Flywheel | February 13, 2022
Featuring the top 5 used vehicles of the week and an exploration of the typical condition of vehicles sold in the secondary market.
Welcome to Flywheel, a weekly exploration of the used side of owned micromobility. Each newsletter will highlight five of the most interesting used vehicles being sold in the market followed by an observation of trends emerging in the industry.
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This week’s featured vehicles are a cargo bike, an upgrade/retrofit kit, two mini e-bikes, and a motorcycle-esque class-3 bike. The observation of the week explores the typical condition of vehicles sold in the secondary market.
Top 5 Vehicles of the Week
The Yuba Sweet Curry is the pedal-only sister vehicle of the beloved Yuba Spicy Curry, one of the best family-friendly cargo bikes on the market. This listing was professionally retrofitted with a 1000W Erad mid-drive motor (4x more powerful than the Spicy Curry’s standard Bosch mid-drive) and a 48V Erad battery with a custom charger that allows for different charging speeds to help optimize for battery health. Local bike shop The New Wheel has regularly serviced this vehicle and is the best place for it’s future maintenance. Being sold at the same price as the Yuba Spicy Curry with 4x the performance, this listing is the perfect option for those looking to replace their minivan. Listing can be found here.
Superpedestrian’s Copenhagen Wheel is one of the original, pioneering products of the micromobility industry and Superpedestrian’s first foray into the sector before they pivoted to shared dockless scooters. The 350W retrofit is an easy-to-install rear-wheel replacement that can turn any pedal bike into a class-1 e-bike. All electronics, battery pack, and other components are integrated into the 17lb wheel body. The included pack is a 48V 279Wh Li-ion battery that delivers ~20-30 miles of range. Perhaps the most unique feature of this product is that it’s capable of regenerative braking, activated by pedaling backwards. The Copenhagen Wheel is amongst the best performing, easy-to-install, and well-designed pedal bike upgrade kits. Superpedestrian unfortunately no longer sells the product, making this listing of a lightly-used wheel at $500 below MSRP an excellent choice for those looking to stick with a pedal bike they already own. Listing can be found here.
The 2020 Riese & Müller Tinker Vario is a mini commuter e-bike featuring the premium quality and high performance componentry and build that the Riese & Müller brand is known for. The Tinker is one of the most stable and smooth mini e-bikes in the market, due to its 20” wheels and a Enviolo continuous hub gear with a Gates belt drive. The Bosch Performance CX motor combined with a 500Wh Bosch battery give riders a max speed of 20mph and a range of ~50 miles. The powertrain can be unlocked to go much faster, but that would render the bike street/bike-lane illegal. Selling for ~$2600 less than MSRP with very little use (373 miles), this listing is a steal for what is an incredibly high quality vehicle. Listing can be found here.
The Xiaomi HIMO H1 is the world’s smallest e-bike, folding to the approximate size of a ream of A3 paper and weighing less than 30lbs. It’s functionally a cross between a class-2 e-bike and a scooter, with a 180W hub motor and a 36V 6Ah battery that provides a max speed of ~12mph and a range of ~13 miles. While the vehicle isn’t great for those looking to commute entirely by e-bike, it is a great vehicle to cut down the first/last mile in a multi-modal commute and easily carry onto a bus/train, into your office, etc. Launched at the end of 2019 on Indiegogo, this vehicle has been extremely hard get your hands on ever since the campaign ended. This listing of a brand new, in-box H1 is a rare find. Listing can be found here.
Juiced is one of the best selling used vehicle brands in the market, and the Juiced City Scrambler is their most popular model. The motorcycle-esque aesthetic and form factor is fast becoming one of the most popular styles for class-3 e-bikes, and the City Scrambler has a 750W Bagang Motor and a custom 52V 13 Ah battery that have firmly placed it at the top of the pecking order in terms of performance, range, and ride-ability. This vehicle was bought new only ~1 year ago, and is being sold for significantly less than the average resale price of this model. Listing can be found here.
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Observation of the Week
What is the typical condition of a vehicle sold on Craigslist?
The following is a breakdown of the condition of vehicles listed on Craigslist across major markets.
Shockingly, the vast majority of used-vehicles on Craigslist seem to be barely used at all. ~37% of vehicles listed are in new condition while ~28% are in like-new condition. Vehicle condition is self-reported, so there is likely some exaggeration and understatement of depreciation by sellers. Regardless, the point stands that most vehicles being sold are nowhere near their end of life.
This is likely happening for a few reasons:
Many listings on Craigslist are actually posted by bike shops, manufacturers, and other businesses that are using the platform as a free mass distribution channel and often post their entire inventory, both used and new.
Returning e-bikes is incredibly difficult and inconvenient. Many sellers often seem to be recent buyers who bought a vehicle that’s not the right size, is too large for their home, an unused gift, etc. Re-selling the vehicle is simply an easier alternative to managing a complicated returns process.
There is significant price inflation in the secondary market due to supply shortages and long wait times for new vehicle delivery, leading to many sellers taking advantage of the opportunity to make an above average return on a resale.
That’s it for this week. Thanks again for joining, see you next Sunday!
- Puneeth Meruva
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