The Valeo Smart e-Bike System is the first solution in the world to integrate an electric motor and an adaptive automatic gearbox in the crankset. Thanks to this new electric assistance, it is the bike that adapts to the cyclist and no longer the other way around. With this system, gearshifting is automatic and its algorithms instantly adjust the amount of electrical assistance the rider needs on the first pedal stroke.
Valeo has developed a new application of its 48 Volt electric systems for bicycles, which enables vehicles to be electrified at an affordable cost. New on the market, Valeo’s technology, developed in partnership with Effigear, integrates in a single module, located in the crankset, a 48V electric motor and an adaptive seven-speed automatic gearbox. This is the best electric bicycle assistance to date according to the manufacturer.
With its 130 Nm (Newton meter), it multiplies the effort of the cyclist by x8, when what is commonly found on the market goes up to x5. On a cargo bike, Valeo’s electric assistance allows the cyclist to climb a 14% hill (the equivalent of a parking ramp), with a load of 150 kg, without effort, in forward gear, like backwards. The electric motor also offers better efficiency than the 24V or 36V motors equipping the vast majority of electric bicycles available today.
The adaptive automatic gearbox, which is a world first on an electric bicycle, understands, thanks to an algorithm, the needs of each individual (depending on the route and the driving style) and adapts to them instantly. The gear changes are smooth and, above all, without any control activation. The electric bicycle can now benefit from the same advantages as a car in terms of adaptive automatic gearbox.
The Valeo Smart e-Bike System also incorporates an anti-theft function, directly in the crankset, which, once activated, makes it impossible to use the bike. It also includes a “pedestrian” assistance mode when pushing the bike (particularly useful when carrying a load), and a boost function which makes it easier to overtake or cross a hill.
In the end, there is no need for a derailleur, no pinions, no gear controls on the handlebars, no associated wiring, or the traditional chain which can now be replaced by a belt, which is cleaner: the electric bike is thus relieved of around fifty components, often fragile and requiring constant maintenance.
Valeo, which only aims to equip bicycles with its electric assistance solution and not to build bicycles, has developed three demonstrators attesting that its solution adapts to all types of models: a city bike, a touring and a cargo bike for transporting loads, the latter offering reverse gear and braking energy recovery functions unheard of on the market.