Toronto, Ontario – The Smart ebike is going into series production and will be launched in the first half of 2012 in North America and Europe.

The new electric bicycle is currently on display at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto. It will be built in cooperation with ebike manufacturer Grace, based near Berlin.

“The Smart ebike is a true Smart, but on two wheels,” said Smart CEO Dr. Annette Winkler. “It’s not just an extremely well-designed bicycle that is sure to draw admiring glances in the city – it’s also really practical and simple to ride. Anyone can zip through town on it with or without exerting themselves, depending on their fitness level and as the mood takes them. And it’s even easier to find a parking space than with the Smart Fortwo.”

Sales of electric-assist bicycles in Germany have risen from 70,000 to 2007, to 200,000 in 2010, and by 2018, it is estimated that ebikes will make up 15 per cent of all bicycle sales in Germany.

The Smart ebike uses a maintenance-free electric motor, which switches on as soon as the rider starts to pedal. The rider determines how much electric power is provided by pushing a button on the handlebar, to one of four power levels. Depending on the power level selected and the manner of cycling, a battery charge can last for more than 100 kilometres. The portable lithium-ion battery can be charged from a wall plug or while riding, as the wheel hub motor becomes a generator when the rider brakes, recuperating and storing energy in the battery.

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