'Zen Skunkworks' - a new model in the development (to be priced at $1990 for an outstanding value)

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
For your mid-drive Bosch model, you will support the Bosch Performance Line Speed motor to Canadian customers?

It is up to the OEM to bring it or not.
The laws are grey and don't mention the pedal assist vs pure throttle. It is because of this grey area, Stromer was selling bikes in Canada through some shops like Amego, Scooteretti etc.

It is possible to bring in Bosch speed drives and market it as "usage on private land only" and one reason companies like Trek, Giant and Specialized have not brought in Class 3 to Canada is because the Canadian market is so small compared to the EU market and they just wait until the laws are clear.

But, you will see lots of bikes with Bafang Ultra motor being sold in Canada. These bikes are not illegal if they are used on private roads.
Many motor kits from Grin Technologies that go up to 45 kmph and they sell all over Canada but the liability rests on the consumer.

Bosch speed motors have the exact same hardware as the Bosch CX motor and they comply with 500W Canadian limit. Top speed can be an issue but it is not a problem if you are going to ride on private land.
Even if you ride on the road, if you are not speeding on multi-use trail, it is a non-issue.
 
No disagreement from me. I went to the Toronto & Montreal bicycle shows the last 2 years. At the Bosch booths, there was no sign from them that Bosch Performance Line Speed motor even exists in Canada(as if it was a taboo subject to bring up with them).
 

JRA

Well-Known Member
Nice Ravi! Assuming it is a DD motor and if so will there be regen and a cruise control feature?
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
The bike frame is getting painted next week and two prototypes will be ready in about 3-4 weeks.
Controller, battery, motor and the torque sensor stuff is figured out and it will be exciting to see a decent commuter priced at $1990. Not to forget, this does come with dual battery capability that offers close to 100 miles range.

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Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
A gentleman reached out me and asked how does the dual battery stuff work?

Well... Paul (co-founder of Zen) designed a custom electronic board that will handle inputs from 2 batteries and power high intensity lights. If there is someone who knows a lot about tuning controllers, building E-bike batteries, it has to be Paul. Here is a testing apparatus in his lab.

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CityExplorer

Well-Known Member
A gentleman reached out me and asked how does the dual battery stuff work?

Well... Paul (co-founder of Zen) designed a custom electronic board that will handle inputs from 2 batteries and power high intensity lights. If there is someone who knows a lot about tuning controllers, building E-bike batteries, it has to be Paul. Here is a testing apparatus in his lab.
So is it using both batteries at once, or first one and then the other, can this be selected? Since the voltage on the pack affects performance quite a bit on the bikes I have I prefer to control which battery is being used, or having the first one depleted before switching to the second one. This is probably not what the average person or majority want though. Any options here, or configuration possible?
 
Ravi, besides the dual battery option, what other options(or upgrades) are you looking at for this Zen bike? For security, Abus locks will be standard(included in base package)? Is Abus cafe lock installation possible with this bike(either standard or added by the user)?
 

FlatSix911

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Silicon Valley
We have couple of major updates.
  • We have another founding member along with me, Paul Daniel.
    Paul is an engineer and EV technologist who has been in the E-bike space for over 14 years. Paul also worked with a major electric motorcycle company "Brammo" as a battery development engineer.
    Having someone like Paul with deep knowledge of E-bikes and technical expertise is just great.

    From my experience, he is one of the most knowledgeable folks when it comes to E-bike tech. His creations are top-notch and ElectricBike.com even wrote this piece about his work:
    In his latest project, he single-handedly built a mid-drive motor with extremely high performance:weight ratio and is one of the very few mid-drives to use custom ASI controller+torque sensor for super smooth power application.

    View attachment 57291

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The second major update is that me and Paul have been developing a model that is truly unique. We wanted to bring a torque-sensing, hub motor version that provides exceptional value to the end user and yet maintains high-quality DNA.
    So far the project is coming along really well and we hope to have a full prototype ready by the beginning of October.

    The highlights of the products are:

  • 48V hub motor with thru-axle with nominal power of over 600W and 1000W of peak power. Thru-axle makes wheel removal super easy just like a mid-drive.

  • 48V, 14Ah fully integrated battery and with an option for dual battery ~(672 whr stock + 672 whr optional) total of 1340 Whr of energy

  • Custom tuned torque sensor

  • Tektro HD-E series Hydraulic brakes with motor cutoff

  • SR Auntour AIR suspension with 100mm travel and thru-axle up front.

  • 1500 lumen headlight rated at 20W of power and it comes with Hi-lo beam switch (lo-beam at 900 lumens)

  • Shimano Deore 10 speed drive train

  • Schwalbe Super Moto X tires with Greenguard protection

  • To be priced at $1990 including shipping.

Wow, the concept bike was a beautiful design that was brilliantly executed. ;)

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Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
So is it using both batteries at once, or first one and then the other, can this be selected? Since the voltage on the pack affects performance quite a bit on the bikes I have I prefer to control which battery is being used, or having the first one depleted before switching to the second one. This is probably not what the average person or majority want though. Any options here, or configuration possible?

