Mini-guide to smart electric bike choices.
How to choose an electric bike?
Mini-guide to smart electric bike choices.
You may have already thought about buying an electric bike for use instead of or in parallel with another vehicle. What to look for when choosing?
Here's what the GoEV team thinks about it:
The universe of electric transport is developing so rapidly that today the leaders in the production of electric transport are companies that were unknown to anyone a few years ago.
Most of the major bike and motorcycle manufacturers entered the race later, and not all are delivering innovative products with the quality and performance that users expect.
Therefore, brand awareness in this case is still important, but not decisive. If you want to try something new, you should look at new manufacturing companies.
- The quality of the components
And here there can be no compromises. You can't make a quality bike out of second-rate parts.
All quality manufacturers, including GoEV, use only the best and most reliable solutions in their segment.
For example, the Sabvoton 72V 150A controller allows the user to independently program the characteristics of their bike (e-RUNNER 12kW). Kelly controllers are also highly regarded. Some of the manufacturers declare the use of proprietary controllers (for example, the CAB Recon, Luna Super Banana V2 / Sur Ron X bike models).
In some models unknown controllers of a smaller amperage are used. This solution may be less reliable and not very convenient for active bike users.
One of the most important components of a bike is its battery. Bikes of the highest price segment use the latest solutions from Panasonic (Power Ranger 12kW model), batteries from LG (Nomad 750W, Bikonit Warthog models) or Samsung (Luna Super Banana V2).
Regardless of the price, road safety is the # 1 priority. Preference should be given to bikes that use quality braking components, for example, the world famous Tektro (GoEV e-RUNNER, Power Ranger and Offroader models) or Magura (CAB RECON model).
The location of the motor depends on the purpose of the bike and its power. Typically, high-power speed bikes are rear-mounted.
Shock absorbers provide comfort in motion. Most high-end and mid-range e-bikes have front and rear shock absorbers. Components from brands such as KKE (e-RUNNER), DNM (Power Ranger, Offroader) and Rockshox (Nomad 750W) should be preferred.
There is not always a need to chase record mileage on a single charge. These numbers look nice on paper, but in practice you are unlikely to drive 12 hours a day without interruption. 80-100 miles in quiet mode is a reasonable balance between range, bike weight and price. After all, it's no secret that the most expensive part of any electric vehicle is its battery. And the larger its capacity, the more expensive the cost of the bike, all other things being equal.
If you do not have great physical strength, then it is better to stay on electric bikes with an average power reserve. They are lighter, more manoeuvrable, and often have removable batteries (e.g. Bikonit Warthog, GoEV Nomad) that can be recharged at home.
- Customization options
There is no way to create a bike that suits the needs of every customer.
Therefore, it is very good if, when buying, there is an opportunity to configure the bike for your goals and objectives.
Of the interesting options, the following can be noted:
- 6 options for motor power from 2 to 12kW (GoEV e-RUNNER)
- Street Safety Kit (CAB RECON)
- DRT Kit (Onyx RCR-72)
Generally, a 1 to 2 year warranty is sufficient. Most manufacturing defects can be found already in the first months of operation.
The Lifetime Frame Warranty declared by some companies is, in our opinion, more of a marketing gimmick than a real advantage.
- Payment methods and financial options
Every self-respecting seller offers several payment options, such as PayPal, Stripe or bank transfer. If the payment method looks doubtful in your eyes, you should refuse to purchase.
It is very convenient if the seller's website has financial options that allow you to split the impressive amount of payment into several parts. For example, Klarna, Affirm, Partial.ly proved to be reliable financial partners. Some manufacturers have even started accepting payments in cryptocurrency, for example, through coinbase.
Cost is one of the significant factors when choosing an e-bike.
Between the two extremes (the cheapest and the most expensive bikes), many customers want to choose the highest quality product for themselves for a reasonable price. If you compare the bikes of more famous brands and those who are just trying to conquer the market, you can see that with approximately the same level of solutions used, beginners offer a product that is more attractive in terms of price. Is this choice ideal? Not. As always, you need to weigh all the factors before giving up your money.
- After-sales support and service life of the e-bike
Many sellers focus on the fact that a high-quality electric bike can serve its owner for 10 or more years.
This is partly true, but with the speed of technology development, in a couple of years you may want to replace some of the main components with other, newer developments. But in most cases it is not possible to replace just one component. For example, when installing a new battery, most likely you will need to replace, in addition to the battery, the BMS, part of the wires, the monitor, and possibly the controller.
Therefore, in our opinion, it is much more profitable to buy a bike in a not the most expensive price segment (subject to similar components). For many owners, it will be more convenient to resell it in a couple of years and buy a bike of a new model. Also keep in mind that bikes that are too expensive will lose much more in value than e-bikes with an inherently more moderate price tag.
The speed of technology development and the life cycle of components is also playing a cruel joke with after-sales support. In a few years, the used components may be discontinued and neither you nor the bike manufacturer will be able to find them on the market to replace a broken part in your electric vehicle.
Therefore, you should not chase "eternal" electric bikes, it is much wiser to focus on an average service life of 2-3 years.
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