Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sanyo Eneloop electric bicycle

Sanyo Eneloop electric assist bicycle: "Ene + Loop" describes "energy looping" features: regenerative charging, pedal assist bicycle.

Sanyo Eneloop electric bicycle

Sanyo launched their Eneloop ebike to the North American market today at Interbike. The Eneloop bike is expected to be available through independent bicycle dealers and specialty retailers throughout the United States beginning in November 2009, with a suggested retail price starting at $2,299.

Regenerative battery charging can be done by braking and by going downhill to extend the bike's range.

bicycle brake lever The eneloop bike is a 26-inch, three-speed regenerative, pedal-assist hybrid electric bicycle. As such, riders can propel the eneloop bike under their own power or can engage the bike’s motor and electrical system to pedal in one of three assist modes – standard, power-up or auto – where the front hub-based motor helps the bicycle and rider travel forward.

As with similar ebikes, power and mode are selected from a handlebar mounted panel switch. The Sanyo eneloop is somewhat unique in that the bike lights are integrated with the other electronics of the bike; other ebikes tend to have lighting as a separate system if they're included at all.

ebike switch

Sanyo Eneloop bike motor
As with most other ebikes, the power assist comes from a hub motor. The motor, mounted in the front hub, is a 250 watt DC brushless motor.

Sanyo claims the Eneloop bike motor can provide as much as twice the effort as you put into pedaling, while previous pedal assist bikes provide about a 1:1 assist ratio. A torque sensor at the rear wheel senses the pedal power and adjusts the powered wheel output accordingly.

Sanyo Eneloop electric bicycle

Some features of the eneloop bicycle:
  • 25.9 volt/5.7 Ampere-hour(Ah) lithium-ion battery
  • Charge time ~ 3.5 hours
  • Total bike weight ~ 50 pounds (about typical of hybrid ebikes)
  • Taillight brake lamp - High-intensity, flashing LED tail lamp that operates when the headlight is turned on and flashes faster when braking
  • Handlebar panel switch
  • Low frame and saddle design to allow easy step-through and mounting
  • Seat that accommodates 26-inch framing
  • Neatly-designed frame with internal cabling

Sanyo Eneloop electric bicycle

Expected riding distances:
  • Up to 17 miles in Standard Mode – no charging while riding (with the motor engaged)
  • Up to 20 miles in Power-Up Mode – regenerative charging via braking only
  • Up to 40 miles in Auto Mode – full regenerative charging

Sanyo Eneloop electric bicycle

More: Sanyo Eneloop Bike.


  1. Regenerative braking is overated. You do get some energy back, but very little. You get a lot of marketing punch, though.

    For a detailed analysis (i.e. the numbers) see

  2. the slides remind me of the movie lost in translation.... More Intensity.....

  3. @Anon 12:25 - I agree, but it's something people are always asking about. Still, I'm amazed Sanyo decided to go this route.

    @Wuss912 and I already chatted about "intensity" on Twitter.

  4. This is a great bike, Ii would fit anyone who likes to ride in the sunset electric bikes

  5. So... would this with slick marketing seduce people onto bicycles with motors-- and then, perhaps, we can seduce them onto bicycles without them and they find out how easy it is to pedal a bike without a honkin' motor weighing it down? Sounds like the American weigh...

  6. @Sioux: I can imagine the day when I can't exert quite the effort I once did, so I can appreciate a little boost. Unfortunately, I think everybody I see on e- and gas assist bikes are all younger than me.

  7. The SANYO eneloop electric bike is truly a unique electric bike unlike any we have sold in the past 10 years. It's small battery and efficient hub motor are so well optimized, they run forever on a charge but still give you plenty of oomph going up steep hills.

    I think with the Eneloop, Sanyo is pointing in the direction electric bikes are going.

    Bert, electric bike enthusiast

  8. Thanks for dropping by, Bert. I posted a more complete review of the Eneloop bike here.

  9. Interesting and important information. It is really beneficial for us. Thanks