Gazelle Avenue C8 Review

Gazelle Avenue C8 Electric Bike Review
Gazelle Avenue C8
Gazelle Avenue C8 Finura Plastic Chain Cover
Gazelle Avenue C8 36 Volt Lithium Ion Battery Pack Rack With Bungee
Gazelle Avenue C8 Removable Transflective Shimano Steps Ebike Display
Gazelle Avenue C8 Ergon Gp1 Ergonomic Grips Magura Hs11 Brake Levers
Gazelle Avenue C8 Alloy Fork With Spring Suspension
Gazelle Avenue C8 Deep Wave Step Thru Frame
Gazelle Avenue C8 Sks Plastic Fenders With Rubber Mud Flaps
Gazelle Avenue C8 Shimano Steps Rear Rack Ebike Battery
Gazelle Avenue C8 Shimano Ebike Battery Charger With Adapter
Gazelle Avenue C8 Large 4 Amp Electric Bike Charger By Shimano
Gazelle Avenue C8 Electric Bike Review
Gazelle Avenue C8
Gazelle Avenue C8 Finura Plastic Chain Cover
Gazelle Avenue C8 36 Volt Lithium Ion Battery Pack Rack With Bungee
Gazelle Avenue C8 Removable Transflective Shimano Steps Ebike Display
Gazelle Avenue C8 Ergon Gp1 Ergonomic Grips Magura Hs11 Brake Levers
Gazelle Avenue C8 Alloy Fork With Spring Suspension
Gazelle Avenue C8 Deep Wave Step Thru Frame
Gazelle Avenue C8 Sks Plastic Fenders With Rubber Mud Flaps
Gazelle Avenue C8 Shimano Steps Rear Rack Ebike Battery
Gazelle Avenue C8 Shimano Ebike Battery Charger With Adapter
Gazelle Avenue C8 Large 4 Amp Electric Bike Charger By Shimano

Summary

  • A durable, streamlined, wave style step-thru electric bicycle from an established European brand with an excellent track record of quality and service, available in three frame sizes for improved fit
  • Uses one of the lightest, quietest, and most efficient mid-drive motors from Shimano with an updated display panel and high-capacity 504 watt hour rear-rack battery, adjustable swept-back handlebar
  • Purpose-built frame routes cables internally but has cutouts for serviceability, reinforced main-tube reduces frame flex, smaller 26" tires bring the frame closer to the ground, gel saddle and seat post suspension feel great
  • Integrated LED lights and reflective tires keep you visible and safe, fully encased chain stays clean and won't drop easily, internally geared hub can be shifted at standstill and won't get dirty or go out of true as easily as a derailleur

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Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Gazelle

Model:

Avenue C8

Price:

$2,999

Body Position:

Upright Relaxed

Suggested Use:

Neighborhood, Cruising, Urban, Commuting

Electric Bike Class:

Pedal Assist (Class 1)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

2 Year Motor and Battery, 5 Year Frame

Availability:

United States, Europe

Model Year:

2018

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

52.5 lbs (23.81 kg)

Battery Weight:

5.8 lbs (2.63 kg)

Motor Weight:

7.05 lbs (3.19 kg)

Frame Material:

Aluminum Alloy

Frame Sizes:

17.72 in (45 cm)20.08 in (51 cm)22.44 in (56.99 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

Step-Thru Small 45 cm Stats: 17.9" Seat Tube, 21.5" Reach, 15.5" Stand Over Height, 25.5" Width, 72.5" Length

Frame Types:

Step-Thru

Frame Colors:

Saturn Blue Mat

Frame Fork Details:

Aluminum Fork with Headset Spring Suspension, ~30 mm Travel, 100 mm Hub Spacing, 9 mm Skewer with Quick Release

Frame Rear Details:

135 mm Hub Spacing, 10 mm Axle with Nuts

Attachment Points:

Rear Rack Bosses, Fender Bosses

Gearing Details:

8 Speed 1x8 Shimano Nexus Inter8, Internally Geared Hub, Freewheel, SG-C6011-8R, 18 Tooth Cog

Shifter Details:

Shimano Nexus Half-Grip Shifter on Right

Cranks:

Miranda Delta, Alloy, 160 mm to 170 mm Length, 38 Tooth Chainring

Pedals:

Gazelle Light Edge, Aluminum Alloy and Plastic Platform with Rubber Tread

Headset:

VP-Z051AD Straight 1-1/8", 68.5° Head Tube Angle

Stem:

Gazelle Switch Tool-Free Adjustable Angle (Steplessly Adjustable), 110 mm Length

Handlebar:

Aluminum Alloy, Swept Back, 630 mm Length

Brake Details:

Magura HS11 Hydraulic Rim Brakes, Four Finger Levers with Tool-Free Adjustable Reach

Grips:

Ergon GP1 Ergonomic, Locking

Saddle:

Selle Royal Loire Gel

Seat Post:

Spring Suspension, 40 mm Travel, 27.2 mm to 29.8 mm Shim

Seat Post Length:

300 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

27.2 mm

Rims:

RYDE X-Plorer Safety Line, Aluminum Alloy, Double Wall, 36 Hole

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 14G Front 13G Rear, Black with Adjustable Nipples

Tire Brand:

Schwalbe Marathon, 26" x 1.75" (47-559)

Wheel Sizes:

26 in (66.04cm)

Tire Details:

Performance Line GreenGuard, 45 to 70 PSI, Reflective Sidewall Stripe, E-Bike Ready 50 km

Tube Details:

Presta Valve

Accessories:

