Somewhere between e-bike and electric motorcycle lies the sassy and stylish M-1
Can't decide whether you want to buy an electric bike or an electric motorcycle? The M-1 may be the answer.
When it comes to electric mobility options, there are plenty of options currently on the market, ranging from the luxury-priced Tesla Model X to powerful electric motorcycles to affordable e-bikes and electric scooters. But sometimes you just want something decidedly different, such as this 'crossover' electric two-wheeler from Monday Motorbikes, which is more than an e-bike and yet not quite a motorcycle. It's more like an electric moped, with manual pedaling as an option, but not something you'd really enjoy doing on a heavier machine like this.
Monday Motorbikes, originally known as Bolt Motorbikes when it launched the M-1 on Indiegogo in 2015, now has the M-1 available for order (or to reserve a place in the pre-order queue), and while it's a far cry from what many of us might be able to afford for a small personal transportation option, the bike looks like it would go over well as a higher-end choice for secondary transportation.
With a style reminiscent of a cafe racer motorcycle, yet without the noisy and smelly gas engine, the M-1 is said to offer the fun of a motorcycle yet avoid the additional license and registration (and insurance) required of a full-sized motorbike. With a top speed of up to 40 mph, a swappable battery pack, and a 50 mile range per charge, plus regenerative braking for partial recapture of energy, the bike's electric drivetrain is designed as the primary source of motive power, but a completely independent chain and pedal system allows for conventional pedaling if needed.
The bike has two modes, Economy and Sport, and while the Economy mode gets you a top speed of 20 mph (to stay within electric bike regulations in many states) and a range of up to 50 miles, the Sport mode unleashes the full power of the 5.5 kW motor to push riders to 40 mph (off-road only), but reduces the range by at least half, to 20-30 miles. A full charge takes about 5 hours, and the battery can either be charged while on the bike, or removed for secure charging indoors. According to the company, the lithium iron phosphate (AKA LiFePO 4) batteries used on the M-1 "are rated for over 2,000 cycles before any noticeable reduction in performance" with an estimated 5 to 8 years of usable life before needing replacement.
At about 140 lbs, the M1 is heavier than most any other electric bike, but then again, it's a beast of a powerful machine in off-road mode, and can carry two riders (with optional passenger pegs installed) or up to 350lbs in capacity, so the weight may not really be an issue for those who ride one.
And now for the bad news, at least if you're on a limited budget. The retail cost of the M1 is $5995, which isn't exactly pocket change, but if you're replacing a car with one, that cost may be offset by savings on insurance, gas, parking, and maintenance. The bike is available in any color you want, as long as that color scheme is Classic Matte Metal with Black Bodywork. Find out more at Monday Motorbikes.