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Gocycle, the British e-bike company founded by a former McLaren car designer, has just taken the wraps off an innovative new electric cargo bike for families. The CX series of longtails are lightweight and foldable, as you’d expect from Gocycle, with an intriguing new handlebar on the CX Plus model that can be quickly adapted for rider comfort.
Gocycle calls it Flofit, and it’s “probably the most adjustable-for-comfort handlebar ever developed!” says company founder and designer Richard Thorpe in a press release. “Adjustable in reach, grip angle, offering multiple hand positions, and of course foldable — it’s a game-changer for discerning urban e-bikers.”
Maybe, but right now all we have is a promise and a bunch of image renders, not even photographs of a real bike. That’s not to say we can’t trust Gocycle — the company’s been making ultra-premium e-bikes since 2009, including fast foldables with integrated running lights, internal cable routing, a minimalistic display, and those weirdly cool side-mounted wheels.
Gocycle says the CX weighs just 23kg (51 pounds), which is very light for a cargo e-bike, yet it can support up to 220kg (485 pounds) of total weight, including the rider, passengers, and cargo. For comparison, the Rad Power RadWagon electric cargo bike doesn’t fold and weighs about 77 pounds with a 350-pound weight limit, but it’s also equipped with a much bigger battery and more powerful 750W motor for far less money. But let’s see you stuff a RadWagon into a train, elevator, or back of a car.
As to the center kickstand’s ability to support such a massive load, Gocycle’s Thorpe had this to say in an email exchange with The Verge:
“Gocycle has been a pioneer in dual-legged retractable center kickstands – and we have built up an enviable reputation for things that are lightweight, strong, and foldable! The new patent pending CX kickstand is designed and tested with a 220kg max load vehicle rating and multi passenger/rider loading-unloading use cases. It presents a formidable design and engineering challenge drawing on our many years of experience in the folding and compact wheel e-bike market segment.”
The rear wooden deck (available in cherry or teak) on the CXi and CX Plus are compatible with MIK accessories, including child seats, pet carriers, panniers, and, eventually, an F1-inspired halo system from Gocycle to protect kids.
As for the rest of the specs, the frame is a mix of alloy in front and carbon fiber in the rear. There’s also a carbon fiber wheel and fork and a 375Wh (10.4Ah / 36V) removable battery that charges in 3.5 hours with a claimed “up to 80km (50 miles)” range from the front-hub motor. In the US, you get a 500W motor with a 20mph top speed, which falls to the standard 25km/h and 250W mix for Europeans.
Front and rear hydraulic disk brakes help bring those 20 x 2.4-inch tires to a confident stop. The transmission is underpinned by a torque sensor for a more intuitive pedal assist, a five-speed Shimano Nexus hub with Gocycle’s predictive shifting, and a Gates CDX carbon belt drive instead of a long, oily chain and finicky derailleur.
Gocycle’s e-bikes have never been cheap, and the CX family doesn’t change the situation. Nevertheless, these are cargo e-bikes which can replace cars for some families, including those paying $12,000 each year to own and maintain a new car that’s likely sitting unused most of the time.
Preorders are open now starting at a suggested retail price of £5,999 (about €7,000 / $7,600) for the CXi model, jumping to £6,999 (about $8,860 / €8,210) for the CX Plus with first deliveries expected in September. Just know that you’ll need to put down a £499 deposit to guarantee your spot in the queue.
Gocycle has managed to survive the double-whammy of a boom / bust pandemic sales cycle followed by the sudden disappearance of “free” investor money. 2023 saw excess e-bike inventory flooding the market at fire-sale prices which was great for consumers but not so great for small boutique builders. “That’s been hard for a company like Gocycle focused on value innovation, thoughtful design, and pride in maintaining our industry leading 4.5 star customer service rating,” says Thorpe. “The era of relentless discounting will eventually fade, and with that, we hope urban e-bike customers and dealers will value innovation over a cheap deal or free stock.”