Blix Vika+ Review

2018 Blix Vika Plus Electric Bike Review
2018 Blix Vika Plus
2018 Blix Vika Plus Alloy Rear Rack Bag Spanninga Lineo Backlight
2018 Blix Vika Plus 36 Volt 11 Ah Removable Battery
2018 Blix Vika Plus Control Pad Ergonomic Grips Folding Stem
2018 Blix Vika Plus Spintech Fixed Lcd Display Panel
2018 Blix Vika Plus Kenda 20 Tires With Reflective Sides
2018 Blix Vika Plus Spanninga Kendo Headlight
2018 Blix Vika Plus 7 Speed Shimano Acera
2018 Blix Vika Plus Wellgo Aluminum Metal Folding Pedals
2018 Blix Vika Plus Folded
2018 Blix Vika Plus Folding Electric Bike
2018 Blix Vika Plus 3 Amp Charger
2018 Blix Vika Plus Tool Kit
2018 Blix Vika Plus Electric Bike Review
2018 Blix Vika Plus
2018 Blix Vika Plus Alloy Rear Rack Bag Spanninga Lineo Backlight
2018 Blix Vika Plus 36 Volt 11 Ah Removable Battery
2018 Blix Vika Plus Control Pad Ergonomic Grips Folding Stem
2018 Blix Vika Plus Spintech Fixed Lcd Display Panel
2018 Blix Vika Plus Kenda 20 Tires With Reflective Sides
2018 Blix Vika Plus Spanninga Kendo Headlight
2018 Blix Vika Plus 7 Speed Shimano Acera
2018 Blix Vika Plus Wellgo Aluminum Metal Folding Pedals
2018 Blix Vika Plus Folded
2018 Blix Vika Plus Folding Electric Bike
2018 Blix Vika Plus 3 Amp Charger
2018 Blix Vika Plus Tool Kit

Summary

  • An elegant folding electric bike available in three classic colors (green, black, cream) with matching silver accents all across the frame including the stem, handlebar, chainring, rear rack, seat post, and sturdy alloy pedals
  • Safe and durable with plastic fenders from SKS that have flexible mud-flap ends, puncture resistant tires from Kenda with reflective sidewall stripes, and premium integrated lights from Spanninga
  • Fast folding design with magnetic clasps keep the bike from unfolding on the go, you can trolly the bike around when half-folded, canvas carry bag with shoulder strap makes transport clean and easy
  • Two battery size options allows for longer rides and the packs work with other Blix models like the Vika Travel and Aveny, faster than average 3 amp charger, two-step on/off process, no bottle cage bosses, heavier than some other folders because of the battery capacity

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Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Blix

Model:

Vika+

Price:

$1,649

Body Position:

Upright

Suggested Use:

Neighborhood, Urban, Travel

Electric Bike Class:

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

Warranty:

2 Year Comprehensive, 3 Year Frame

Availability:

United States, Canada

Model Year:

2018

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

49.6 lbs (22.49 kg)

Battery Weight:

6.8 lbs (3.08 kg)

Motor Weight:

7 lbs (3.17 kg)

Frame Material:

Aluminum Alloy

Frame Sizes:

15.75 in (40 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

Unfolded: 15.75" Seat Tube Length, 22.75" Reach, 15.75" Stand Over Height, 25.25" Width, 63" Length, Folded: 35" Length, 22" Width, 27.5" Height

Frame Types:

Step-Thru, Folding

Frame Colors:

Gloss British Racing Green, Gloss Cream, Gloss Black

Frame Fork Details:

Rigid Alloy, 100 mm Hub Spacing, 10 mm Threaded Axle with Nuts

Frame Rear Details:

135 mm Hub Spacing, 12 mm Axle with 9 mm Flats Threaded with Nuts

Attachment Points:

Fender Bosses, Rear Rack Bosses

Gearing Details:

7 Speed 1x7 Shimano Acera Derailleur, Shimano MF-TZ21 Cassette 14-28 Tooth

Shifter Details:

Shimano Triggers on Right (One Way High Lever, Three-Shift Low Lever)

Cranks:

Prowheel Forge Alloy, 170 mm Length, Square Tapered Axle, 52 Tooth Chainring with Plastic Guide

Pedals:

Wellgo Alloy Platform, Folding

Headset:

Promax, Threadless, Internal Cups, Sealed Cartridge Bearings, Straight 1-1/8"

Stem:

Promax, Adjustable Telescoping Height, 330 mm Base Height, 150 mm Extension, 40 mm Length, 25.4 mm Clamp Diameter

Handlebar:

Promax, Alloy, Low-Rise, 630 mm Length

Brake Details:

Tektro Mechanical Linear Pull, Four-Finger Tektro Levers with Motor Inhibitors and Rubberized Edges

Grips:

Velo, Faux Leather, Stitched, Ergonomic, Brown

Saddle:

Velo, Artificial Leather, Springs, Brown

Seat Post:

