GM takes orders for new e-bike but US consumers have to wait

General Motors is starting to take orders for its new electronic bicycle, but U.S. consumers will to wait as the Detroit-carmaker targets several European countries for the initial launch.

The e-bike -- called ARĪV after a global campaign to find a name for the product -- will ship to Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands in the second quarter of 2019. Meld, the compact version, will cost as much as $3,164, while the folding model will cost at most $3,842.

"The crowdsourcing campaign allowed us to bring consumers into the development of our brand,” ARĪV Director Hannah Parish said in a statement. “Combine that with our products and our blend of bike and automotive talent, and the result is a unique brand DNA.”

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The battery on the ARĪV charges in roughly 3.5 hours, resulting in nearly 40 miles of ride-time. It can reach speeds over 15 miles per hour.

The company's entry into the electronic bicycle space comes as U.S. firms seek to captalize on the burgeoning mobility business. E-scooter companies like Bird and Lime have received millions in outside investment. Competitor Ford Motor Co. bought scooter-firm Spin for $100 million in November.

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GM is in the midst of laying off 14,000 workers in the U.S. amid a shift towards pickups and electric vehicles. A chunk of those laid off by the automaker could receive jobs in other plants where it is adding capacity, according to GM.