Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Review

2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Review
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle 500 Watt Front Hub Motor External Controller
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Rear Basket Battery Case
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Cockpit View
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Display Controls Brake Lever
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Folding Frame Wide Comfort Saddle
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle American Style Crank Set Plastic Pedals
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle 19 Inch Wheels Chain Guard
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Stock Trike Red
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Review
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle 500 Watt Front Hub Motor External Controller
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Rear Basket Battery Case
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Cockpit View
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Display Controls Brake Lever
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Folding Frame Wide Comfort Saddle
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle American Style Crank Set Plastic Pedals
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle 19 Inch Wheels Chain Guard
2019 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Stock Trike Red

Summary

  • A value priced mobility style electric delta trike with a lot of practicality, while remaining simple and keeping thoughtful considerations
  • Made to fit through narrow doorways and aisles, able to remove the handlebar and fold the bike for transport, can fit in some trunks and is approved by the FAA to travel by plane
  • Has a natural feeling coasting brake as well as front brake, 500 watt front hub motor, and a standard cargo basket in the back
  • No pedal assist (throttle only), no motor inhibitor on the rear brake, other than at a standstill, you have to shift your weight during tight turns

Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Liberty Trike

Model:

Electric Tricycle

Price:

$1,498 ($250 Shipping, Fully Assembled Ready to Ride)

Body Position:

Upright

Suggested Use:

Neighborhood, Travel

Electric Bike Class:

Throttle on Demand (Class 2)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

1 Year Comprehensive

Availability:

United States

Model Year:

2019

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

80 lbs (36.28 kg)

Battery Weight:

10.5 lbs (4.76 kg)

Motor Weight:

14 lbs (6.35 kg)

Frame Material:

Steel

Frame Sizes:

13 in (33.02 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

10" Seat Tube, 14" Stand Over Height, 23" Reach, 26" Wide, 55" Length

Frame Types:

Trike

Frame Colors:

White, Black, Blue, Purple, Hot Pink, Coral, Orange, Yellow, Teal, Forest Green

Frame Fork Details:

Custom Chromoly Steel 124mm

Frame Rear Details:

Flexible Shaft Coupling on Rear Axle

Attachment Points:

Rear Rack Bosses

Gearing Details:

1 Single Speed, 20 Tooth Sprocket

Cranks:

Single Piece American 6" Cranks (152mm), 40 Tooth Chainring

Pedals:

Generic Plastic Platform

Headset:

Threaded, Caged Bearings

Stem:

22.2mm Diameter

Handlebar:

High-Rise Steel, 26" Long

Brake Details:

Coaster Brake in Rear (Pedal Back), Promax Mechanical Disc with 160 mm Rotor in Front, Wuxing Lever with Motor Inhibitor on Right

Grips:

Black Flat Rubber with Matching Throttle Length

Saddle:

Velo, 11" Wide with 12" Backrest

Seat Post:

Rigid, Steel

Seat Post Length:

350 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

25.4 mm

Rims:

Alloy, 32 Hole Rear and Cast Aluminum Front

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 13 Gauge, Black

Tire Brand:

Electric Bike Technologies Branded 16" x 2.5"

Wheel Sizes:

16 in (40.64cm)

Tire Details:

35 PSI, 2.5 BAR

Tube Details:

Schrader Valve

Accessories:

Steel Chain Cover, Micro USB Port on Display, Chain Tensioner, Parking Brake Latch for the Front Brake, Motor Cable Protector, Chainring Frame Brace Mounted Under Bottom Bracket

Other:

Frame is Made in Brooklyn NY, 1.7 lb 2.5 Amp Charger, Max Weight Flat Ground ~400 lbs, Max Weight on 18% Grade (Wheelchair Ramp) ~300 lbs

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Electric Bike Technologies

Motor Type:

Front-Mounted Geared Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

500 watts

Motor Peak Output:

750 watts

Motor Torque:

21 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Electric Bike Technologies

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

8 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

288 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

4 hours

Estimated Min Range:

15 miles (24 km)

Estimated Max Range:

35 miles (56 km)

Display Type:

King Meter, Fixed, Backlit, Monochrome LCD

Readouts:

Battery Level (5 Bars), Speed, Avg. Speed, Max Speed, Power Level (0-5), Odometer, Trip A, Trip B

Display Accessories:

Independent Button Pad

Drive Mode:

Cadence Sensing Pedal Assist, Trigger Throttle (12 Magnet Pedelec Sensor)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)(Adjustable Speed, PAS Sensitivity, Current, Reverse)

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Written Review

To run the forums, host the website, and travel, I charge a universal service fee for my reviews. This review was sponsored by Electric Bike Technologies. My goal is to be transparent and unbiased, this video and written review are not meant to be an endorsement of Electric Bike Technologies products.

