- Stiff, efficient and affordable city style electric bike with pedal assist and twist throttle mode
- Includes front and rear fenders, LED lights and a sturdy rear rack for transport utility
- Basic pedal assist sensor is less smooth, weight of hub motor on front wheel can impact steering a bit
The Zurich 350 IX by EG is a stiff and efficient city style electric bike with narrower tires and more traditional forward-leaning frame design that’s easy to mount on racks and convenient for commuting. The fenders, lights and rack match perfectly and even though there aren’t any shock absorbers the front fork is steel which reduces vibration and smoothes out the ride. With four levels of pedal assist and a trigger throttle this bike can scoot you around or climb and go for distance. I love the Shimano Nexus hub and overall balance (battery in the rear and motor in the front) but the motor weight does impact steering to a limited extent. It’s a compromise at a decent price point and it looks very sharp.
The motor driving this ebike is by 8FUN which is a trusted manufacturer from Asia. It’s black, to match the bike, and geared so it’s got more torque for acceleration and climbing without the added weight of a direct drive (gearless) solution. Offering 350 watts of power it’s very capable (even spinning the front wheel a bit if you gun it on gravel surfaces). There’s a spring going from the front fork to the downtube (called a deflopilator) meant to keep the bike steady when loading with gear and probably also to help with the added weight of the hub motor. Overall, it’s a decent design and it balances out the weight while providing space in the rear for an internally geared Nexus hub which stays clean and can be shifted at standstill.
The battery pack is slim, removable and painted black to match the rest of the bike. If you live in hot environments consider covering it with white or silver tape or putting a bag on top because heat is bad for Lithium-ion cells and well… black absorbs heat. The pack offers 36 volts of power and 12 amp hours of capacity. That’s a touch above average and I like the design overall. It’s great that the rear rack is a bit oversized to support the battery and any bags or panniers you add. Note that the larger gauge tubing may not fit all generic accessories.
Given the more standard straight top tube design of this bike and removable battery it’s going to be easier to mount onto hanging style bike racks (like those that attach to the back of cars). The front hub motor design also makes changing flats easier because the motor isn’t near the gears and chain which add complexity. This bike is a step above some “do it yourself” conversions and I like how it all matches. The control panel is simple and while it lacks speed, distance and precise battery indicators it looks durable and lets you choose from throttle mode or pedal assist. That’s the real advantage compared with a conversion kit which might not have assist (or would be complicated to install on the bottom bracket).
This isn’t the fanciest electric bike but it’s feature complete. The pedal assist modes can feel jerkier than newer ebikes with speed, torque and cadence sensors but those also cost more. There’s a certain charm and uniqueness with the Zurich 350 IX and I enjoyed riding it. It would be good for someone who enjoys pedaling along because the wheels and tires are so efficient. The internally geared Nexus hub will stay clean and require less maintenance but does add to the price and weight here. The fully enclosed chain guard also keeps things clean. To me this is a mid-level ebike in a world where so many cost $2K+ and others lack the features and quality seen here.
- Everything matches on the black version from the battery to the fenders and even the motor!
- Well balanced with the battery in the rear and the motor up front
- Lots of extras including deflopilator spring to stabilize front fork, fenders, LED lights, fully enclosed chain guard
- Shimano Nexus internally geared hub stays clean, requires less maintenance and can be switched when standing still
- Nice ergonomic grips decrease hand fatigue when riding
- Removable battery pack reduces weight of bike during transport and makes charging more convenient
- Extra sturdy rack works well for bags or panniers but uses slightly thicker tubing than standard
- Internally routed wires look great and stay out of the way
- Four levels of pedal assist for extended range or climbing and thumb throttle drive mode for relaxed cruising
- Adjustable stem requires tools but gives you some flexibility in ride position
- Black battery pack may heat up faster than if it were silver or white, heat can damage Lithium batteries so consider covering with white tape or a cargo bag
- Front mounted motor creates a gyroscopic pull and added weight that changes the steering a bit
- LED lights have to be turned on independently, easier to forget
- Stiffer electric bike with no suspension fork or padded saddle though the steel fork helps
- Somewhat limited availability (may have to order online and finish assembly at destination)
- Heavier than some other folding electric bikes at ~57lbs in part due to Nexus Hub