
  • + 1
 Lets make emtb for all those with disability, while we are at it lets pave all the trails in the national parks so people in wheelchairs can get up them. can't drag your fat ass to the top of that hill/mountain just fly your drone up to get that sweet instagram pic...
  • + 1
 dam I love e bikes, theyre fun theyre fast and I can go way further or do more runs...haters are always gonna hate but I just laugh as I go past...hahahahhah. now if only the out of touch Australian government would let us have more than 250 watts......
  • + 2
 Is this a pb comments record? Just getting to the bottom of the comments so I could write something know one will read was more of a workout than riding my bike (without the e)
  • + 1
 Pinkbikers. Give it 2 years and the same number of journalists as we have now will be split across normal and ebikes and we will be getting 2 normal mtb articles and 18 ebike articles. The same with bikes. The manufactures will be pumping all their time and resources into ebikes and pedal bikes will be forgotten. It's the same way 26ers died. At the time everyone said - you don't have to buy 27 what are you worried about just ignore it but within 1 year nothing new for 26 was being built killling it dead. Be careful about supporting ebikes. The way that the manufactures and mags have gone after it, that is energy and money being taken from development of pedal bikes. Wake up people. This will kill our sport.
  • + 1
 I fail to see how Pinkbike can remain "objective" when they are essentially an ad-drive site with just as many "news" pieces as there is paid content.

In other parts of the world where cooler heads prevail regarding trail access, user conflict, and environmental impact eBikes are all well and good. But for us here in the U.S., where you can't look at someone sideways without being threatened with a lawsuit, trails are regularly sabotaged, and conflicting user groups are at each other's throats, eBikes do INDEED present a very real and serious threat.

One thing that isn't talked about very much is the inevitability of a throttle based, non-pedal assisted incarnation of these bikes. Don't for a second think that companies won't go there... it is only a matter of time before these motors get more powerful, and these throttle based "bikes" only have cranks in order to fly under the radar so to speak.

Already the forest service has posted signs banning users from taking eBikes on hard won trails, and guess what, the signs aren't stopping them. The forest service allows us to be guests on that land and it won't take much for that access to be rescinded.

Again, this is a U.S. problem that not many other places in the world share or even understand.

The rest of the world can bitch and moan about how eBike critics are just contrarian, fun-hating a-holes but the danger to our trails is very real, and it should be approached as such.

The problem is these "bikes" will soon be indistinguishable from real bikes, this their perceived impact will be applied to anything with two wheels, and that could end up with a lot of trails being taken from riders who are innocent of this foolishness.

