Help: e-bike for NYC commute? (20 mi round trip)

seinberg

Member
Have you considered the Pellagio? It is made by Vespa. It has a powerful motor and the anti-theft system is really cutting edge.

Thanks for the suggestion! Aren't those scooters though, not bikes? (Unless my Googling needs some practice :D) Anything that's not class 1 (pedal assist) is illegal in NYC, so would have to be ridden on the street rather than the protected Greenway that runs along the west side of Manhattan (traffic free, riding through parkland and along the Hudson River). I wouldn't really consider anything that I can't ride on bike paths.
 

TaraBara

Member
The Piaggio is a class 1 ebike ….you are correct Vespa makes scooters but they also make ebikes. There is a nice review on here. I believe they are made in your city although I could be wrong. They are sold out online but if I lived in a major city I would consider it because of it's anti theft system. (South Dakota) Good luck to you..... I am looking at the Specialized Turbo Como 4.0 650B.
 

seinberg

Member

Ah! The Piaggio. I looked up Pellagio and could only find scooters. Thanks for the link, found it. Not a bad option, but ends up in a crowded field (e.g. VanMoof Electrified S2 has similar, perhaps better, security features) and others provide equally good or better range or "bang for the buck".

I looked at the Specialized as well, but since it's a class 3 would be illegal in NYC :(
 

seinberg

Member
Couple updates in case anybody cares...

I asked the bike shop if I could test out the GoCycle on a ride to my place and they wouldn't let me -- they said 10mi was "way too far" for a test ride, and that it'd put too much wear and tear on the bike. That surprised me and was disappointing, but he was nice about it. He said he thinks if I took it easy on the ride in, that I shouldn't have much trouble making the whole round trip, but that it'd be easy to make the trip home from work if I charged it there. There are two other shops that sell the GoCycle so I'll see if one of them will let me do the test ride.

I also went to a Trek shop a couple blocks from work and talked to them about the different classes and test rode the Trek Super Commuter+ 8S. Apparently class 3 / pedelec are in a kind of gray legal zone and most of them can be limited to 20mph if need be to be compliant. This is only the second ebike I've tested (aside from the GoCycle for a very short period) and it was aahhhh-mazing. Essentially effortlessly getting up to 23-25mph, and with a bit more effort 28ish. Trek was totally cool with me doing my full commute (in reverse) and I did it on roughly half a battery charge there and back mostly on "turbo" mode, which is the fastest mode. The bike shredded the hill - it was comically easy to get up. It also kinda made me want to go the "replace my old mountain bike" route with a powerful pedelec.

Decisions decisions. :)
 

seinberg

Member
Here's a pic after conquering the hill :D
 

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seinberg

Member
Final update on this thread: I ended up going full-sized and purchased the Gazelle CitiZen H10 HMB Speed. The range anxiety really is what did it in the end -- I don't want to have to charge at work, and without having any way to test it on my commute beforehand I was left with something heavier that has longer range. None of the three bike shops who sell it in the area were willing to let me take it out for more than a quick spin around the block. I figured if I wasn't going to be able to easily fold and bring it with me indoors (e.g. restaurants or friends places), I might as well optimize for comfort too and go full-sized.

The folks at Propel in Brooklyn were pretty awesome. I test drove 3-4 bikes and was really indecisive but they were super helpful. Really great shop. Attached is a pic of the bike just before I left the shop this weekend! I took it with three of five bars left on the battery and rode the ~17 miles home from Brooklyn mostly in Sport and Turbo modes and it crushed the GWB hill with plenty of juice left over :)
 

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Ebiker01

Well-Known Member
Nice, good choice ! Gazelle is a well made ebike.
Which other ebikes did you tested ? I have to visit Propel for a 2020 ebike.
Did You knew that Trek has 2 stand alone stores in Nyc ? They only wrench on Trek ebikes and reg. Treks though...
If you ever park it oustside use a parking garage(7-12$) or cover it with a moto cover if outside. And use 2 strong locks. Spend on locks at least 2-300$(10% of bike purchase going towards very good locks is the norm).
Enjoy ? !
 

seinberg

Member
Nice, good choice ! Gazelle is a well made ebike.
Which other ebikes did you tested ? I have to visit Propel for a 2020 ebike.
Did You knew that Trek has 2 stand alone stores in Nyc ? They only wrench on Trek ebikes and reg. Treks though...
If you ever park it oustside use a parking garage(7-12$) or cover it with a moto cover if outside. And use 2 strong locks. Spend on locks at least 2-300$(10% of bike purchase going towards very good locks is the norm).
Enjoy ? !
I test rode a few Riese & Muller bikes as well -- I forget the names of the models. Two full-sized (one mid-step, one step-thru) and one smaller/compact one. They were really really nice too, but were substantially more $ ($6k+ vs the $4k I paid for the Gazelle) and also made bigger "statements" (from a style perspective) than I really wanted.

