Valeo and Smovengo join to remanufacture Velib e-bike motors and batteries – ET Auto

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The “Circular Innovation Factory” in Czechowice (Poland ) for electric motors.

New Delhi: Valeo and Smovengo, the operator of Vélib’ Métropole, a large-scale public bicycle sharing system in Paris and 64 of its communes, have joined forces to remanufacture the motors and batteries of the 8,000 electric Vélib’ bicycles that tour the streets of Greater Paris.

Valeo is the key technology partner of global automakers and plays a major role in promoting more diverse mobility. Recognizing that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for mobility in today’s urban environments, Valeo offers a range of solutions for small mobility devices such as bicycles, scooters and electric rickshaws.

Valeo’s commitment to the e-bike sector includes the supply of Valeo Cyclee electric motors and the circular maintenance of other essential components used in e-bikes such as the Smovengo bikes. Bringing such service for eBike is fully part of Valeo’s circular economy strategy (4R) to expand the lifespan of existing mobility systems. This concrete action is possible thanks to Valeo’s unique positioning to build the sustainable mobility of tomorrow.

For over 40 years, Valeo has put its expertise in the design and manufacture of original parts at the service of remanufacturing, to offer a range of products with the highest quality standards. Two Valeo sites specialising in remanufacturing have been selected for the partnership with Smovengo.

Valeo launched in 2023 the Circular Electronics Lab in Nevers (France) to set up a dedicated team combining flexibility, quality and competitiveness, in touch with our internal experts to incubate circular electronics projects. This unit successfully launched the first ever remanufactured front camera and has expanded its circular services for Small Mobility, starting with the Repair of batteries for Smovengo.

The “Circular Innovation Factory” in Czechowice (Poland ) for electric motors.

Czechowice is Valeo’s Competence Centre for remanufactured products such as starters, alternators, dual mass flywheels, dual clutches and air conditioning compressors, and is now expanding its remanufacturing activity into the field of micromobility with the motors equipped on Smovengo’s electric bikes.

Recycling and upgrading at the heart of Smovengo’s commitments: Since becoming the operator of Vélib’ Métropole in 2018, the largest station-based bike-sharing service in the world, covering 65 municipalities and 450 km², Smovengo has been tackling a considerable logistical challenge. Every day, the teams in the field and in the workshops repair 1,000 bikes to ensure a constant availability of the fleet, 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

To meet this challenge, and in response to the ecological emergency, Smovengo has chosen to strengthen its commitment to the circular economy by designing parts that are increasingly durable, reliable and, above all, refurbishable. This effort, steered by the R&D department, enables the provision of cutting-edge equipment while reducing dependence on Asian suppliers.

Since 2020, the company has implemented a complete industrial process for recycling spare parts. All maintenance parts are prepared for a second life or recycled. Currently, 30 employees are dedicated daily to testing and repairing these components. In parallel, a wheel production line has been set up in Alfortville, producing the 2,500 wheels needed for fleet maintenance each week, using new or recycled parts. Continuing these efforts, Smovengo has been certified as a bicycle manufacturer in October 2021, allowing for the annual production of over 2,000 CE-certified electric and mechanical bicycles, also using new and recycled parts.

To go further, and in order to repair more complex parts such as electric motors and batteries, specific expertise was needed, as well as industrialisation capacity. This is why Smovengo has entered into a partnership with Valeo, a global expert in automotive parts recycling.

Eric Schuler, CEO of Valeo Service, said, “Valeo is delighted to announce its partnership with Smovengo, a major player in urban mobility in Paris. This collaboration for the repair and remanufacturing of batteries and motors for electric Velib bicycles demonstrates Valeo’s commitment to safer and more sustainable mobility, and its capability to offer solutions for the electrification of all forms of mobility.”

“As a player in sustainable daily mobility, it is essential to provide responsible solutions to the environmental challenge,” explains Jacques Greiveldinger, Managing Director of Smovengo. “We are proud of our partnership with Valeo, whose expertise helps us make significant progress in our commitments and continuously improve the management of second-hand parts in the bicycle sector. This represents a triple benefit: ecological, economic and optimisation of logistics for our company. The revaluation of motors and batteries is only the first step in this partnership, which will be extended to many other bicycle parts,” he added.

  • Published On May 24, 2024 at 11:53 AM IST

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