Help choosing my first ebike for urban/beach environment

therza001

New Member
Region
USA
I'm moving to miami in a few weeks and decided getting an ebike would be a nice little housewarming gift to myself after eyeing one for a while. I've been reading and overanalyzing but I can't seem to pick between these:

Trek Verve+ 2 Lowstep
Espin 21 Flow
Ride1Up 700 ST

I like the step through design, and while I'd like to stay in the lower end of the price range of these 3 bikes, I'd rather spend a little more on a quality bike and not have to worry about having issues. I've read some issues about R1UP and their chains falling off, and a few weird things about Espin. I'm only considering the Trek because they appear to be a bit more reputable.

Any thoughts on these three, or maybe another bike that fits the criteria I'm looking for would be greatly appreciated!
 

Dallant

Well-Known Member
My wife test rode the Verve+2 and really liked it and was ready to buy. I certainly liked the Verve but I stepped in to suggest an Allant+7 Lowstep so we could share batteries, Racktime Odin trunk bags, etc. and so she’d have the same Bosch PLCX motor. She certainly loves her Allant but would have been very happy with the Verve.
 
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therza001

New Member
Region
USA
My wife test rode the Verve+2 and really liked it and was ready to buy. I certainly liked the Verve but I stepped into suggest an Allant+7 Lowstep so we could share batteries, Racktime Odin trunk bags, etc. and so she’d have the same Bosch PLCX motor. She certainly loves her Allant but would have been very happy with the Verve.
Is the difference in price on the Trek bikes justifiable compared to these Direct to Consumer companies like R1UP and Espin?

I definitely understand how this applies across different industries, but haven't read too much about it in the ebike space
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I think it helps for you to determine if there are bike shops local to you who are willing to work on an ebike not bought from them, otherwise you might be better off going with the Trek which you can take in to any Trek bike store for maintenance/service or problem troubleshooting.
 

Dallant

Well-Known Member
Is the difference in price on the Trek bikes justifiable compared to these Direct to Consumer companies like R1UP and Espin?

I definitely understand how this applies across different industries, but haven't read too much about it in the ebike space
Justifiable comparatively? To be honest, I don’t know. I have no clue about either of the other bikes.
Is the Trek worth it? Absolutely. I have well over 1k miles of totally reliable riding. It’s a fantastic bike that rides well, has good balance, great brakes and the Bosch PLCX drive is fantastic albeit a little noisy.
I have a good local dealer in my small town. He ordered and assembled both of our Allants. He found, ordered and assembled an adjustable stem (that only a Trek dealer can order) for the wife’s bike gratis. And just in case, there are at least 3 other Trek dealers within an hour of me. What’s that worth to you?
 

indianajo

Well-Known Member
You better have long legs for a 700 mm tire bike.
You have a chance of getting some exercise by turning the power off on the espin flow. Geared hub motors can be pedaled without drag power off. Trek has the bosch active line mid drive. There are variations in the line but most bosch drag like a boat anchor power off. You spin the motor with your feet unpowered on mid drive except brose, shimano steps, yamaha. Plus mid drive, if the chain pops off, no chaintools, you call a tow truck. Hub drives, chain trouble means you power home with the throttle. In 3 years or 1000 charges when battery wears out, bosch batteries are VERY expensive. Plus bosch dropped support for generation 1 products. (10 years guarentee).
None of the 3 has enough frame behind the seat to keep a bag from wiggling from side to side & rubbing the tire. That spindly rack on the Ride1up, that support that sticks out front provides no side to side support. IMHO. The trek shows no front support on the rack. I've had trouble with racks that clamp to the seat post, always rubbing the tire. If you don't carry tools, a tube, a tire pump, and always have a bike rack within 6" of your U-lock, fine. No bag or basket. Or maybe you never stop for a cup of coffee or the opposite. I carry a 6' x 3/8" SS sling in my bag to lock to power poles, live conduits, gas meters, cart racks, things I actually have in my city. Plus U-locks are easily cut with a grinder. Cheap bike cables are easily cut with dikes, but not the 21x19 SS cable I use. https://www.mcmaster.com/8942T15 I ride off the edge of cell phone service and have enough tools to handle anything short of chain break, since tow trucks & taxis can't find their way out there.
In the hub drive inexpensive dept with dealer service, is Magnum. UI6 is their drop frame model. I also like the looks of the x-treme catalina that appears as if it has a throttle & front suspension this year, but no dealer support on that bike.
 
