Lecture Andreas Lübeck: E-bike reality of specialist dealers
Chances to make people mobile – in particular those who would never dare to go into a specialist shop. But the problems increase. At present, however, they are only pushed between dealers and manufacturers. Direct quote Lübeck: "That’s absurd! This stereotype thinking, here the dealer, there the manufacturer. This cannot function. In this regard the industry must professionalise."
The market will continue changing. "The currently big number of e-bike producers will decline. In the end, only a few systems will win the race. These will then determine the brands that meet their demands," thinks Lübeck. The clear positioning of the shops could be an alternative. At present, there was a "bubble of devalued systems."
Bicycle tester Dirk Zedler stated that only with a concentration the profit margins would increase. "Offering 30 e-bike models and selling no more than 100 to 500 cannot be profitable. In this regard the development costs are too high. Have a look at Volkswagen. They have the Golf and sell it by millions!"
What would happen, Lübeck dreams aloud, "if the VSF concentrated on two or three e-bike brands?" A dealer objects that in his job individuality would play an important role. Individuality can, however, mean two things, as it turned out. On the one hand the selling of bicycle brands outside the mainstream, on the other hand the individual retrofitting of e-bikes. That’s what Zedler warns about: "I can only advise against individualising e-bikes. We are here within a strait-jacket in which we have to move. And we have to take care for the legal requirements. The dealers are aware of the standards, but this is it!" In other words: The dealers should let go of the tinkering.
On the other hand it was decided to present to the member’s general meeting's plenary session the following day their application to ask for the composition of a VSF e-bike purchase expert committee that should actively approach suppliers and sellers. The next step would be to try to convince three to four suppliers to become authorised VSF e-bike suppliers complying with all legal regulations.
Authors: J. Beckendorff, M. Bollschweiler, C. Müllenhof