Steel, Folding Saddle Clamp for Easy Battery Removal

Seat Post Length:

440 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

27.2 mm

Rims:

Alexrims, Alloy, Double Wall, 36 Hole, Machined Sidewalls, 24 mm Outer Width

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 13 Gauge Front, 12 Gauge Rear, Silver with Nipples

Tire Brand:

Kenda, 20" x 1.75" (47-400)

Wheel Sizes:

20 in (50.8cm)

Tire Details:

40 to 65 PSI, 2.8 to 4.5 BAR, 280 to 450 KPa, Reflective Sidewall Stripe, K-Shield Puncture Resistant Tire Casing

Tube Details:

Schrader Valve

Accessories:

Alloy Rear Rack with Spring Latch (55 lb 25 kg Max Weight, Silver), Spanninga Kendo+ Integrated Headlight, Spanninga Lineo Integrated Backlight, Rear Mount Adjustable Kickstand, SKS Plastic Fenders with Rubber Mud Flaps (Black), Optional Additional Charger $89, Optional Additional Batteries: 11 Amp Hour $399, 17.5 Amp Hour $599 or $200 Upgrade at Time of Purchase

Other:

Locking Removable Battery Pack Mounted Behind Seat Tube, 1.3 lb 3 Amp Charger, 250 lb Max Weight

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

SpinTech R6

Motor Type:

Rear-Mounted Geared Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

350 watts

Motor Peak Output:

500 watts

Motor Torque:

60 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Panasonic 18650

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

11 ah (Optional 17.5 ah Upgrade)

Battery Watt Hours:

396 wh (Optional 630 wh Upgrade)

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

3 hours

Estimated Min Range:

20 miles (32 km)

Estimated Max Range:

55 miles (89 km)

Display Type:

SpinTech Branded, Fixed, Backlit, Monochrome LCD, Buttons: M, Up, Down, (Hold Up to Activate Lights, Hold Up and Down for Settigns: Clear Trip Meter, Adjust Backlight, Change Units)

Readouts:

Battery Level (5 Bars), Assist Level (0-4), Power Meter, Current Speed, Average Speed, Max Speed, Odometer, Trip Distance, Trip Time, Lights (On/Off)

Drive Mode:

Cadence Sensing Pedal Assist, Trigger Throttle (12 Magnet Sensor)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)

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Written Review

The Blix Vika+ is a classically styled, step-thru, folding electric bike with upgraded drivetrain hardware, a full accessories package, and a quiet but powerful geared hub motor drive system. It’s one of my favorite folding models on the market right now because it hits a reasonable price point but is still sold through dealers. That means you can go for a test ride, see the three different colors in person, and get help with maintenance and support down the road if needed. I’ve reviewed the Vika Plus two other times, heard positive testimonials from dealers across the US (as I travel for reviews), and recently covered the new Vika Travel… it’s an even smaller folding ebike for people who want to completely minimize weight and size. The really cool part about the Blix lineup is that many models utilize the same battery pack interface, so you could get a Vika Travel, the Vika+, or maybe the full sized Aveny or Stockholm and share the packs between them. Folding electric bikes tend to be easier to mount and stand over, for petite riders, because they often use 20″ wheels, as is the case here. The Blix Vika+ is built around a wave “step-thru” frame that is much lower than the average folding electric bike, but they have reinforced the downtube with a gusset plate near the head tube and a mini top-tube near the bottom bracket. This increases strength and stability, it also helps to balance out any rear cargo you might add to the back rack. I appreciated the plastic chain guide, which will prevent chain drops and also keep your pant legs or dress ends clean and snag-free. The kickstand is positioned out of the way on the left, so it won’t collide with the crank arm when walking the bike backwards. The stem offers adjustable height, so the bike can comfortably accommodate a wide range of riders, but don’t go too high or it will stretch the cables! I think Blix has chosen their cable wrap solution really well here because it looks clean and didn’t get in the way when folding… they utilize threaded metal connectors with rubber washers vs. the cheaper plastic press fit plugs. One of my favorite upgrades is actually the Wellgo metal folding pedals; they match the silver accents and provide more strength and surface area than the majority of other pedals I see on folding products. The bike isn’t perfect, they have made some trade-offs to save weight or money, but overall it works very well. Some of the trade-offs that I perceive are mechanical rim brakes vs. hydraulic, which would be easier to actuate. Some folding ebikes use disc brakes, but the rotors can get bent more easily when folding and transporting, so the rim brakes are a decent choice here. There’s no suspension fork up front, but the sprung saddle and padded grips felt decent and this keeps the bike more steady and definitely lighter. Pedal assist is activated through a higher resolution 12-magnet cadence sensor, but Blix has gone with a large external sensor verses the newer internal sealed ones. And finally, the on/off procedure requires a button press on the top of the battery pack before activating the display, which takes a few extra seconds.

