Last year, Raleigh brought the Misceo iE to market, a feather-light city ebike with electronic shifting and the Shimano Steps system. It was a unique bike that was a Raleigh exclusive, unlike Raleigh’s other 2015 entrant, the Tekoa iE, which was a clone of the 2015 IZIP E3 Peak. This coming model year brings a mix of both unique bike models and stablemate clones.
The 2016 Raleigh Misceo iE and Misceo iE Sport
In 2016, the unique Misceo iE remains and is joined by a new Misceo iE Sport model that ditches electronic shifting but adds a rear cargo rack, fenders, a headlight and taillight, all for $2,999, fully $100 less than the electronic shifting Misceo iE.
Re-badged IZIPs and Diamondbacks aplenty
The copycat models that Raleigh has borrowed from Accell North America’s other brands (IZIP and Diamondback) dominate the 2016 range – Raleigh’s 2016 electric bike models closely mirror their sibling brands’ models, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
The 2016 Raleigh Sprint iE
The most newsworthy new Raleigh ebike is the new Sprint iE ($3,449), which appears to be a clone of the 2016 IZIP E3 ProTour with the exception of red paint, Raleigh branding, and $100 in price. It has the same 500W TransX mid-drive motor, 417Wh/8.7Ah/48V battery, and 28MPH top speed, and it sure does look great in red!
The 2016 Raleigh Route iE
Next is the new 2016 Route iE, a clone of the 2016 IZIP E3 Dash:
It’s got a 350W TransX mid-drive motor, a 28MPH top speed, hydraulic disc brakes, all for the same price as its IZIP sibling ($2,999).
What Raleigh’s expansion means for the industry
So what’s so special about Raleigh’s 2016 lineup given that half of the models are simply rebadged IZIPs? I’m glad you asked! One great thing about Raleigh’s expanded ebike lineup is its potential to increase the number of bike shops around the country that can service your bike. By leveraging Raleigh’s (and potentially Diamondback’s) large dealer and service network, buying a Raleigh-branded version of that IZIP ebike you’ve been salivating over might just mean that you can get your bike serviced closer to home since Raleigh bikes are more widely available than IZIPs are. Also, Raleigh’s expanded lineup could mean more revenue and greater scale for its corporate parent, Accel North America, which could mean expanded availability of ebikes at retailers, better service, more models to look forward to down the road, or even lower prices for consumers. Building more Raleigh ebikes is a no-brainer, since Raleigh has much more brand recognition among the cycling public than IZIP does – IZIP is only well-known brand in the niche ebike community.