City’s new e-bike scheme launched

Liverpool’s new rental e-bike scheme hits the city’s streets today (Wednesday, 2 November). 

Branded the Explorer 2, Liverpool is the first UK city to receive Voi’s next-generation e-bike as part of a new multi-modal service that complements the existing and hugely successful e-scooter service.

Voi will initially introduce a fleet of 50 e-bikes before eventually rising to 150 as the scheme becomes more successful.

The company was appointed in the summer after the council reviewed its existing rental bike scheme as part of a best value evaluation.

Available to everyone aged 16 years and above, and without a provisional license, Voi’s new e-bike service offers a fun, easy and sustainable way for residents and visitors alike to get around this popular and historic city.

Voi’s e-bikes can be spotted around the city centre and activated through the same Voi app as its e-scooters – they also use the same operating area. Once registered, riders can use the app to simply pick up and drop off bikes at parking locations close to where they live and work.

By offering a new multimodal service, the company aims to take advantage of the wider trend of people in Liverpool adopting micromobility for everyday activities.

As navigating safely across the city has become easier and more convenient with Voi, according to our latest Summer 2022 Survey, nearly a third of riders are now deciding to use e-scooters rather than a car for their journey, whilst 2 in 3 riders are also now choosing to commute, meet friends or run errands by e-scooter rather than sit in traffic and create unnecessary pollution in the city. 

Today’s rollout also reflects Voi’s commitment to encouraging more people in Liverpool to adopt sustainable transport following the recent introduction of the Voyager 5, the company’s greenest and most inclusive e-scooter to date. 

Special offers for new riders:

To celebrate the city going multimodal with the arrival of the Explorer 2 to Liverpool, Voi is offering new riders 2 x 15 minutes of free riding. New riders simply need to download the app –  available from the App Store for iOS and the Google Play Store – input a valid payment method and redeem the special discount code ‘LIVEXPLORER’ in the in-app wallet. 

The special offer expires on Monday 2 January 2023. In addition to the free rides, there is also a PAYG service and Day and Month Passes that allow riders to take an unlimited number of rides at a fixed rate. Discounts are also available for students, NHS staff, emergency service workers, military personnel and veterans, and those on a low income via the ‘Voi 4’ discount scheme.

Key features of the new Voi Explorer

In England, over 75% of all car trips are between 2 – 3 miles which makes the Explorer 2 the perfect vehicle for more comfortable and longer journeys around town. Equipped with an electric motor, which has a max speed of 15 mph and 5-speed gears, it can tackle steep hills and bumpy roads. It was designed for both smooth city roads and trekking routes and is perfect for longer trips of up to 30 miles, making commuting safe, easy, comfortable and fun.

Other great features of Voi’s new e-bike:

  • In-house developed Internet of Things (IoT) sub-metre location accuracy that makes finding and parking the Explorer 2 e-bike easier
  • Highly visible for safety front and back lights and reflectors to keep riders visible in low-light conditions
  • Easy braking – two easy-grip hand brakes enabling riders to adapt their speed to the surroundings
  • A dashboard that lights up – the Explorer 2 e-bike lets riders know when to stop and go slow across the city
  • A convenient storage basket – riders can store their small bags or groceries 
  • Suited to different bodies and needs – adjustable unisex saddle and an ultra-low step-through frame 
  • Hidden bike chain – preventing baggy clothing from getting caught and ruined, such as long skirts 
  • Easy-to-use kickstand – making the beginning and ending of journeys quicker and safer to park
  • GPS Tracked – every Explorer 2 is tracked and Voi is alerted to any misuse and vandalism through its Report a Voi feature. GPS tracking also ensures e-bikes remain within Voi’s operating zone.

Built to last

The Voi Explorer 2 is also made out of durable, reparable and recyclable parts. In collaboration with e-bike sharing operator Vaimoo, Voi’s new e-bike has been developed and produced in Italy. 

The commitment to sustainable design and manufacturing in the Voi Explorer 2 is a boost to Voi’s Circular Vehicle Programme and integral to the company’s mission to become carbon positive by 2030.

Matthew Pencharz, Head of Policy for UK and Ireland at Voi, said:  “There is more than one way to get a city moving, and our new Explorer 2 rental e-bike is a great addition in helping people choose how they want to get around in a sustainable way.

“Helping people change their everyday travel habits must be the top priority of every UK town and city to reduce unnecessary pollution and congestion, especially as more than half of journeys above a mile are unbelievably done by car. We are determined to help more people in Liverpool leave their cars at home by introducing our new multi-modal service today.

“Liverpool has shown its ambition in becoming a leading UK city for e-scooters, now e-bikes are set to become an important part of the transport mix in transforming green travel in the city.” 

Councillor Dan Barrington, Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environment, said: “I’m delighted we’ve partnered with Voi to deliver a new e-bike scheme for Liverpool and it’s great to see that they’ve chosen our city to launch the next generation of rental e-bikes. I also welcome Voi’s discount measures too as we need to offset any financial barrier to those who will benefit most from this scheme. 

“We’re working very hard with them and other partners to deliver and promote as many active travel options and alternatives for our residents and visitors to enjoy. By doing so we can make big strides in improving people’s physical and mental health as well as our air quality and on delivering our commitment to being a carbon-free city by 2030.”

While Voi continues on its mission to create better cities for living, safety remains the micromobility company’s top priority. It announced a partnership with Lazarillo, an app that improves accessibility for blind and visually-impaired people, earlier this year and launched a new safety campaign “Let’s get it right” over the Summer to continue educating riders on following the rules of the road and how to ride safely.

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