Finura Plastic Enclosed Chain Cover, Gazelle Steps Aluminum Alloy Rear Rack with Pannier Guards and Triple-Bungee Strap (25 kg / 55 lb Max Weight), SKS Plastic Fenders with Rubber End-Flaps (Gloss Black), Busch+Müller Upp T Integrated LED Headlight (6 Volt DC), Spanninga Integrated LED Backlight, Gazelle Axis Rotary Bell, AXA Defender Frame Lock Keyed-Alike, Massload CL-KA36 Adjustable Center-Mount Kickstand, Rubberized Tube Protector at Step-Thru

Other:

Locking Removable Rack Mounted Batter Pack, 2.3 lb 4 Amp Battery Charger, 70° Seat Tube Angle

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Shimano STePs E6000

Motor Type:

Mid-Mounted Geared Motor
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

250 watts

Motor Peak Output:

500 watts

Motor Torque:

50 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Shimano STePs, Rear Rack, BT-E6001

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

14 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

504 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

4 hours

Estimated Min Range:

40 miles (64 km)

Estimated Max Range:

70 miles (113 km)

Display Type:

Shimano STePs SC-E6010, Removable, Adjustable Angle, Transflective Grayscale, Backlit LCD, (Hold Up and Down for Settings Menu)

Readouts:

Clock, Battery (Infographic and Percentage), Speed, Assist Level (OFF, ECO, NORM, HIGH), Shifting (Manual, Auto), Trip Time, Avg Speed, Max Speed, Trip Distance, Odometer, Range, Detail Range

Display Accessories:

Independent Button Pad with Tactile Feedback on Left

Drive Mode:

Advanced Pedal Assist (Rotation Sensor, Speed Sensor, Pedal Force Sensor, Power Output Relative to Pedal Input: Eco 70% 30 Nm, Normal 150% 40 Nm, High 230% 50 Nm)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)

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Written Review

The Gazelle Avenue C8 is a wave style step-thru electric bike with a very low main-tube (combined top tube and downtube). It’s actually still comprised of two metal tubes in order to maximize stiffness and strength, but they are joined with some beautifully smooth welding and gusset plates along the upper and lower portions. Because the bike uses smaller 26-inch sized wheels vs. 27.5″ or standard 28″ 700c, the entire frame is lower to the ground and that means the absolute saddle height can be lower, even with the stock suspension seat post! Approachability, stability, and comfort are all important in the world of electric bicycles because riders tend to travel at slightly higher average speeds, over longer distances, and possibly get out more frequently. I searched for a definition of the word “avenue” and found the following: a broad road in a town or city, typically having trees at regular intervals along its sides. And, I think this really suites this Gazelle ebike because it’s designed for neighborhood and city use. The tires offer a blend of efficiency, comfort, safety, and durability because of their 1.75″ width (slightly wider than average), their reflective sidewall striping, and their puncture protective lining. This is a feature-complete electric bicycle with fenders, a fully enclosed chain case, a cargo rack, and LED lights that run off of the main rechargeable battery (the same battery powering the motor and display). I love how the headlight has windows cutouts along the sides to allow for light to shine out and increase your visual footprint, however, the light is mounted on the moving portion of the fork which means it could bounce and vibrate a bit more than if it had been mounted higher on the steering tube or handlebar. The rear light is positioned above the fender and below the battery, out of the way if you put a trunk bag or side pannier bags onto the frame. The frame color is a unique semi-metallic dark blue matte that matches throughout, even on the chain case, and you can get this bike in three sizes to fit your body and leg length. I noticed that on the smallest frame size (the one I reviewed) the crank arms were extra-short 160 mm vs. the standard 170 mm and that’s the sort of attention to detail that you don’t get with some cheaper products. In a lot of ways, $3k is an excellent price for a more premium build with a name-brand motor and high capacity battery. Gazelle has been around for over 100 years and is part of the PON Group in Europe, an automotive company that has really been investing in the ebike space in recent years, acquiring Focus, Kalkhoff, and Faraday.

Driving the Avenue C8 is one of the lightest, most efficient electric bike motors I have tested in recent years. It’s the Shimano STePs E600 mid-drive which delivers 250 watts nominal, up to 500 watts peak, with a maximum torque rating of 50 Newton meters. It’s responsive, smooth, and so compact that it hides behind the chain casing and blends nicely with the downtube design. This motor is also fairly quiet, especially in the lower two assist levels. I could imagine that with some panniers on the rear rack, hiding the battery, people might not even notice that it’s electric. A real highlight for me on this bike is that it uses an 8-speed internally geared hub, also from Shimano, that can be shifted at standstill. When you pair a mid-motor with a decent range of gearing, you can maximize climbing power and efficiency to get incredible range. The Shimano display panel has a range estimator readout that was saying 47+ miles for me, even in the highest assist level, and up to 70 miles in the lowest. That’s pretty incredible, but it does depend on how you leverage the gears. Shifting is intuitive with the half-twist grip shifter on the right portion of the handlebar, there’s even a little window showing which gear you’re in (lower gears are excellent for starting, climbing, and riding slowly). One of the other benefits of internally geared hubs is how clean and durable they tend to be. There’s only one sprocket in the rear and one chainring up front so the chain itself isn’t moving around and probably won’t fall off or rattle, and if the bike tips over onto its side, there’s no derailleur hanging down that could get bent! The downsides however, are that internally geared hubs tend to cost a bit more, weight a bit more, and shift more slowly. In fact, if you try to shift while pedaling hard, you might hear some clicking and not get a result. The Nexus Inter8 is a mid-level component that tries to protect itself and won’t allow shifting if the forces are too high. And of course, because this is an electric bike with 20 mph top assisted speeds and the additional weight of that motor and battery, it’s important to have reliable braking power. And that’s exactly what you get here… some very nice Magura HS11 hydraulic rim brakes with big comfortable levers. The lever position can be adjusted to make them easier to reach for people with petite hands and the hydraulic lines, verses mechanical wires, tend to require less hand strength.

