What Creates eBike Pleasure?
What is Power?
Power is actually a derived value
consisting of a combination of Torque and Rotation. Power can also be expressed as a combination of Force and Velocity. Changing back and forth is just a matter of conversion factors.
So is Pleasure all about Torque?
Yes and No...
The Pleasure Principle
Ultimately we come to realize that it's ACCELERATION that gives pleasure and not Power alone.
We define eBike Pleasure as:
Constant Positive Acceleration or Increasing Positive Acceleration.
We define eBike "dis" - Pleasure as:
Decreasing while still Positive Acceleration.
There is actually another area to consider which is Negative Acceleration (braking) and it also has three different modes:
Constant Negative, Increasing Negative and Decreasing Negative Acceleration.
...but that's another story.
Looking here at a typical 1000 Watt Mountain Bike we see how the GREEN area represents Acceleration "after losses". Losses fit into different categories like copper loss, iron loss, wind loss and hill loss. You can't really talk about the Pleasure until after you subtract all the losses because they all impact your riding experience. All these losses are specific to the motor, the gearing, the rider and bike weight so it's very hard to talk about anything in isolation.
We see in the GREEN area what is known as the "EV Grin" which is a very strong acceleration beginning at very low speeds (essentially at zero) that "fades out" after 15 mph. Riding this type of powerband gives a pleasurable experience up to 15 mph and then a great sense of disappointment afterwards. The "EV Grin" becomes the "EV Bummer".
In order to improve the Pleasure it's possible to "shift" Acceleration to a higher point in the powerband. In this example I've also adjusted for a lower Wind loss since the Road Racer concept focuses on improved aerodynamics over a Mountain Bike.
This extracts only the Acceleration of the two eBikes and shows how the 1000 Watt Mountain Bike "peaks early" and then fades away. For the 20 lbs of Force Road Racer the power comes on slower, but lasts longer which tends to extend the Pleasure.
Which is actually faster?
The truth is that they are probably very similiar. Long ago (2006) when I first started into this hobby it was all about going faster. But it wasn't long before it became clear that it doesn't take much to make something that is absurd... a poorly designed "motorcycle with pedals".
So my goal now is Pleasure... if the "Pleasure Principle" were to expand into actual racetrack action that's great, but for now I'm content that it's something I can enjoy.
My "Road Racer" is fun.