Epicenter Cycling - Santa Cruz Bike Shops

Locally Owned and Operated with Shops in Santa Cruz and Aptos

1730 Mission St, Santa Cruz 831.423.9000 - 8035 Soquel Dr, Aptos 831.662.8100

We love bikes and are your one stop for all things bicycle-related! We offer electric and traditional bikes for purchase; rental/demo bikes; cycling apparel, parts & accessories, an exceptional service department, and a mountain bike shuttle service from our Aptos store. Owned by local Shawn Wilson, and operated by friends & family.

8 Things to LOVE About Electric Bikes

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We are at the forefront of an electric bicycle revolution. E-bikes make life so much more fun and convenient for folks of all ages, abilities, and riding styles. Here are a few things we especially love about them, and we think you’ll agree!   

1. E-Bike Pedal Assist is Remarkably Intuitive

If you can ride a bike, you’ll feel right at home on an electric version with pedal assist. A pedal assist motor is engaged when you start pedaling, and it simply boosts the effort you put into the pedals. Hills are no longer intimidating, and you’ll feel like the wind is always at your back.

Pedal-assist e-bikes that we recommend include Trek Super Commuter+ (commuter/hybrid; pictured), Trek CrossRip+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Super Commuter+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Verve+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Dual Sport+ (commuter/hybrid), and Trek Powerfly (mountain bike), as well as Electra Townie Go! (comfort/cruiser).

Pedal-assist e-bikes that we recommend include Trek Super Commuter+ (commuter/hybrid; pictured), Trek CrossRip+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Super Commuter+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Verve+ (commuter/hybrid), Trek Dual Sport+ (commuter/hybrid), and Trek Powerfly (mountain bike), as well as Electra Townie Go! (comfort/cruiser).

Other types of e-bikes boast a throttle motor which is engaged by a lever (thumb throttle) or dial (twist throttle) on the handlebars. Some such models are powered exclusively by the motor; there is no pedaling involved unless the motor is turned off. However, there are also throttle motors that can be powered via pedaling or the throttle depending on what the rider desires at the time.

Throttle e-bikes we love include Blix Sol (comfort/cruiser; pictured), Blix Aveny (comfort/cruiser), Blix Packa (cargo), and Blix Vika (folding), as well as Vintage Electric’s Cafe (commuter/hybrid) and Xtracycle’s Edgerunner Swoop (cargo).

Throttle e-bikes we love include Blix Sol (comfort/cruiser; pictured), Blix Aveny (comfort/cruiser), Blix Packa (cargo), and Blix Vika (folding), as well as Vintage Electric’s Cafe (commuter/hybrid) and Xtracycle’s Edgerunner Swoop (cargo).

Regardless, all types of electric bikes can be ridden as a conventional bike, by turning off the motor.

2. Riding an E-Bike Offers Legit Exercise While Amping Up the Fun Factor

Riding a pedal assist bicycle is a fun and low-impact way to get quality exercise. Pedal assist motors are engaged by pedaling, but the rider gets to determine how much effort to put into that pedaling and can adjust the level of assist accordingly. Imagine enjoying the hill climbs, while burning calories and keeping the ole ticker healthy at the same time!

Because e-bike riders enjoy getting out on their bikes so much, they tend to ride longer and farther … getting more and more exercise. And as word spreads about how awesome e-bikes are, more and more people are getting out for a pedal on a regular basis. This is great news for the health of our community and planet.

Studies show that because riding an electric bike is so much fun, folks are riding longer and farther … and getting more exercise than they otherwise would have. (Trek CrossRip+ pictured.)

Studies show that because riding an electric bike is so much fun, folks are riding longer and farther … and getting more exercise than they otherwise would have. (Trek CrossRip+ pictured.)

3. E-Bikes are a Gateway to the Fountain of Youth

It’s no secret that being physically fit is very important no matter what your age. Regular exercise can prevent or significantly reduce risks of obesity, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, and dementia, including Alzheimer’s. Routine exercise can slow the aging process, boost the immune system, improve balance and flexibility, keep muscles toned and the heart strong, and much more.

However, as we age, engaging in regular exercise can be a challenge due to physical issues such as arthritis, sore knees, longer recovery periods from surgery or illness, and other factors. Getting outdoors for some much-needed movement can become more of a chore than an enjoyable activity, and many older people find themselves procrastinating day after day. Although exercise is known to be a natural mood-enhancer due to the endorphins raised during activity, that’s no help to people who feel especially intimidated by exercise.

If you can relate to feelings of discouragement and frustration, an electric bike is just the thing for you. Studies show that e-bikes actually make daily riders out of folks ...  say hello to fun exercise that you’ll look forward to! 

The growing popularity of electric bikes has made a profound impact on the lives of older people who experience physical barriers to conventional cycling such as arthritis or sore knees. E-bikes make getting out for much-needed movement a joy vs. a chore. (Blix Aveny Step-Through pictured at right.)

The growing popularity of electric bikes has made a profound impact on the lives of older people who experience physical barriers to conventional cycling such as arthritis or sore knees. E-bikes make getting out for much-needed movement a joy vs. a chore. (Blix Aveny Step-Through pictured at right.)

