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Pedego Cincinnati: Electric bicycles grow in popularity

CINCINNATI (WKRC) -- Cincinnati as a city has put a lot of money into becoming more bike-friendly.
   
But getting some people to get out of their cars and pedal can be difficult, especially in the "City of Seven Hills."  A new bike shop in town is selling Pedego bikes.  They're not the only store in the city that sells pedal assist electric bikes but it is one of the only stores where you can actually try them out.
   
At just .5 horse power, it actually still packs a good amount of get-up!  Just pop in the battery and you're ready to go!
   
Marcie Taylor has had her bike for less than two months, "Honestly, it's really kind of a life-changing thing.  I really enjoy doing this now."
   
She's been interested in "pedal assist" bikes for a few years.  Her husband was an avid cyclist but she's never felt quite up to speed to join him.

"It wasn't fun for me because I couldn't keep up.  Now with this bike, especially on the hills, before where I lagged behind, now I can just blow him away," said Taylor.
   
She uses the electric bike for a lot more than fun, "Before I used to take the car out to go run up to the drug store or to go downtown for a meeting and now it's much easier to just take the bike."
   
The bikes have throttle and assist modes.  The assist mode kicks in to help as the person starts to pedal.

"I usually keep it on the lowest level so I get some exercise.  It really feels like I just have this gentle tailwind that's pushing me along," said Taylor.
   
Egbert Powell opened the "Pedego Cincinnati" shop in April.  He said more people want to bike and this can give them the extra confidence.  And they can save you thousands of dollars.
   
"The bikes that we have are super sophisticated.  You have the technology of the bikes in terms of becoming more reliable, going further on a charge, being easier to maintain and the cost of transportation going way up," explained Powell.

After less than five hours of battery charging and about five cents worth of electricity the bike is fully charged.  A full charge will get you about 40 miles.  For cars that computes to about 800 miles per gallon!
   
The electric motor will help power the bike up to 20 mph.  Powell told Local 12 that, by law, anything faster than that would require a license.  While it may save you money in the long run, the initial price is a little steep.  The bikes sell for 2-3,000 dollars.  Or they can retrofit a bike you already own starting at 400 dollars.



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