I rode a $7,000 electric bike that's as close to an old-school motorcycle experience as you can get in the 21st century — here's what it was like

Tracker Bike

  • California-based Vintage Electric builds electric bikes that are styled to resemble old-time motorcycles.
  • The company recently updated its Tracker line of bikes.
  • Vintage Electric let me borrow a Tracker S, which is good for up to 75 miles on a single battery charge.
  • I was extremely impressed with the looks and performance of the e-bike.

I test cars and trucks all the time for Business Insider, but rarely two-wheeled conveyances. Dan McMahon is our bike person, and his coverage needs no introduction.

However, I also dig motorcycles and am particularly intrigued by electric versions. But because of my age and status as a parent, I’m deep in the realms of second thoughts about whether I should ever throw a leg again. 

But then along came California-based Vintage Electric and their all-electric bicycles that are styled to evoke early 20th-century motorcycles. I love a Ducati Panigale as much as the next guy, but my heart truly belongs to small, dashing motorcycles from long ago. And unless I go vintage, it’s hard to locate reliable, new versions of such machines.

Yes, I could pick up up a moped or buy a scooter, but Vintage Electric’s combination of the electric bike with the old-school board track racer motorcycle design immediately appealed to me. 

With updated versions of its Tracker lineup coming out, the company was kind enough to loan me a bike for a few weeks. It was a top-of-the-line Tracker S, retailing for $7,000. That’s expensive — other e-bikes can be had for thousands less — but as I discovered, sometimes you get what you pay for.

The Tracker S was my ride for a few weeks in the New Jersey suburbs. Here’s how it performed:

Behold — the Vintage Electric Tracker S! The Tracker was first introduced in 2013, but it’s been upgraded from 2018. The Tracker S has a little brother, the Tracker.

The Tracker S goes for about $7,000, while the Tracker is $5,000. The main differences are the Tracker S’s larger battery and its beefier front suspension.

If the Tracker S didn’t have pedals, you could easily mistake it for a throwback motorcycle from the earlier days of iron horses.

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