Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Review

Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Electric Bike Review
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Geared Hub Motor
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Removable Battery
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Handle Bars Basket
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Chain Guard
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Led Headlight
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Shimano Tourney
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Electric Bike Review
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Geared Hub Motor
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Removable Battery
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Handle Bars Basket
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Chain Guard
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Led Headlight
Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser Shimano Tourney

Summary

  • Affordable cruiser style electric bike with a well balanced frame and removable battery pack
  • Includes mechanical disc brakes, LED lights, suspension fork, throttle mode and pedal assist
  • Upright position with padded seat and swept back handlebars, cargo rack and basket for utility

Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Big Cat

Model:

Long Beach Cruiser

Price:

$1,495 USD

Body Position:

Upright Relaxed

Suggested Use:

Neighborhood, Urban

Electric Bike Class:

Throttle on Demand (Class 2)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

1 Year Comprehensive

Availability:

United States

Model Year:

2014

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

68 lbs (30.84 kg)

Frame Material:

Steel

Frame Types:

Step-Thru

Frame Colors:

Pearl White, Matte Black

Frame Fork Details:

Basic Zoom Suspension

Gearing Details:

7 Speed 1x7 Shimano Tourney

Shifter Details:

SIS Index Shifter on Right Bar

Pedals:

Aluminum Alloy Platform with Rubber Tread

Handlebar:

Swept Back, Steel

Brake Details:

Mechanical Disc with 160 mm Rotors

Grips:

Flat Rubber

Saddle:

Comfort with Rubber Bumpers

Rims:

Triple Box Wide 32 mm

Tire Brand:

Kenda E-Bike 26" x 1.75" or Kenda Sunlite WhiteWall 26" x 2.125"

Wheel Sizes:

26 in (66.04cm)

Accessories:

Plastic Chain Guard, Plastic Chain Guide, Double Leg Kickstand, Front and Rear LED Lights, Front Basket, Welded Rear Rack, Optional Fenders

Other:

Removable Silver Fish Style Battery Pack

Electronic Details

Motor Type:

Rear-Mounted Geared Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

350 watts

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

8 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

288 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

5 hours

Estimated Min Range:

10 miles (16 km)

Estimated Max Range:

20 miles (32 km)

Display Type:

LED Console

Readouts:

Battery level

Drive Mode:

Cadence Sensing Pedal Assist, Twist Throttle

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)

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Written Review

The Long Beach Cruiser is one of my favorite Big Cat electric bikes. It’s well balanced with a centrally located battery pack. Has an emphasis on safety with front and rear LED lights and brakes that cut power to the motor. For me it was comfortable to ride having a suspension fork, padded saddle, oversized tires and swept back hendle bars. And it’s very affordable at just under $1,500. The basket and rear rack add a lot of utility (even though the rear rack uses larger gauge tubing that doesn’t work with all panniers) and I just think it looks good with the wires and cables all run through the frame. With seven gears to choose from when riding (and both pedal assist and throttle mode) this bike is comfortable on streets, dirt paths and going up moderate sized hills (or pedaling in off-mode).

The motor used here is a standard 350 watt geared design with decent torque and efficient freewheeling. It’s light weight (compared with most gearless designs) and small so it doesn’t stand out. Geared motors produce a bit of noise and can wear out faster than gearless but should last several years. This one is modular with a quick disconnect plug on the right seat stay for wheel maintenance or motor replacement. It’s powerful enough to move most riders but may struggle to climb moderate hills or reach the 20mph top speed without a bit of pedaling help.

The battery pack on this bike offers 36 volts of power and 8 amp hours of capacity. It’s not the largest configuration so range is a bit limited but replacements are only ~$249 so you could potentially buy a second one to keep at work. The pack is removable which is great because it makes charging and storing inside much easier. It also reduces the weight of the bike if you need to lift it up for transport. The cells inside are Lithium-ion which are known for being light weight and long lasting. To maximize their lifespan I’ve been told it’s best to discharge to ~50% the first few times but always avoid completely depleting. Store them in moderate temperatures (avoid extreme heat and cold) and top the pack off when finished riding with refills every couple of months if you haven’t gone out.

The cockpit area of this bike is relatively simple and easy to use. After inserting the key into the battery pack and turning it to on, the bike is automatically set to pedal assist. That said, at any time you can twist the grip throttle for an extra boost but this drains the battery faster. A basic LED battery indicator gives you some idea of how much capacity is remaining and there’s a separate button on the display to activate the lights. It’s a simple design that doesn’t show your speed or distance but keeps the price low and seems pretty well sealed against water. In order for the bike to operate the keys have to be left in the pack (so they can jingle around a bit when riding) but this reduces tampering when the bike is parked if you take the keys with you.

