Rad Power Bike vs Tern HSD P9 | Newbie who will ride and commute

Best overall commuter bike

  • RadRunner

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Tern HSD P9

    Votes: 3 60.0%
  • RadCity Step Thru

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 2 40.0%

  • Total voters
    5

readysetjess

New Member
Hello EBR crew,

I am new to E-biking and I am looking for a commuter bike for ~20 each way on flat with a little hill at the end. I would like to put my 30lb dog maybe on the back at some point, so I would like a cargo rack. I am interested in the Tern HSD P9 as it has a Bosch battery and heard they were terrific and I also get a good pro deal on them. On the other hand I do live in Seattle and have heard great things about Rad Power bikes. I am not sure which one is better for the value but would love some real life expertise. I want to make sure I have a bike that will work in the rain as well as be light enough to put in my car at some point.

Thanks for your help!
 

jaizon

Active Member
Comparing a Rad Power bike to a Tern HSD 9 bike is like comparing a Chevy to a Mercedes. You get what you pay for. Tern all the way, if you can afford it! It's not possible to comparison ride because there are no Rad dealers, so you have to rely on word of mouth or to some extent...reviews, which are hardly ever neutral in bias. Best of luck with your choice.
 

pxpaulx

Well-Known Member
Since I believe Rad is Seattle based (if memory serves correctly), they should have a showroom there to test out the bike. Hub motors do not do as well on hills as a mid-drive, since the mid-drive can take advantage of the bike's gearing - if you slow down on a hill with a hub motor you'll just lose your steam! With that said if you are a smaller rider that may not be an issue.

There is nothing wrong with the rad (assuming you're looking at their cargo bike), so it is worth a try to see if you like it. As @jaizon said, the tern is just going to be a next-level bike, if you've ridden bikes significantly in the past (or currently), you'll likely appreciate the higher end components and overall build of the Tern.
 

readysetjess

New Member
Comparing a Rad Power bike to a Tern HSD 9 bike is like comparing a Chevy to a Mercedes. You get what you pay for. Tern all the way, if you can afford it! It's not possible to comparison ride because there are no Rad dealers, so you have to rely on word of mouth or to some extent...reviews, which are hardly ever neutral in bias. Best of luck with your choice.
That makes sense. I just have no idea what i am looking into. I just tried my friends RadRunner and it is REALLY heavy.I think that may be hard as well.
 

antboy

Well-Known Member
Hello EBR crew,

I am new to E-biking and I am looking for a commuter bike for ~20 each way on flat with a little hill at the end. I would like to put my 30lb dog maybe on the back at some point, so I would like a cargo rack. I am interested in the Tern HSD P9 as it has a Bosch battery and heard they were terrific and I also get a good pro deal on them. On the other hand I do live in Seattle and have heard great things about Rad Power bikes. I am not sure which one is better for the value but would love some real life expertise. I want to make sure I have a bike that will work in the rain as well as be light enough to put in my car at some point.

Thanks for your help!
Like everyone else said, the Tern is a whole different beast on many levels. It definitely wins on specs and range.

From a battery life POV, the Tern will definitely serve you better, given your commute distance.

The Rad Runner with a 14ah battery would probably JUST BARELY, IF LUCKY get you the 40 mile round trip, without needing to charge. For example with a 13ah battery, my rear hub fat tire gets about 35-37 miles per charge (about 260 lbs combined bike/rider/cargo in warm weather). The Rad City with thinner tires might get you a bit farther, but probably not TOO much. You'd probably want to do charging each way, meaning bringing the charger with you, or having a second one at your commute destination.

With the same weight/riding conditions, the Tern would probably get you close to double the range (65-70ish miles) per charge in Eco mode, and upping the assist a little to tackle any challenging hill, and will give you a much more "bike-like" riding experience, with a much nicer bike.

That being said, the Rads are way cheaper, even if you get a second charger or battery. If it's mainly for commuting, and less about "fun" riding, you might find the Rad works well, especially having a throttle on hand. It's definitely a cheaper entry point, and if you find yourself addicted to e-bikes, you'll be looking at other ones soon enough. :D
 

jaizon

Active Member
Like everyone else said, the Tern is a whole different beast on many levels. It definitely wins on specs and range.

From a battery life POV, the Tern will definitely serve you better, given your commute distance.

The Rad Runner with a 14ah battery would probably JUST BARELY, IF LUCKY get you the 40 mile round trip, without needing to charge. For example with a 13ah battery, my rear hub fat tire gets about 35-37 miles per charge (about 260 lbs combined bike/rider/cargo in warm weather). The Rad City with thinner tires might get you a bit farther, but probably not TOO much. You'd probably want to do charging each way, meaning bringing the charger with you, or having a second one at your commute destination.

With the same weight/riding conditions, the Tern would probably get you close to double the range (65-70ish miles) per charge in Eco mode, and upping the assist a little to tackle any challenging hill, and will give you a much more "bike-like" riding experience, with a much nicer bike.

That being said, the Rads are way cheaper, even if you get a second charger or battery. If it's mainly for commuting, and less about "fun" riding, you might find the Rad works well, especially having a throttle on hand. It's definitely a cheaper entry point, and if you find yourself addicted to e-bikes, you'll be looking at other ones soon enough. :D

Buy cheap, buy twice.
 

readysetjess

New Member
Like everyone else said, the Tern is a whole different beast on many levels. It definitely wins on specs and range.