I visited the Trek shop in Chelsea and they were great too. Really friendly folks and they were willing to let me take the Trek out for a full-on commute (I had the bike for almost 90 minutes!). I would have seriously considered buying the Super Commuter+ 8S if it came in a color other than that ugly orange/red. It was really nice. I don't love the lack of shocks though, and the design isn't as nice/elegant as the Gazelle, so I'm happy with where I landed.
 

Ebiker01

Well-Known Member
And yours is lighter too-about 48lb, that’s why with the 500wh battery is like having a 600wh one.
Most full size ebikes are 58-65lb.
 

dblhelix

Well-Known Member
Final update on this thread: I ended up going full-sized and purchased the Gazelle CitiZen H10 HMB Speed. None of the three bike shops who sell it in the area were willing to let me take it out for more than a quick spin around the block.

I’ guess that the built-in battery is the problem. Makes it much harder to sell a demo end of season. In any case, good call, and I’m glad you’re happy!
 

seinberg

Member
I’ guess that the built-in battery is the problem. Makes it much harder to sell a demo end of season. In any case, good call, and I’m glad you’re happy!

Yeah, that's what they said - the mileage on the bikes would mean they'd have to sell it as used when the time came. And to be clear, none of the shops who sell the GoCycle would let me ride it very long. After riding the trek, I knew the gazelle would make it without any problems.

Incidentally, I put about 40 miles on the gazelle on one charge today and the display was saying I had ten left. This was mostly in touring or Eco modes, except on hills and over verified when I was cracked up to turbo. Not bad!
 

ebikemom

Well-Known Member
I’m glad you didn’t go with the bike with a tiny battery. Battery life reduces over time also. I think the bike you got is going to be a better long-term purchase.
 

seinberg

Member
Epilogue: my wife loved the electric bike too. I put our kid's seat on the Gazelle and it made zipping my son around the neighborhood so easy and pleasant that we decided to get another so we could both ride them together. We're selling our old bikes (a road bike and a mountain bike) and going fully ebike aside from our kids' bikes. We weren't sure whether to get another full-sized one or the Gocycle like I'd initially intended, but in the end the flexibility of having one of each won the day -- being able to take either the small folding or the full sized is convenient enough.

So I was finally able to see what the range of the Gocycle GX is like :) Picked it up yesterday afternoon and rode it around 11 miles. On the flats, I kept it in Eco mode, but on hills I cranked the assist up to 100% -- including the one under the GWB, which the GX does a very good job on -- I still need to pedal non-trivially and on really hot days I'll crack a sweat, but it's still an order of magnitude better than without assistance. The Gazelle in its lowest gear is noticeably more powerful. But after 11 miles, including 100% assist on the GWB hill, the battery was only depleted 20% (in other words, it had 80% remaining). Much, much better than I had anticipated!
 

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dblhelix

Well-Known Member
Epilogue: my wife loved the electric bike too. I put our kid's seat on the Gazelle and it made zipping my son around the neighborhood so easy and pleasant that we decided to get another so we could both ride them together. We're selling our old bikes (a road bike and a mountain bike) and going fully ebike aside from our kids' bikes. We weren't sure whether to get another full-sized one or the Gocycle like I'd initially intended, but in the end the flexibility of having one of each won the day -- being able to take either the small folding or the full sized is convenient enough.

So I was finally able to see what the range of the Gocycle GX is like :) Picked it up yesterday afternoon and rode it around 11 miles. On the flats, I kept it in Eco mode, but on hills I cranked the assist up to 100% -- including the one under the GWB, which the GX does a very good job on -- I still need to pedal non-trivially and on really hot days I'll crack a sweat, but it's still an order of magnitude better than without assistance. The Gazelle in its lowest gear is noticeably more powerful. But after 11 miles, including 100% assist on the GWB hill, the battery was only depleted 20% (in other words, it had 80% remaining). Much, much better than I had anticipated!

That’s a great ending and some good info on the GoCycle. It’s def an attractive little bike.