Hartje has launched QiO, a new brand focusing on compact utility e-bikes. The first model under the brand is called Eins, which will be seen at Eurobike in September.
In late November 2020, compact bicycle specialist I:sy announced that it would end its production and distribution partnership with Hartje at the end of 2021. For this reason company founder Martin Kuhlmeier started a cooperation with with the newly-founded Biketec Beteiligungs GmbH, a subsidiary of the Zweirad Einkaufs-Genossenschaft (ZEG). Thanks to this cooperation, the small-wheeled I:sy bicycles get access to a network of more than 1000 independent bicycle dealers across Europe. Currently the Biketec Beteiligungs GmbH is recruiting in order to find the staff for the sales offices and the road rep team.
When Kuhlmeier announced the decision to split with Hartje, the wholesaler pointed out that this decision had been taken unilaterally. To compensate for the loss of the I:sy brand, Hartje decided to launch a brand of its own that focuses on compact bicycles. With Hartje’s vast network of contacts within Asia’s bicycle industry and the wholesaler’s role in getting the I:sy brand off the ground and into bike shops, the development took far less time than usual. From March through to June 18th Hartje lifted the cover of confidentiality step by step, first presenting the concept, then the brand name QiO and finally the first model called “Eins” (“One” in German).
With its heavily hydroformed aluminum frame built around a Bosch mid-motor, a Power Pack battery placed behind the seat tube and internally routed brake lines and shifting cables, QiO’s Eins is a modern, compact utility e-bike that is available in eight colours. Rolling on extra-wide 20 inch tires, the Eins combines agile handling for urban traffic with an extra bit of comfort and safety. The wide tires won’t get caught in tram rails or stuck on curbstones easily. The frame comes with smart features such as the small strut between down tube and seat tube that serves as a convenient handle to lift the bike off the ground. With Gates’ belt drive and internal transmission hubs, the Eins combines reliability and sturdiness with low-maintenance.
To maximize the utility of the Eins, QiO has developed a range of accessories, from front and back luggage carriers to bags of serious sizes, neoprene covers for both the battery and the motor and even an infant seat. The deep-instep configuration of the frame and the small wheels the bike rolls on makes for a convenient unisex model that can be adapted to a wide range of body sizes – thanks to the Speed Lifter system of by.schulz being used for the cockpit and the long seat post with its integrated parallelogram suspension. QiO expects to deliver the first Eins bikes to IBDs across Europe in Q4 of 2021, and without a doubt the new compact bike brand will take center stage at Hartje’s booth at Eurobike.
Introduction video QiO «Eins», 1min55 long: https://youtu.be/dV6q0o4swJUhttps://youtu.be/dV6q0o4swJU