Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?



BiciMad. Madrid Gets A (Crazy) Electric Bike Sharing Program

By Luis González

Madrid’s bike sharing program finally debut this week, joining other metropolises, such as Barcelona, Seville, Valencia, Zaragoza, and Vitoria, to advance the most sustainable and healthy transport system after walking. More interestingly, Madrid’s brand new bicycles are electric.

LabiciThe chosen name was initially controversial. BiciMad comes from bicicleta (bicycle) and Madrid, and despite some people noticing the double meaning in English, the local council did not get it or actually liked it and decided to go “loco.” It was prophetic, as the first day was a little hectic, with it not working and a fake twitter account helping people better than the official one.

Nevertheless the bike sharing system is welcome in Madrid. The Spanish capital is begging for clean air and many social movements have been started in the last few years demanding more space for bikes in the street. Will people in Madrid leave the car to take the bike? The electric motor will probably make the difference.

Taking advantage of the experience from the beautiful city of San Sebastian, Madrid has adopted the same bike model. Specially designed for sharing programs, the robust bike has an integrated battery which lasts for about 18 hours or about 70 kilometers, according to the specifications, allowing the bikes to recharge at night. The bulky handlebar displays all the instructions and contains the controls for the start/stop, lights, and electric assistance level. It also displays the battery charge state.

The booster bike is around 22 kilograms (48 pounds) and cuts the electric thrust at 18 km/h (11 mph), therefore, the assistance will make a difference between sport and transport, but won’t let people surf the city like the effortless kamikaze-deliverymen in New York City.

The bicycle is designed and built by the Spanish company BonoPark, which is at the same time in charge of the stands and management of the system. In total, there will be 1,560 bicycles and 3,120 stands shared at 123 stations. The bicycles will be available 24/7, all year long.

The price is, like always, the most controversial point. Starting with an annual fee of 25 euros (15 for the public transport subscribers), the users will pay 50 euro cents for the first 30 minutes and 60 additional cents for each half-hour of use. After the second hour the price rises to 4 euro per hour.

Compared to other European cities, like Paris or Barcelona, the BiciMad annual fee is slightly lower (29 euros for Paris and 47 euros for Barcelona), but in the other 2 cities the first 30 minutes are for free, which makes Madrid more expensive after just one month of daily use (commuting to work, for example). (Please, do not compare with Copenhagen.)

Price could be justified because these bikes are electric, but a rough approximation makes it more expensive than taking public transport. Visitors and sporadic “BiciMadders” will pay 2 euro for the first hour and 4 euro for the following ones.

BiciMad got in the first 24 hours more than a thousand subscribers, a number that could have been much bigger if the system would not have collapsed. The challenge now is to share the road with the cars. Hopefully the bike sharing program produces a big increase of bikers that will make drivers realize that they are not alone anymore. Actually, that they never were.

Image Credit: BiciMAD

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
If you like what we do and want to support us, please chip in a bit monthly via PayPal or Patreon to help our team do what we do! Thank you!
Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Written By

We publish a number of guest posts from experts in a large variety of fields. This is our contributor account for those special people, organizations, agencies, and companies.


You May Also Like


Amogy plans to have a zero emissions ammonia-powered tugboat in operation in the state of New York later this year.


IRA subsidies are chief threat to gigafactory plans unless Europe offers accessible incentives and streamlined permitting.


Li-Cycle has been granted a $375 million conditional loan to develop its lithium recycling hub in Rochester, New York.


New York City’s Fire Commissioner wants a crackdown on subpar e-bikes that could be fire risks.

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.