Cycle off into the sunset—without having to pedal all that much.
Electric bikes have been all the rage these past few years, and no city dweller could use a push up the hill quite so much as a San Franciscan. But that gorgeous Faraday Porteur will set you back $3,500. (Imagine all the avocado toast you could buy with that coin.) So, why not rent one to get a feel for the future of urban transportation?
Here are some of our favorite EB (electric bike) rental shops in the Bay Area.
Ebikelane was among the first in the city to introduce EBs to cycling San Franciscans. Carrying only the best brands, their rental selection of Bosch, Yamaha, and Shimano battery-platformed bikes can easily take you upwards of 40 miles on a single charge. Stop by the Nob Hill location and see what the buzz is all about. // $100/day for each rental bike (introduction to charging and riding is included in price); 1452 Bush St. (Nob HIll), ebikelane.com
The New Wheel
While not specifically a rental shop, the insightful folks at The New Wheel are more than happy to teach you about EB ownership. The store's rent-to-buy program allows curious bikers a chance to get a feel for this eco-savvy way of getting around the city quickly—some e-bikes can go as fast as 32 mph on a full charge. Check out street and mountain EBs and, if you're so inclined, take one out for the day. // $90/day (rental fee can be applied to purchase of the bike); 420 Cortland Ave. (Bernal Heights); 14 E. Sir Francis Drake Blvd. (Larkspur), newheel.net
Pacific E-Bike stocks 16 electrically assisted models, with many now available to rent, whether you're looking to jam down the hillsides of Mt. Diablo or leisurely cycle the Bay Bridge Trail. Soon, the store will also carry refurbished EBs, starting low as $1,200 (about one-third the price of most new e-bikes on the market). // Rentals start at $75/day; 843 Carleton St. (Berkeley), pacificebike.com
Pedego Electric Bikes
Supporting the notion that Marin is an Eden for cyclers, Pedego Electric Bikes offers EBs for hourly, daily, and weeklong rentals with advance reservations. With only three models to choose from, their selection isn't as robust as others in the Bay Area, but they do offer a tandem e-bike, so that's cool. // $95-130/day; 10 Main St. (Tiburon), pedegoelectricbikes.com
SJ Bike Rentals
Being the epicenter of all things tech and Tesla, the South Bay has more than its fair share of electric bike shops—but, surprisingly enough, few offer rental programs. Thankfully there's SJ Bikes, which also happens to offer the most affordable EB rental in the Bay Area. And unlike the others listed here, locks, helmets, and even a bottle cradles are included with your rental. // $69-89/day; 111 Curtner Ave., Suite 70 (San Jose), sjbikerentals.com