Driving this e-bike is a compact 350-watt nominally rated planetary geared hub motor, spoked into the rear wheel. Blix has refined all drive system hardware here, branding it as SpinTech. The motor felt smooth and quiet compared to similar offerings, and accelerated more gently because of its custom motor controller programming. I could hear a bit of whirring when operating at the highest level of assist, but it wasn’t bad at all, and the smaller 20-inch wheel size provides a mechanical advantage compared to 26″ on the full sized models that use the same motor. With the centrally mounted battery pack, the bike is very steady and even front to rear. Geared hub motors usually offer the advantages of instant power, efficient freewheeling (so they won’t slow you down when coasting), they don’t interfere with the pedaling drivetrain, and they can be used more easily with throttles. The Vika Plus utilizes a high resolution 12-magnet cadence sensor that is responsive in pedal assist along with a variable speed trigger throttle near the left grip. It gives you many ways to ride and eliminates the need for pedaling at all if you get tired or need to focus on balancing. The throttle is live as soon as the display panel is activated on and it overrides zero, 1, 2, 3, and 4 assist, so be careful mounting, dismounting, and folding the bike if you don’t turn it off first! If you utilize the throttle and the highest levels of assist frequently, it will cut down on your maximum potential range, and t his is where the upgraded battery option starts to makes sense… It’s a great choice if you plan to ride further, enjoy throttle mode without pedaling, or plan to carry more weight. I enjoyed the bike most in assist levels 2 and 3 and pedaling felt very natural and comfortable.

The stock battery for the Blix Vika+ is a 36 volt 11 amp hour 396 watt hour size. This is average or maybe even a little above average for the 2018 timeframe. I was talking to the founder, Pontus Malmberg, about battery size choices, and he explained that the seat tube packs are interchangeable, so you can actually upgrade to a 36 volt 17.5 amp hour for just $200 at the time of purchase or $599 separately. I’m not convinced that the upgraded pack would be necessary for most riders because the stock battery charger is lightweight at just 1.3 lbs and faster than average, putting out 3 amps. You could easily bring the charger along in a backpack or trunk bag and use it to top-off at work, school, a friend’s house, or a restaurant as you explore new destinations. Being able to quickly and easily remove the battery is fantastic, and I appreciated the molded handle feature at the top; it felt secure in my hand. To maximize the lifespan of the battery, always store it in a cool dry location (avoid extreme heat and cold) and try to maintain at least 20% capacity because going all the way to zero can strain the cells. If you do drain it completely, just charge it up again as soon as you can. The charging port for the battery is raised up on the right side, so you won’t be vulnerable to the crank arms and pedals snagging, which is something I see with many other products. The primary drawback to this battery in my opinion, is that you must power it on separately from the display panel as mentioned earlier. This two-step process takes a bit more time and can be frustrating if you forget and hop onto the bike without first reaching down to activate the battery. Also, it’s too bad that the battery pack and display do not have USB ports for charging portable electronics on the go. This is something I have seen on a few competing products and it’s nice to have if you plan on using a phone for GPS… especially if you upgrade to the 17.5 amp hour battery.

Turning the bike on requires that first step of activating the battery and then a second power button press on top of the display panel. The LCD is beautiful, large enough to be seen and read clearly while riding, but not overly crowded with buttons and wires. The cockpit is actually very clean considering that both brakes have motor inhibitors, there are trigger shifters on the right, and the display and throttle! That’s a lot of wires, but they are all wrapped up with plastic spiral tubing. The connector points use metal threaded locks with rubber washers to keep water out and should be more durable as you fold and unfold the bike repeatedly. The display itself isn’t removable and could get scratched at the bike rack or while folding and transporting, but you could simply put a sock or microbag over it as a solution. The display doesn’t swivel easily and could produce some glare if the sun is positioned behind and above you, but I found that it was fairly easy to read and use. The power button doubles as a mode button, allowing you to cycle through trip stats like current speed, average speed, max speed, and distance. The up and down buttons allow you to adjust assist levels, and the menu goes from 4 back to 0 so you can basically save clicks by going “around” instead of all the way back down or up. Hold the up arrow to activate the LCD backlighting and integrated headlight. Hold up and down to enter into the settings menu and change units. It’s all fairly standard and intuitive, but the buttons aren’t quite as reachable as they would be without the trigger throttle also mounted on the left side of the handlebar. You do have to reach over a bit, and I’d probably use more of a “set it and forget it” approach with assist level 2 for efficiency and occasional throttle override for help starting and climbing. Ebikes like this are great, because it’s not so inconvenient to stop and you really don’t have to pedal if you need a break or are trying to stay balanced. I really like how the throttle is setup. There are always trade-offs when it comes to organization and simplicity vs. features but I love where Blix ended up. However, I wish that the Vika+ had included a little flick bell in the left brake lever like the Vika Travel has, it’s useful but doesn’t add clutter or push the throttle and display further out with an aftermarket bell.

