We got a sneak peek at the modular Saigon e-bike with ModMo’s integrated Bekan seatpost brake light project late last year. Now the e-bike itself is almost ready, opening up pre-orders for what they call “the world’s 1st” modular commuter e-bike. Modmo developed the Saigon to address three core obstacles that keep more people from choosing a bike for urban transport: sweat, theft and utility. And the result is an adaptable e-bike that integrates all the tech you could want with modular attachments to haul most everything you could need on the daily commute.

Modmo Saigon modular-mount, integrated-tech urban commuter e-bike

Founded in Ireland but now based in Vietnam where they are able to be in direct connection with their manufacturing, Modmo  – read: modular mobility – is a small cycling tech & lifestyle start-up on a mission to replace cars in cities with bikes for more sustainable, more efficient individual urban transport. Their first Bekan seatpost brake/taillight made for a tidy & theft-resistant solution for better everyday (everynight) visibility. Now the complete Saigon e-bike project solves how to move you around the city, with a modular platform to adapt to individual riders/commuters.

Modmo Saigon – Tech details, integration & modularity

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

c. Modmo

The Saigon tucks all the smart electronics we’re used to seeing in an urban e-bike directly into the one-piece bar & stem – like the large Android-powered integrated display for turn-by-turn navigation, headlight & turn signals, including GPS tracking, Bluetooth connectivity, accelerometer motion sensors, etc. and integrated taillight / brake lights as well.

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

The drive system of the 6061 aluminum-framed e-bike is a Aikeam-made front hub motor, with a removable 17.5Ah Panasonic battery hidden in the slightly oversized downtube, and the option to add a Shimano Nexus 8-speed or Alfine 11sp internally geared hub out back to balance things out. Charging is simple too, with a plug built into the modular front mount.

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

Range is claimed to be an impressive 200km, with 350W 40kph possible for EU buyers (but with a 250W, 25kph mode that is the max you can use on public roads) or 500W & 40mph (with limited 20mph street mode) for US buyers. We’re not entirely sure how that is going to fly with EU or US regulators, so I guess they take a ‘wait & see’ approach.

The Saigon uses a Gates CDX belt-drive to keep clean and worry-free. It has 700c wheels and ample clearance for the 42mm WTB Horizon tires to take on any commuter road surface. Total claimed weight is just 13.9kg / 30.6lb.

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

Beyond all those tech & integration details that are thankfully becoming the norm in most city commuter e-bikes, the Saigon also leans hard on modular solutions to let riders customize the bike to how they need to get around town. Their patented front & rear modular mounting system accommodates a basket, rear rack platform, a trailer, or simply a kid seat. Plus, a fold-away stand at the rear wheel.

Modmo Saigon – Introductory pricing & availability

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

The modular mobility Saigon is being made offered in a limited number of just 100 more pre-sales now direct from Modmo (the first 200 were already sold before the pre-order opened officially. The Saigon is available in a single size M/L for riders 170-195cm tall (5’6″ – 6’5″) and in colors black or black.

Modmo Saigon modular urban e-bike, adaptable integrated-tech urban commuter city bike

The limited pre-order price of the city e-bike is 1999€, but you only have to lay down a refundable 99€ now as a deposit to reserve yours. Deliveries of the completed e-bikes are expected to begin shipping in September 2020, at which point the full retail price will bump up to 2800€ for those who didn’t get in on this pre-sale. While their first seatpost light was launched on a crowdsourcing platform when it looked like there was work still to be done, the Saigon has already been produced in a limited pre-production run that is undergoing late stage testing now (Modmo has said a complete Saigon is available for us to test.) With our EU team based in a large European capital, we’re always excited to see more viable & affordable options for alternatives to urban transport.

ModMo.io

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Brad Comis (@BradComis)

My bike has a modular system that allows me to attach racks or what ever I want to my bike frame. The system is based around M5x1.0 threaded bosses that are brazed onto the frame. It is innovative and is disrupting the industry!
Joking aside this Modmo thing doesn’t look *too* bad for a company that styles themselves as a “tech start-up” type of operation. Still lots of questionable claims and bad renders, BUT at least the frame seems like it will work as a bike. The computer in the handlebar…I’d give it two years at best before it is dead and gone. Nice to see a robot welder being put into action.

David R.
David R.
2 years ago

Having ridden in Saigon, and up the Mekong in Vietnam and Cambodia, two things really struck me. First is how amazingly versatile 2-wheel transport can be. Second, how badly scooter exhaust pollutes the air. It would be awesome to see e-bikes take over some of that traffic.