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The Vélib’ service

Everything you need to know about the new Vélib’ bicycles in a few minutes

Electric bicycles making journeys shorter

The Vélib’ Métropole service aims to further the development of new forms of travel across the Île-de-France region that operate alongside existing transport options.

Moving around is made much easier thanks to a fleet of bicycles which is 30% electric: Vélib’ users see their journeys shorten and defy the city's hills to climb them with ease. With a range of 50km and a top speed of 25km/hour, the electric Vélib’ bicycles represent a genuine alternative to the use of private cars that pollute the atmosphere.

Depending on how they are used, larger numbers of electric bicycles may gradually be introduced. This is one of the great advantages of the new fleet: in under half an hour in the workshop, mechanical bicycles can be made into electric bicycles!

Smart, connected bicycles that make travelling easier

The new fleet boasts other technological innovations beyond the electric bicycle: all bicycles are also fitted with an integrated V-Box that improves orientation, as well as a fork lock for better security.

The V-Box

The V-Box is an electronic unit built into the handlebars that allows users quick and direct access to bikes. The unit is energy autonomous since it is charged by the dynamo. It communicates with the station via a radio transmitter/receiver, meaning it can feed data into the Vélib’ service's information systems.

The fork lock

The fork lock is a patented security system. Controlled by the V-Box, the fork lock secures the bicycle in one of two different ways.

Stations: the heart of the self-service bicycle system

A unique overflow management system

The new Vélib’ Métropole service uses an overflow management system that is one of a kind. This system (which is also called "Park +") is designed to:

  • minimise instances where a user arrives at a station to return their bicycle but cannot do so because it is full;
  • double the number of bicycles available at the most popular stations before the morning rush hour.

Smovengo is the only operator to have tested this overflow management system in real conditions, in Helsinki. The "Park +" function, which is configurable and flexible, symbolises the new generation of self-service bicycles.

When a station is full, it gives users the option to attach a bicycle the other way around between two bicycles already parked. Bicycles docked in this way are secure since they are attached by a cable and protected by a Neiman lock that blocks the steering. The system allows the public road around the station to be kept as clear as possible.

An ecosystem adding value and creating employment in France

Smovengo has utilised a network of more than 100 subcontractors during preparations to launch Vélib’ Métropole, a large majority of which are French companies. Almost 80% of the value added to the manufacture and assembly of the bicycles is carried out in France.