Powering this bike is an upgraded 36 volt 14 Amp hour Lithium-ion battery pack that slides into the rear rack. The older Shimano battery offered 36 volt 11 Amp hour capacity, and was still great, but the industry has been moving towards the half Kilowatt-hour size because the affordability of energy dense cells has gone up (meaning you can put the same number of batteries into a box but each battery has more power). Weight hasn’t increased much either, maybe one half of a pound, so this is a big win in my book. You can charge the battery while mounted to the frame or take it off, perhaps bringing it into your workplace for a top-off during the day. And, I love how quick the Shimano STePs battery charger is, offering 4 Amp out put vs. just 2 Amps on many cheaper products. The gripes I do have however, are that the charger is a bit bulky and heavy… and that it requires a little plug adapter to charge the battery directly when off of the frame. This block does not attach securely to the end of the charger plug, nor does it have a leash or other attachment feature. So it would be easy to set down, drop, or just misplace and then lose permanently. In that case, you would only be able to charge the battery when mounted to the bike frame, and that means you need to bring your bike close to an outlet. For people who live in upstairs apartments or don’t have space in their garage, this would be a bummer. So, keep track of the little charger dongle thing! And Shimano, please improve this design… Bosch and other companies have been able to use the same charging port on their bikes and the battery so you don’t need a dongle at all. To really maximize the life of this and other Lithium-ion battery packs I have heard that you should store them in a cool, dry location and avoid extreme heat and cold. The battery could cost over $800 to replace but is very secure when locked to the frame, and I like that the rear wheel lock uses the same key. I do have a gripe here however too, the key must be left in the frame lock to have it in the open position. If you have a keychain connected to the ebike key there, it could jingle around and even scratch up the frame or get snagged on your pant leg or dress. Other frame locks I have seen allow you to remove the key in the open or locked position, so this was a bit quirky and frustrating to me. I suppose you could lock the frame every time you stop and take the battery off, but with the key not on a keychain, what if you misplace the key! It’s like the charger adapter plug situation all over again, two small and important parts that could just be floating around if you don’t keep your wits about you.

Operating Shimano STePs powered electric bikes that use the new E6010 display panel is easier than ever! This display is larger than the old model, uses a transflective LCD that is easy to read in direct sunlight, and only requires one on/off press whereas the old display wouldn’t power up until you pressed a button on the battery pack first. Sometimes that meant reaching way back or even getting off the bike and then back on. I love almost everything about this display and the accompanying three-button control pad, which is mounted within reach of the left grip. You can remove the display for safe keeping just like the battery pack, adjust its brightness, and even invert the font color from black text on a white background to white text on a black background. It beeps sometimes when you change assist levels or navigate through menus and that can even be turned off in the settings menu. The basic operation begins when you press the power button on the display and then press either the up or down arrows on the control pad to raise or lower assist power. Getting more advanced, you can press the center button on the control pad to cycle through trip stats like average speed, maximum speed, distance, odometer, and then range. As mentioned before, range is really cool because it can help you plan rides so you don’t run out of power half way. Range is dynamically calculated based on the battery charge level and whatever assist setting you are in (Eco, Normal, or High). There is also a battery infographic at the top right corner of this display which uses a percentage vs. five or ten bars like so many competing ebike systems. If and when you want to get more advanced and change the font color or brightness stuff, just hold the up and down arrows to enter the settings menu.

This Gazelle Avenue C8 does so many things right and I recognize and appreciate lots of little things about it that might go unnoticed by someone who doesn’t study bikes all day… The frame design and wheel sizing, the longer front fender to keep your shoes and shins dry, the rubber pad at the base of the main tube to protect the paint, the minimalist suspension fork, tool-free adjustable stem, name-brand locking ergonomic grips, color-matched chain casing, nicer flick bell, and internally routed (but still accessible) cables and wires. Even though they did not included bottle cage bosses on the seat tube or main tube, you can easily add a trunk bag with a bottle holster for under $25 like this. The rear rack uses standard gauge tubing that will be compatible with most clip-on or velcro panniers, and it’s got really nice tubing supports on both sides that will keep bags from rubbing against the tires. It even comes with a triple-bungee cord for securing lightweight items quickly. Most of the areas that I feel could be improved rely on third party vendors like Shimano (for the charger weight and dongle adapter) and AXA (for the frame lock key design). Bosch now offers an Active Line motor that produces less torque, less noise, weighs less, and would be a good option to compete with the Shimano E6000, but I still like this motor and prefer the Shimano display (especially compared to the minimalist Bosch Purion seen on the Bulls Cruiser E). Compared to that ebike, the Avenue C8 is lower to the ground, lighter weight, less expensive, and it has eight speeds vs. just seven. I hope this deep review and video ride test help you to learn more about ebikes and consider the trade-offs between drive systems. Big thanks to Gazelle for partnering with me on this post and to Chris Nolte at Propel Bikes in Brooklyn for letting me review one of his demo models and proving some insights. As always, the comments are open below and I’ll try to help you with any questions. You can also connect with other customers and enthusiasts in the Gazelle Ebike Forums.

