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Video: Dual-drive 50mph e-bike can be yours for US$5000

Madness or genius? you tell us...

How do you make an electric bike that will do 50mph? You bring together two hub-motors, a backpack full of lithium-ion batteries and - we assume - some clever electronic jiggery-pokery to make it all work and you get this:

The builder says it has two-wheel drive from the pair of motors, which must make for a very different ride feel from a conventional bike, and three power settings for 20, 30 and high-40s mph speeds.

The set-up uses a 72-volt battery. If you’ve seen videos of exploding lithium-ion batteries, fret not: these use lithium iron phosphate chemistry, which doesn’t quite have the energy density of the batteries in your laptop, but can take a higher power draw and has a longer service life.

The nutter engineering wizard behind this machine can be found though his Facebook page. His custom-built e-bikes cost between $2000 and $5000

If the videographer and the venue, California’s Mulholland Drive, seem familiar, that’s because YouTube user rnickeymouse, shot a famous clip of a cyclist getting rear-ended by a motorbike in the same place.

Acknowledged by the Telegraph as a leading cycling journalist, John Stevenson has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with editor Tony Farelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013 and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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