Blix is doing a great job growing their dealer network and refining their product line. The Vika Plus is one of their most popular bikes, and I can definitely see why. It’s beautiful but not overpriced, the components are all upgraded, and safety and strength have really been taken into consideration. Many women and smaller riders opt for folding bikes like this for everyday use, because of how approachable they are. The step-thru frame is incredibly low but weight is positioned well and the battery is easy to remove for charging or transport because of the flip-up saddle mount. As I was learning about this updated model, I asked Pontus about the name of the company and some history. He’s originally from Sweeden and was inspired by the vintage European bicycle designs that he saw growing up. The name Blix means lightening and Vika means fold. It was cool to see how much attention he and his team have paid to user experience here, including a nicer tool set and a canvas carrying bag. I’ve heard that some busses and subways won’t allow bikes onboard unless they are bagged. When you combine the easy folding, magnetic clasp design, and utilize the bag, this bike becomes very easy to transport. Just be careful with the display and the motor power cable on the right side, so they won’t get scratched up or bent. These are standard considerations with nearly every folding e-bike I’ve tested. It’s worth noting that the base of the frame, below the bottom bracket, is very well protected by a metal support strut that will keep the plastic chain guide from making contact with the ground. We didn’t show it in the video (sorry) but the Vika Plus can be towed around when half-folded, and that’s a lot easier to do than lifting it up since the bike does weigh nearly 50 lbs. Big thanks to Blix for partnering with me on this review and to Pontus for hanging out with me and bringing multiple bikes to test back to back. I’ll do my best to answer questions in the comments below and I welcome you to connect with owners and share your own experiences in the Blix forums.

Pros:

  • Deep step-thru frame is low and approachable, the folding joint doesn’t get in the way of your shins or knees when pedaling like some other folders I have tested over the years
  • Good weight distribution, the battery pack is centered on the frame vs. the rear rack, I also like how Blix has added a short top tube near the center of the frame and a gusset near the head tube to reduce flex
  • The proprietary SpinTech display panel, motor controller, and hub motor itself are a cut above in my opinion, the bike feels smooth, runs quietly, and is easy to operate
  • Easy to fold and transport, you can actually push or pull the bike around using the handlebar when it’s nearly folded… this could be handy for trains, I love that they include a protective cover and carrying bag for clean transport and storage (some busses won’t let you on with a bike unless it’s stored in a bag)
  • I like the little magnets that help to keep the bike from coming unfolded, you could also use adjustable bungee cords to reduce vibration and the possibility of unfolding, or the bag :)
  • Blix sells this model in three classy colors and has matched nearly all of the accents in silver vs. black and silver, it’s just a beautiful bike, even the grips and saddle are matched
  • Wires are managed very well, there are extra wires for the display, throttle, and motor inhibitors on the brake levers, but they are wrapped cleanly and stay out of the way when folding/unfolding
  • I’ve become a big fan of disc brakes, especially hydraulic, but the linear pull rim brakes here work well and and are probably tougher when folding… the rubber pads won’t squeak as much as a metallic disc brake caliper and if you accidentally bend disc brake rotors there can be some scraping noises and inconsistency when braking
  • Despite not having a suspension fork and utilizing more efficient hybrid tires, the Vika Plus feels pretty comfortable thanks to the sprung saddle, padded grips, and adjustable-height stem
  • I absolutely love the flip-up saddle mount because it allows for quick and easy removal of the battery pack, this is great for reducing the weight of the bike when lifting or charging/storing the battery separately to protect it
  • The tires offer puncture protection, the chain is kept on track by plastic guides, and the fenders should keep you from getting dirty in rainy weather, there’s a lot of good utility and durability with this folding electric bicycle
  • Safety is a priority for me, especially when traveling through new environments, so I love that Blix has included a front and rear light that both run off the main battery pack, that they offer a more visible cream frame color, and that the tires are reflective… folding ebikes tend to sit lower to the ground too, so anything to stay more visible is a good thing in my book
  • Excellent kickstand position, you can walk the bike backwards (or pedal backwards) with the kickstand down and now get pedal locked… it seems minor but is something I really appreciate in tight conditions
  • This is one of the only folding electric bikes I have ever seen with an optional battery upgrade, you go from a very reasonable 36 volt 11 amp hours all the way to 17.5 amp hours that can really increase range or provide more power for a heavier rider
  • If you purchase the Vika+ and maybe a Vika Travel or other model with the SpinTech battery then you can swap packs between them, even if they are different sizes
  • The electrical connectors for the display, throttle, and motor inhibitors are a bit tougher and well sealed against water, they are metal threaded connectors verses plastic press-fit on many other products
  • I was really surprised and impressed at the trim level Blix chose for their derailleur, this uses Shimano Acera which is several steps up from Tourney and Altus that you see on many cheaper bikes, it should shift smoother and last longer

Cons:

