Warum verwenden wir eigentlich Akkus für unsere SUSHI BIKES?

Why do we actually use batteries for our SUSHI BIKES?

We build e-bikes because we firmly believe that they are the ideal means of transport in the city and therefore have the potential to replace cars there . Distances travelled by e-bikes are usually a little longer and are also covered more regularly than with conventional bicycles. E-bike users are also less affected by extreme weather conditions, as the effort required to ride an e-bike is less than with a conventional bicycle. The same effect ensures that people who would otherwise not be able to ride a bike due to health restrictions can also use an e-bike. We owe all of these advantages to the batteries. Scientific studies have now also come to this conclusion. They describe that the savings potential of e-bikes for replacing cars is greater than that of conventional bicycles. (1)

E-bike batteries and CO2 emissions

With batteries, most CO2 emissions arise during the manufacturing phase. This is also the case with the batteries that we install in our SUSHI BIKES . The same applies to the entire e-bike. The longer you use and ride the bike , the better the carbon footprint of the battery, and therefore of the entire BIKE, becomes . A study describes that between 41 and 89 kg of CO2e are emitted per kWh of battery power (2). For our battery, this means that between 9 and 20 kg of CO2e are emitted to manufacture the battery. If you calculate a saving of 14kg/100km compared to a car, you would have to drive almost 200km with the SUSHI BIKE instead of the car to “offset” the emissions. You can usually manage that in a month and with regular commuting .

The two biggest levers for improving the carbon footprint of batteries are the use of renewable energies in production and the use of recycled materials (3). More and more manufacturers are already using renewable energies in production. However, most batteries are still manufactured in China. Unfortunately, the electricity mix in China is still heavily influenced by coal, even though the largest increase in renewable energies is taking place there. The EU, on the other hand, is focusing on the use of recycled materials. It requires battery manufacturers to use more recycled materials and in the future every battery should have a "passport". This should help to recycle the batteries or use them for other purposes (4). We are already a member of the GRS recycling system. This means that all of our batteries can be returned to recycling centers, bike shops and to us. The batteries are then professionally recycled and returned to the cycle. In addition, more efficient production methods and new battery compositions that are less harmful to the environment are constantly being developed. By using standard battery cells, we are so well positioned that we can switch quickly if a better alternative is available on the market.

What does this mean for our SUSHI BIKE?

Our e-bike battery is smaller and therefore the entire bike is a bit more environmentally friendly than comparable e-bikes with a larger battery. The battery accounts for between 16% and 24% of the emissions from e-bikes (5,6) and the battery capacity plays a significant role in the batteries' emissions. Our battery contains around 18g of cobalt and around 20g of lithium. These two metals are essential for the batteries. However, their mining is regularly criticized for either environmental reasons (lithium) or human rights reasons (cobalt).

Batteries and human rights

An Amnesty International report from 2017 drew a lot of attention to the issue of human rights violations in cobalt mining. Since then, large mining operators and automobile companies in particular have professionalized mining in large industrial mines. But incidents keep happening here too (7) and, above all, the cobalt from large industrial mines is often mixed with cobalt from small-scale mining. This is one of the reasons why we are an active member of the Fair Cobalt Alliance, and so far the only e-bike brand to do so . You can find out more about our involvement in the Fair Cobalt Alliance here. We are currently examining whether we should expand our existing commitment to consumption-related donations. In addition to our contributions, we would thus buy credits that support local projects worth the value of our cobalt needs. Our batteries mainly use Samsung battery cells; the corresponding certificates are available here. (8)

Long live the battery - what you can do for it

If you want to have an impact during use, you can influence this by charging correctly and by the electricity used for charging. Basically, the longer you use the battery, the better it is for the environment. The e-bike battery lasts longer if you use and charge it correctly. The ideal charge level is between 20 and 80 percent. You should also avoid extreme temperatures, especially when storing it. You can find more information on using and storing your e-bike in winter here. Of course, the electricity you use to charge the battery also influences the carbon footprint of the battery and therefore of the entire SUSHI BIKE. It is best to always charge it with green electricity, but the German electricity mix is ​​also becoming increasingly more environmentally friendly.


(1) E-Bikes and their ability to reduce car CO2 emissions - ScienceDirect
(2) Future greenhouse gas emissions from automotive lithium-ion battery cell production - ScienceDirect
(3) Life cycle assessment of power batteries used in electric bikes - ScienceDirect
(4) Circular and safe batteries enters force in 2023 - Environmet.ec.europa.eu
(5) Pedelection - ifeu.de
(6) On the way to a sustainable future - Bosch Press
(7) Ev Cobalt Mines Congo - Washingtonpost.com
(8) Supply Chain Responsibility - samsunsdi.com


Back to blog