I appreciate how balanced this bike is with the suspension fork in the front balancing out the hub motor in the rear and the battery pack right in the middle. At ~68 pounds it’s nice that the battery is removable because this makes transporting it much easier and extends the range if you get a second pack. You really get a lot of value with the Long Beach Cruiser… the disc brakes, lights and suspension are kind of basic but they look good and do their job well. Little extras like the basket and chain guard really set this bike off and I like the color options.

Pros:

  • One year warranty covers covers the motor and battery pack against factory defects
  • Battery uses higher end Lithium-ion cells and is removable for easier charging and transport
  • One of the more affordable cruiser style electric bikes I’ve seen at under $1,500
  • Basic suspension fork, oversized tires and padded saddle add comfort
  • Includes both twist throttle and a basic pedal assist mode (for extended range, climbing or exercise)
  • Comes with a front and rear LED light that run off the main battery pack
  • Solid 160mm mechanical disc brakes with brake levers that cut power to the motor
  • Plastic chain guide on front ring keeps the chain on track when riding over bumpy terrain
  • Nice basket on the front and rear rack (though the tubing is a bit larger than standard)
  • Step-thru design is easy to mount and stand over when waiting at stop lights and stop signs
  • Chain guard protects pants from snagging and getting dirty in the chain

Cons:

  • One of the heavier cruiser ebikes I’ve tested, removable battery helps for transport
  • No braze ons for adding a water bottle cage, consider using a CamelBak
  • No LCD display showing speed, distance or precise battery capacity
  • Only available in one frame size (kind of medium) with low-step configuration

Resources:

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Comments (8) YouTube Comments

Laura Duritza
5 years ago

Is there a smart charger to this bike

  Reply
Court Rye
5 years ago

Hi Laura! I didn’t spend time with the battery charger for the Big Cat Long Beach Cruiser but I’m sure it comes with some sort of charger. When you say “smart charger” was there something in particular you wanted to know like how fast it charges or how heavy it is, what it looks like etc. or just that it does indeed come with a charger?

  Reply
Andrew D
4 years ago

I’m looking for my first ebike, which I’ll use for my 3 mile residential-street daily commute when the weather is nice. I live in a place that has zero electric bike retailers though so I’m buying without ever testing and I know very little. I’m 6’4″ and 250lbs. Will this “medium” frame feel/look silly for my size? I’m considering this big cat or I’ll double the price and get a pedego commuter. Thoughts would be appreciated!

  Reply
Court Rye
4 years ago

Got it… yeah it sounds like you’re a very large person (tall and heavy) and that has the benefits of reaching higher shelves and slam dunking possibly but the downside of having to eat more to satisfy extra calories and being scrunched on medium and even large sized ebikes… I realize it seems like a lot more money but if I were you I’d get the high-step Pedego Interceptor with a 48 volt battery to help with the extra weight. This is large bike that’s well made, comfortable and comes with a solid warranty. You could look for a “last year” model. My first ebike was more affordable and I felt like I was dipping my toe to see if I liked it but buying a cheaper model that doesn’t fit or satisfy your power needs will only feel like a waste. I immediately sold my “cheap” ebike and upgraded… it held its value a lot better and came with a warranty. That’s my advice, or you could check out the kits and find a frame that feels great then attach a larger motor.

  Reply
Andrew D
4 years ago

Thanks so much! I think I’ll go with a Pedego. Maybe even just go all the way up to an Interceptor.

  Reply
Court Rye
4 years ago

It’s a solid ebike in my opinion… I’ve reviewed this model several times over the past few years and I think you’ll get a much richer experience given your specific needs in terms of fit and power than something that doesn’t fit. Pedego is not a sponsor of the site right now and I don’t get paid to tell you this, it’s just my honest opinion as someone who has spent a lot on ebikes trying to find the right one for my own needs ;)

  Reply
Debbie L
4 years ago

Have you had a chance to look at any of the newer models of this bike ? 2015 or 2016 if available

  Reply
Court Rye
4 years ago

Not yet Debbie, I hope to visit Big Cat later this year and check them out but so far I haven’t come across any of their products in shops during my travels :)

  Reply

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