250W Giant or Trek mid-drive bike vs 500W Biktrix mid-drive, or Pedego hub, and size considerations-help me choose

DayByDay

New Member
Region
USA
I've been reading, researching and test rode a few bikes so far. My budget is up to $3000, maybe a little more if there are some really compelling reasons. Hills are my main reason for wanting an ebike - there are little inclines and big hills all over where I live. Comfort, including good fit, is also a consideration due to being older with aches and pains. Please lend your experience and knowledge to help me choose between these:
  1. Momentum Vida e+ Lowstep, $2650. Pros: at Martin's Bike Shop, a great shop; Giant reputation. Very smooth motor and internally shifted gears. Small size is very comfortable for me. (tested today). Test left the impression that using pedal assist is easy. Potential con/Cons: No big hills to test it on, can it really cut it? I'm heavy and it's hilly here. Only level and battery "dots" on display; hard to see in sunshine.
  2. LaFree e+ Lowstep, $2100. Pros: same shop and manufacturer as #1; haven't tested yet but also comes in a small. $550 less than Vida, probably due to derailleur instead of internal shifting. Includes rack, fenders, and kickstand.
  3. Trek Verve 2 Lowstep, $2650. Pros: can also get from a reliable dealer. Trek reputation. Looks like my size (S or XS) is available. Con: I need >= 2" tires for gravel trails, most of my intended riding. Also, it seems like for the same price / "Big 3" service, the Vida e+ has nicer shifting than the Trek Verve 2.
  4. Biktrix Stunner X 24"x3, $2499, or Stunner LT 20" or 24" Pros: Biktrix has a good reputation, and some of the specs are better, at least on paper. 500W Bafang mid-drive - how does that compare to the Yamaha/Giant motor setup on the Vida e+? People who get them seem to be enthusiasts. Cons: NO LOCAL SERVICE! Company has good reputation for communication but it far away and it's not clear any local bike shops will work on the motor or electronics for maintenance or repairs.
Also sort of in the mix:
  • Pedego Boomerang Plus - $3000. Was able to rent a 26" and ride for 3 hours on plenty of hills, with lots of juice left in the battery. There's a 24" version. Easy to understand and use. The Dapu 500W hub drive could be considered either a pro or con compared to the mid-drives above. I know that it works well for me, at least for a day. 5 year warranty (not for wear parts, but others). The one other option with guaranteed service available. Adjustable handlebars included.
  • My husband bought a Pedego Element - 20x4 tires. (He had particular criteria for his choice). It's pretty comfortable, 500W hub (happens to have Dapu unlike later ones) motor, and I know I could also do well with it. Much less expensive than other options, $1695.
There were a swarm of people at the Giant dealer today; I hope to make a decision Monday after trying out a Biktrix Stunner X. What do you think?
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
Great that you get to test ride so many models. The Momentum Vida E+ isn‘t quite as low as the Pedego Boomerang but it is pretty low and upright. The Yamaha motor specs on the Momentum website mention it has 60nm torque which is respectable for hill climbing. The Nexus 7 IGH would let you shift gear when stationary that is a plus.

The Biktrix Stunner step through uses a Bafang BBS02 motor with twice the torque of the Vida E+ so it will be a better hill climber. Instead of the intuitive torque pedal assist sensor of the Vida the Stunner uses a cadence PAS sensor and a throttle to get you going, it too has an IGH, and a suspension fork that might be more comfortable to ride than the rigid fork of the Vida. You’re right about the maintenance, any bike shop could work on the mechanical bicycle components of the Stunner, troubleshooting electrical issues on the BBS02 motor would require a multimeter to check current at electrical connectors, and the display should list an error code you could use to call Biktrix for support, but then you’ll need to find a bike shop prepared to fit parts mailed to you. If you’re looking for least hassle I’d go with what a local bike shop will sell and service.
 

darksky

Member
Region
USA
I purchased a Pedego Boomerang Plus in early February. I'm retired so I ride it for recreation and have been riding 5-10 miles (sometimes more) each day the weather coorporates. I really like the extremely low steep thru frame and the comfortable upright riding position. I also looked at other bikes inlcuding mid-drives without throttles. Although I don't use the throttle on my Boomerang much, I like having it once in a while. If I had it to do over again I would never buy an e-bike without a throttle. It's nice to have even if you don't use it much. The people at my local Pedego store have been a joy to work with.
 

