BERLIN. They are as big as matchboxes and make e-bikes twice as fast with a few simple operations: clip-on tuning kits, i.e. components designed to manipulate the limited speed. Although e-bike tuning for road traffic is illegal and dangerous, the demand for auxiliary devices pushing the speed is obviously high.
The dangerous thing about tuning is above all the fact that components, such as handlebars, frames or seat posts suffer from “fatigue” and are therefore liable to break eventually, says Dirk Zedler, Managing Director of Zedler-Institut für Fahrradtechnik und -Sicherheit. “This can happen on a normal trip, with no special reason and without notice.” Serious accidents may be the consequence.
However, manufacturers of e-bike drives have found a way to put a technical stop to the dangerous business with the manipulated boneshaker bikes: Drive manufacturer Brose offers the possibility of detecting excessive speeds by means of a sensor. Competitor Haibike also uses a sensor which reportedly makes manipulations impossible by plug-on dongles. Bosch has integrated a recognition software in recent models. However, dealers are already offering a new tuning kit that could at least bypass the protective mechanism of Bosch.
Author: Taylan Gökalp (dpa)