You might have heard about a new shifting option from Enviolo (formerly NuVinci). It's called Automatiq, and it offers an extremely simple riding experience for e-bikes - you can forget about shifting gears and concentrate on the road. Once you've set the desired cadence (rate at which you're rotating the pedals), the Automatiq shifter will take care of the rest. It will even drop the gearing back down when you stop, so you're in the perfect gear to start riding again.
So, that's all well and good, but there aren't that many bikes offering the Automatiq system. Maybe you've already got a perfectly good Enviolo hub, with a cable-based shifter installed, and you'd like to retrofit the Automatiq system. Is it possible? The answer is yes! But there are a few choices you'll have to make before you start, and it won't work in all situations.
What are the requirements for retrofitting?
First, you'll need an electric bike. The part of the Automatiq system that attaches to the hub requires power from the motor.
Second, you need an Enviolo 380 hub on your bike. Enviolo 360 hubs are unlikely to work (though I haven't verified this).
Last, you need to make sure that the Automatiq interface will physically fit around the frame. If your dropout has a derailleur hanger, this will probably get in the way of the interface, and prevent installation. There may be other quirks of your frame so measure it up before you commit to this project.
Should you integrate Automatiq shifting with your e-bike - and can you?
You need to decide if you're going to fully integrate the Automatiq shifting with the electrical system. The advantage of doing this is that you can alter the programmed cadence using the display, and you won't need anything else to control the shifting system.
It's not possible to fully integrate with a Bosch system - there are strictly managed firmware files that only Bosch service centres have access to, and they won't modify your bike to allow it to integrate with the Automatiq system.
Enviolo and Bafang have announced an integration, but you'll need to make sure you have a firmware that's compatible with the integration in order to control the system through your display.
The alternative is to use your phone or an Enviolo shifter.
Parts required for retrofitting
Regardless of whether you're integrating the Automatiq shifting with your system, you'll need the following:
- Automatiq hub interface - choose the version that matches your hub
- Hub magnet ring
- Sprocket magnet ring
Then you need a wire to connect the hub interface to your motor. If you're just looking for power, you need the Automatiq Wire Harness. If you have a Bosch system you'll also need a Bosch Y-Cable. This wire ONLY provides power to the Automatiq shifter, with no data connection. You can also add a wireless controller (there are two types, CA or CO - they seem functionally very similar, but the CA version protrudes away from the handlebar whereas the CO version extends along the bar), however this isn't compulsory- you can actually control the system with your smartphone, using the Enviolo Automatiq app and a Bluetooth connection. It's up to you whether you'd prefer to use your phone or a handlebar-mounted controller.
Once you've got the parts, it's a matter of removing the old mechanical hub interface and replacing it with the Automatiq one. Enviolo have a useful video tutorial for the installation process. Don't forget to fit the two magnet rings. Then you'll need to run the cable between your motor and the Automatiq hub interface. This may require you to fit the Bosch Y-Cable, which may need the motor and battery mount to be removed. If you're not integrating the shifting with your Bosch system and you'd prefer not to use your smartphone, install your wireless controller on the handlebar. Then you're all set!