From a battery life POV, the Tern will definitely serve you better, given your commute distance.

The Rad Runner with a 14ah battery would probably JUST BARELY, IF LUCKY get you the 40 mile round trip, without needing to charge. For example with a 13ah battery, my rear hub fat tire gets about 35-37 miles per charge (about 260 lbs combined bike/rider/cargo in warm weather). The Rad City with thinner tires might get you a bit farther, but probably not TOO much. You'd probably want to do charging each way, meaning bringing the charger with you, or having a second one at your commute destination.

With the same weight/riding conditions, the Tern would probably get you close to double the range (65-70ish miles) per charge in Eco mode, and upping the assist a little to tackle any challenging hill, and will give you a much more "bike-like" riding experience, with a much nicer bike.

That being said, the Rads are way cheaper, even if you get a second charger or battery. If it's mainly for commuting, and less about "fun" riding, you might find the Rad works well, especially having a throttle on hand. It's definitely a cheaper entry point, and if you find yourself addicted to e-bikes, you'll be looking at other ones soon enough. :D
Thank you for your help! This is so helpful. I mean, if i get a good deal on the nicer one, it is seeming like a good idea to just get that so I don't end up paying twice.
 

rich c

Well-Known Member
Personally, I would not choose a 20" tire eBike as a long commuter. 200 miles a week would put me on a narrow 700c tire bike to stay nimble and more tolerant of pavement changes. Edit; Make sure you can pedal at the commuting speed you want. Some of the smaller bikes have shorter cranks and smaller chainrings and you will pedal out before you reach the top speed. But if you choose with a throttle, pedaling isn't as important.
 
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CityExplorer

Well-Known Member
I guess my experience is different. Given my positive experience with DJ Bikes (similar to RAD Power) and Juiced RCS (RAD on Steroids), I'd go with the RAD rather than Tern especially if I was doing 40miles a day on it.

HOWEVER; if you didn't really like your friend's Rad then obviously I would not get one, and would shop around more. Most e-bikes are relatively heavy.

There is nothing special about Bosch batteries except maybe when it comes time to get a new one or a second one there is a "special" price (but not one you may like).
 

fooferdoggie

Well-Known Member
I

There is nothing special about Bosch batteries except maybe when it comes time to get a new one or a second one there is a "special" price (but not one you may like).
they are known for their longevity. plus you don't loose power as the battery gets low the assist is the same pretty much to the last drop. most of the name brand bikes batteries will far outlast a a cheap battery. Plus you can buy one that will fit 5 years later.
 

CityExplorer

Well-Known Member
they are known for their longevity. plus you don't loose power as the battery gets low the assist is the same pretty much to the last drop. most of the name brand bikes batteries will far outlast a a cheap battery. Plus you can buy one that will fit 5 years later.
Nothing special, you an read about them on their website, just talks about the advantages of all lithium batteries, you can see teardowns on youtube, they have no regulator, power delivery behavior is controlled by their controller hardware and software. sure you can find junk batteries, but most batteries use the same or better cells than are in the Bosch batteries, and often can be much higher capacity. The Bosch BMS is reasonable, but nothing special. They are ok batteries for their capacity class.
 

fooferdoggie

Well-Known Member
Nothing special, you an read about them on their website, just talks about the advantages of all lithium batteries, you can see teardowns on youtube, they have no regulator, power delivery behavior is controlled by their controller hardware and software. sure you can find junk batteries, but most batteries use the same or better cells than are in the Bosch batteries, and often can be much higher capacity. The Bosch BMS is reasonable, but nothing special. They are ok batteries for their capacity class.
except they last longer. if the cells are matched and well balanced they work much better. I have not heard of any complaints about battery longevity. but we hear about them and the other cheap bike batteries out there. of course there are higher capacity cells but are they as reliable? I think thats what Bosch is after the most reliable battery pack.
 

sc00ter

Active Member
I went backwards. I sold my Pedego 28" and ordered a RadRunner, so I don't really agree with the buy cheap/buy twice. If I use the RadRunner as much as I intend and get the urge to get something "better" I will pass the Rad down to a friend who could really use a ebike. Its cheap enough to re-test the waters of ebike land, and its a 20". I got tired of huge, skinny wheels. Standing on my tip-toes at red lights or hopping back on the seat. I'm just going to use it for occasional commuting and bumping around the 'hood. I might even try to get my wife on it!
 
I think you should look into Dost Drop or Biktrix Stunner. They are both mid range quality much better than Rad with large batteries lots of power and mid drive.
 

jaizon

Active Member
I went backwards. I sold my Pedego 28" and ordered a RadRunner, so I don't really agree with the buy cheap/buy twice. If I use the RadRunner as much as I intend and get the urge to get something "better" I will pass the Rad down to a friend who could really use a ebike. Its cheap enough to re-test the waters of ebike land, and its a 20". I got tired of huge, skinny wheels. Standing on my tip-toes at red lights or hopping back on the seat. I'm just going to use it for occasional commuting and bumping around the 'hood. I might even try to get my wife on it!

The fact that you bought expensive does not negate my original comment. It simply points out that one should
"look before they leap". 😂
 

sc00ter

Active Member
Or I bought the wrong model the first time. I'm not in my 20's anymore, and the height of the 28" wheels was not working out. So yes, I bought twice BUT I'm testing the waters again with a much lower buy in this time. So you were right jaizon.