JUMP Bike Models Demystified
It seems as if there’s no stopping the story of the scrapped JUMP bikes. The tech and bike advocates of the world have heard the news and are busy sharing it on the World Wide Web.
But there seems to be some confusion over the various JUMP models, especially since Street Justice has reported that the bikes being scrapped are “older generation vehicles than what Lime got in the transaction.”
We don’t think so. Since pictures tell a thousand words, let’s begin:
There are four major generations of the JUMP e-bike: 5.0, 5.5/5.6, and 5.8. There’s also a 5.4, but it barely factors into the story, and it’ll be discussed last.
The JUMP 5.0:
This was the very first JUMP bike released, based off the original Social Bicycles technology. As such, it has a big, grey Social Bicycles GPS unit in back with a removable U-lock, one of the easiest spotting features of this model. It also has a Shimano roller brake in front, reverse brake levers, and a fixed battery in the downtube that can only be accessed by removing the basket from the front of the bike.
Most were retired at least a year ago and probably scrapped afterwards. Not a single one of these “older generation” 5.0s have been seen in @CrisMoffit’s pictures at Foss Recycling in North Carolina.
The JUMP 5.5/5.6:
The JUMP 5.5 is the current JUMP model. It was was deployed on the streets as JUMP’s flagship right up to the Lime takeover. They’re highly distinctive from the 5.0’s in a couple of areas.
First off, the clunky Social Bicycles GPS is no more. The 5.5 incorporates the GPS into a slick touch-operated control panel and integrated cellphone holder, located between the handlebars. The problematic Shimano roller brake was also eliminated in favor of a disc brake, while the now-smooth rear fender houses a retractable cable lock, eliminating the original U-lock system.
Another huge change on the 5.5 is its new battery design. A rubber pad on the left side of the bike disguises a 36V battery pack that can be quickly be removed by JUMP staff (not users) and swapped when the bike is being serviced by fleet technicians. To accommodate the new battery tray, the downtube of the 5.5 is larger than the 5.0.
The bikes in the videos and photos published by @CrisMoffit are visually identifiable as 5.5s.
Also, though these bikes do have firmware built into the battery management system (BMS) to prevent charging if they do not connect to the UBER (or Lime) network, these bikes are not the ones attributed to be packed with so much anti-theft firmware that they’re (presumably) impossible to turn into personal bikes.
The JUMP 5.6 is the EU version of the 5.5. It may run slightly different firmware for regulatory purposes, but appears virtually identical, externally. From what we’ve seen, the only visual detail that appears to set them apart are the ANEC-mandated dual orange wheel reflectors, as opposed to the US models’ single, white wheel reflectors, as mandated by the CPSC. We have not noticed any other major spotting differences otherwise.
The JUMP 5.8
The JUMP 5.8 seems to be the most misunderstood of all the JUMP models. Very few seem to know it exists or what it looks like. Fear not, clarification is on the way.
The 5.8 looks like the 5.5 with one major visual difference: The downtube is bulged to fit a distinctive, silver (early prototypes were red), user removable battery that clips directly into the frame.
These are the oft-referenced wonderbikes that have DRM firmware from front to back to prevent theft and tampering, not the 5.5’s.
More importantly, the JUMP 5.8 is not a finished product. According to the JUMP staff that we’ve spoken to, these never got past limited beta testing in Santa Cruz. The testing was so controlled that JUMP techs would literally shadow the bikes in the field, and the new code was fraught with bugs.
They never did get all the bugs out by the time the Lime takeover happened.
This begs the question: If UBER is scrapping “older generation vehicles than what Lime got in the transaction,” then Lime has to be running 5.8’s exclusively, right?
We’re not holding our breath. Lime doesn’t have the tech team to reverse engineer the extensive work executed by the JUMP techs – or the time to do it. It could be months, if not longer, before Lime could both reverse-engineer the system just to ensure control over it, much less get the kinks out that the original designers themselves hadn’t figured out.
As for what’s being scrapped – they’re all easily identifiable as 5.5s, which is all that’s necessary to prove that “old models” are not the ones being scrapped.
EXCLUSIVE: New, close-up pictures of the Seattle JUMP 5.5 fleet show that every single bike has *already had their 36V Li-Ion battery removed,* so the manpower existed to do that prior to sending them to scrap. The extent of the waste is unfathomable. pic.twitter.com/zT3nRhYNAs
— Bike Share Museum (@bikesharemuseum) May 26, 2020
Without the 5.8 in service, there’s no such thing as a newer generation – and the “older” 5.0’s were dead and gone a long time ago.
In the meantime, we’re also waiting on contacts in Denver to snap a picture of the post-5/22 relaunch bikes. We’re betting they’re 5.5s.
And finally, for the total bike geeks:
The JUMP 5.4
The JUMP 5.4 was a transition model that incorporated the original Social Bicycles GPS system from the 5.0 and the side-loading battery of the 5.5. These were deployed for an extremely limited time between the 5.0 and the 5.5 and were retired very quickly due to firmware reliability issues.
Not a single one has been seen, but so few were deployed that it’s unlikely any examples still exist.
Stay tuned for some Denver pictures.