Pedego Element Review (20" Fat Bike)

tommybgood

Member
Region
USA
I had a chance to demo the Pedego Element. It's similar enough to the Lectric 1.0 and 2.0 that I thought it might serve as a good proxy. This is going to be a brief list and discussion of the bike's pros and cons.

Pros:
1. it's reasonably light! I was surprised that the bike was fairly easy to pick up. I had to ease the bike down some steps and lift it back up those same steps and it was not difficult at all. The smallish wheels and lack of suspension are probably factors in lowering weight.

2. ridiculously fun to ride. Level 5 and the throttle are addictive.

3. fat tires make for a relatively comfortable ride, even though there is no suspension.

4. the upright ride will be comfortable for those who are not accustomed to a more aero position on traditional bicycles.


Cons:
1. handling under most all circumstances is extremely sketchy and twitchy.

-maintaining balance slowing to a stop at a light or sign uphill, and getting started back again are both difficult.

-maintaining balance in slow speed riding in general is difficult

-at higher speeds, there is still a sense that you need to be careful and alert in keeping the bike stable.

2. power delivery is very inconsistent. With each step up, power comes on hard, then levels off as the controller attempts to ramp you up to a specific speed range and keep you there. There is no consistent relationship between pedaling input and power.

3. throttle use is safe but frustrating. Throttle power ramps up slowly, but that can be frustrating when you are trying to get up to speed from a stop going uphill. You need to twist all the way to activate, again a great safety feature, but introduces a delay when you need power.

4. as with all cadence sensor bikes, power on with pedal input requires a half revolution or so--not good with a bike this unstable.

5. the upright riding position places almost no weight over the front wheel which makes it tough to maintain balance with such small wheels.


Summary:

This bike is ridiculously fun to ride at first. The easy speed from throttle and max assist are super fun on an open road. Even lower levels of assist are fun to use! Ultimately, the bike's handling is severely compromised by the overly upright riding position and small wheels which make the bike unstable requiring constant attention for steering corrections and to keep the bike stable in general.

I thought I might go out on a longer demo ride but I returned it after just 10 minutes or so. It was very fun, but also stressful due to the lack of stability.

I would caution older riders and/or inexperienced or those returning from a long layoff from buying this bike without a longer demo ride. The bike is very, very twitchy and power delivery is not in any way linear with pedal input.

This bike suffers from poor design, both in handling and in power delivery. I could see how many, many riders could get themselves into trouble very easily riding this bike. As an experienced rider who rides several days per week and has been riding for a long time, it was tough to ride this bike. I am also accustomed to track standing at stop lights but balance on this bike was next to impossible. Let the buyer beware.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove Pennsylvania
Nice writeup ... specifically for the Element, but I could say much the same about the only 20 inch wheel folder I ever rode beyond the parking lot.