E-Bike FAQ

GENERAL QUESTIONS

What is the BionX e-bike system and how does it work?

The BionX e-bike propulsion system offers four levels of assistance in the A mode, and four levels of regeneration in the G mode. In the assistance mode, your pedaling is assisted proportionally by an electric motor that drives the rear wheel. A torque sensor is located on the axle of the Bionx motor and measures the effort provided by the rider; this produces a natural feeling assistance from the motor. BionX offers you a unique bicycle feeling with an extra electric boost.

Can I “tune” the BionX system?

For legal reasons, in North America, it is not allowed to use BionX e-bike products for higher speeds than 32 km/h (20 mph). In most regions of Europe, it is not allowed to use BionX products for higher speeds than 25 km/h.

However BionX gives you the opportunity to fine tune your system up to your personal preferences by adjusting several parameters, e.g. enhancing the sensor’s signal for a quicker response of the motor or the signal gain at start. Please contact your local BionX Dealer for further information.

What is the advantage of the Mountain Mode?

The Mountain Mode optimizes driving performances in alpine terrain. Ideally, the Mountain Mode should be activated right at the beginning of a long uphill in order to take advantage of the optimized performance. The Mountain Mode is activated via a software update by your local BionX dealer. To engage, hold the + button from any level of (A) or (G) for 2 sec. The four assist levels will flash, MOUNTAIN will appear briefly. Press – to disengage. The Mountain Mode sustains your power up to the top of the hill. It is not a “level 5″ of assistance, but a different setting.

Can I upgrade my BionX e-bike system with a throttle?

Your local dealer can easily upgrade your BionX e-bike system with a throttle, if your e-bike has a G2 console. In some cases, if you have a G1 console, you may be able to upgrade to a G2 console and add a throttle.

I have an I2C system and have been told BionX is no longer supporting this communication platform. Is this true?

As of January 2013, BionX is no longer manufacturing I2C parts. Consult your dealer for information on our I2C upgrade program, where a new CANbus system can be purchased for slightly more than the cost of a new battery when your old system is disabled. This policy was instated to offer existing customers the opportunity to carry on with a new BionX system rather than purchase new batteries (as most I2C customers’ batteries are reaching the end of their lifespan) and the systems are not compatible with technology manufactured over the past 6 years. With the new system a customer will experience the new console, throttle module, have a brand new battery and start over with a 2 year warranty against manufacturer’s defects.

 

MAINTENANCE AND INSTALLATION

How much maintenance does the BionX e-bike system need?

The BionX e-bike system is equipped with a gear and brushless electric motor that doesn’t require any maintenance. Before being stored for a long period (i.e. winter), the battery should be fully recharged and then should be recharged at least once every 3 months. Please also follow the instructions in the User Guide regarding the proper storage of batteries. To ensure overall safety, your e-bike should get regular check-ups at your local BionX dealer.

Is there any software for the BionX e-bike system?

Yes. BBI2 (BionX Bicycle Interface) is the dealer only software that functions as a global communication and service platform. It allows the user to update the software and firmware of his e-bike system, customize the settings and read out the system data. Similar to the operating system of a computer, our software is constantly optimized, allowing your system to achieve the best performances. Ideally your e-bike should get a complete check up including a check for the latest software at the beginning of the season. Since BBI2 is a software for dealers only, please ask your local BionX dealer for further information regarding software updates, customization or any other software related topic.

Please note that BionX now offers a free warranty extension to 3 years*, when you register your BionX e-bike system via BBI2 at your local dealer!

*3 year warranty applies to certain BionX OEM product only – contact your local dealer for more information.

 

BATTERY

Do I need to completely discharge the battery before recharging it again?

BionX uses Li-Ion batteries that have no “memory effect”. You can charge the battery at any time regardless of its state of charge. Please note that this does not affect the overall performance of your system. When not in use for a longer period of time, the batteries should be stored fully charged and be fully recharged at least once every 3 months. Please also follow the instructions in the manual regarding the proper storage of batteries. In any case, a deep discharge of the battery has to be avoided.

Can I purchase a spare battery for my BionX e-bike system?

