The end of chains on electric bikes, is it coming soon?

Today’s e-bikes are limited by the fact that their pedals have to be mechanically connected to the rear wheel, but that could soon change thanks to Schaeffler’s Free Drive system.

Credit: Unsplash

At this year’s Eurobike show in Germany, Schaeffler presented its new Free drive system which is expected to make owning and using an electric bicycle even easier than a conventional bicycle.

Indeed, the Schaeffler Free Drive system developed in partnership with Heinzmann, specialist in two-wheel electric propulsion, eliminates the need for a chain or belt to transfer energy from the pedals to the wheel hub. Its arrival will make it possible to design entirely new bicycles awith fewer moving parts and will therefore facilitate their maintenance.

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How does Schaeffler’s Free Drive work?

This works in converting the cyclist’s pedaling power (mechanical energy) into electrical energy through a small generator housed between the pedals. The latter converts electrical energy into mechanical energy, which is used to turn the wheel and therefore help the cyclist to move forward.

Free Drive Schaeffler electric bike
Credit: Schaeffler

The generator thus regulates the resistance with which the cyclist is confronted when pedaling, according to the pedaling force that he has chosen to maintain his cruising speed. According to Schaeffler, the whole system provides a continuous power of 250 watts. In addition, the system is able to recharge, since excess energy, obtained if the rider pedals harder than necessary, can be stored in the battery.

According to Schaeffler, the technology offers “ a potential for new fields of activity in the field of micromobility », Since the company is already adapting it for other means of transport with three or four wheels.

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If you are seduced by this technology, we remind you that the French government offers you 2,500 euros if you exchange your car for an electric bike. For the moment, we do not know exactly when the first bikes equipped with this new Free Drive system will be marketed. Schaeffler invites the public to come and see his innovation at the major Eurobike trade fair currently being held in Frankfurt, Germany. The company is currently using a modified BAYK Bring S cargo bike to accommodate its Free Drive system.

Source: electrek

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