A2B Ferber Review

A2b Ferber Electric Bike Review 1
A2b Ferber
A2b Ferber Shimano Alivio
A2b Ferber Rear Rack
A2b Ferber Display Panel Grips Button Pad
A2b Ferber Chain Guard
A2b Ferber Disc Brake Rotors Front
A2b Ferber Kickstand Pedals
A2b Ferber Remote Button Pad
A2b Ferber Removable Battery Pack
A2b Ferber Electric Bike Review 1
A2b Ferber
A2b Ferber Shimano Alivio
A2b Ferber Rear Rack
A2b Ferber Display Panel Grips Button Pad
A2b Ferber Chain Guard
A2b Ferber Disc Brake Rotors Front
A2b Ferber Kickstand Pedals
A2b Ferber Remote Button Pad
A2b Ferber Removable Battery Pack

Summary

  • Relaxed urban cruiser with quiet resposive motor, removable battery pack and excellent warranty
  • Premium upgrades including ergonomic grips, fenders, chain guard, suspension fork with lockout, rack and integrated LED lights
  • Rear heavy design, rear wheel is more permanently fixed (lacks quick release for maintenance), display panel is not removable

Video Review

Introduction

Make:

A2B

Model:

Ferber

Price:

$2,399 USD

Body Position:

Upright Relaxed

Suggested Use:

Commuting, Urban

Electric Bike Class:

Pedal Assist (Class 1)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

5 Year Frame, 2 Year Electronics and Battery

Availability:

United States

Model Year:

2015

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

48.5 lbs (21.99 kg)

Battery Weight:

5.2 lbs (2.35 kg)

Frame Material:

6061 Aluminum

Frame Sizes:

17 in (43.18 cm)20 in (50.8 cm)

Frame Types:

Step-Thru

Frame Colors:

White, Silver, Black

Frame Fork Details:

HL CH-140 Suspension with 75 mm of Travel and Lockout

Attachment Points:

Fenders, Rear Rack

Gearing Details:

8 Speed 1x8 Shimano Alivio

Shifter Details:

Trigger Shifter on Right Handle Bar

Pedals:

Aluminum Alloy Platform with Rubber Grips

Stem:

Adjustable Angle

Handlebar:

Upright Townie, North Road Style

Brake Details:

Tektro Aurigia E-Comp Hydraulic Disc with 180 mm Rotor on the Front and 160 mm Rotor on the Rear

Grips:

Ergon GP1 with Lockers

Saddle:

Comfort with Rubber Bumpers

Rims:

Double Walled, Aluminum Alloy

Tire Brand:

Kenda, 26" x 1.95"

Wheel Sizes:

26 in (66.04cm)

Tire Details:

Reflective Sidewalls

Accessories:

Full Length Fenders with Mud Flaps, Chain Guard, Rear Carry Rack, Front and Rear LED Lights, Bell on Left Handle Bar, Kickstand on Left Side

Other:

Removable Battery Pack Charges on or off Bike and Includes Lock, Brake Levers Cut Power to the Motor, Named after Ferdinand Ferber, a pivotal contributor to aviation development in Europe.

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Ultra Motor

Motor Type:

Rear-Mounted Gearless Direct Drive Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

350 watts

Motor Torque:

35 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Sony

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

8.8 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

316.8 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

5 hours (Reach 80% in Two Hours)

Estimated Min Range:

30 miles (48 km)

Estimated Max Range:

55 miles (89 km)

Display Type:

Backlit LCD

Readouts:

Speed, Odometer, 3 Levels of Assist, Battery Voltage

Display Accessories:

Independent Button Pad (On Left Handle Bar) (On Left Handle Bar)

Drive Mode:

Torque Sensing Pedal Assist Three Levels: Economy, Standard, High, Uses a TMM4 Torque Sensor

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)


Written Review

The Ferber is new A2B electric bike model for 2015 that comes at a more affordable price point but still delivers quality components, efficient motor systems and chic design features that the company is known for. A2B has been a pioneer in the American electric bike space since 2008 when it launched the iconic A2B Metro (Jay Leno and Leonardo DiCaprio even picked them up). By comparison, the Ferber is less powerful but much lighter and easier to mount. It uses standard sized 26″ wheels, a traditional rear rack that accommodate most bags and panniers and is available in two sizes including 17″ and 20″ to suit a wide range of users. To me, the bike looks very ordinary at first glance but upon closer inspection the Ergon ergonomic grips, slim display panel with break-out button console, hydraulic disc brakes, suspension fork with lockout, removable battery, LED lights (which run off the battery), adjustable stem and stylized chain guard leave an satisfying impression.

The motor driving the A2B Ferber is a 350 watt gearless direct drive hub located in the rear wheel. Its aluminum casing is wider than equivalent sized geared hub motors which diminishes the stealthy look that the rest of the bike maintains, but the benefit is very-quiet operation. It’s made by Ultra Motor, produces 35 Newton meters of torque and feels quite good when riding. During the video review shoot I was suprised just how good it does feel despite the average size watt rating of 350. I think the TMM4 torque sensor adds to the powerful, zippy feel it offers because it’s a higher-end responsive sensor. A downside to this whole setup is that if you get a flat tire or need to work on the rear wheel there’s no quick release system in place and the torque sensor makes re-installing the wheel a bit more delicate than a standard hub.