Dallant

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I’d say up your budget that little bit more and look at/test the Allant+7 Lowstep with the much better CX motor, 2.25 tires, front suspension. I guarantee you’ll go up most any hill you want to. Best of luck in your search.
 

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DayByDay

New Member
Region
USA
Great that you get to test ride so many models. The Momentum Vida E+ isn‘t quite as low as the Pedego Boomerang but it is pretty low and upright. The Yamaha motor specs on the Momentum website mention it has 60nm torque which is respectable for hill climbing. The Nexus 7 IGH would let you shift gear when stationary that is a plus.

The Biktrix Stunner step through uses a Bafang BBS02 motor with twice the torque of the Vida E+ so it will be a better hill climber. Instead of the intuitive torque pedal assist sensor of the Vida the Stunner uses a cadence PAS sensor and a throttle to get you going, it too has an IGH, and a suspension fork that might be more comfortable to ride than the rigid fork of the Vida. You’re right about the maintenance, any bike shop could work on the mechanical bicycle components of the Stunner, troubleshooting electrical issues on the BBS02 motor would require a multimeter to check current at electrical connectors, and the display should list an error code you could use to call Biktrix for support, but then you’ll need to find a bike shop prepared to fit parts mailed to you. If you’re looking for least hassle I’d go with what a local bike shop will sell and service.
Thanks Dewey!

I've decided I'm looking for a "regular" bike feel as opposed to a fat/dirt-bike feel. Per Biktrix, the Stunner step-through is not a good fit for my inseam (28.5") although there are a number of people close to my height (5'3") or inseam who say they love it. So if I can convince someone to work on the Bafang motor in the future (there is one possible person I'll ask), I'm looking at the Stunner LT - 20" or 24". I know that's rear hub. I think the motor type is not the biggest factor to me, but the torque and overall quality is.

Do you think RST fork provides decent / noticeable suspension? Would it be worth it to add a ThudBuster? (I say these things as if I have experience, but I'm just reading specs and options.)

ps what's IGH? Internal gear hub?
 
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DayByDay

New Member
Region
USA
I purchased a Pedego Boomerang Plus in early February. I'm retired so I ride it for recreation and have been riding 5-10 miles (sometimes more) each day the weather coorporates. I really like the extremely low steep thru frame and the comfortable upright riding position. I also looked at other bikes inlcuding mid-drives without throttles. Although I don't use the throttle on my Boomerang much, I like having it once in a while. If I had it to do over again I would never buy an e-bike without a throttle. It's nice to have even if you don't use it much. The people at my local Pedego store have been a joy to work with.
Good to hear! Interesting to hear about using a throttle. Did you have an ebike without a throttle at one time? I'm thinking if I can get throttle technique down then I might use it to get started from a dead stop if I face an incline and/or traffic. I plan to mostly ride trails.
 

DayByDay

New Member
Region
USA
I’d say up your budget that little bit more and look at/test the Allant+7 Lowstep with the much better CX motor, 2.25 tires, front suspension. I guarantee you’ll go up most any hill you want to. Best of luck in your search.
I'll have to check if these are in stock, I'm looking to ride soon.
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
Thanks Dewey!

I've decided I'm looking for a "regular" bike feel as opposed to a fat/dirt-bike feel. Per Biktrix, the Stunner step-through is not a good fit for my inseam (28.5") although there are a number of people close to my height (5'3") or inseam who say they love it. So if I can convince someone to work on the Bafang motor in the future (there is one possible person I'll ask), I'm looking at the Stunner LT - 20" or 24". I know that's rear hub. I think the motor type is not the biggest factor to me, but the torque and overall quality is.

Do you think RST fork provides decent / noticeable suspension? Would it be worth it to add a ThudBuster? (I say these things as if I have experience, but I'm just reading specs and options.)

ps what's IGH? Internal gear hub?
Oh right 5’ 3” you would indeed be better off with the 24” or 20” models. Yes IGH is short for internal geared hub. Thudbuster is good, Suntour NCX suspension seatpost is also good, Kinekt is best according to folks on this forum. I don’t know about suspension forks and I expect it depends on how you ride. Other posters on this forum have described RST brand making a good basic fork