Pros:

  • Gazelle is over 100 years old and has been recognized with a Royal seal for outstanding products and customer service, they are based in the Netherlands and produce more than 275,000 bicycle per year! You get outstanding customer service and warranty with this product
  • The Avenue C8 step-thru electric bike is available in three frame sizes, it’s one of the most approachable and comfortable electric bikes in its category regardless of your body size
  • The suspension hardware is lightweight and minimal with a monoshock on the fork and a spring seat post, they aren’t super adjustable and you cannot lock them out, but they compliment the swept-back handlebar with adjustable stem, premium ergonomic grips, and gel saddle wonderfully
  • This bike is feature-complete with long plastic fenders that have rubber flaps at the end, a fully enclosed chain cover, paint-matched rear rack for hauling cargo, and integrated LED lights as well as reflective tires
  • Internally routed cables, a reinforced double-tube downtube, and color matched accessories all make this product sleek and beautiful, it’s also fairly stiff and sturdy compared to other wave models I have tried
  • The Shimano STePs display panel is removable, large and easy to read, and uses a transflective LCD which can be read in bright conditions as well as low-light and it has lots of adjustability with the easy menu system (just hold the up and down buttons to get into the menu), you can even change from black text on white to white text on black to improve the contrast
  • Hydraulic braking systems tend to be quicker and require less effort because there isn’t a cable rubbing on a housing and stretching over time, they also offer tool-free adjustable-reach levers which is great if you have large or small hands, or if you like to wear gloves to stay warm when cycling
  • The Shimano Nexus Inter8 internally geared hub tends to be more reliable and stay cleaner than a cassette and derailleur setup, it can be shifted at standstill and only has one external sprocket so your chain stays tighter and is much less likely to fall off
  • The battery pack can be charged on or off the frame and only weighs ~5.8 lbs so it’s relatively easy to carry if you are a commuter, the 4 Amp charger will fill it quicker than most other ebikes that use 2 Amp chargers
  • I like the rear rack design because it’s low, positioned far back from the saddle so it can go all the way down without colliding, uses standard gauge tubing to work with clip-on panniers, has side blockers to keep gear from rubbing on the tires, and even comes with a bungee cord for quick mounting
  • For quick stops, the AXA rear wheel lock secures the bike and most people aren’t going to be able to lift and run off with a 50+ pound bicycle… the front wheel does have quick release by default so consider locking it or keeping en eye out so nobody snatches it
  • Getting a flat tire is no fun, even if you’ve got quick release wheels like the front wheel on this bike, since the rear wheel is bolted on and you’ve got a fancy chain cover setup… it’s really nice that Gazelle included Schwalbe Marathon tires with Performance Line GreenGuard to reduce the possibility of flats, just keep the tires pumped up between the recommended PSI (40 to 70 PSI) so you’ll be less likely to get a pinch flat
  • Considering that the bike uses a deep step-thru frame and offers smaller sizes, I think it was smart that they opted for 26″ wheels vs. 28″ (700c) sizing like most city bikes… these wheels bring the frame closer to the ground, the trade-off is rolling momentum and a higher attack angle which won’t span cracks quite as smoothly
  • I like that Gazelle opted for shorter 160 mm crank arms for their smaller frames because that will reduce pedal strikes and just feel more comfortable riders with shorter legs

Cons:

  • You have to lock the cafe lock in order to remove the key which can take a bit of extra time or encourage you to just leave the key in… which presents a security risk, it would be nice if you could remove the key locked or not locked as is the case with most ABUS frame locks
  • Some of the fancier ebike systems are now offering USB or Micro-USB charging ports for use with portable electronic devices, this ebike does not have that yet
  • The charger is pretty large and weighs ~2.3 lbs while similarly specced hardware from competing brands is in the 1.7 lb to 2 lb range, this charger also requires an adapter plug to charge the battery pack independently (off the bike) and there’s no leash or convenient way to keep the adapter with the charger, I could see this part being misplaced and lost easily
  • The rear rack is pretty great but I was surprised that the frame doesn’t have bottle cage bosses on the seat tube, there appears to be plenty of space and this could be handy for attaching a mini-pump, folding lock, or bottle cage
  • Minor grip here, but the headlight is mounted below the front shock which means it will bounce around more and adds unsprung weight
  • I understand why they chose a rack mounted battery here, to free up the mid-section of the frame for low step-thru, but it does position weight up high and towards the back which isn’t as stable and contributes to some frame flex
  • The kickstand is mounted at the center of the frame, just behind the bottom bracket, and can get in the way of the left crank arm if you leave the stand down and spin the cranks or back the bike up (like out of a garage or shed), I prefer the rear mounted stands that stay out of the way and can provide increased stability for a rack battery and bags
  • The rear fender did not seem to be attached to the underside of the cargo rack and it rattled quite a bit during my ride test… you can see and hear this around 22:24 in the video review above

Resources:

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Mike
2 weeks ago

Once again, we have a mid drive that has no throttle. While having no throttle is something that EU regulators shoved down the throats of European ebike riders, and respective OEM’s, the lack of a throttle remains a serious shortcoming of all of these ebikes. Most mid-drives do not have throttles, except for Evelo.

Customers typically demand the throttle, for uses such as having help while navigating from a stop on a hill, to occassionally not wanting to pedal, and other situations that an ebike has an advantage for the user.

The US doesn’t have to accept this, and nor should consumers accept these very high prices for mid-drives. They are really hard to maintain or service, and will be much more expensive in the long run.

Reply
Court Rye
2 weeks ago

Hi Mike! My experience with mid-drives is that they’re efficient, well balanced, and can be extremely reliable and easy to maintain (basically they are swapped out if a problem arises). That’s not the case for every product, and EVELO uses mostly Bafang mid-drive motors which do tend to encounter breakdowns with throttle activation and that can be very hard on your chain, cassette, and derailleur too… but I’m still a big fan of choice and love that we have so many options to choose from. The Gazelle Avenue C8 comes from a European company that follows their rules. I think they executed very well with this product, but you don’t have to buy it :)

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Court
2 weeks ago

Update! I just completed a full review for this electric bicycle, complete with a video and some photos. Check it out at https://electricbikereview.com/gazelle/avenue-c8/

Dewey
1 month ago

Gazelle Avenue

Raleigh Electric Sprite iE

richiebike
1 month ago

Thank you all for the replies and information. I live in western Pennsylvania, and believe me, it's hilly and sometimes very steep. I live only 20 miles from Canton Avenue, probably the steepest(37%) residential street in the US. (See Bicycling Magazine p. 38 January/Feb. 2018 issue) So I'll probably stick with the cassette when the time comes for a new ebike.

