For many commuters—and not only fancy Hipsters—cycling has become the new driving. Bike commuting, expanding bike-lane networks and large-scale public bicycle sharing system, top most big-city traffic agendas today. But while the perception and attitude toward cycling are evolving, so are bikes themselves. Electronic bicycles—also known as e-bikes—have hit the scene and are making a major impression. While they look like normal two-wheelers, they however have a built-in electric motor for propulsion; some kick in with pedaling, while others even have engines where you can thumb the throttle. Just like the Lohner Stroler does. With that additional retro modern look that got us excited.
Is it an electric moped or an e-bike?
This was our first reaction when we came across the Lohner Stroler during our last stay in Vienna, Austria. And we were probably not the only ones to wonder. At first glance, the Lohner Stroler can be difficult to assign to a specific category of cycle. And there is no wondering why: Manufacturer Lohner wanted this unusual electric vehicle to benefit from the advantages of both categories. So he united them under one format: a cycle with enough room for two to sit comfortably (just like a moped does), but quiet and environmentally friendly as an e-bike. This is how the Lohner Stroller was born.
But first things first, a little bit of history about the Lohner brand.
The development of the Lohner Stroler is built on a rich history of innovation that began 193 years ago. Back in 1821, Heinrich Lohner built in Vienna, carriages for the imperial court of the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria–Hungary. At the 1900 World‘s Fair, Lohner presented together with Ferdinand Porsche, the Lohner-Porsche electric car, which was driven by two wheel motors. At a speed of 35 km/h, the Lohner–Porsche could cover a distance of 50 km, which for those times was quite something.
Heinrich Lohner, the Company founder, already predicted that by the end of the century, the air would be “mercilessly spoiled by the already growing large number of gasoline powered engines“. This was quite a prediction indeed, without knowing that electric mobility would experience a renaissance over 100 years later.
“What you need today is a city cruiser – passionate, quietly purring. Unique design combines urban lifestyle with emotion and passion, thanks to a high-performance electric drive with purring passion.”
Lohner describes its e-bike as a “new class of two-wheeler”, a machine “which can’t help but leave every driver with a relaxed smile on his or her face”. The Lohner Stroler is available since November 2014 in a few cities of Austria (Vienna, Linz, Graz, Salzburg, Villach and Klagenfurt) and Germany (Köln, Starnberg, Leipzig and Munich), at a retail price of 3,990 euros ($4,720/£3,114). And if you thought that to get your hand on this little jewel, you merely had to check in at your nearby cycle or motorcycle shops, you might be disappointed: Lohner consciously decided to follow its own path as per its “distribution strategy”: According to the manufacturer, the Lohner Stroler E-Bike won’t be sold at the typical bicycle shops. Instead, the Lohner Stroler will be made available to potential customers in a few handpicked Lifestyle-related venues, such as design-oriented furniture stores. When a bike becomes more of a lifestyle item than a utility.
The Lohner Strolers is available in four colors (black devil, silver star, red chili, white angel and a new light blue version) and in two motorized versions (a 250 W version for the German market and a 500W version for the Austrian market), both built on a steel frame, which ensures the total weight of the bike to remain under 40 kilograms. An aluminum version of the Lohner Stroler is also currently being tested. Equipped with an aluminum frame, the Lohner Stroler e-bike could be six to seven kilograms lighter. Which will make the differentiation between motorcycle and bicycle, even harder.
- Frame: Steel. Wheel Size: 26 ”.
- Tyres Option 1: 26”x2.125 Felt quick brick, white wall.
- Tyres Option 2: 26”x2.35 Schwalbe Big Ben with reflective stripes.
- Drive: 250W Heinzmann electric hub motor (German market) and 500W Heinzmann electric hub motor (Austrian market)
- Torque 22.7 Nm, o Max. Torque (4 min.) Nm 50 o pulses torque 60Nm.
- Batteries: LiIo, 36V – 11 Ah
- Battery content: 400 Wh.
- Charging time: 5.8 hours for full charge with 2A PSU.
- Gears: Shimano Altus 7 speed.
- Brakes: Shimano Hydraulic BLM506.
- Energy recovery: Yes, controllable in 3 steps.
- Maximum speed: electrical support should by law give a maximum speed of no more than 15.5 mph (25 km/h).
- pedal assistance: 3 power levels with pedelec drive, continuously with twist grip.
- Range: up to 60 miles (95 km) in pedelec drive.
- Lighting: Front Retro, classic design, rear light: Axa reef.
- Weight: 88 lbs (40 kg)
- Maximum load: 330 lbs (150 kg)
Photos © Lohnerwerke GmbH