After covering so many bikes at Electric Bike Review, over time, they can start to blend tougher somewhat…So it is always fun and refreshing for us to see our 3 wheeled friends, the trike. Today we are checking out the Liberty Trike from Electric Bike Technologies. The Liberty Trike is a somewhat familiar face for those in the ebike world. Having been around as a favorite for affordability and mobility, the parent company has upgraded it bit by bit over the years to bring us the 2019 version we have today. So as just mentioned, it is quite affordable at $1,498, and it is indeed mobility oriented. That is thanks to the super low stand over height, narrow width, and portability for both short and long distance traveling. First, we will talk about that standover height. It’s very low to the ground and easy to approach. If you can get your leg over a single staircase step, then it should be okay for you to get over and onto the Liberty Trike. The wheels here are 16” which keeps things nice and compact as well. The overall width of the trike was kept narrow on purpose, to get in and out of small doorways and through skinny aisle or crowds of people, and this is something it does exceptionally well! The stem and handlebars are removable, as well as the battery, and the already compact trike can fold via the latch on the main frame tube to get it even smaller. I have heard stories of people easily stowing this in the trunk of a car, or even taking it on an airplane as we will talk about a bit more later. Seating on the Liberty Trike is nice and comfortable, thanks to the upgraded 11” wide saddle that now comes standard with a backrest. Pedaling is better too, the rear seat stay frame has been slightly changed so that now you have more heel clearance. Additionally, the crank arm itself has been refined to a longer American style crank so you get a more natural pedal motion, where as the older version, the pedaling action could feel like you were on a toddler trike. As you sit, you will see the simple controls, small grips, and the twist throttle on the right… I love that the handlebars have a rise to it so they come out and meet you nicely, even if you are taller. The stem is telescoping and easy to adjust as well as the seat with a quick release lever. For creature comforts, you get a nice chain guard to protect your clothing from getting eaten up by the chain. You also now get a front fender with a large mud flap to keep you dry and the dirt out of the way. One of the fan favorites is still here too, the rear basket. This is mounted on the battery rack and has nice strong tubing for carrying you bag or other items around. Another fan favorite is the many colors it comes in, there are 11 fun colors to chose from.

Driving the trike is a front hub-drive motor rated at 500 watts. This motor is encased in the wheel rim itself and has a torque arm to keep things stable and sturdy. Although the Liberty Trike is throttle only with no pedal assist, I really appreciate that it has a reverse mode where as most others don’t. It coms in really handy and it is setup in such a way that you can’t reverse during forward movement as a safety feature. The throttle here increases smoothly and you can control that level of power with 5 modes of throttle responsiveness. This is great if you need to dial it down for hanging out with a slow moving crowd at like a museum or something similar, yet you can dial it up and really get going for long stretches. The controller here is external which keeps battery replacement costs down, and it also makes maintenance easy. The same could be said about the external wiring here too. In the rear you have a 20 tooth sprocket, but the real interesting mechanical piece here are the brakes. In the front you have a Promax 300 160mm mechanical disc brake powered by the left brake lever and includes a motor inhibitor. However, to stop the rear, many appreciate the traditional style coaster brake. A coaster brake is where you stop the pedals (some people say pedal backwards) to engage the brakes. It feels natural to most, however there is no motor inhibitors on this rear brake, something I wish was present. There is a parking brake though, which is nice for loading and unloading.

Powering the trike is a 36v 8ah lithium ion battery pack. I love that this one has a metal enclosure to keep it protected. Also, the battery here has a handle and mounts securely on a sturdy metal plate. The battery is pretty lightweight so having it mounted in the rear makes turning easy. It is secured by lock and key and the key is also what turns the trike on in an ignition style. When I asked them about the lower 8ah rating, Electric Bike Technologies told me that it was actually done on purpose. For one, they riders found they weren’t using the full capacity of the battery on their average trips, and two, the 8ah rating meets federal regulations with the FAA so you can take the battery with you when you fly! This is nice since as a mobility trike, it stows away nicely, so it really makes the ultimate travel companion. To really care for this and other lithium-ion packs, I have heard that storing in a cool dry location vs. extreme heat or cold will extend the life and try to keep it about 50% full when not using for long periods so you won’t stress the cells. Try not to let it run down to zero, because that’s really hard on the cell chemistry.

