Electric bicycles have been taking the mobility industry by storm in recent years. In fact, the impact of e-bikes in modern society is so great that lots of cities around the world—particularly in Europe and Asia—are integrating them into big-time urban planning projects.

That said, if you wanted an e-bike, you had to buy an e-bike. So what happens to your regular old bicycle if you don’t want or need it anymore? Well, you could try one of those e-bike conversion kits.

There are tons of them in the market today, and they all have their own pros and cons. But one innovation—simply called the Clip—wants to be the simplest and most effective one yet.

The Clip Is The E-Bike Conversion Kit Nobody Asked For

So, how does the Clip work? Well in essence, the Clip is a modern-day interpretation of the post-World War II Solex moped. Those mopeds made use of a small two-stroke engine mounted over the front wheel. The Clip is similar in concept, except that it makes use of an electric motor. The company says that it’s compatible with any type of bicycle, including those with suspension forks. And here’s the kicker: you don’t need any tools to install it on any bicycle.

Sounds too good to be true, right?

Simply put, the Clip is a friction-drive unit. The motor housed within the assembly has rollers which are in constant contact with your front tire. And because the Clip is attached to a fixed point on your bicycle (i.e., your front fork, or the fork lowers of a mountain bike), it’s able to propel you and your bike forward.

The Clip Is The E-Bike Conversion Kit Nobody Asked For

Clip offers its e-bike conversion kit in two versions: Commuter and Explorer. The main difference between the two has to do with range, more specifically, the size of the battery.

The Commuter model has a small 96-watt-hour capacity, which promises just six miles of range on a single charge. It does, however, meet certifications that allow it to be carried onboard commercial airlines—useful if you’re planning an out-of-town bike trip. It takes just 30 minutes to charge it up.

Meanwhile, the Explorer version doubles the range to 12 miles with a 196-watt-hour battery pack. This means it loses its airline-carry-on privileges and takes twice as long to charge.

Both the Commuter and Explorer Clips are said to provide a top speed of 15 miles per hour. But in reality, the size and weight of your bike will almost surely affect this.

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When it comes to price, the Clip is fairly pricey as it retails for $499 USD for the Commuter and $599 USD for the Explorer. It’s hard to justify its cost, especially when e-bikes from brands like Ride1Up and Lectric give you a full-fledged e-bike with more than double the range for less than double the price.

Furthermore, if you’re a performance-oriented e-biker, don’t expect a Clip-mounted bicycle to behave in any way like a from-the-ground-up e-bike. I’m almost certain that even the mildest wheelie, curb-hop, or bunny-hop would mess with the Clip’s mounting system and maybe even cause it to fall off completely.

And so, I can’t help but feel like the Clip just might not be all it’s clipped on to be. Sure, it’s a gimmick for folks with some extra cash lying around looking to spend an afternoon having fun with their bikes. But as an actual e-mobility solution, it might be better to look at actual e-bikes—or hey, why not just pedal your way to your destination aboard your regular old bicycle? It’s good for your health, too.

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