So here we wait for the hammer to drop, by ourselves, sweating and swearing through dust filled gritted teeth as we power ourselves up the hills, while the MTB media essentially abdicates, obfuscates, and evades. Because the bread must be buttered, and our thoroughly self-vindicated storytellers know on which side that butter goes.
  • + 1
 I haven't read all the comments yet but I'm conflicted about emtb. I hate the thought of them sharing my trails and believe they will raise access issues everywhere.
They have MOTORS therefore they are motorbikes !!
However I'm nearly 50 and have ridden mtb for 30+ years so I'm hypocriticaly seeing these things as a way of extending my time on the trails but I'd hate to think that my selfishness caused access problems for others enjoyment.
They're here though and not going away.
  • + 2
 The data in this 'poll' is useless as the options have been designed to split the vote and skew the values from a definitive answer. Make it 3 answers. Want, dont care, Dont want.
  • + 1
 Pinkbike, the bike media and the bike companies want more riders. Most bike clubs and organizations want more bike riders. People that actually ride bikes don't want more people riding bikes. Sure we want our girlfriend or our best friend to ride bikes with us. But nobody wants to get the Saturday afternoon Wal Mart crowd on ebikes in trails next to us. Elitist, yes. But that's the truth. More people riding is good for the planet and all that BS, but it will result in less access, more dumbed down trails and dealing with more morons in the woods. It's not worth it. I know my money is worthless in the grand scheme of things and the companies I don't spend with couldn't care less, but I refuse to buy a bike from anyone that makes eBikes. I would avoid Shimano and SRAM and Fox too if I could. I fully expect to see Santa Cruz and Yeti making eBikes in the next two years and that will mark the day mountain biking truly died.
  • + 4
 With pb's current blogish format, cramping in too much is going to be tiring and frustrating.
  • + 2
 Volume is a legitimate concern for us.
  • + 3
 It is a scientifically proven fact that ebikes suck sweaty donkey balls and there is really no logical argument against that.
  • + 1
 If people don't like an article they can just click on the next one I really can't see the problem. If you have proper public discussion and agree on regulations I.e no more than 300 watts and the motor cuts put at 25kph which is what it is in NZ I can't really see why people are so salty about ebikes. It is the same with any change look at real issues like drug decriminalization, gay marriage etc people think the sky l fall down, then people just get on with their lives and after a couple of years they realise nothing has actually changed for them but you have created less harm/ more happiness in your community.
  • + 3
 I'm old enough to remember front suspension, disk breaks....
Do what you like, eventually you won't stop progression.
PS: don't tell anyone, but they just double the fun.
  • + 1
 After 25 years of riding ,it was either give up a sport i love or get an E-bike ,so I got one,and I love it ,yesterday I did 22 miles in 2 hours ,over 3000 ft of downhill,which unless you are a closet roadie is why we do this sport! you haters make laugh! try one, and try not grinning !
  • + 1
 I'm on part of the ebike wagon but would be cool with a separate site. Ebike sites suck and the reviews are done by noobs who can't ride for shit. Endless sphere has some good tech but no real riders. I'm all alone in wanting moto power and the ability to remove it and ride without it. I want ebikes to destroy cars not MTB. I'm sick of wasting all my energy getting to riding spots. I'm sorry California has shitty access laws but this was a global site last I checked. Blame the lawyers, hikers and horse people or grow some balls and break the law.
  • + 5
 Bike + motor = motorbike.
Not anti ebike but they aren't mountain bikes
  • + 0
 Technically a motorbike, sure, but not in the eye's of the law (we're talking about the types of bikes Pinkbike will cover, not those with thousands of watts and throttles). That means that they are considered bicycles and their use case makes them mountain bikes. If you want to differentiate and clarify then call them e-MTBs or assisted MTBs, but those last three letters are still the same.
  • + 4
 @TheRan24: To be fair, there are many different laws, in different places. Some places classify ebikes as bicycles, others don't and are prohibited from trails.
  • + 1
 @dfishdesign: Well I was mostly talking about the UK as that's where me and Daniel are from and that's what's relevant
  • + 2
 @TheRan24: the sad thing for me is I've seen ebikes on loads of trails in the UK and none carrying shovels for trail building / maintainance. Fine art the trail centres but I don't want to bust my back digging to support motorbikes (haha screw the legislation, that's my distinction)
  • + 0
 @danielshiels: And there are plenty of riders of unassisted bikes who also don't help with trail maintenance, what's your point? I ride natural trails on both my assisted and unassisted bikes, I don't do any maintenance (beyond moving obstructions) because neither bike does much damage.
  • + 0
 Some articles about trail access in different parts of the world would be nice. I don't know what the problem is in north america, but here in my area those are mostly grumpy old men maintaining the trails who are simply close minded against bikes, assisted or not. If the trails have been damaged before then it was damaged by regular mtb, mostly enduro knobheads who cut corners and won't slow down, but this has nothing to do with ebikes as we don't see much yet, even if they outsell regular mtb. I'd make a guess that the majority of ebikes is probably sold to guys around 50-60y.o. who don't go far in the mountains, will they venture further in the future ? Maybe, I don't know.
From a valley to another the acceptance is totally different. Some are trying to make compromises, some are against bikes, period. We tried to give them a hand in maintaining trails but every time they voice their opinion in the local press it's just mtb bashing, never a word of encouragment for bikers. There's probably some business behind this, like renting parcels to wealthy hunters, and mtb supposedly scare animals. Also some trails are simply utterly destroyed by woodsmens tractors, but there's money involved so it's ok I guess. Mtbs just go by without paying anything.
  • + 2
 i think most of us can live with PB covering e-bikes, as long as there is a clear tag under every e-article, that prevents us from being tricked into clicking on it
  • + 1
 Please let the bike industry improve ebikes . I hope they will weight under 15kgr in twenty years, when I will be 60 years old and I will not have such strong legs and lungs to ride my bike uphill.
  • + 0
 Ebikes are sick! At least over in the uk where the bikes are limited! And your argument about those really hard places to get to? If people wanted to go there they will! Weather it be an Ebike a car a van or just pushing the £5000 bike they brought to the top of the hill!

You all said enduro was shit! 5 years ago pinkbike picked it up and then holy shit you think it's cool! Only sheep have opinions of negitivity! The foxes of the world are already lining there pockets with Ebike products!
  • + 0
 Really great thread, good to see the die hards feeling hard done by. Great to see common sense prevail, more people into the sport will only be good.

Just got to hope that the manufacturers keep everyone happy, the moaners can only blame themselves if they force this amazing opportunity to spoil it for everyone.

Live and let live, let the sport flourish by accepting ebikes and help everyone Smile
  • + 0
 Like it or not electrically assisted mountain bikes are still mountain bikes. They have many of the same parts, they're made by the same manufacturers, they're sold at the same stores, they're ridden in the same places, they're ridden by the same people (as well as allowing those to ride who otherwise couldn't).

Call the people that ride them lazy if you want, despite the fact you can get just as much of a workout on one as an unassisted bike (you're only taking effort out of the climb, to be used elsewhere), but there's no rule in mountain biking that requires a minimum amount of exertion. Gear a DH bike low enough and it could climb too, but people use lifts or push them instead and yet it's still mountain biking and it's still on this site.

