Video produced by John V. Turner
This foldable electric bike will change the way you cruise.
I’ve never ridden an electric bike. So when I was tasked with riding down an L-shaped dock and making a 90-degree turn, I wasn’t sure I wouldn’t end up in the drink. The stakes were high: It was a bitter November day and the water was no doubt only a few degrees above freezing. I made the turn and my confidence soared as I whizzed up the ramp onto land. I could get used to this.
Bikes and boats are a logical pairing, and not just because they both take us places. Having a bike on hand for provisioning or adventuring ashore is a game-changer. Need to grab a few groceries? No problem; get to the store in minutes and stow your loot in the optional panniers. Want to explore more of your latest destination? This two-wheeled contraption has you covered.
The Pedego Latch is a foldable electric bike that delivers for both type of excursions. It takes less than 30 seconds to collapse and put back together, and the process is incredibly simple. The adjustable seatpost, handlebars and full-size frame make it comfy for any size rider. It folds up to roughly the size of a large backpack for easy stowage.
It gets better. Where a regular bike has a metal chain that gets greasy, the Latch has a Kelvar-infused belt drive that eliminates mess on your boat. Plus, the battery charges from a standard 120-V outlet in five hours, so you can plug into the boat while you sleep. Depending on which battery you choose, the bike will take you between 30 and 45 miles. That’s plenty of range for a full day of adventuring around Catalina Island or Martha’s Vineyard, and more than enough for several trips to the supermarket.
The Latch isn’t cheap ($2,795), but one dealer I spoke with says he’s never had to repair one. The upfront investment appears to be worth the near-nonexistent cost of charging and maintenance. At 46 pounds it isn’t lightweight, but it’s simple enough to roll down the dock when folded, so you shouldn’t need to lift it very often.
There are three settings: manual pedal, electric pedal and electric boost. If you want to get some exercise, you can ride this beauty like a regular bike. Not feeling it, or want to get somewhere quicker? Twist the throttle and it’ll take you away. Or, if you want the best of both worlds, pedaling will engage a boost of electricity that feels like a push from behind. Pretty fancy.
Oh, one last thing: It goes 20 mph. That statistic speaks for itself.
I’ve always been skeptical of electric bikes—I prefer the old-fashioned way—but the Pedego Latch just changed my mind. Its versatility, ease of use and good looks are a winning combination. Just make sure not to ride off the dock.