Every year, I put together a list of some of the best, brand-new electric bikes and motorcycles you can buy … and this year is no different. Except it is, because there’s at least one bike that really deserves to be on that “best bikes” list, but it doesn’t really fit into any bike category I can think of. That bike: the Jackrabbit.
Weighing in at a featherweight 24 pounds and sporting an ultra-short frame between a set of 20″ BMX-style wheels, the Jackrabbit isn’t really a bike. For starters, you don’t pedal it — but it’s definitely not a motorcycle, either. It has no suspension, but it has a throttle. It even manages to kind of “fold up,” but without actually folding.
No matter how you try to classify it, in other words, there’s always something a bit different about it. “We do describe it as a micro e-bike,” said Jackrabbit co-founder, Jason Kenagy, when I interviewed him at the Electrify Expo in Austin last year. “That’s what various reviewers have taken it on as.”
Putting the Micro in Micro-mobility
Whatever it is, it’s stupid fun – and it does have a bike sort of “feel” to it as you ride it. The Jackrabbit has a bike geometry, it’s made with bike parts, and it even rides like a bike. The biggest differences, from the seat, are the Jackrabbit’s ultra-responsive handling that comes courtesy of that compact wheelbase, and the fact that your feet are, left-to-right, in the same position.
The static foot placement can feel a bit weird, but after a few minutes on the move it feels natural enough, and I started to realize that, for a bike that’s this small — small enough to be checked as luggage on Southwest, in fact — it feels pretty roomy. Roomy enough, in fact, to fit NFL player Michael Davis of the LA Chargers.
Micro E-Bike, Macro Style
“It was designed by bike enthusiasts, bike mechanics as well, and we just realized that 80 lb. e-bikes are great,” says Jason. “I have several, and I use them — but a lot of the time you just need something that’s extremely light, portable, and will get you anywhere you want to go. And you can just grab a Jackrabbit and go.”
I’m not the only one enamored with Jason’s creation. “The portability of this is part of the fun factor,” says my friend Matt Teske, the founder of EV charging app Chargeway and co-host with me of the Electrify Expo Podcast. “You add the ‘micro’ in and then you add the flexibility of how you can travel and use it.”
Conceptually, and in practice, the Jackrabbit is the opposite of another favorite of mine, the heavyweight, fat-tired, 30 MPH Himiway Zebra. “That’s kind of like taking the RV out of the garage,” says Jason. “You can fit 3 Jackrabbits in the trunk of a Tesla Model 3,” he jokes, “bringing bikes to a show, I can fit 12 in my small SUV.”
3 Jackrabbit E-Bikes Fit In A Tesla Model 3
See? He’s not kidding!
Regardless of what you call this thing or how you might think of it, you definitely owe it to yourself to check out the Jackrabbit. With a 20 MPH top speed and “10+ miles” of scooting range, the Jackrabbit may be just the thing to make your last mile of riding the smilingest mile of the day.
Don’t just leave it at that, though. Let us know what you think of the Jackrabbit in the comments section, below, and stay tuned for the Best E-Bikes & Motorcycles You Can Buy In 2023, coming soon!
Images via Jackrabbit.
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.
Source: Clean Technica