Lime announces $50 million investment and new generation of e-bike
Lime’s bumper investment will enable it to roll out its services to more cities across Europe in particular, where micromobility is increasing in popularity.
Lime's newest bike will feature a swappable battery that is interchangeable with the company's latest generation of scooter
Lime has announced a $50 million investment in new e-bike hardware to launch its latest generation e-bikes and double the number of cities globally where it provides shared e-bike services.
Most of this investment will be focused in Europe, where Lime plans to bring its shared e-bike to new cities, particularly in France, Germany, the UK, Italy and Spain. Lime says European riders took almost two million rides on its e-bikes last year, and the micromobility provider says it expects that number to grow significantly in 2021, spurred by city residents getting vaccinated and returning to work in larger numbers.
“As we build out the Lime platform to serve any urban trip, e-bikes are a key piece of the puzzle as a perfect option for medium-length trips,” said Ghassan Haddad, Head of European Affairs for Lime.
“It’s why based on the feedback we heard from cities, we’re making substantial investments to upgrade our world-class e-bike and bring it to more European metropolis, providing riders a new and exciting way to leave their cars behind.
“Shared micro mobility is playing an essential role in getting cities moving again safely so we see this as a critical moment to double down on e-bikes as an open-air, socially-distanced transportation option.”
Lime’s latest generation e-bike includes a swappable battery, which is interchangeable with Lime’s Gen4 scooter. The interoperability of the battery has been described as a “game changer” for the micromobility industry by Lime. It will allow the company to streamline operations across more markets, reducing the frequency of charging and rebalancing vehicles. The swappable battery also yields environmental benefits by cutting down car trips from Lime’s operations vans.
The investment comes as the way e-bikes are used is changing in Europe, with many city residents replacing traditional commutes with the open-air, socially distanced option of a bike or scooter.
Lime claims its data shows that riders have taken trips almost twice as long on e-bikes since pandemic has started, with their main purpose either a daily commute or shopping errands, instead of recreation or social activities as it was in previous years.
“COVID-19 has changed the game for e-bikes in Europe and we want to make sure we partner with cities to address new demand for sustainable and shared mobility,” added Haddad.