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Continental e-bike system aims for high end of market

Published August 29, 2013
Continental’s compact e-bike motor integrates into the frame around the bottom bracket.

FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany (BRAIN) — Continental has unveiled a new e-bike drive system, developed in partnership with Benchmark Drives, that drive specialty division ContiTech Power Transmission Group says is smaller, more powerful and lighter than other systems currently available.

“Our focus is not only the motor, it’s the complete drive system,” Frank Surmann, head of sales at Benchmark Drives, said at the system’s Eurobike display this week.

Aimed at the premium end of the e-bike market, the system consists of a 250-watt belt-driven mid-motor, display screen, handlebar control and battery. The motor, which integrates directly into the e-bike frame around the bottom bracket, weighs 3.4 kilograms, while the battery weighs just over 3 kilos.

The rear-mounting battery on display at Eurobike has taillights, a battery status indicator on top, and a mini USB port for software updates. It snaps into an integrated rear rack developed with rack producer Racktime. ContiTech says e-bike manufacturers who spec the system can also order batteries in varying capacities to mount on frame downtubes.

Integration continues with the handlebar-mounted control, which is contained within a special grip developed with Ergon. The speedometer on the display screen shows only whole numbers, not decimals, so the numerals can be larger on the screen and more readable.

The drive system has 10 modes, numbered zero through 9. Zero just turns on the computer display, leaving the remaining nine drive modes. OEs can change the number of modes, however, simply by changing the software, Surmann said.

Continental and Benchmark Drives each will market the system to e-bike manufacturers.

Topics associated with this article: Electric bike, Eurobike

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