By Adam Ruggiero, gearjunkie.com
Completing its acquisition of Motivate, the most-used bikeshare service in the U.S., Lyft pledged to make bikes more accessible, affordable, and easier to use.
Last week, rideshare giant Lyft announced it completed its acquisition of Motivate, operator of several major bikeshare systems nationwide. The announcement included Lyft’s unveiling of a new urban e-bike design and a plan to triple New York City’s current Citi Bike fleet.
While the crux of the news centered around Lyft’s $100 million investment in New York’s rideshare, the San Francisco company’s acquisition of Motivate will likely have impacts in several major U.S. cities. Motivate handles more than 80 percent of America’s bikeshare rides and oversees programs in San Francisco; Minneapolis; Chicago; Boston; Portland, Ore.; Washington, D.C.; and Columbus, Ohio.
“Today, Lyft takes a large step forward in our vision to provide a more sustainable transportation experience that will bring together all your favorite ways of getting around into one unified Lyft app,” said John Zimmer, president and co-founder of Lyft. “We’re excited to introduce new and exciting mobility products in the months ahead for our city partners and riders.”
Lyft Launches New Bike, Acquires Motivate
While Lyft has been pushing into the bikeshare and scooter markets for a while, the brand now has control over established fleets. With it, Lyft said it intends to increase ridership and expand fleets.
“With this acquisition, we are poised to help take bikeshare to the next level,” Lyft said in a statement, “adding thousands of bikes and stations in communities that haven’t had access to transportation; making bikeshare membership more convenient and affordable than ever; and deploying new electric bikes, on a major scale.”
Lyft also provided a first look at a new bike design, presumably bringing the various bikeshares under one umbrella. Currently, the Motivate lineup has independent identities in each city: Divvy in Chicago, Citi Bike in New York, and Nice Ride in Minneapolis, among others.
The new bike shows the same step-through build common among all bikeshares. But this one has an all-black paint job with Lyft’s trademark pink gracing the rear wheel. In addition, the new bicycle appears to have an e-bike battery, suggesting further implementation of pedal-assist bikes across fleets.