Looking to buy 2 e-bikes, fairly lightweight, for under $1500 each

mspncr

New Member
Hi there everyone. My wife and I are looking at buying two e-bikes for mainly recreational + weekender + light errand use.

Ideally we could get 2 of the same bike, but we're willing to split it up if it makes sense.

Our ideal features:

  • Lightweight. We live on the 2nd floor of a building with a cramped staircase and want to minimize the struggle up and down.
    Not sure how to test this but it seems like <50 lbs is as heavy as we could go. We're in our 30s and reasonably fit but my wife is somewhat small
  • $1500 or less
  • I prefer wheels that are as close to full-size as possible
  • We'd like to ride the bike unassisted a fair amount, so preferably models that feel good when motor's off
  • Non deal-breakers:
    • Ideally the thing could do ~18mph+
    • Folding is a welcome feature. Seems tough with our priorities though
We are not going to be major cargo haulers, long-distance riders, daily commuters, or trail riders, so the bike can be fairly light-duty. I'd like to be able to make it the 12 miles to the beach, though.

Some appealing models so far:

  • iZip Brio/Simi/TRLZ, & Raleigh Misceo/Sprite
  • Schwinn eVoyageur
  • Swagtron EB12
  • Ride1UP Core-5
  • Propella 7-speed
  • Motobecane EF3
  • Qualisports Dolphin
Am I missing any interesting makes & models? Or can anyone weigh in on their experiences with the ones I've listed? We're located in the US.

Thanks in advance for your advice!
 
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Dewey

Well-Known Member
Is that 12 miles each way ie minimum 24 mile range? While the Propella and Swagtron are lightweight for an ebike, that is because they both have small <250wh batteries, if you are climbing hills and raising the power consumption their small batteries might be an issue, but if you got the 7-speed option on the Propella then like the Swagtron its light enough to pedal unpowered. The izip simi or raleigh misceo use the SR Suntour ATS hub motor which has a mixed reputation. The Ride1Up Core-5 has a 48v system that will burn through the 500wh battery quickly at Class 3 28mph speeds, but if you kept to <20mph, and avoided using the throttle too much, the battery ought to have the range you're looking for. The Schwinn uses a standard bafang 250w hub motor and the 400wh battery ought to go the distance. The Shimano Steps system on the Motobecane model is energy efficient and the 400wh battery would go the distance there and back, but like the Qualisports it has smaller wheels and like you I prefer larger wheels for distance riding. Do you have the option of test riding any of these models? I can;t speak to how they feel riding, but Court has posted video reviews of some of the models on your list on this site.
 
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mspncr

New Member
Fantastic insight @Dewey thank you. Great to get those details on motors.
Yes my 12 mile figure was one-way. For that kind of trip (rare-ish) it would likely be largely unassisted riding.
 

FlatSix911

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Silicon Valley
Is that 12 miles each way ie minimum 24 mile range? While the Propella and Swagtron are lightweight for an ebike, that is because they both have small <250wh batteries, if you are climbing hills and raising the power consumption their small batteries might be an issue, but if you got the 7-speed option on the Propella then like the Swagtron its light enough to pedal unpowered. The izip simi or raleigh misceo use the SR Suntour ATS hub motor which has a mixed reputation. The Ride1Up Core-5 has a 48v system that will burn through the 500wh battery quickly at Class 3 28mph speeds, but if you kept to <20mph, and avoided using the throttle too much, the battery ought to have the range you're looking for. The Schwinn uses a standard bafang 250w hub motor and the 400wh battery ought to go the distance.

The Shimano Steps system on the Motobecane model is energy efficient and the 400wh battery would go the distance there and back, but like the Qualisports it has smaller wheels and like you I prefer larger wheels for distance riding. Do you have the option of test riding any of these models? I can;t speak to how they feel riding, but Court has posted video reviews of some of the models on your list on this site.

Fantastic insight @Dewey thank you. Great to get those details on motors.
Yes my 12 mile figure was one-way. For that kind of trip (rare-ish) it would likely be largely unassisted riding.

Based on your response, I would recommend going with a lightweight mid-drive along with full-size wheels for distance riding.
Take a look at the BD Elite adventure... https://bikeshopwarehouse.com/cgi-bin/BSW_STOR20.cgi?Action=Details&ProdID=2036
 
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