I admit, one year ago I did not really believe in pedal assist bikes. It took a ride on one while on vacation to change my ideas about these bikes.
While on a trip, my wife (an admitted non-cyclist) and some friends rented some pedal assist bikes to explore the local paved trails of Hood River, Oregon. Some of us were on regular bikes, but the ones on the electric bikes were having a blast going up the hills. Sheila was hooked on riding. I still had my doubts.
Last fall we invested in a pedal assist bike for her. After a lot of research and test rides, she found the bike she enjoyed the most. Since then she rides on a regular basis, both just riding for exercise and also running local errands. My problem was keeping up with her. While I am a decent cyclist, it was frustrating to try to match her consistent 15 MPH over hills and into head winds.
About 2 months ago I purchased a Specialized Como 3.0. I am now a firm believer in pedal assist bikes. Not only is it fun to just ride, it has taken the place of my car on many local trips. In the summer I do not run local errands on my bike- by the time I get somewhere I am too sweaty to be presentable in public. On an electric bike I cruise at 18 MPH (or more) with minimal effort, with a nice breeze cooling me. I really feel that with some planning my wife and I could become a one car family.
I have had some cyclist friends give me grief about my new bike. Everyone of them has a smile on their face after testing it- it makes you feel like Superman on a bike. As Specialized says- It's you, only faster. There are many advantages of the pedal assist bike. One is it opens up cycling to a lot of people who would not otherwise ride. Another is that is fantastic for commuting or local trips. I can get from College Park to downtown Orlando or Winter Park in about the same time as in my car, and parking is never an issue. The new bike is not replacing my regular rides; it is supplementing them.
If you have not ridden a pedal assist bike, stop by Orange Cycle and check out our selection of Specialized and Raleigh electric bikes. You'll love the ride.