LMT'D Review: First Impressions

ebikenoob20

New Member
Hi all,

I originally posted this review on the Ride1Up eBike Owners Facebook Page on 9/29, but I thought I'd repost here for those who aren't on Facebook. Two weeks after my review, I wouldn't change it all. Thanks for reading.

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I ordered my LMT'D on 6/7 and received it on 9/16. The company was good about communicating even though it (understandably) took some time to get the bike, and there was only one delay, which I was notified about. After my shipping notification on 9/3 my bike was received when expected, on 9/16. There were two moderate-sized holes in the box when it arrived, but it was otherwise in good shape. That said, I do think Ride1Up should consider investing in thicker/tougher boxes. My wife recently ordered an indoor rowing machine, and the box, made of super-thick cardboard, was pristine when it arrived. I think most R1UP customers would gladly pay another 10-15 bucks for a stronger box.

I had a local bike shop assemble it for me. It cost $30 for them to pick up the box and $70 to put it together. They said assembly was super-easy. I’ve been riding bikes for the past twelve years and have some basic repair skills, but I didn’t trust myself to assemble something with electronics, especially considering that I eventually want to ride with my two-year-old. The peace of mind that comes from knowing the bike is securely assembled when I’m barreling down a hill at 35+ mph is worth the $100. Probably a lot more.

Okay, on to the fun stuff.

I got it on a Wednesday but have been so busy with work and life I wasn’t able to really take it for a spin until a week and a half later, this previous Saturday. I thought I’d go out for a loop around my house and downtown Asheville, which is plenty hilly. I was enjoying myself so much, though, I decided I’d go a little further and continue on to the Blue Ridge Parkway, about 7.5 miles away via backroads, including a two-mile section of gravel. When I got to the gravel section I wisely remembered to unlock the fork, which was a cinch, and the ride was super-smooth. Though, I’m curious: is there a way to adjust the fork preload settings, or is it all or nothing?

I get up to the Parkway and stop at an overlook, which is crowded with cars and another (non-motorized) cyclist, who compliments me on my ride. What the hell—I might as well keep going! I decide to continue a bit further and then come back to town via Elk Mountain, another windy road that eventually spits out at the northern part of the city. All is going according to (makeshift) plan, and I’m about halfway down Elk Mountain, when I come across a common local sight: a big old black bear, slowly ambling up the road in my direction. I slam on my brakes, skid for a few seconds, turn around, then throttle back up hill. I wait for a few minutes, yell loudly into the void in attempt to annoy the bear, then turn back around. No dice; the bear is now completely stopped and enjoying the roadside flowers and spectacular views on Elk Mountain. So 3/4 of my way home, I decide I’ll have to double back. And I do.

What began as a short trip around the city turned into a 30-mile, 2-hour ride, with 5,500+ feet of vertical. When it was all over, I still had 20% battery power. I was impressed.

Observations:
  • This doesn’t feel like a beast. Maybe it’s because the only other e-bike I’ve ridden was a 60+ lb. Pedego Boomerang, which I rented for a day, but I definitely don’t feel at all like I’m straining to handle the bike or keep it upright. It handles super-smoothly, and it took tight downhill curves like a charm. Within a half hour of riding the bike felt like an extension of my body. The only time I really notice its weight is when I’m wheeling it out of my garage and over a small concrete barrier.
  • It handled just as well as, and possibly better than, the Boomerang (which also has a torque sensor and is hub-driven—and retails for $3K). This may be because the Boomerang I rented was a stepover and had swept-back handles (i.e., a very non-performance-oriented riding setup). The riser bars are super-comfortable and secure-feeling and put me in an almost-upright riding position, which my lower back appreciates.
  • You can really get a good workout in. On the hills/mountains around here, even the highest PAS setting and throttle can’t save you, at least not for long. After each big climb my heart was pounding, and my legs were very worn out, in that good way, the following day. I used the throttle sparingly, for 10 to 15 seconds at a time, max. It’s ridiculously fun, sure, but like French fries and sitcoms, I enjoy it more when I only indulge on special occasions.
  • The only real issue I had, and I’m not even sure if it is an issue, is that I skidded a little both times I jammed on the brakes when I came across the bear. I was probably going about 20 mph each time. It was nothing too bad, and I was able to keep control, but I was a little surprised since my road bike (with 28C tires) can pretty much stop on a dime, even at high speed. I realize this may be completely expected—it’s just a new thing for me. I’ve never ridden a bike with such large, non-slick tires on asphalt before, so maybe this is totally normal. Just a heads up to others who are coming from a road background.
  • I noticed that the battery dipped while I was huffing and puffing up a steep hill but bounced back higher once I headed downhill. Is there some sort of regenerative braking mechanism with this bike? Or are minor fluctuations expected as it establishes equilibrium? The fluctuations haven’t been very big, so I’m satisfied that the reading is accurate enough.
  • I dream about riding this thing, and I’ll take any excuse to wheel it out. Not only that, but I can definitely see it replacing my car for lots of errands. Yesterday I ordered lunch from a place about a mile away, which provided a very good excuse for a quick ride. Because I took a bunch of side streets over there, I only hit one light. Honestly, compared to driving, the timing must have been a wash, or close to it.
  • So far I’d say the LMT’D exceeds my expectations, which were already pretty high. I’d give it an A-. Like I said, I have nothing to compare it to except for that one day with the Pedego, but I think I’m in love.

Riding up to the Parkway over some light gravel/dirt. Not my house!


Tanbark Ridge Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Elevation: 3,175.


 
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