Court
3 months ago

I've been doing some more Gazelle e-bike reviews and they recently sent me this press release about a new model called the Avenue so I wanted to share it:

INTRODUCING THE GAZELLE AVENUE
The Perfect Bike For An Urban Lifestyle

Monday, October 2, 2017 — SANTA CRUZ, CA - Gazelle - www.gazellebikes.com - Introduces the Gazelle Avenue, a secure and stable eBike equipped with Shimano STEPS intelligent drivetrain that is perfect for the urban commuter. The Avenue is ideal for everyday activities whether picking up dinner or commuting to work, the capable Avenue is the best choice for a reliable, safe and swift ride.

The Avenue features a lightweight aluminum frame that is balanced to perfection with a low-step design, single tube, and integrated cables. The geometry is based around 26” wheels and optimized for comfort with a 68-degree headtube angle and 70-degree seat tube angle that creates a relaxed and stable ride. The 250 watt Shimano STEPS has an average range of 50 miles and a max distance that can approach almost 80 miles. Magura brakes provide dependable, controlled safety with swift and smooth braking. Combining design and performance, the Avenue never disappoints. Enjoy the ride!

Features:

Shimano STEPS
36V / 504 watt battery
8-speed Shimano internal hub
Magura HS22 hydraulic brakes
Frame: Low-Step
Suspension Seatpost
Suspension Front Fork
Unisex
Available colors: Saturn Blue Mat (with more colors to follow)
MSRP: $2,899 (limited edition price)

ABOUT GAZELLE BIKES
Gazelle’s history is very much the history of the bicycle as a popular means of urban transportation. Their original Dutch style comfort bike won over the hearts of the Netherlands 125 years ago and their continued design and technology have people all over the world falling in love today. Today, Gazelle remains at the forefront of invention to make cycling more enjoyable and accessible. Gazelle is an integral part of Dutch cycling heritage and have kept in cadence with today’s global innovation with their new line of e-bikes. Gazelle has positioned themselves as the benchmark for urban mobility - traditionally and contemporarily. Learn more at www.gazellebikes.com/usa/

1/8
BurbManDan
6 months ago

Yay, smooth silence again! The replacement wheel arrived on Wednesday. I was not able to get over to the dealer until this morning due to my commuting schedule. Further since the dealer indicated they would not be able to swap the wheel while I waited, suggesting I would have to leave the bike, I did the work myself. I took in the bare wheel and swapped, having removed the tire, sensor magnet, sprocket, disc brake and Nuvinci shifter interface. Not much work really, and good to help better understand the hub. Ironically, the hardest thing was breaking the bead on the tires... GOOD GRIEF - these tires seat onto the rims like motorcycle tires and require a massive squeeze to let go of the rim.

I had hoped the dealer would be able to do a software update to correct a dual-battery charging issue (stops charging with both batteries on bike at about ~65%), but they cannot locate their computer, cable, software, whatever... They said it must be packed somewhere still after their move to their new location (about 6 months ago). This is not confidence inspiring since it indicates they obviously don't do much Bosch servicing. Can anyone give me an idea how frequently or regularly updates come available, or is my only avenue depending on this dealer?

Robie
7 months ago

Hi Bunny,
Check out "Electric Avenue" they are a dealer in Austin for Hai-bike and Bulls e-bikes.

Matt A
7 months ago

The frames of the R&Ms do seem well put together and strong. People comment to me about the sturdiness of the Charger so they'd probably be really surprised to see the Delite. I guess the welds are always going to be the weak spots on any bike frame.

That gear ratio thing I had mentioned before: I don't have hills on my commute just a gradual grade change. On the way to work I am descending a bit and on the way home ascending. When I'm on an open stretch and have good pavement I run out of gear range and the only way to increase my speed is to increase the assist level. Its like using the assist level as another gear I guess. In fact, I have the shift suggestion thingy turned on in the Intuvia and sometimes it throws me the arrow to shift when I actually can't shift anymore. I've maxed out my gear range and the Intuvia is telling me to shift. On good pavement I feel like I have enough leg and lung power to get the bike to 28 with only Tour mode. But I don't have the gear range to get it there. I actually haven't hit 28 mph yet on this bike. My max is 27.5 and that was a slight ascension. If I am maxed out on gear and I up the assist to Turbo, I just feel like I'm spinning ridiculously fast. There were some suggestions on this forum and even my LBS mechanics suggested that maybe I could change the front or back rings to alter that ratio - but I haven't really explored that avenue yet.

A couple of the 2nd commuter bikes I am considering are 20 mph bikes. I'm really curious as to whether the higher torque motor and lighter bike but lower top speed might actually make my commute more efficient (given all the start/stop riding I have). I mentioned it before but very little of my total commute is spent at speeds over 20 mph. I have a couple of stretches where I get there but on those I'm usually cruising around 22-23 mph and never hitting the higher top speeds of 28 mph. On the commute home I sometimes keep the speed down a bit on the open stretches trying to stay right around 20 mph in order to conserve battery. I wish my area had a strong e-bike presence wherein I could borrower a bike for a day or two to test out on an actual 35 mile work commute. Its one thing to test ride a bike but totally another to sit on it for a couple of long rides over multiple days with your gear/wind etc.
Oh yeah and also, if you too see your cadence being at about 85rpm at 26-27mph, then I would go with the different chain ring sizes. If you are spinning faster than that at 26mph+, then please get someone who knows what they're doing to fix your Nuvinci.