Operating the trike is simple. Once the battery is mounted, start by turning the key in the on position. From there, hold it ‘i’ button to turn on the display. The battery is shown across the top in 5 ticks, so 20% increments. Shown below that is you speed in MPH and the various levels of throttle assist you might be in, 0-5. To change the throttle assist, simply hit + or – button on the controls mounted on the left handle bar. Keep in mind, the throttle assist level controls the top speed too. This is great so if you are in a parking lot, or need to take it slow, you can have it… let’s say at level 2, and the throttle will go nice and easy without fast acceleration and keeps the top speed limited. Similarly, if you want to go full out, you can put it in level 5 and the throttle will act accordingly. Anyways, the display is not removable which is kind of a shame, but it is clear and easy to read. I also noticed there is a button on the left controls underneath that can act as a walk mode if you need to move the bike forward while carting it around.

Overall I found the Liberty Trike to be a wonderful trike built with purpose and thoughtfulness. I enjoyed the easy going ride but also have a lot of appreciation for the practicality of it all. The trike may not be for everyone however, so let’s go over the tradeoffs here to see if it is a good fit for you. Some riders will be turned off by no pedal assist, but I found the throttle to be something I wanted to make a priority anyway. When turning tightly, you have to shift your weight since it is such a small vehicle, this may be annoying for some riders wanting to take things a bit faster. And finally, I love the back brake, but I wish it had a motor inhibitor like the front does. I feel it would make the whole process more natural. Even with those tradeoffs considered, there is a lot of practicality and it is hard to argue with a $1,498 price point. With stellar online reviews and a lineage of reliability, this trike will likely appeal to many of the right people. A big thanks to Electric Bike Technologies for letting me try out the Liberty Trike!

As always, I welcome questions and feedback in the comment section below. Whether you own a previous version of the bike, have taken a test ride, or are brand new to the space, my goal is to provide an objective and honest resource. You can also join the Electric Bike Technologies Ebike forums and share your own photos, videos, and review updates to help others! Have fun out there, and ride safe :)

Pros:

  • A compact trike centered around mobility, portability, and reliability, thanks to its narrow wheel base, easy to use operation, folding aspects, and simple mechanics
  • It is very low to the ground and easy to approach, if you can get your leg over a single staircase step, then it should be okay for you to get over and onto the Liberty Trike
  • The overall width of the trike was kept narrow on purpose, to get in and out of small doorways and through skinny aisle or crowds of people, and this is something it does exceptionally well
  • The stem and handlebars are removable, as well as the battery, and the already compact trike can fold via the latch on the main frame tube to get it even smaller, I have heard stories of people easily stowing this in the trunk of a car, or even taking it on an airplane
  • Seating on the Liberty Trike is nice and comfortable, thanks to the upgraded 11” wide saddle that now comes standard with a backrest
  • Pedaling has been improved, the rear seat stay frame has been changed so that now you have more heel clearance, also, the crank arm itself has been refined to a longer American style crank so you get a more natural pedal motion
  • Fan favorites like 11 different color options, folding capabilities, and rear battery rack mounted basket are still here, part of what made the original such a success
  • For creature comforts, you get a nice chain guard to protect your clothing from getting eaten up by the chain, you also now get a front fender with a large mud flap to keep you dry and the dirt out of the way
  • The throttle here increases smoothly and you can control that level of power with 5 modes of throttle responsiveness, this is great if you need to dial it down for hanging out with a slow moving crowd at like a museum or something similar, yet you can dial it up and really get going for long stretches
  • I love the coasting brake that allows you to brake traditionally by pedaling backwards, you also get a front mechanical disc brake with a motor inhibitor
  • Battery has been kept compact and with a lower amp hour rating so you can fly with your Liberty Trike and battery while following FAA guidelines
  • Cost has been kept down, despite the upgrades this year, they have been able to maintain the affordable $1,498 MSRP

Cons:

