Keeping in mind that I am a road cyclist.... My first experience with straight bars was converting a road bike to achieve a more upright riding position. It did get me more upright but I never got my hands and wrists comfortable. More recently with the electric bikes, it was a nasty bout of tennis elbow, something I have never had before, that got me questioning the handlebars. Ultimately, the physical therapist related the straight bars with twist throttle and shifters as the source of my flair-up. If you have any numbness or discomfort with your current bars, give a swept back bar with a good ergonomic grip a try. With my current setup I can ride all day with no discomfort.
I agree with you, starting with a basic ebike is a good way to go. Until you use it for a while and see how it fits into your likestyle, it can be foolish to make a big investment. I spent a full year with the X2 and really loved it and used almost daily, 3k miles. When I was young, cycling was my passion. I road many many thousands of miles. I started working in a Bike Shop in LA selling and repairing bike at 15, and when I graduated High School I opened a small Bike Shop of my own I tiny Los Osos, Ca. As my life progressed, priorities changed to making a living and raising a family, and the time for cycling disappeared. The ebike has allowed me to revisit the glory of being able to hop on the bike just go, with no thoughts of not being conditioned enough to enjoy the ride. I have gotten in allot better shape since I started riding my ebikes, especially the Turbo, which is quite capable of going very fast with a bit of work. It is because I ride all the time! I am glad I started with the basic bike and dailed into what I wanted in a bike, and then made the investment. I also found it very easy to sell the inexpensive Prodeco on Craigslist without loosing much money, I sold it the day I listed it.
The Topeak rack will stay put if you really crank it down. I leave the quick release open and turn the lever until it is very tight, making sure it isn't sticking out to catch on something. I put some old center pull cable hangers on one of the sets of rear fender bosses to secure the open panniers. I have no problem with them staying out of the drive train on the Turbo.View attachment 4597
Excuse the bad snap shot!