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Lithium batteries help turn bicycles into "eBikes"

November 24, 2008

In our ongoing efforts to provide you with broader communications and industry information, we are pleased to issue another Industry Bulletin discussing recent trends in the markets of various rare and strategic metals. This edition looks at the emerging popularity and growth of battery-assisted (or electric) bicycles, more recently referred to as "eBikes". According to the Electric Bikes Worldwide Report, 2008 Update, 20.8 million eBikes were sold worldwide in 2007 and now represent the fastest-growing segment of the bicycle market. This product is yet another example of new electric vehicle technology enabled by rare metals, in this case lithium.

The main challenge with electric vehicles is that battery technology is not advancing fast enough to keep pace with the power needs of today's electric vehicle. Toshiba's new battery technology called SCiB