Matt A
7 months ago

The frames of the R&Ms do seem well put together and strong. People comment to me about the sturdiness of the Charger so they'd probably be really surprised to see the Delite. I guess the welds are always going to be the weak spots on any bike frame.

That gear ratio thing I had mentioned before: I don't have hills on my commute just a gradual grade change. On the way to work I am descending a bit and on the way home ascending. When I'm on an open stretch and have good pavement I run out of gear range and the only way to increase my speed is to increase the assist level. Its like using the assist level as another gear I guess. In fact, I have the shift suggestion thingy turned on in the Intuvia and sometimes it throws me the arrow to shift when I actually can't shift anymore. I've maxed out my gear range and the Intuvia is telling me to shift. On good pavement I feel like I have enough leg and lung power to get the bike to 28 with only Tour mode. But I don't have the gear range to get it there. I actually haven't hit 28 mph yet on this bike. My max is 27.5 and that was a slight ascension. If I am maxed out on gear and I up the assist to Turbo, I just feel like I'm spinning ridiculously fast. There were some suggestions on this forum and even my LBS mechanics suggested that maybe I could change the front or back rings to alter that ratio - but I haven't really explored that avenue yet.

A couple of the 2nd commuter bikes I am considering are 20 mph bikes. I'm really curious as to whether the higher torque motor and lighter bike but lower top speed might actually make my commute more efficient (given all the start/stop riding I have). I mentioned it before but very little of my total commute is spent at speeds over 20 mph. I have a couple of stretches where I get there but on those I'm usually cruising around 22-23 mph and never hitting the higher top speeds of 28 mph. On the commute home I sometimes keep the speed down a bit on the open stretches trying to stay right around 20 mph in order to conserve battery. I wish my area had a strong e-bike presence wherein I could borrower a bike for a day or two to test out on an actual 35 mile work commute. Its one thing to test ride a bike but totally another to sit on it for a couple of long rides over multiple days with your gear/wind etc.
Why the high end gear ratio of the Nuvinci is not ideal, I think it is enough. After reading your post I opened up the Nyon Fitness screen with the Cadence readout and found that the cadence in the highest gear ratio required to maintain 26.5-27mph was 85 for me. If yours is significantly more than that, I would consider having a shop take a look at your NuVinci, a shop that really really knows the Nuvinci. What worries me is that your Shift recommendations are going off while in the highest gear, this was my first clue that something was wrong with the Nuvinci. The bosch shift recommendation should not appear when you are already in the highest gear. This happened to me along with the spinning at high speeds which lead me to realize something has to be wrong.

It would be nice to have more ebike presence everywhere for test riding and reviews. If you rarely go over 20mph then I would get the CX drive, however one of your goals is fitness so the extra torque is something I feel you would never utilized. As you know, max torque is achieved at high RPMs, and if you are never doing top speed in Turbo, then you will never see that 75nm of torque. I am no expert so please don't take this as fact, but I absolutely highly highly doubt that the CX drive is going to hit the 75nm of torque unless you are either 1. close to top speed or 2. going up an extremely steep grade. I would opt for the optional higher speed even if I would rarely use it. Also, just as our HS bike starts to cut the motor down at 26mph, the CX drive I'm sure will start cutting your motor power out significantly at 18mph.

E-Wheels
7 months ago

There were some suggestions on this forum and even my LBS mechanics suggested that maybe I could change the front or back rings to alter that ratio - but I haven't really explored that avenue yet.

Over50,
At one time I was considering the R&M Nuvinci Charger but my concerns regarding the limited high ratio end of the N380 hub required for commuting steered me towards the R&M Charger Touring as it has the Shimano 10S cassette which has higher gearing options
I posted the below about possible Gates pulley sizes in the Nuvinci Hub thread https://electricbikereview.com/forum/threads/nuvinci-hub.11852/ just in case you were considering a change out at some point

Over50,
Thanks for posting your observations of the Nuvinci N380 CVT high-low ratio range
Your feedback on the R&M Charger is very useful and appreciated as I have included the 25km/hr Charger Nuvinci on my short list
Based on my current road bike gearing which allows me to comfortably cruise at 30-35km/hr, I have concerns if the N380 will give me enough high ratio range to cruise at similar speeds without having a too higher cadence
I am looking at gear ratio change out options if I was to buy a bike with the Nuvinci N380 hub and thought this might be helpful to you as well
Using the Gates Carbon Drive Calculator http://www.gatescarbondrive.com/Apps/DriveCalculator/index.html it appears as you may have a few options to change your current front and rear pinions to get higher gear ratios whilst optimizing your current 111t belt
This is providing you have enough adjustment at the dropouts to vary the chain stay lengths to accommodate the new pinions accordingly
I have assumed your bike has the below pinions and belt size which were taken from the R&M site listed for the Charger HS Nuvinci
Motor pinion 22t
Rear hub pinion 24t
Chain stay length 485
Belt 111t
Gear ratio 0.917

If so then the below options are available

New ratio option #1
Motor pinion 24t
Rear hub pinion 22t
Chain stay length 483.99
Belt 111t
Gear ratio 1.091

New ratio option #2
Motor pinion 26t
Rear hub pinion 22t
Chain stay length 478.45
Belt 111t
Gear ratio 1.182

Not sure what the cost would be to purchase new front & rear pinions from Gates, but it may be worth pursuing

Over50
7 months ago

...The aluminum on the Delite it much thicker everywhere, but especially the top tube where the Charger is literally half the thickness of the Delite. I assume this is because they wanted to make a super strong front triangle on the bike to support the suspension components. Losing the geometrical advantage of the diamond frame probably required more aluminum to strengthen the front triangle. But really, it looks like double the aluminum was used at least for the top tube...I am curious what you mean when you say you do not have the gear range for Turbo to be useful...

