Looking for an e-bike to replace your car? French bike builder Calendar might have just the thing: an electric cargo bike that can carry up to 200kg, folds down in a few seconds, and glows in the dark to keep you safe at night.
Electric cargo bikes were once the domain of stores and couriers, but there's increasing demand for them as a practical, green replacement for a second car. Last year, Raleigh launched the Stride range (an electric bicycle and tricycle that can lug loads of 80kg and 100kg respectively), and BMW's design for a weird tilting cargo e-bike became a reality.
The biggest disadvantage of these electric workhorses is their weight and sheer size. The Raleigh Stride 2 tips the scale at a mighty 60kg, while the Stride 3 is 75kg, and by their very nature, both are much longer than a typical bicycle. That's not a problem when you're riding, but if you need to store them, it could be a real issue.
As ebiketips reports, the Calendar Longtail Max solves that problem with an aluminum frame that folds down small enough to be wheeled along single-handed. Unlike many folding e-bikes, it's not intended to be carried any distance, but the ability to compress it down means it's much easier to fit into a corner out of the way.
The frame folds in half, while the handlebar and pedals compress down to reduce the bike's width. Like the excellent MiRider One, it's equipped with small caster-style wheels that allow you to drag it along while compacted, and it appears to clamp together securely rather than being held closed with a flimsy strap (a problem we've encountered with some other folding electric bikes).
Glow for it
On the tech side of things, the bike comes with a 250W motor, 260Wh battery for a maximum range of about 30 miles, hydraulic front and rear brakes (critical when you're carrying heavy loads), and a color LCD display. Calendar doesn't specify, but since the Longtail Max is built for riding in the EU, it seems safe to say it's a class one e-bike with a top speed of 9.6kmph.
The bike is equipped with front and rear fenders as standard, and you can pick extras like backlit pedals for an additional fee. Unlike many e-bikes, the Longtail Max lacks built-in front and rear lights, but Calendar has made sure you'll be visible when riding at night by spraying the aluminum frame with a coat of photoluminescent paint. Chic? Perhaps not. Practical? Absolutely.
The Longtail Max is available now direct from Calendar Bikes for €3,990 (about $4,400 / £3,300 / AU$5,800), or you can upgrade to the Longtail Max Plus with extras like a padded seat for passengers and suspension seat post for €4,590 (about $5,000 / £3,800 / AU$6,700).
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Cat is the editor of TechRadar's sister site Advnture. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better)