  • The display panel is not removable, this means that it could get scratched at the bike rack or when folding and transporting, it may also take additional weather wear over time if you leave the bike outside… but very few displays are removable so this is only a minor gripe
  • The smaller Blix Vika Travel has a bell built in to the left brake lever, and I really like that feature! I wish that the larger Vika+ had a bell too… but at least the levers are rubberized for comfort
  • This isn’t the lightest folding ebike at ~49 lbs, but it does have one of the higher capacity batteries, a rear rack, integrated lights, and fenders… and that adds utility but also adds to the weight
  • Minor gripe, the power cable that runs back to the hub motor is a bit exposed on the right hand side of the frame, this is common for hub motors (except Dapu which has a special tucked-in design), just be careful when folding and transporting so the cable doesn’t get snagged or bent… same thing with the derailleur and shifter cable back there
  • Minor gripe, there are no bottle cage bosses on this electric bike, you’ll have to use the side bag, purchase a trunk bag with a bottle holster, or a bar mount cup holder
  • Activating this bike is a two-step process, you have to begin with a power button on top of the battery and then press a second power button on top of the LCD display, this takes extra time and can be annoying if you mount the bike and forget to first activate the battery

Resources:

More Blix Reviews

Blix Vika Travel Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

One of the most compact folding electric bikes around, only weighs ~40 lbs, uses smaller 16-inch tires and shorter 140 mm crank arms, long seat post and telescoping stem conform to a wide range of riders. Efficient 250 watt planetary geared hub motor gets a mechanical advantage from the smaller wheel…...

Blix Aveny Review

  • MSRP: $1,899
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

A classically styled city bike available in smaller step-thru with 26" wheels and larger high-step with 28" wheels, both include beautiful paint-matched plastic fenders and alloy racks. The faux leather saddle and grips match custom Kenda tires and fit seamlessly with four…...

Blix Stockholm Review

  • MSRP: $2,390
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

An efficient, city style commuter bike with tight fenders, a solid rack and premium LED lights from Spanninga that run off the main battery pack, has hydraulic disc brakes and offers throttle and pedal assist modes. Name brand motor from 8Fun with a larger than average battery capacity for increased range,…...

Blix Komfort+ Review

  • MSRP: $1,990
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

A classy step-thru city bike with ergonomic grips, swept back handlebar and sprung saddle for improved comfort, available in two frame sizes for improved fit. Beautiful faux leather touch points, bright silver accents on the rack, pedals and brake levers,…...

2016 Blix Vika+ Review

  • MSRP: $1,650
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

Feature complete folding electric bike (full length fenders, integrated LED lights) with a larger than average battery and two upgrade options for even long range rides. Available in three classy colors (Green, Black and Cream) with beautiful fake leather touch points…...

2015 Blix Vika+ Review

  • MSRP: $1,590
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A folding electric bike with classy accents including matching saddle and stitched ergonomic grips. Upgraded brake levers with comfort edge, easy-mount step-thru frame, locking removable battery pack...

2015 Blix Komfort+ Review

  • MSRP: $1,990
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A beautiful city cruiser available in three colors with easy to mount step-thru frame, comfortable ergonomic grips and matching sprung saddle. Removable battery pack with flip-up saddle for convenient access, integrated LED headlight...


Mike
6 days ago

In your article, you indicate the Vika has a 250 watt motor. Its actually 350 watt, just as your original spec’s outline, but you mis-printed within the body of your commentary. (Vika Travel is however a 250 watt motor.)

This IS a VERY popular ebike at my shop here in northern Illinois.

Very utilitarian, serves a lot of purposes, fun to ride, and many people choose bc they don’t need a car rack to carry the ebikes… just fold ’em up, and plop them in the trunk or back of your small SUV or mini-van.

Reply
court
5 days ago

Correct! Thanks for the heads up Mike, I did make a mistake in the body of the review and have just fixed it. The Vika+ is one of my favorite folding ebikes and it seems like Blix is a great company for both shops and customers :)

Reply

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AlanDB
4 days ago

I don't know if this has been posted yet, but I got an email promotion from Blix today (6/13/18) for pre-order on a new step-thru model they have named Sol ($1599, coming in August 2018): https://blixbike.com/pages/sol

jhoblo
1 week ago

What is your wife's folder that has a full suspension? I agree that 20" wheels and potholes/dirt roads are tough, but seatpost suspensions can impact how they fold, depending on the bike.
I've never ridden a Brommie, but now that REI sells them I considered one- no choice in colors- red is fugly :( Too bad that they don't have any demos in store that I can test ride. There is no comparison to the tidy Brompton fold.

harryS
1 week ago

For good looks, it would be the Motiv Stash for me, but taking the battery out for storage might put some extra wear on the connectors and wires. It's also a smaller battery at 9AH. Magnum is 13 AH and Blix is 11 AH? If all three of these makers goes away, it might be easier to find the rear batteries from a third party seller.

I would expect over 30 miles at 14 mph and pedal assist out of the Motiv, based on what our folders will use at that same speed. My wife was at 32 miles recently with a 36V 9AH battery and probably had another 4 miles range. She would love a step-thru bike.