The frames of the R&Ms do seem well put together and strong. People comment to me about the sturdiness of the Charger so they'd probably be really surprised to see the Delite. I guess the welds are always going to be the weak spots on any bike frame.

That gear ratio thing I had mentioned before: I don't have hills on my commute just a gradual grade change. On the way to work I am descending a bit and on the way home ascending. When I'm on an open stretch and have good pavement I run out of gear range and the only way to increase my speed is to increase the assist level. Its like using the assist level as another gear I guess. In fact, I have the shift suggestion thingy turned on in the Intuvia and sometimes it throws me the arrow to shift when I actually can't shift anymore. I've maxed out my gear range and the Intuvia is telling me to shift. On good pavement I feel like I have enough leg and lung power to get the bike to 28 with only Tour mode. But I don't have the gear range to get it there. I actually haven't hit 28 mph yet on this bike. My max is 27.5 and that was a slight ascension. If I am maxed out on gear and I up the assist to Turbo, I just feel like I'm spinning ridiculously fast. There were some suggestions on this forum and even my LBS mechanics suggested that maybe I could change the front or back rings to alter that ratio - but I haven't really explored that avenue yet.

A couple of the 2nd commuter bikes I am considering are 20 mph bikes. I'm really curious as to whether the higher torque motor and lighter bike but lower top speed might actually make my commute more efficient (given all the start/stop riding I have). I mentioned it before but very little of my total commute is spent at speeds over 20 mph. I have a couple of stretches where I get there but on those I'm usually cruising around 22-23 mph and never hitting the higher top speeds of 28 mph. On the commute home I sometimes keep the speed down a bit on the open stretches trying to stay right around 20 mph in order to conserve battery. I wish my area had a strong e-bike presence wherein I could borrower a bike for a day or two to test out on an actual 35 mile work commute. Its one thing to test ride a bike but totally another to sit on it for a couple of long rides over multiple days with your gear/wind etc.

bob armani
8 months ago

Thanks Bob for the support! I hope other companies are monitoring this thread as well, they should never make money on updates, need to take a lesson from the Dot.com world, updates are meant to improve their product, not as an avenue for their dealers to make money from us or to use it as tool to force us to buy from them. This business model needs to be changed, customer loyalty is EARNED through product support and customer service. We are not talking about a $79 Walmart bicycle, these things start at $2K and up, not cheap, we deserve better!!!

You are welcome Goodair. Very well said. These ebikes ain't cheap and you need to get these people to realize that you can take your business elsewhere! Thanks to this forum, we can band together and voice our opinions and get what is well deserved for our hard earned cash spent on a complex machine. They need expert assistance on all levels! The mfg needs to be competent and not cast aside a legitimate complaint like yours. I don't buy the liability issue at the corporate meeting. Just trying to skirt the issue to avoid any further responsibility to the customer from the get go IMHO.Please keep us all posted on any further developments concerning this matter. Thanks!

Ravi Kempaiah
8 months ago

Thanks Bob for the support! I hope other companies are monitoring this thread as well, they should never make money on updates, need to take a lesson from the Dot.com world, updates are meant to improve their product, not as an avenue for their dealers to make money from us or to use it as tool to force us to buy from them. This business model needs to be changed, customer loyalty is EARNED through product support and customer service. We are not talking about a $79 Walmart bicycle, these things start at $2K and up, not cheap, we deserve better!!!

@Goodair ,

Recently, Shimano released a new E8000 motor that is claimed to be much better than the Bosch CX. Many brands are quickly adapting to that motor.
So, Bosch quickly sent out a new update for their CX motor last week that has a dynamic assist in "sport" mode.
Brose did not want to fall behind either. Actually, Brose released a new update 3-4 weeks ago. If the dealer had the bike prior to that, he may have forgotten to do an update.
The latest update from Brose is supposed to improve the torque band but I have not had a chance to test it fully. Either way, it won't make the bike like Bosch CX (which has much sharper response). Brose system is more subtle and fluid than the Bosch.
I am glad Barney was able to address the issue. They are good folks and they do care about their customers. I wouldn't be too worried.

Goodair
8 months ago

Goodair-Again you are 100% correct on all of your gripes here and they are totally legitimate! Keep hacking at this issue IMHO!

Thanks Bob for the support! I hope other companies are monitoring this thread as well, they should never make money on updates, need to take a lesson from the Dot.com world, updates are meant to improve their product, not as an avenue for their dealers to make money from us or to use it as tool to force us to buy from them. This business model needs to be changed, customer loyalty is EARNED through product support and customer service. We are not talking about a $79 Walmart bicycle, these things start at $2K and up, not cheap, we deserve better!!!

ace20ri
9 months ago

Nice work @SuperGoop as usual! Great info on the add-ons. I definitely would like to add the ability to record my rides.

Since I haven't posted in a while here is an update to my current sense resistor swap. It was successful but had some temporary set backs. Here are some pics of the swap...sorry I was caught up in the moment and did not take a lot of them. If the solder job looks a little crappy it is because the pcba has conformal coating which sucks to remove.

