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Bike shop news: GenZe e-bikes now open, Crank moves and doubles in size

Posted by on February 16th, 2016 at 3:42 pm

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Crank’s new storefront on Southeast Ankeny.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The only constant in Portland’s bike shop scene is change. On that note, I bring you updates on two southeast Portland shops that have opened up new doors in the past few weeks.

Crank Bike Shop moves to Southeast Ankeny

When Crank opened in 2010 I rolled over to look for it and, given what I knew about its general location near Southeast 28th Avenue, I just assumed it would be on Ankeny. But it wasn’t. It was one block over on Ash. That was a bummer because Ankeny is the very busy bike boulevard in that part of town. So imagine my delight when I found out the other day they’ve moved to… Ankeny! Yes, after many months of hard work, the folks at Crank are enjoying twice the space in a wonderfully remodeled retail store on Ankeny just before 28th.

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Justin Tutor.

I talked to Justin Tutor during a visit earlier this month and he said they always wanted to be on Ankeny and the opportunity finally arrived. Now they’ve got 4,000 square-feet of space that includes a nice and open showroom, a bar to relax on, and a large service area. The shop sells great looking bikes from Soma, Public, Marin and Felt. And if you’re into bamboo, they also build bikes for the local Zambikes importer and have a few of them on display. Crank is a great neighborhood bike shop and now they’ve got a prime location. Stop in next time you ride by and say “hi” to Justin and the crew.


GenZe Electric Bikes (and scooters)

Portland has another e-bike business in town, and it’s a big one. GenZe is an off-shoot of Mahindra, a massive, Mumbai-based company that makes all sorts of vehicles and happens to be the largest manufacturer of tractors in the world. Last week I swung by their new Portland retail store (their firs in the U.S.) on the corner of Southeast Main and Grand (1235 SE Grand) to learn more about their e-bike offerings and meet their Portland area Marketing Manager Tim Navarrette.

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Tim said GenZe is a result of the company “innovating around urban mobility.” They offer both an electric scooter (which is really cool by the way) and a few e-bike models. With their vast manufacturing resources and know-how, GenZe wants to lower the bar for electric vehicles (Tim said it’s about the “democratization of EVs”). GenZe’s Michigan-made and designed scooter is just $2,999 while their e-bikes sell for around $1,500. That’s low in the electric market.

The GenZe e-bike comes in three sizes and two models (a standard frame and a step-through). The energy boost comes from three sources: your own pedaling; a twist-throttle, or via pedal-assist. The 36-volt lithium-ion battery is integrated into the downtube and can be easily removed for charging. The 250-watt motor is in the rear hub. The bike tops out at 20 mph (as per state law) and comes with 26-inch wheels. Roll over and give one a test-ride. You’ll also find GenZe e-bikes at Field Electric (1408 SE Cesar E Chavez) and The E-Bike Store (809 N Rosa Parks Way).

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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4 Comments
  • Todd Boulanger February 16, 2016 at 4:46 pm

    Jonathan – you took the words out of my mouth…about bike shops and change.

    Anyway…do clarify…are the bike [frame sets] also made in MI? Or just the scooter?

    And as where is the battery and motor sourced from? China, Taiwan or Japan?

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  • Todd Boulanger February 16, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    PS – Future bike shop owners and bike shop managers seeking expansion…HEY do not forget about us in Downtown Vancouver!

    We are an underserved area that just lost its long time bike shop.

    Remember for your business plan in Vancouver: focus on repairs and service and new bike retail as only a minor 3rd leg…until you build up a base of customers or an underserved niche in Portland region (hand cycles, etc?).

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  • Tom Hardy February 16, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Hopefully the batteries are not out of the same factories the hover board batteries are from. That would put something really hot between your legs :-)

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    • Todd Boulanger February 17, 2016 at 10:53 am

      For whatever reason there have not been a lot of press on e-bikes bursting into flames while recharging…even with the larger batteries. It may be a case of price point…the hover boards cost a 1/10 or so of a bike so the cost pressure is much more extreme on the hover-board.

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