At our speeds, the rim brakes on the Blix would be fine, and I think that good rim brakes feel better than most mechanical disks.

Being able to test ride and test fold the bike woud be very nice. I would suppose some of thes ebikes don't fold or carry so well.

TeJay
1 week ago

Thank you so much for that! I did go to nice wheels. But I didn't like the bike they had color wise and it was the only color they offered. I believe it was the blix 20 inch wheel folding bike.

michael mitchell
1 week ago

I have a vika+ with about 1600 miles. I've ridden it on rough roads and bike paths in Seattle, through heavy rain many times. I highly recommend it. The thing climbs like a beast. Speeds on the flats usually max out at about 19.5mph, but the high torque gets you to that speed quickly. It will be a more upright position than a road or mountain bike (I'm 6'0" with a 34/35 inseam), and you should look at getting a good suspension seatpost like a thudbuster LT or bodyfloat/kintekt. The walk-up may be tough for any ebike that weighs approx. 50lbs, but I guess a good thumb throttle would help.

Depending on your budget, you may also want to look at getting a brompton and adding a grin tech kit.

jhoblo
1 week ago

Which Tern did you ride? A couple have Bosch motors, but I think that one still uses the 350W Bafang. I’ve thought about adding a BBSHD on a Link D8.
You know, folding bikes with small wheels without motors are sluggish. It’s a compromise between how portable you need your transportation to be and comfort. I seriously thought about doing a Grin conversion on a Brommie, but that kit is sold out. I didn’t ask if/when they will get more in. I don’t know that I’d like the ride on 16” wheels, but that fold is sooo nice!

BiscuitHead
2 weeks ago

It'll be a commuting bike that will be stored in my trunk, as I live in a walk-up without an elevator. My commute is ~4 mi each way with ~1.5mi long hill, and I used to do it on my pedal-powered hybrid but now I get too sweaty for the workplace & need another option.

I'm currently deciding between the Magnum Classic (low step), Blix Vika+, and Motiv Stash, and leaning towards the Vika+ or Motiv Stash. I like that the battery is built into the frame on the Stash, but I tend to lean on the grips a bit and for that reason having a throttle on the grip makes me nervous. The Vika+ has a better warranty and cheaper replacement battery ($400 vs. $600 for the Stash/Classic), but I am wary of the high investment in marketing with the brand.

Beyond Court's reviews, does anyone have any experience/opinions about these bikes?

I plan to buy at a local shop, and unfortunately the Vika+ is being sold at a shop that is farther away so it would be more difficult to get it serviced.

Edit: I also test-rode a Tern but honestly the mid-drive system did not impress me -- it felt sluggish even at higher pedal assist levels. I think I like a throttle option too.

Alex M
2 weeks ago

Some ideas.
Step-through for sure, yes.
Size 16"-17" max. You "might" get 19" frame, but I would feel uncomfortable every time when I need to jump off and on the bike.
350W motor might not cut it for heavy rider on the hills. 500W would be better.
2K is reasonable for 500W step-through of average quality. 350W Blix sounds a little overpriced, for this reason - but not much. Many 500W models cost more (not necessarily better for you), and a handful cost less - mostly direct-sales and entry-level parts.

Are bikes get thrown away when battery dies - hard to tell. This industry is in adolescence, growing rapidly. E-bikes made more than 5 years ago are dinosaurs by design and parts, they often have 250W motors and 24V batteries, so I wouldn't be surprised that people dump it and get something with better electric components. Today's battery is typically 48V by 11-15AH, they will probably be around for a while, and so will 500W motors,for short-range urban and light trail use. There are places now that would re-fill dead battery with new cells if you can't find a replacement battery, but I "think" 48V batts will be around for a while. IMO, the best shot for long-term use is to avoid proprietary form-factor of battery - hidden in the frame, curved nicely to conform to rear wheel etc - you won't find those in aftermarket.

John from Connecticut
3 weeks ago

I don't know the Trek Verve well, but I do know Trek 'cause I have three, two e-bikes and a traditional carbon road bike. The company
is first rate, great. Besides their bikes, followup customer service and support is the best. The issue now becomes $$s .You'd mentioned you wanted to stay at or less than 2K.

John from CT

Dewey
3 weeks ago

The 2018 Raleigh Electric Retroglide is a nice ebike. It is a Cruiser style so you may like to look at the 24” https://www.pedegoelectricbikes.com/shop/24-step-thru-comfort-cruiser-1/ Comfort Cruiser which is one of Court’s top picks for shorter riders, or the https://www.vintageelectricbikes.com/pages/cafe Electric Cafe small frame fits riders above 5’ 1”, or the https://www.electrabike.com/bikes/townie-go/townie-go-8i?g=stepthru Townie Go!