Existing current sense resistor:

Current sense resistor removed:

New current sense resistor (Vishay 3W 0.005Ohm):

I improved the solder job after I took these pics (promise!). I also added more solder around the FET pads and the FET rail (right side of the picture above). The Vishay 3W current sense resistor improved the rated current to 24.5A so no more worrying about pushing the controller to hard (besides worrying about the FETS and capacitors but they seem to be pretty robust based on my research). Now I did run into an issue taking the bike out after this update. The motor would cut out every time I tried to accelerate from rest. The power reading would ramp to 500-600W and then cut out and start from 0. After it restarted then it would accelerate no problem. I was worried that resistance change caused to much ripple current and caused the motor to trip due to under voltage. BUT after unplugging the battery and fully charging it and reconnecting it seemed to have corrected itself. Not really sure how that is the case (I'm asking my electrical engineer coworkers to explain). I have been able to accelerate from rest without any cut outs and it's great. I can feel the difference on some of the hills I climb during my commute. I really want to take it to Half Moon Bay beach to really test it out.

One thing I did notice when I accessed the current parameter in the LCD display is that I can increase the current to 30A now. I was pretty sure that 20A was the previous limit. I'm not sure if it our controller is smart enough to know that it received an upgrade but somehow it does. @SuperGoop can you confirm that your bike max current setting is 20A? Or can you increase it to 30A (obviously don't leave it at 30A)?

Either way yay for me! All that I am missing is the ability to tweak the controller programming from the back end...need George's help with that! Since I live in Silicon Valley, I would really like to take advantage of every possible avenue to increase my speed for commuting.

I am looking into the magnetics side of our motor to see if we are truly limited by the windings of the coils or if Voltbike is limiting us due to country/state laws. I do feel that since we purchased the bikes we should have the ability to change the bike to how we see fit easily.

Lastly, here are some pics of my Classic 2.0 Garment pannier for commuting (https://www.twowheelgear.com/products/commuter-garment-pannier):

I have changed the bike a lot since these pics but they work for showing the pannier. Needless to say, I love my purchase and glad that I made it.

Okay, really lastly for this post if anyone is taking a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico in the near future I highly recommend booking the Ebike outing with Cabo Adventures. They have a bunch of RadRovers (the Yukon is way better IMO) and take you for a 2 hour ride up and down the Pacific ocean coast. You then go to a remote pavilion to make real Mexican quesadillas and learn how to make Mexican margaritas! Ask for Hector the Protector! (I do not get anything for referals just wanted to share because my fiancé and I had a blast!).

1/5
Rolf620
2 weeks ago

About the AXA Defender frame lock.
It is a Dutch lock and sins we have more bikes than people you need a good lock in the Netherlands.
Firts of the key retention, it is a insurance requirement the lock is ART 2 certified and has a serial number.
If you claim your bike stolen you have to provide two key's (whit that number) so if you park your bike and don't lock and some one takes of whit your bike they have one of the two key's that way they make sure you lock your bike.
The two hand operation is a child safety device we Dutch tend to take our young kids on the back of the bike to school.
You have to turn the key on one side 1/8 to be able to operate the locking lever on the other side this way a child riding on the back can't push on the leaver during the ride blocking the rear wheel in transit.
On the other side of the key hole there is a hole were a locking pin fits in.
A hardened chain whit a pin and a big end shackle can be looped around some thing solid like a pole pull the pin trough the big end shackle and insert into the lock this way your bike is lock at the rear wheel and locked to the solid world so no one can lift the rear wheel and walk away whit your bike.
Unlocking does retract the locking ring on the rear wheel and releases the locking pin.
One key two security features.

Michael V
2 weeks ago

Very nice city pedelec. Court you selected the right spot for a navy blue bike!
Noticed the rim break mounts are attached to correct side on frame and bicycle fork so it is pushed not pulled when breaking. If I saw it corectly that chain protector covers all chain right and left side protecting it much better from sand carried by sea wind as they got quite often in the Netherland.
I'm using Shimano Nexus i8 hub since 16000 km and it is a sufficient non-problem hub for pedelecs used in flat and middle hill areas. It needs professional maintenance each 5000 km. The chain tension adjustment screw shows the big experiance Gazelle got.

Wishing all a happy new year!

Eco Hut
2 weeks ago

Is there a throttle button? If yes, what is the build quality?

Seb K
2 weeks ago

I have those tyres and they are really good . I have had mine for nearly a year and use my bike daily and they are still perfect .

Ddr Hazy
2 weeks ago

Rim brakes, small motor and small battery. Expensive at $3k, you are paying roughly $2500 for the non electric parts of the bike and paying a premium price for the "hip" design, not for it's performance.

Chris Till
2 weeks ago

I much prefer the R&M Nevo to this but it’s still pretty good. But tyres too narrow, rim brakes instead of discs. Rack mounted battery also not great. And the badly positioned kick stand.

It’s cool to see more of the Shimano system. But I haven’t seen that system or the Yamaha being used with a belt drive. Is that possible on either of them?

David Darwall
2 weeks ago

Do you plan on doing a review on the smart Motion pacer gt?

Douglas Kmiotek
2 weeks ago

It's freezing in NYC,... when did you get to do this review??? LOL!!!

Douglas Kmiotek
2 weeks ago

Seb K I actually know that,...I was being humorous. I've chatted with Court on many occasions.

Seb K
2 weeks ago

He has a lot of videos he has already filmed and is releasing them one by one .

Lysle Basinger
2 weeks ago

Price?

Seb K
2 weeks ago

100k

TECH_GEEK10
2 weeks ago

3k

Kevin Soon
2 weeks ago

1

trekkeruss
2 weeks ago

Personally, not a fan of batteries mounted on a rack; too much weight up high. Also, there are good reasons why hydraulic rim brakes are not popular. IMO, better use quality mechanical brakes that are both easier to service and where replacement parts are available everywhere and not only online.

b b
2 weeks ago

Nice