Laid-back and dynamic tandem touringWith the STEPS motor on the PINO, riding fun is guaranteed. The motor is especially helpful when the tandem is being used as a family taxi or cargo bike. But even touring duos appreciate the extra power provided by the STEPS, particularly when cycling up steep hills.
The best thing about the new mid-drive system is that it harmonizes perfectly with the riders. There are no disturbing noises or vibrations. The only noticeable difference is the ease of pedaling. When the tandem reaches 15 mph (25 km/h), the assistance switches off automatically. This means that, for legal purposes, the PINO is still a bike.
Powerful drive, relaxed rideThe PINO STEPS frame, which was specially designed to accommodate Shimano’s powerful mid-drive system, guarantees a high level of riding comfort and safety. Thanks to the low and central center of gravity, the tandem is a breeze to handle.
High-capacity battery, long range, fast chargingThe STEPS battery, mounted neatly in the frame triangle, has a capacity of 418 watt-hours. This means: maximum assistance for many miles, depending on the selected assist mode, terrain, and rider performance.
The empty battery can be fully recharged in a mere four hours.
Everything under control with the STEPS cycling computerThe STEPS cycling computer displays all relevant data: from standard cycling metrics, such as speed and distance, to battery- and motor-related data like selected assist mode, estimated range, and battery level. Basically everything you need to know … at a glance.
The switch for operating the computer is located ergonomically at the end of the handlebar grip. With the touch of a button, you can change the display or choose a different assist mode – easily and intuitively.
Who better to test our PINO STEPS prototypes than experienced bike dealer Monika Schwarz? The 46-year-old has always had a passion for anything with wheels and pedals – including adaptive cycles for special needs riders. She even worked in our manufacturing facility for several years.
So when, in the spring of 2015, we walked into Fahrrad Claus – the bike shop she runs in Trebur with her companion, Oliver Claus – it was actually a visit to old friends.
“The PINO is now a bike that can be – and is – used for many different purposes,” she explained soon after our arrival. She knows all PINO model years and is familiar with the many options available for adapting the tandem to individual needs and wishes.
The PINO has always played a role in Monika’s life – it was there when she needed to transport her ill sister, when she met Oliver, when she taxied her kids around, and whenever she needed to transport large loads.
For Monika, the new PINO is the most versatile family-touring-cargo-everyday bike possible. “In all my years, I’ve never seen a cargo bike with this much carrying capacity,” said Monika. Be it produce, pet supplies, or paint cans – the PINO can handle cargo of all sizes.
And the new Shimano STEPS e-bike system has no problem with heavy loads. “The ride is smooth, and the motor provides good support,” observed Monika, approvingly.
“Everyone I’ve shown the bike to has also been amazed at how seamlessly the e-motor is integrated into the PINO frame.” And on shopping trips, the pedelec has practically as much cargo capacity as a car. “Even when fully loaded, I never have to huff and puff up hills.”
And it’s not just the unfolded PORTER BAG on the front seat that makes load-lugging a piece of cake: the PORTER RACK under the seat handles heavy loads like a breeze. From bottles to bulky boxes, the new PINO packs it in. Monika stows a tray of vegetable seedlings under the front seat.
“The fact is, I no longer need a car in the city,” she said with a proud smile. “A few weeks ago, I even used the PINO for transporting an injured passenger!” Monika’s son Darius had hurt his foot and wasn’t allowed to walk or pedal. So she taxied him around in the front seat of the PINO. “Thanks to the extra power from the motor, I even enjoyed it.”
She also loves the new kickstand. “It folds away automatically when you start riding, and it’s relatively effortless to engage, even when the tandem is fully loaded.” And the best part: when parked on its stand, the PINO is as steady as a rock!
“The PINO with e-motor is my absolute favorite bike,” confessed Monika. “It used to be my kid-taxi, but now it’s my go-to bike for every errand and destination.” The best part is: “Since we’ve had the e-PINO, even Darius is crazy about shopping. Which frees up more time for me …,” she said, smiling.
“Is that the new vegetarian bike?” joked a passerby, noticing the colorful assortment of vegetables we had brought along for lunch. Catchy, but that would be a much too one-sided name for the multitalented PINO STEPS.