Also located at the rear of the bike is a removable Lithium-ion battery pack that’s sandwiched between a lower set of rack rails and an upper rack platform. it offers 36 volts of power and 8.8 amp hours of capacity which is about average in the world of ebikes. I love that the battery pack is removable, can be charged on or off the frame for convenience (or to lighten the frame during transport) and includes a keyed locking core for security. The other neat thing about the battery setup is that it powers the front and rear LED lights. That means you won’t need to waste individual AA cells or worry about charging multiple items on the bike.

Operating the Ferber and navigating through its three levels of pedal assist is intuitive and physically easy thanks to an independent button pad located on the right side of the handlebar. This pad has three buttons that let you turn the bike on, change display modes and navigate assist levels all the way down to zero which keeps the display active (like a cycle computer) but turns the motor off. The brake levers also turn the motor off whenever you pull them and this is a nice safety feature even though the system is torque activated and most people cease pedaling when they need to stop. The display panel that shows your speed, distance, battery level and assist settings is located front and center just above the adjustable stem. the size is impressive and I love how thin it and the button pad are. It swivels forward and back to help you reduce glare on sunny days and it’s backlit for evening and nighttime use. The one downside is that it’s not easily removable which means increased wear and tear.

To be completely honest, the first time I saw the Ferber I was unimpressed. It seemed kind of generic… another entry into an already crowded (and price competitive) section of the ebike market. Sure, it’s from a reputable brand but how much would it cost? Urban and city style ebikes are plentiful but the five year warranty (two year on battery and motor systems) and all of the nice features, colors and sizes convinced me that the Ferber really does offer something special. I think it’s worth paying a little bit extra to get these kinds of features and support vs. a budget model and considering that A2B is now a part of HeroEco (a larger ebike conglomerate) it’s a safe bet. There are ebikes out there that offer better climbing and wheel accessibility with mid-drive systems but most are significantly more expensive. The real benefit of this rear-hub design is just how quiet it is and how zippy it feels no matter which gear you’re riding in. I also enjoyed the comfort saddle, hybrid tires and suspension fork with lockout.

Pros:

  • Solid warranty with five years on the frame and two years on everything else including the battery pack
  • Available in three colors including black, white and silver as well as two frame sizes including 17″ and 20″
  • Uses standard sized 26″ tires (replacements and tubes are more plentiful and affordable) and comes with upgraded Kendas that feature reflective sidewalls
  • Front and rear LED lights are positioned well, the headlight is aimable, and are powered off of the main battery pack for convenience
  • Full length plastic fenders include mud flaps, chain guard is of higher quality, rear rack uses standard gauge tubing for widest compatibility and has little metal loops welded to the bottom bars for latching down panniers (great attention to detail)
  • Battery pack is fully removable and includes a keyed lock, the pack can be charged on or off the frame for convenience
  • The display panel is large, backlit, easy to read and convenient to interact with thanks to the button pad
  • Overall satisfying ride, the eight speed Shimano Alivio cassette isn’t the highest end component group but it climbs well enough and provides good cadence at 20 mph
  • Motor feels powerful and responsive thanks to the TMM4 torque sensor, it operates very quietly and is durable due to the gearless direct drive configuration

Cons:

  • The gearless direct drive motor is larger and heavier than an equally rated geared offering and this weight adds to the rear-mounted battery for an overall rear-heavy design
  • The rear wheel requires wrenches and tools to remove for servicing wheels and tires, the TMM4 torque sensor is also located at the rear dropout so re-installing the wheel can be more sensitive and possibly require a shops help
  • The display panel is not removable which means it is may take more damage from natural elements or vandalism depending on where you park

Resources:

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Comments (2) YouTube Comments

Martin Van Nostran
6 years ago

Great review as always, Court. Thanks! Saw this in the local bike shop and enjoyed the ride but could find very little on it on the web until your fine review. Thanks again!

  Reply
Court Rye
6 years ago

Thanks Martin! I’ve got some more A2B reviews in the works that should be out soon. Glad the review helped you, ride safe out there!

  Reply
Coran
5 years ago

A2B are the most dishonest, careless companies I have ever encountered. Those bikes are death traps! Literally. They go out of control when the torque sensor repeatedly fails. Lucky I wasn’t thrown onto a busy road. They don’t care about fixing it. You have to pay to send it back, then comes back just as broke. Give a load of guff about their bikes being sold on websites they don’t approve of, eg Amazon, means they can totally void all warranty. Liars. They’re running a dangerous and illegal scam. Cheap faulty rubbish from the far east. Everything on it failed. Literally, everything. At least once.

  Reply
Court Rye
5 years ago

Wow! That really sucks Coran, thanks for sharing your experience here. I had a negative experience with A2B recently myself and it’s disappointing to see one of the earliest most iconic electric bike companies (at least in the US) falling short :(

  Reply

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