Looking for an e-bike with three wheels? You found it!Why does a well-trained athlete ride a trike? Because she wants to. And because the LEPUS is not your run-of-the-mill upright trike, but instead a comfort-class recumbent. The fact is that the LEPUS is also ideal for anyone who refuses to let balance problems or reduced muscle strength slow them down.
With its seat positioned between the rear wheels, the LEPUS provides exceptional stability, even when cornering at a sporty tempo. The independent rear-wheel suspension with air shocks offers not only comfort but also more safety on bumpy roads and paths.
Another luxury is the quiet Shimano Steps motor, which helps out on an as-needed basis. “As-needed” means that it only provides assistance when you want it to and when the pedals are in motion. Once you’ve reached 15 mph (25 km/h), it switches off automatically.
Mounting made easyThe LEPUS scores points with its high seat: up to 25 inches (63 cm). This lets you pedal comfortably downwards – and ensures that you will “see and be seen” in traffic. In terms of mounting and dismounting, the trike is almost like a normal chair: just lower yourself onto the seat from the side and lift one leg over the low frame. You’ll be looking as sporty as you do on court.
Bag and rolling hand basket for this and thatThe accessory behind the recumbent seat is the waterproof ROLLER BAG. With a volume of 100 liters, you may have to fish around a while to find your tennis balls. Where does the ROLLER BAG hang? On the ROLLER RACK of course! This multi-talented carrier can transport up to 33 lb (15 kg) – e.g. beverage crates, potting soil, you name it. The bag-rack combo is also full of surprises: with two wheels and a fold-out handle, it can double as a handy, rolling shopping basket!
The LEPUS itself is also easy to pack and transport: for example, in a compact car. Just fold it up – no tools required!
“Standing all day in the operating room – that was never difficult at all!” The 67-year-old told us about his former profession when we visited him in the community of Nauheim in southern Hesse, Germany. “But all the paperwork…!”
Alfred Lang’s accent is befitting of his Bavarian roots. To be exact: he comes from the Allgäu region and lived in Munich for many years. His Bavarian identity is no trivial matter for him: “I guess I do have a bit of healthy patriotism,” he grinned. And he even, in some ways, fits the stereotype of a “real” Bavarian: in spite of his calm demeanor, he is enterprising, energetic, and a little unconventional.
The medical doctor no longer has his legs. “Terror attack!” is sometimes his spontaneous answer when asked about the reason. “Or sometimes I also say ‘car accident’,” he explained with a mischievous grin during our visit. Then he revealed the “mundane” truth: he lived with undiagnosed diabetes for many years.
There are certain people that Lang holds in particularly high regard: “my prosthetics maker, my physical therapist, and the people at HASE BIKES. They gave me the strength,” he explained, his expression now completely serious. “In the beginning it was almost impossible to walk. After I was somewhat mobile again, I had to take the car everywhere I went. That was no fun – and I wasn’t getting any exercise either,” he said.
Later, over a bowl of Bavarian sausages, he told us what made him choose the LEPUS. “With the saddle-trikes, you have to turn corners very slowly – they tip over if you ride any faster than two miles an hour! The LEPUS’s road-holding is super!”
The medical supply shop had only offered him upright trikes. Then, at the HASE BIKES dealer Fahrrad Claus in Trebur, he finally found what he was looking for. The Bavarian was immediately impressed with the road performance of the trike – and even used the word “awesome!” to describe the experience, “although that’s actually not in my vocabulary.”
He was also taken with the staff of the bike shop: “The shop assistant just grabbed a wrench, and in no time at all, she had adjusted these special pedals to fit my feet and legs perfectly. I really appreciate hands-on people like that. People who don’t just say, ‘Sorry, you’ll have to come back later.’ A woman who really knows her stuff,” he added as if still in awe.
Lang has been riding his LEPUS practically on a daily basis for more than three years now. His trike is equipped with electric assist. The sensor-controlled e-motor amplifies his leg strength – so that, when he pedals, he can accelerate and climb hills just as fast, or even faster, than a rider with healthy legs.
Shopping, leisure activities, visiting friends, and his favorite route around the nearby Hegbachsee lake – his LEPUS takes him everywhere. “And to think that, in the past, cycling was never really a big part of my life,” said Lang, almost apologetically. “But with the trike, I can stop anywhere I like, relax in the recumbent seat, and enjoy my pipe!”
Later, at the lake, we asked him whether the trike had given him back a measure of freedom. “No,” he replied, in his characteristically deadpan humor. “It’s given me that threefold!”