Panasonic Intros Hybrid-Electric Bike in US

December 03, 2001 by Jeff Shepard

Panasonic (Secaucus, NJ) introduced its new hybrid-electric bike in the US. The new bike was developed specifically for the US market in cooperation with Light Electric Vehicles Technologies and Electric Vehicles Northwest (Seattle, WA).

The new bike is a high-end folder with 20in wheels, riding as a full-sized bike. Its breakthrough "non-contact" drive system is smooth and silent. The bike weighs 40lbs, in addition to its quick-release, lockable 5lbs NiCd battery pack. Its 230W/24V motor is placed in the bottom bracket and drives through seven speeds by derailleur shifting, while providing power-assist up to 15mph. The handle bar also incorporates a mini panel with buttons for on/off and high/economy settings, as well as an LED state-of-charge indicator.

The new Panasonic hybrid-electric bike sells for $1,495.