GM kills its electric bike project, Ariv - The
as of Tue May 12 2020 23:21:13 GMT-0400 (Eastern Daylight Time)
GM kills its electric bike project, Ariv
By Andrew J. Hawkins@andyjayhawk May 12, 2020, 8:50pm EDT
GM’s Ariv Merge folding e-bike in Amsterdam. Photo by Thomas Ricker / The
GM has killed its first electric bike. The automaker’s Ariv e-bikes,
pronounced like “arrive” and stylized as “ARIV,” were released last year in a
handful of countries in Europe. But thanks to COVID-19, the company said it
has decided to wind down its e-bike production. The website where customers
previously could place orders now redirects to GM’s main site.
GM was the latest automaker to try leverage its experience in
manufacturing, batteries, and powertrains to build an amazing electric bike.
And early reviews suggested they may have done it. The Verge’s Thomas Ricker
tested out both available models last year — the Ariv Meld and the foldable
Merge — and came away impressed.
"“Ariv has generated significant insights about micromobility for General
In a statement to The Verge, GM said the decision was the result of the
company needing to take a hard look at its various business amid the
coronavirus pandemic. “Ariv has generated significant insights about
micromobility for General Motors, and we plan to use those insights to
benefit future innovation,” said Brian Tossan, GM’s director of global
The COVID-19 outbreak has cut deeply into GM’s business, costing the
largest US automaker $1.4 billion before taxes during the first three months,
according to its latest earnings report. Still, the company eked out a $294
million profit for the first quarter despite the crisis. GM’s North American
factories have been closed since mid-March, but the company recently informed
workers it was planning to resume production on May 18th.
Ariv isn’t GM’s only casualty of COVID-19. The company also recently shut
down Maven, the car-sharing service it first launched in 2016.
The decision to end GM’s e-bike production may have seemed necessary, but
e-bike sales in the US and Europe are actually growing during the shutdown.
Several e-bike makers have reported record sales, following an initial dip in
the immediate aftermath of the pandemic.
Fortunately, GM is not the only automaker dipping its toes into electric
micromobility. BMW is making electric bikes and motorcycles. Audi is
manufacturing electric mountain bikes. Ford recently acquired e-scooter
startup Spin. Jeep recently unveiled a high-powered electric mountain bike.
Even Harley-Davidson has unveiled a lightweight electric two-wheeler concept
amid a drop in sales.
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Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race
- H.G. Wells
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