Edinburgh Cycle Hire’s electric bikes will be available for hire from Monday 2 March 2020.
They will be available from the same cycle points as all the other bikes and will cost £1.50 to unlock which is the same price as the unpowered bikes, but there is an additional 10p per minute charge.
An introductory offer from 2 to 16 March 2020 will make no additional charge during the first hour.
The new electric bikes have a maximum supported speed of 15 mph and provide a constant electric assist while you pedal, making Edinburgh’s hills a lot easier to tackle.
There will be 168 e-bikes phased into the current scheme using the same Just Eat Cycles app. They will be available to hire and drop off at the existing 90 hire points which are already home to over 500 pedal bikes.
Made in Britain by Pashley, the e-bikes are similar to the existing pedal models but have a slightly different frame to accommodate the battery, and a new colour scheme. The average trip length on the scheme’s existing pedal bikes is 16 minutes. Serco think that e-bike journeys will be far shorter given the greater distances which can be covered in the same time.
Alex Macdonald, General Manager of Just Eat Cycles, said: “We’re proud to announce that we will launch our e-bikes on the 2 March – this is an exciting step. The thousands of people who live, work, study and visit this brilliant city can look forward to an easy to use, sustainable and affordable alternative mode of public transport. I am looking forward to seeing them being enjoyed around the city, alongside our fantastic pedal bikes.’’
George Lowder, Chief Executive of Transport for Edinburgh, said “The e-bikes are great fun and make cycling around The City comparatively easy. The really innovative thing is the way in which they are completely integrated into the existing scheme.”
Ellie Grebenik, Senior Programme Manager at Energy Saving Trust, said: “E-bikes are growing in popularity across Scotland and provide a fantastic low carbon transport option which promotes sustainable and active travel. The addition of e-bikes to the public hire scheme in Edinburgh increases their accessibility for local residents and visitors alike, which can only be viewed as progress.
” The eBike Grant Fund, delivered by Energy Saving Trust and funded by Transport Scotland, awarded Transport for Edinburgh £238,144 towards supporting 63 e-bikes and associated charging infrastructure which will be made available through the Just Eat Cycles hire scheme.”
Testing has been carried out over the last three months with series of partners including Transport for Edinburgh and the University of Edinburgh trying out the bikes and providing feedback and journey data to operators Serco.
Users with a 24hr or an annual pass can make multiple trips per day and can choose whether to use a pedal bike or pay extra for an e-bike, depending on their individual journey and availability of the bikes.