4. E-Bikes Bring People Together

Not only do e-bikes make cycling more fun for more people, they promote more social interaction than traditional bikes. The reason for this is that electric bikes allow riders of varying skill, fitness and experience levels to bike together. This has such a positive impact on families, couples, friends, co-workers, and other social groups.

E-bikes level the playing field, allowing riders of varying skill, fitness, and experience levels to enjoy time together. (Trek Powerfly pictured.)

E-bikes level the playing field, allowing riders of varying skill, fitness, and experience levels to enjoy time together. (Trek Powerfly pictured.)

5. E-Bikes are Ideal for Commuting

A traditional bicycle will save you from those nasty traffic woes and parking hassles; but imagine cruising by that cross-town congestion at 20-28 MPH, and arriving at work sweat-free. Parking is a breeze; no more searching for that elusive spot or paying hefty fees (attention UCSC students and faculty!). On your ride home, simply adjust the level of assist to get a convenient and fun workout.

Wait … how fast can you go? !! Class 1 and Class 2 electric bikes can reach speeds of 20 MPH, while Class 3 boosts you up to 28.

We recommend the following Class 2 e-bikes for commuting: Trek Verve+ (pictured above), Trek Dual Sport+, Electra Townie Go!, Blix Aveny, Blix Sol, Blix Packa and Blix Vika.

We recommend the following Class 2 e-bikes for commuting: Trek Verve+ (pictured above), Trek Dual Sport+, Electra Townie Go!, Blix Aveny, Blix Sol, Blix Packa and Blix Vika.

Recommended Class 3 e-bikes include Trek CrossRip+ (pictured above), Trek SuperCommuter+, Vintage Electric Cafe, and Xtracycle Edgerunner Swoop.

Recommended Class 3 e-bikes include Trek CrossRip+ (pictured above), Trek SuperCommuter+, Vintage Electric Cafe, and Xtracycle Edgerunner Swoop.

Got stuff to schlep? No problem! E-bikes are compatible with a wide range of options for carrying your things, whether you are commuting to work or school, or heading to the grocery store, the beach, or gym. Choose from racks, baskets, panniers, and trunks to fit your style. Some models come equipped with racks and/or baskets already. And there are even electric cargo bikes, which even allow for small passengers!

Adding to your new-found state of commuting contentment will be the knowledge that your choices and actions are making a powerful impact on your community and planet. The less you use your car, the less emissions are being let into the air — what a ripple effect that would make as more people opt for two wheels over their vehicles!

An electric cargo bike will transport even the most precious of cargo. (Blix Packa pictured.)

An electric cargo bike will transport even the most precious of cargo. (Blix Packa pictured.)

6. An E-Bike Can Save You Money

Electric bikes are a viable and sustainable transportation alternative whether supplementing car usage or ditching the four wheel gas-guzzling monster entirely. When you opt for your e-bike for simple errands, you’ll save plenty on gas and parking.

Getting rid of your car entirely, of course, can have a massive impact on your financial situation. Purchase an e-bike with what you made selling the car; or if you’re just starting out, there are loan programs to help with the cost. Your employer may even offer financial incentives when you choose to make your work commute by bike.

An e-bike is an ideal solution for the parking woes that university students and staff face. Imagine saving up to $600 a year on parking passes and not having to worry about finding a spot when you’re late to class!

The initial investment when purchasing an e-bike will pay off quickly. In addition to saving on gas and parking, you’ll kiss those ever-escalating registration and insurance fees goodbye. Plus, naturally, the cost of bike maintenance and repairs is a fraction of that for autos.

To make the cycling lifestyle easier to come by, we offer the Trek Credit Card with 0% interest for 12 months.

The money saved by opting for an e-bike is definitely something to smile about. (Trek Dual Sport+ pictured.)

The money saved by opting for an e-bike is definitely something to smile about. (Trek Dual Sport+ pictured.)

7. E-Bike Batteries Can Be Recharged Anywhere

Charging an electric bike battery is as simple as plugging it in to any household power outlet; no special charging station necessary. Some e-bikes even have a removable battery, which makes charging even more convenient. Most electric bike batteries can be fully charged between two and five hours, depending on size. A battery will last between 20 - 100 miles, depending on the model and assist level.

Some electric bikes boast a removable battery, which makes charging it even easier that it already is. (Trek Dual Sport+ pictured).

Some electric bikes boast a removable battery, which makes charging it even easier that it already is. (Trek Dual Sport+ pictured).

8. You Can Test Ride E-Bikes for FREE!

Curious to give e-bikes a try? Test rides are always FREE at Epicenter Cycling — come feel for yourself what all the excitement is about. We believe once you give ‘em a try, you’ll be as stoked on electric bikes as we are!

And keep in mind, when you purchase any bicycle from Epicenter Cycling, you receive unlimited FREE tune-ups for the life of your bike. We also include a full bicycle fit and saddle sizing at no charge. A 10% accessory discount for the first year puts the cherry on top!

Found your dream bike, but you don’t have the cash? Ride home with 0% interest for 12 months with the Trek Credit Card.