If you don't like e-bikes it's pretty f*cking simple, don't click on any articles about them. I don't have any interest in XC bikes or 29ers so I just scroll right past them, but I'm glad they're there for the people that do have an interest in them.
  • - 3
 Good to see someone talking sense,instead of the usual nonsense.
  • - 1
 @TheRan24 Thank you
  • + 1
 They click on the articles just to press the buttons of people like you. Wink

I wish that I could be optimistic and believe that they can see the bigger picture of the whole matter, but alas, with all the blinding amount of hate and anger being directed at each other, I can only be cynical. I find it just best to walk away, knowing that idiots will use only part of truth, and oversimplified generalizations, to serve their own views and spite those that don't share it.
  • + 3
 Hmm. By that definition (sold with the same branding, sometimes in the same stores, some identical parts, often froom the same manufacturers) my KTM suddenly becomes a Mountainbike. Wink
  • + 1
 that about sums it up fella. Well written.
  • - 1
 @FuzzyL: I have never seen an actual petrol powered motorbike in a bike store. Go ahead and name some parts that you could take off your KTM and slap on a mountain bike. At most it'll be the handlebars and grips, although I'm fairly sure most aren't a standard pedal bike size (25.6/31.8mm for the bar and I think about 22mm at the grip). However on an e-bike everything other than the cranks, chainring, and the frame will be the same as an unassisted bike (perhaps a bit burlier but still interchangeable).
  • + 1
 Bring it on. The amount of new people to the sport is incredible, especially middle aged women getting out with their partners! Even some of us with permanent injuries won't go to an bike after spending on them.
  • + 2
 The seperate site idea is a good one, though I think it would be better to simply have a seperate home page for ebike news.
  • + 2
 Needs to be an extra poll to see how many haters have actually ridden one yet.
  • + 1
 I view e-bikes in the same way as I view mobility scooters, a few people have legitimate reasons for owning them and the rest are just lazy!
  • + 1
 I can't see anything wrong with ebikes, I'd prefer to be out on one of them say if I had a hip or knee problem, than not out at all.
  • + 0
 I have no problem with ebikes for people who are disabled or are older and need some help getting up the hill but do not consider them to be a mountain bike. They are as closely related as a go-kart and a regular car.
  • + 2
 Is the photo of the e-bike in the fire deliberate? Is PB saying "we hate this too but we've got a dollar gun to our heads?"
  • + 0
 Nobody knows how much if at all EMTBs are "a threat". Most of the naysayers have never ridden one, therefore have NO credibility especially since they think they can predict the future. You know who you are.
  • + 3
 I haven't tried heroin; likely I'd dig it, anyway I know I don't even want to, cause the whole thing is plain wrong to me.
Same with e-bikes.
  • + 2
 Separate site! Electric powered machines are not mountain bicycles. There are mortorbikes without gasoline.
  • + 1
 Ow man. I m gonna need a hell lot more popcorn than I thought. Keep fighting.
  • + 1
 if reviews of e-bikes ridden by pink bike staff on mountain bike trails becomes a normal thing I'm out.
  • - 2
 Friend of mine just got a Turbo Levo since he has a busted knee. It means he can ride again. Had a quick go on it. Ridiculous fun on the climbs - riding up the side of valleys while my mates were down below plodding along the track. On the negative side the weight and the 15mph speed cap really limit it on straight sprinty sections. If they were sub 16kg I would be tempted to buy one, they're just a bit sluggish to throw around.
  • + 1
 ebike content not posted in the USA?

I think you are making a mistake here PInkbike.
  • + 2
 I thought motors on bicycles were reserved for people with DUIs?
  • + 2
 Drone racing???? Hahahah

Other option... qui mtb and become porn actor
  • + 1
 How about porn actress using electric dildos? It is a battery powered penis. Are they cheating? :-) Will mikekazimer blame them too?
  • + 2
 F*&k EMTB all the way
  • + 2
 I'd rather be klunking...
  • + 2
 Oh gaawwd
  • + 1
 why eMTB picked up so rapidly than gearboxes?
  • + 2
 Pink-e-bike.com
  • + 1
 Cue the tears from the butthurt who think an ebike is a cr500 motocrosser.
  • + 1
 Give 'em time www.altamotors.co/redshiftmx#redshift-mx

I already see ebikes that go uphill with no pedaling whatsoever. That is motorcycling not bicycling.
  • - 1
 This is a real difficult one. They have their place for less abled riders, but how to avoid use and abuse by lazy ass riders?
  • - 1
 Separate site - pinkebike.com - use the same template, everything, just keep that shit off here.
  • + 0
 e-bikes are waaaaay closer to e-nduro than to e-sports.
  • - 1
 I want to make a Tshirt: "I am stronger than you but I still want an Ebike"
  • + 3
 Make all e bikes with 26" rims laced onto non Boost hubs and then stand back and watch as the inner turmoil detonates the minds of half of Pinkbike's comments section regulars.
  • + 1
 @teamcliff: hahahah E-bikes already have 8 speed drivetrains...
  • + 1
 Get an old kmx
  • + 0
 I want a carbon eM16 or an eV10. No more shuttle necessary! F-yeah!
  • + 1
 all you need is a Levo!!
  • - 1
 fuck off it has a motor its a motorbike
  • - 2
 i want one but there too god dam expensive!!!
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