A bicycle commuter has invented a simple, portable device that instantly turns your old sweat-and-tears-commuter-bike into a fast electric bike.
Perfect for San Francisco or Los Angeles cyclists who are faced with thigh-punishing hills on their way to and from work, Clip was named as one of the 100 Best Inventions of 2020 by Time Magazine.
Clip’s small profile, seven-pound device attaches to your front wheel and around the forks. Its small controller is secured to your handlebars, and has enough power to add 15 miles per hour of speed to your pedaling, enough to propel you up most hills no problem.
According to Adele Peters writing for Fast Company, Clip was mad by product designer Somnath Ray when he realized that people who may want to reduce their carbon footprint by pedaling to work could be dissuaded from doing so by hill climbs that arrive them at work pouring with sweat.
Small enough to fit into a backpack, the onboard 450-watt motor is powered by batteries that can be recharged in a wall socket, and provides about 10-15 miles of range.
“We wanted to have a solution where people could attach it to the bike really easily, and then basically detach it when they arrive to work,” Ray said, according to Fast Company.
E-bikes are undoubtedly cool, and even though their sales more than doubled during the pandemic, their costs are much higher than even high-end model bicycles, making them not only barriers to entry, but lucrative targets for bike thieves.
Clip isn’t alone in its class. There are other e-bike conversion kits on the market, such as the Copenhagen Wheel. However, these are often expensive (the latter costing $1,700) and heavy or permanent in their application.