Currently, it will pick the pack that has highest SOC and once both packs are equal, then it will draw from both simultaneously.
It is possible to engineer a more sophisticated electronics handle multiple batteries, voltages etc but it adds more time for testing and also increases the cost. We want to keep this bike at $1990 so it is affordable for a wide rider demography. Perhaps we will be able to do something more complex in 2021 but frankly at that price point people are looking for reliability and certain features. Not everyone appreciates these dual battery stuff. Only ~20% of the riders go on rides that last more than 40 miles at a time. For those riders, who really want to push the limits, we can offer a difference package.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
Ravi, besides the dual battery option, what other options(or upgrades) are you looking at for this Zen bike? For security, Abus locks will be standard(included in base package)? Is Abus cafe lock installation possible with this bike(either standard or added by the user)?

We have close contact with ABUS and all our Bosch bikes will have keyed alike feature and upgrade to the Alarm lock but if we add ABUS stuff to this bike, the company will not be able to provide high-quality service and be still profitable to sustain this competitive market. Frankly, there are not many bikes that offer what this bike will offer even at $2500 (Dual battery capability, quick release motor, torque sensor, hydraulic brakes, air suspension etc.)
If the riders wants to add on ABUS lock, sure we can do that but it will be an optional upgrade.
 
We have close contact with ABUS and all our Bosch bikes will have keyed alike feature and upgrade to the Alarm lock but if we add ABUS stuff to this bike, the company will not be able to provide high-quality service and be still profitable to sustain this competitive market. Frankly, there are not many bikes that offer what this bike will offer even at $2500 (Dual battery capability, quick release motor, torque sensor, hydraulic brakes, air suspension etc.)
If the riders wants to add on ABUS lock, sure we can do that but it will be an optional upgrade.
I certainly understand. That's why I'd asked more for clarification(I saw your 'Security' thread, in which you stated "... all bikes will have ABUS locks..."). Any other optional upgrade being considered?
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
I certainly understand. That's why I'd asked more for clarification(I saw your 'Security' thread, in which you stated "... all bikes will have ABUS locks..."). Any other optional upgrade being considered?

If there is something in your mind, please let us know. We are eager to listen to experienced riders such as yourself.
We would want to under promise and over deliver and keep the enterprise at a healthy financial level that would enable us to provide excellent service.
 
If you deliver what you promise so far, $1990(US) is a great price(for me, I would get the optional second battery at least to add to my costs). And for me, supporting a Canadian e-bike brand is a great bonus, & I save quite a bit of money too(not having to pay in US funds with weak Canadian dollar, shipping costs eliminated, potential cross-border duty charges). Security is a primary concern for me(a reason I might be dissuaded from buying any e-bike). I would like for this bike, to have some kind of locking feature as standard, that would disable all electronics completely(maybe requiring owners to put in a 5 digit pin code otherwise absolutely nothing comes on). You already announced for your upcoming Zen Samurai e-bike model you will be having a lock feature from the display, but that comes Bosch innovation(it was a important new feature added from Bosch). A reliable GPS theft tracker built-in if possible, if there's something reliable out there, that's not too expensive for the bike owner(like steep monthly subscription charges).

With what I can afford, besides getting a optional second battery for this bike, there's not much I would upgrade. Maybe a suspension seatpost. I assume the supplied controller as standard, would be more than adequate for my needs.

If I had the money finances, I would be most interested in getting your Zen Samurai e-bike. Although from checking the Zen e-bikes website, I'm most curious about the Z Speed R road race bike. Any projected Z Speed R bike price at this point?
 

BigNerd

Well-Known Member
So is this hub drive $1999 bike supposed to be the new Shakti I see on the under contruction website?
 

BigNerd

Well-Known Member
Yeah... you'd be surprised that there are quite a few people where 20mph is good enough. Especially if you've crashed going over that speed. :)
 
D

Deleted member 4210

Guest
These bikes are not illegal if they are used on private roads.
I always get a chuckle out of all the usual disclaimers on high speed ebike brands, shown in fine print on their websites about staying on 'private roads' or 'private land' to 'keep it legal'. And its all stated so smoothly and nonchalantly too, as if its no big deal at all. I mean doesn't everyone have access to large plots of private land with smoothly paved trails ?

The median US lot size is less than 1/5th of an acre. And do you know any 'private roads' one can use to commute on ? Sorry, but where I come from 'private' usually means "NO TRESPASSING."

Thus your 8600 square feet lot would not be enough room to reach a speed of even 20. With a 60 foot wide lot, you'd have ~ 140 feet to reach that speed, before you slam on the brakes. 🤪

Oh, but I suppose your neighbor would have zero issue with you also zooming through their backyard past their outdoor Bar-B-Que and onto their manicured front lawn to give you plenty of runway before you go airborne (up with the landing gear too) as you near their curb ! (oops sorry. forgot this was real life and not a Super Mario video game. my bad. )

Or maybe one's 'rich uncle' has 400 acres of farmland or horse trails, where a screamin road bike would be a wonderful choice. And boy are you lucky, since you only have to drive across a few states to visit him on a weekend. ;)
 
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