Yes. However, it is important to know that a spare battery usually only reaches a fraction of the charging cycles, as it isn’t used as much as the main battery. Therefore – regarding the cost efficiency – the purchase of a second battery should be well thought out.

What do the different colors of the LED touch port on the battery mean and how can I check the battery state of charge?

Swipe your finger slowly over the touch port. The battery state of charge LED will illuminate.

Battery state of charge
100-75 % = Green
75-20 % = Amber
< 20% = Red

During the charging process
Touch port red = upon insertion
Touch port amber = charging
Touch port green = fully charged

Touch port flashing green:
The battery is overcharged; please contact your local BionX dealer.

Touch port flashing red:
The battery is deeply discharged; please contact your local BionX dealer.

What is the “deep sleep” mode?

2014 48V BionX batteries are equipped with a “Deep Sleep” function, which acts as a method of energy preservation. Depending on the battery state of charge, as well as inactivity the battery automatically puts itself into “Deep Sleep” mode – resulting in no energy consumption during stand by. This enables shelf life of at least 18 months for a fully charged battery. To activate the battery from “Deep Sleep” simply connect the battery to the 26V BionX power supply.

The benefits of the “deep sleep” function are an energy preservation, a longer shelf life and a significant benefit in comfort.

 

MOTOR

Does the BionX e-bike system support different axle sizes?

The BionX e-bike systems are only compatible with 135 mm axle sizes.

Why does the electric motor only assist up to 32 km/h (20 mph, NA) or 25 km/h (EU)?

Generally, e-bikes are allowed to have a maximum power output of 250/350W (EU/NA), and an assistance of up to 25/32km/h (20 mph).

Can I replace individual parts of the BionX electric motor on my own?

No. All type of work on the BionX electric motor needs to be done by the BionX Service Department. Please contact your local BionX dealer.

Is the BionX electric motor compatible with disc brakes?

All BionX e-bike systems are compatible with disc brakes.

Where can I buy the BionX 500HS motor?

Due to legal restrictions, the BionX 500HS motor cannot be purchased in North America and within the EU. It is only available in Switzerland, due to a different legislation in this country.

What is a cassette hub?

Cassette type hubs were originally conceptualized in 1938 in England. It wasn’t until 1978 that Shimano developed a commercially successful version used on professional class racing bikes. A cassette is a set of sprockets that slide onto a splined freehub which is a part of the hub body, as opposed to a freewheel which is a set of sprockets with an internal ratcheting mechanism that threads onto a hub body.

What is a freehub body?

This is the ratcheting mechanism which drives most modern high end bicycles, and accepts the best quality gear clusters available on the bicycle market today.

What are the benefits of the BionX cassette motor?

This new type of BionX motor will accept higher quality gear clusters and offer crisper shifting.

 

CONSOLE

Are the BionX consoles interchangeable?

Yes, the G2 consoles (from software version 4.4. onwards) work on older systems using CanBUS communication. They won’t work with systems using I²C communication. The G2 consoles with serial number 3205 can be replaced by consoles with serial numbers 2331 and 2332 (G1 with throttle), but not those with serial number 2005.

 

CHARGER

The BionX charger has a voltage switch. How should I adjust it?

The red switch on the back of the BionX charger must be set to 115 V in North America and to 230 V in Europe. The new power supply for the 48 V batteries automatically adapts to the correct input voltage. Please note that only BionX chargers and power supplies may be used for charging the BionX batteries.

Are there any fast-chargers for BionX batteries?

No, a quick charge is harmful to the chemical structure of the battery cells and would reduce its lifespan.

 

COMPABILITY

Is a 48 V BionX battery compatible with a 37 V BionX system?

You can use a 48 V battery on 37 V BionX e-bike systems, if the system is using CanBus communication. Depending on the model, a 48 V battery can increase the battery range by about 20% (8,8 Ah model). In any case an appropriate power supply has to be purchased with every 48 V battery. Unfortunately I²C systems are not compatible with 48 V batteries. The compatibility of the battery and the docking station always needs to be verified.

 

WARRANTY

What warranty does the BionX e-bike system have?

Since 2012, the BionX warranty covers a two (2) year period for all parts of the BionX propulsion system(s) to the first owner, within the framework of certain conditions. Please see the manual for further information.

You can also download the full warranty policy here.