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Citi Bike Reduces E-Bike Roll Out This Summer, Production Slowed Down by COVID-19

Citi Bike (Queens Post/ Michael Dorgan)

Aug. 12, 2020 By Allie Griffin

Citi Bike has significantly cut the number of electric bikes it had promised to add to city streets this summer.

The company pledged to add “thousands” of e-bikes to its fleet over the summer back in February, but has switched course and will only be adding “hundreds,” according to a report in Gothamist.

A spokesperson for Lyft, which owns Citi Bike, told the outlet that the coronavirus pandemic slowed the supply chain and limited the labor force in factories producing the e-bikes.

There are about 300 e-bikes currently in Citi Bike’s fleet. The pedal-assist bikes can reach up to 18 miles per hour and proved to be very popular when approximately 1,000 of them were rolled out in 2018 under previous ownership.

Citi Bike, however, pulled those e-bikes after a few months because people had problems with the brakes that led to falls.

Lyft released an updated model of about 150 e-bikes in February and planned to gradually add more e-bikes until there were thousands this summer.

“Pedal-assist bikes have proven incredibly popular, and we are working hard to keep up with demand both on a daily basis as well as by increasing our fleet,” a Lyft spokesperson told the Queens Post. “We are on track to add hundreds more throughout the rest of the summer and more on top of that this year.”

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