a balance sheet more than ever under the sign of the VAE

a balance sheet more than ever under the sign of the VAE

The Eurobike show held in Frankfurt from July 3 to 7, 2024 was as usual: dense, loaded with announcements and resolutely focused on the electric bike, which is drawing a market waiting for better days. Here is our assessment after a few days in the aisles of one of the biggest bike shows in the world.

Is it a plane? Is it a bird? No, it’s SuperTang!

The Prodays show, relocated to Toulouse due to the Olympic Games in Paris, left the cycling industry hungry for more. It seems that Eurobike 2024 has kept its promises. One of the largest bicycle shows in Europe and the world, held in Frankfurt, brought together hundreds of exhibitors, bicycle and accessory manufacturers, distributors and retailers. We were there too, to find out what the bicycle market has in store for us in the coming months.

A show that allows you to test lots of bikes.

Here is our assessment after 3 days spent on site walking through the immense halls of this show. A assessment that is not intended to be exhaustive, because even though there are 3 of us at Transition Vélo, that is not enough to see everything at such a large and well-stocked show. See it instead as a photograph, taken through our eyes, of what cycling can offer us in the future.

Electricity, the engine of innovation

It’s no secret that the future of cycling will be largely electric. The e-bike is the one that drives the market, in value as well as in volume, and manufacturers are doubling their efforts to stand out. But the basis of an electric bike is obviously its motorization. And in this sector, new developments are coming thick and fast.

The first electric mountain bike equipped with the DJI motor.
The first electric mountain bike equipped with the DJI motor.

If we had to choose just one, it would probably be DJI’s Avinox. A manufacturer previously unknown in the bicycle segment, famous in particular for its drones. The announcement of its system for VAE is a surprise at first. On the one hand, because keeping such a heavy secret in the world of new technologies is quite an achievement. On the other hand, because investing in the world of cycling as DJI does requires an equivalent dose of courage and madness (and money).

Nobody expected DJI to be in this niche.
Nobody expected DJI to be in this niche.

In a market where the historical players are well established, arriving from nowhere like DJI does seems completely crazy. And yet, beyond an announcement that we did not see coming, it is above all the quality of the execution that strikes us. Admittedly, we were only able to ride for a few dozen minutes with the Avinox motor, mounted on an Amflow full-suspension mountain bike. But we already felt a certain potential.

The underside of a promising engine.
The underside of a promising engine.

DJI will still have to adapt to a bicycle market that is quite different from the one in which the Chinese brand usually operates. A much smaller world in which the players are much more interdependent. We are truly curious to see where all this will lead us.

Hide this new engine that I can't see.
Hide this new engine that I can’t see.

Because DJI may have good ideas, the big players are already well established and continue to innovate. Bosch, like every year, has come out with its new products – some of which have not really been “announced”. New products here again with a very high-tech spirit, with in particular the appearance of artificial intelligence on the menu of the German giant. An AI at the service of electric bikes and automation to make the practice even simpler for the greatest number. Easier to get to grips with, but always more complex and therefore subject to possible breakdowns, some will say.

The new ZF engine, as compact as it is noisy.
The new ZF engine, as compact as it is noisy.

If some still doubt the explosion that awaits the bicycle market, just look at the number of car enthusiasts who are rushing into the two-wheeled peloton. ZF blew us away with its new powerful and compact engines, while SEG presented the fruit of its collaboration with BH. The French company Valeo, for their part, demonstrated their new interface. A very local equipment manufacturer that we would like to see shift into second gear, as the advances seem light years away from what such a group could offer. France is looking for its champions in the e-bike and Valeo should be one of them. But we still have to really want it.

All-auto is no joke

The electrification of bicycles is now well integrated. The next step seems to be their automation. An automation that we already know quite well, whether we are talking about automatic assistance modes present at Bosch, Shimano and others. But also automation in changing gears, Bosch is coming more and more, Shimano too, Pinion should not be long.

Even Moustache is unfaithful to Bosch!
Even Moustache is unfaithful to Bosch!

Some people may see this e-bike, where you just have to turn the pedals without thinking, as the death of the bicycle. Others see it as a way to convince the most reluctant, the least reassured and the least sporty to get started.

The Skarper engine can also stay at home if you want to use only your legs.
The Skarper engine can also stay at home if you want to use only your legs.

The right solution may come from electrification kits then. We were able to try the one from the London company Skarper. A block that integrates motor and battery and which is very easily attached to a muscle bike. The best of both worlds? Perhaps. One thing is certain, Skarper is adopting the codes of the electric bike world in terms of prices!

Cargo is looking for originality

Smarter and more technological, the bicycle must above all become more practical and adapted to everyone’s life. One of the most represented segments on the Eurobike is undoubtedly that of the cargo bike. Whether it is longtail, like the Loady from Velo de Ville, folding like the Miji Bike or even capable of expanding as desired like the Cyclr Flex, the cargo bike seeks to convince.

A cargo bike that stretches to provide more space.
A cargo bike that stretches to provide more space.

A bike for everyday life, to tackle the city, transport the children, the shopping, go to work… But ultimately, don’t we just aspire to this deckchair under a tent offered by SpaceCamper? We can see ourselves there in any case, on the banks of a river, lulled by the song of the water and the birds…

Isn't that what we all dream of?
Isn’t that what we all dream of?

Do we need to reinvent everything?

It’s also nice to see things that you thought were immutable being shaken up, remodeled and rethought. Who would have thought that one day, Presta, Shrader and Dunlop could be reconciled? These bicycle tire valves, obvious to experts, totally obscure to neophytes, are about to be eclipsed by Schwalbe. The German giant, specialist in tires and inner tubes, has presented the Clik Valve. A valve that lives up to its name and that we dream of seeing everywhere.

Schwalbe CLIK VALVE SCV

What can we say about the VabsRider saddle from AtaraxyBSC? A saddle that completely rethinks the genre and gives hope to those who can’t stand having sore buttocks after every ride. We tried it and we recommend you watch our interview with one of its creators on our YouTube channel.

And there are good ideas on paper that have a hard time facing reality. This is the case, for example, of the recycled plastic bicycle. Completely contrary to everything we have just mentioned in the end. But unfortunately completely disappointing for the moment. The plastic bicycle is a little less of a dream than the fully automatic one, that’s for sure. But isn’t it ultimately the one that best captures the very essence of the bicycle?

Nevertheless, let’s not lose sight of the fact that cycling is a major issue for our world. If we want our children to be able to continue riding and having fun on bikes, it’s better to get started… and get serious about it. Above all, you have to get started as soon as possible and a brand like Puky has understood this, by offering evolving balance bikes or even bikes with automatic gear hubs. And to complete the loop on electric bikes, we even came across some for children at Eightshot. You have to follow the parents…

  • Published on July 10, 2024

Journalist on a bike, expatriate in the Luberon. Convinced he is a humor sniper who never misses his target.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping Cart