SusanaSchmitzana
3 weeks ago

I was able to get to a bike shop not far from me and it was such a helpful trip. Couldn't try a Blix Aveny but the store owner said it was not going to be the best fit for me anyway. I tried the Raleigh Retroglide, the 2018 model, and it doesn't have the throttle but has the sensor that responds to how hard you push the pedals. Wow what a surprise! It also has a power button option you can add on. I really liked it. Can't find a review for it here. There is a 2017 model reviewed , but it is quite different than the bike I tried today. Anyway it was nice to be fitted--and it made me realize now poor a fit my regular non ebike is! I feel like I need to check more bikes before buying, this is the first I have tried. Anyone have any suggestions for something else like the Retroglide? Someone mentioned the Trek Verve and I will look for that somewhere else. This bike shop doesn't deal in Treks.

SusanaSchmitzana
3 weeks ago

I was able to get to a bike shop not far from me and it was such a helpful trip. Couldn't try a Blix Aveny but the store owner said it was not going to be the best fit for me anyway. I tried the Raleigh Retroglide, the 2018 model, and it doesn't have the throttle but has the sensor that responds to how hard you push the pedals. Wow what a surprise! It also has a power button option you can add on. I really liked it. Can't find a review for it here. There is a 2017 model reviewed , but it is quite different than the bike I tried today. Anyway it was nice to be fitted--and it made me realize now poor a fit my regular non ebike is! I feel like I need to check more bikes before buying, this is the first I have tried. Anyone have any suggestions for something else like the Retroglide? Someone mentioned the Trek Verve and I will look for that somewhere else. This bike shop doesn't deal in Treks.

BiscuitHead
1 week ago

Thanks J.R.!

Yeah, I don't plan to keep the battery in the trunk -- all the LBS suggest charging the battery when not actively using it. I hadn't heard about cold affecting the brakes, that's pretty interesting. Sounds like I could avoid the hydraulic issue with the Vika+ as it uses v-brakes. Then again, I don't have to worry about that too much with my location.

Short_Stop
1 month ago

Thank you for advice about the Vika+. Although slightly out of my budget, all the specs make saving for a bit longer seem like a good move.

I understand your points about compromising on the weight. I can make 51lbs work. I'll put Vika+ on the short list. Thanks again.

Andy_in_CA
10 months ago

Michael, what was you bad experience as I'm considering the Metro +

eCameron
10 months ago

Let's face it, our bodies eventually get worn down no matter how young we feel. I realized I hadn't ridden my bike for a couple years now. It just sits there, loosing air, collecting dust, getting it my way...
I finally did something about it and bought the Vika+. With 350 watts of power I can now ride for hours in any direction I want to go. Portland and surrounding areas have plenty of hills to conquer. Even better, I can fold the bike and put it in my (Saab) trunk for those regional and out-of-state trail heads. No more having to string my bike rack on the back of my car and no more scratches because of it. Over the years I've received few scratches myself but now I'm able to get back in the saddle!

eCameron
10 months ago

2017 Blix Vika+ Known Issue- Within a week of purchase for a local shop I began to receive "error code 21" and the bike's motor would stop working. I would the stop, wait a few seconds and go again. The issue was intermittent but became more frequent. I wrote the support folks at blixbike.com and received this reply' "...Error 21 means 'current anomaly' and can occur from a faulty wire in the power or display cables, or a controller box issue....". Knowing it was beyond an easy fix I returned the bike to the local shop where they immediately replaced the controller box. It was explained that a series of controllers have a defective PROM chip. The bike now works and I'm fully satisfied with the service provided by Blix
and the local shop in Portland, Oregon.

michael mitchell
10 months ago

I've owned both the Magnum Premium and Vika+ 2016 version. I've also ridden the Vika Travel (albeit indoors). My vote goes to the Vika+. I've got about 1500 miles on mine. The Vika Travel is a cool little bike, but 15 miles seems like it would get uncomfortable. I had a bad experience with buying directly from Magnum, so I would not recommend. At the very least, test ride that bike before you buy it, your experience may be different.

Awakened987
10 months ago

Thanks for the recommendations! I'll have to check into the magnum a little more I did check out some of courts reviews on a few of the magnum products but nothing at the time caught my eye. That Gepida looks like a great piece of gear. I've also been looking at the Blix brand and the newer Vika Travel and the Vika+. I really like hte Vika travel even though it doesn't have any fenders or back rack which is a bummer but I love from the looks the size of the fold. I'm really just trying to find a company that can supply me with some reliable support if I need it and supply me with parts down the road. I hate to think 6 months from now the company doesn't exist or can't help me with a Warranty claim because my luck is just not the best.

San Diego Fly Rides
12 months ago

Yay! A new e-biker! I definitely understand the concern about the bike getting stolen. I'd second Dewey's recommendations. We use ABUS folding locks at our shop and I use the New York U-lock for personal usage.

