AS petrol prices continue to skyrocket unabated, getting around on a bicycle is becoming increasingly popular and cost effective.
This cheap alternative to car journeys, however, isn't available to all as many people are physically unable to peddle long distances.
This is where the Freego Electric Bike comes in handy as it offers users the ability to get around without the physical exertion associated with cycling.
Johnno's Camper Trailer franchisees Steve and Jane Russon are among the first importers to offer a variety of Freego bicycles to the public.
Mr Russon said "most people who buy the bike have either lost their licence, are unfit or have recently had an operation.
"A lot of customers, when they first get on the bike, say things like 'it's rather expensive', but once the electric motor kicks in, they're sold on the idea."
There are four different models available with the cheapest costing about $1,850 and the most expensive about $2,200.
One of the key features is that you can charge the batteries from main power outlets and solar panels.
By using an inverter, owners can hook the bike's charger up to solar panelling and charge the bike in about four to six hours.
Charging the bike through a home's trusty plug also takes no longer than six hours and once fully charged, the bike is ready to go for 100 kms.
Top speed is restricted to the Australian legal limit of 25 km/h which applies to all bikes which don't require a licence, registration or insurance.
A bicycle helmet is required although the advanced double braking system on the bike will, in all likelihood, ensure collisions will be avoided.
The bike uses disc brakes, similar to a car's, and automatically cuts its engine power if the rider touches the brakes.
Mr Russon said the seven Shimano gears available ensured the bike would take any rider, up any hill and one customer had ridden to bike up the steep incline of Sexton Hill without any problems.
The bike's handlebars and hydraulic suspension could be adjusted to suit people's needs and could be changed without the use of any tools.
"We get some customers who buy it simply because they don't want to be seen on a mobility scooter.
"The bikes are stronger and heavier than ordinary bikes but come with a four year warranty and are capable of transporting things like pets in a custom-made trailer.
"Certain models can also be folded and are the ideal bikes to take along on holidays when solar panels might be the only power source available," Mr Russon said.
Freego Electric Bikes are available from Johnno's Camper Trailers located at 2/29 Rivendell Dr, Tweed Heads South.
Contact Steve or Jane on 07 5513 0584 for more information or to book a test ride.