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WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
San Francisco, Bay Area
Is the difference in price on the Trek bikes justifiable compared to these Direct to Consumer companies like R1UP and Espin?

I definitely understand how this applies across different industries, but haven't read too much about it in the ebike space

Having started with an inexpensive ebike and now riding a really nice Yamaha, yes...the difference was drastic for me. It's not the same for everyone but weight, PAS feel and ergonomics were a big factor. It's easy to justify price if it's something you'll be using and enjoying often. It's then a value instead of a big expense.
 

WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
San Francisco, Bay Area
You better have long legs for a 700 mm tire bike.
You have a chance of getting some exercise by turning the power off on the espin flow. Geared hub motors can be pedaled without drag power off. Trek has the bosch active line mid drive. There are variations in the line but most bosch drag like a boat anchor power off. You spin the motor with your feet unpowered on mid drive except brose, shimano steps, yamaha. Plus mid drive, if the chain pops off, no chaintools, you call a tow truck. Hub drives, chain trouble means you power home with the throttle. In 3 years or 1000 charges when battery wears out, bosch batteries are VERY expensive. Plus bosch dropped support for generation 1 products. (10 years guarentee).
None of the 3 has enough frame behind the seat to keep a bag from wiggling from side to side & rubbing the tire. That spindly rack on the Ride1up, that support that sticks out front provides no side to side support. IMHO. The trek shows no front support on the rack. I've had trouble with racks that clamp to the seat post, always rubbing the tire. If you don't carry tools, a tube, a tire pump, and always have a bike rack within 6" of your U-lock, fine. No bag or basket. Or maybe you never stop for a cup of coffee or the opposite. I carry a 6' x 3/8" SS sling in my bag to lock to power poles, live conduits, gas meters, cart racks, things I actually have in my city. Plus U-locks are easily cut with a grinder. Cheap bike cables are easily cut with dikes, but not the 21x19 SS cable I use. https://www.mcmaster.com/8942T15 I ride off the edge of cell phone service and have enough tools to handle anything short of chain break, since tow trucks & taxis can't find their way out there.
In the hub drive inexpensive dept with dealer service, is Magnum. UI6 is their drop frame model. I also like the looks of the x-treme catalina that appears as if it has a throttle & front suspension this year, but no dealer support on that bike.

I daily a 700c bike and I'm quite vertically challenged with a short inseam. I'm very, very comfortable.

I see so many stories of chain wear issues on middrives and I think they're overblown. Keep the drivetrain clean and I don't see why a chain wouldn't last for at least 2000 miles. I do agree that it obviously takes more maintenance than a hubdrive.

There are quite a few inexpensive racks that offset more to the rear so that heel-strike doesn't occur when riding with loaded panniers. My current Axiom rack can carry a couple of loaded panniers without issue. It's lightweight but strong.
 

indianajo

Well-Known Member
There are quite a few inexpensive racks that offset more to the rear so that heel-strike doesn't occur when riding with loaded panniers. My current Axiom rack can carry a couple of loaded panniers without issue.
I never mentioned heel strike. I was complaining about tire rub. Also bending of the fender by a wobbling rack.
Every time the lady in Scotland stretched a spoke, Rad sent her one new one. Three times. See known problems thread for other Rad experiences.
 
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WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
San Francisco, Bay Area
I never mentioned heel strike. I was complaining about tire rub. Also bending of the fender by a wobbling rack.
Every time the lady in Scotland stretched a spoke, Rad sent her one new one. Four times. See known problems thread for other Rad experiences.

I'll maintain that a "properly" installed rack and panniers should never have those issues. Once in a while, I do have a strap from my pannier bag come loose and that can potentially catch in the spokes but that would be my fault.
 

GenXrider

Well-Known Member
I've read some issues about R1UP and their chains falling off
I just got my Ride1Up 700, so I haven't even ridden it yet. But after reading most of the R1U FB group posts over the last year, it has very rarely been mentioned as a problem. There is one particular thread here about the 700 chain falling off, and someone with a 500 mentioned her son having that problem, but I have rarely seen it mentioned otherwise.
 

tlippy

Active Member
Plenty of ride time in Yuma. No chain problem on my 700. I do like to ride close to the middle of the rear chain ring - to keep a straight chain line
 

Kyle44

New Member
Region
Australia
My general recommendation is to get as much power as you can. If the bike is available with different engines, go with the most powerful. I got a 500W Rattan X, which I love, but I should have select the 750W version in retrospect. Especially for offroad use, you want more power and torque. Keep that in mind.