In terms of bikes you might be interested in, I'd be less concerned about weight more about it being the right size. It sounds like you want something with that's easy to mount and dismount, so stick to step-thru frames (also sometimes called low-step) or wave frames. I'd start by checking out the https://shopsandiegoflyrides.com/collections/bulls-electric-bikes/products/bulls-cross-lite-e-step-thru-frame or the https://shopsandiegoflyrides.com/collections/bulls-electric-bikes/products/bulls-lacuba-evo-e8-wave. These are both bikes that are great on hills and great from stops. Basically, you're looking for a higher torque to accelerate more quickly out of the gate. Both Bosch and Brose motors offer higher torques. If you want something a bit cheaper, check out the https://shopsandiegoflyrides.com/collections/izip-electric-bikes/products/izip-e3-dash?variant=37856266179. Still a great commuter bike, but definitely going to save you some money.

I'd say the ultimate in security would be to take the bike into work with you, so you might also want to consider some foldable options. Most foldable electrics can easily fit underneath a desk. This way it's with you all day. My favorites are the https://shopsandiegoflyrides.com/collections/blix-electric-bikes/products/2016-vika-foldable and the https://shopsandiegoflyrides.com/products/tern-vektron. Let us know if you have any questions!

tepake
1 year ago

I've had my Vika+ since July 2016 and use it to commute by train. I don't fold it nearly as much as I thought I would and one reason is that it doesn't fold tightly, like, say a Brompton or a Dahon, and it can't be wheeled around easily when folded. I've recently purchased some velco straps which might make the fold tighter, but haven't solved the wheeling issue.

Very interested to see Tommylee's modifications. Well done!

Tony
5 days ago

You should review the Ahooga bike, winner of red dot design award, weight is an important variable for a folding bike.

Crystal P
5 days ago

Hi Court! Thanks for your great reviews. I have a question - after watching both videos on the Blix Vika+ & E-Joe Epik SE what would you recommend for someone who is commuting from North Beach to the Ferry Building of San Francisco using the Embarcadero route? I'm a petite rider at 5ft tall. What is the durability on both bikes in regards to battery maintenance/replacement and are these bikes low or high maintenance?
Thanks so much!!!

DinobotTM2
5 days ago

Hi, i was wondering if you will do any review of a Swaggtron bike, because I have seen a lot of videos complementing their work, but i trust your reviews better.

chris665
6 days ago

Thanks for a great review I really like the look of this bike, are they available in the UK?

Chauncey Smith
6 days ago

Yes boy I'm first

gast
6 days ago

LOVE that color. Wow!

Glenn Watson
6 days ago

Yeah, the folding-joint was the issue...lol oh man...too funny.

塞尔吉奥
6 days ago

Excuse me, are you based in Florida ?.

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

Howdy! No, I'm based in Vancouver, Canada but I travel all around the USA to see new bikes, including Florida! Are you from there?

Steven R. Hazlett
6 days ago

Just got this from NYCeWheels two weeks ago in black, and I love it! It's a very stealthy bike, I noticed that it tends to startle pigeons and dogs because it sneaks up on them with it's quiet motor. the only thing I didn't like about it was the saddle (so uncomfortable) so I replaced that with a Cloud9, and purchased a thudbuster to top it off. I got the upgraded 17 amp battery and have done about 150 miles in these past two weeks. I would definitely reccomend it! And I appreciated your helpful review!

MRBARBARYCOAST
6 days ago

I like it!! Thanks Court.

Elizabeth Hamilton
6 days ago

Smooth acceleration is what I found with its smaller cousin the Vika Travel. Some other ebikes seem a little too torquey but not the Vikas. I had to sell my Travel but would buy it again in a heartbeat. I bet the Vika Plus feels wonderful due to its larger size. Thank you, Court, for another great review.

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

Well said, I felt the same way... the power comes on smooth and the motors are very quiet. Appreciate your thoughtful and kind comments Elizabeth!

Victor Salas
6 days ago

I bought this bike last month in black, overall, its an awesome bike, i love it

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

Sweet! Thanks for the testimonial, glad you're liking it so far Victor :D

Dennis Dowd
6 days ago

I love the color, I have seen you review this one before, always interesting.

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

Hey Dennis, yeah... I've reviewed it twice now. Got a few brand new models in the works, stuff that is a first time review coming soon :D

howsithngin
6 days ago

I bought an old Dahon years ago at a garage sale (cheap), figuring someday I'd electrify it. It's very light and has a drum break on back. Gears work good. Any suggestions on a good lesser priced hub motor for that?

howsithngin
6 days ago

Thanks!

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

Good question, I haven't reviewed a ton of kits but Electric Bike Outfitters offers some custom wheel sizes and cheaper 36 volt burly kit https://electricbikereview.com/category/kits/

Lysle Basinger
6 days ago

I rode one of those at the Chicago Ebike Expo last year. I didn’t think it offered any more than my 600.00 internet folding Ancheer.

ElectricBikeReview.com
6 days ago

It's nice that there are so many options now, a good range of prices or service/quality