  • The brake setup is nice, but I do wish the rear coaster brake had a motor inhibitor to cut power to the motor like the front brake does, sometimes I just want to use the rear brake by itself, I didn’t have any problems doing so, but it would add peace of mind to have it there too
  • When taking tight turns or going at higher speed, you have to shift your weight since the setup is so compact and narrow, most of the time you may not need to worry about it, but for people wanting to go a bit faster, keep that in mind
  • There is no pedal assist here, just a throttle for electrical propulsion, however, this was not a big deal as I felt the throttle was more appropriate anyway
  • A lot of external wires, none internal, but this is actually good for maintenance and folding I guess
  • A very minor gripe here, but I do wish it had nicer aluminum alloy pedals, plastic pedals were chosen, likely to keep costs down

Resources:

More Liberty Trike Reviews

2016 Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle Review

  • MSRP: $1,498
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

A compact, folding (and separating!) electric trike designed for easier transport, fitting through doors and modular repairs or replacements. Partially built in America, solid one year comprehensive warranty, uses a powerful 750 watt hub…...

Comments (12) YouTube Comments

Mike Deason
5 months ago

My wife, who has MS loves this trike. It allows her to exercise her legs but the throttle will always get her home. The coaster brake is also something that works very well for most people. She has used it in stores, people are surprised to see it. It will climb steep grades. She keeps her speed under 12 mph. I would recommend 10 mph.

  Reply
Court
5 months ago

Hi Mike! What a great testimonial, I completely agree about limiting the top speed. Thanks for sharing and I wish you and your wife happy rides and good health :)

  Reply
D Ferrara
4 months ago

I have owned a Liberty for almost five years, and find it a terrific work horse. You can take it right into stores, classrooms, libraries and meeting rooms. I load it up with art supplies, food for parties, even cases of beer and drive it right inside any place with handicap access. Last week, I discovered that the Liberty would be welcome in a Broadway theatre, according to the house manager. More importantly, Electric Bike Technologies is a great company to work with.

Unlike the prior poster, I wish the trike went faster and the battery had longer range, although I can get 20 miles if the terrain isn’t too hilly. As it is, though, I use the trike for most around town trips, and find it very convenient.

  Reply
Court
4 months ago

Wonderful! Thanks for sharing a little bit about how you use the Liberty Trike! Sounds like a great way to get around, and it makes me smile to hear about all of the fun activities you’ve used it for. Just great, thanks again D!

  Reply
Alex M
4 months ago

300 WH limit by FAA is for “battery operated wheelchair and other mobility aid”, – not for an ebike. There might arise some debate with airport screeners on whether this thing with pedals is a “mobility aid”. Otherwise, the limit is max 2 batteries 160WH each. I really like this little thing, not sure whether backward local villagers who only saw mobility scooters on TV and have never seen ANY ebike or trike, will approve :). Btw, this 2019 review still lists old 36V*10 AH battery.

  Reply
Court
4 months ago

Hmm, thanks for the tip about battery capacity, Alex! I’ll mention this to Mikey and ask about the correct stat :)

  Reply
Jeff
1 month ago

Great video review. Thanks for all the details. I’m curious what it looks like folded up. Is there a pic anywhere?

  Reply
Court
1 month ago

Great question, Jeff! Sorry about that. There is a folded picture from last year’s model (which is very similar to this year) with it folded. Check it out here, and just scroll through the pictures until you see it ;)

  Reply
Mark
2 weeks ago

Very confusing combination of specs here.

  1. Why would an OEM specify a monster 750 Watt motor, but its only going to go 8-12 mph, which is what they say on their website?
  2. Why would an OEM specify a 750 watt motor that only has 21 nm of torque? That is very low torque rating, especially if they are saying on their website this can carry up to 300 lbs? (they say max payload of 400 lbs on their webpage)
  3. Why would you couple such a very small capacity battery, with a very large wattage motor? 8ah is nothing, and for very large watt draws you would not go very far. I see you say a top speed of 20 mph, but the reality with such small tires, and the risk of tipping in corners, I can’t see going much faster than the 8 to 12 mph they mention on their website.
  4. Why would you use ‘coaster’ brakes on something with such a large motor, and also not have any cut out? These brakes are not known for stopping very fast, and its very counter-intuitive to pedal backwards on any e-trike or e-bike.
  5. They mostly only show small people on this trike in their photos. If you were taller than 5’10” it seems like you would have issues, or weighed more than 250 lbs, you would have issues too, especially with such a small seat, that has a back support which would reduce how much space you would be able to fit in, if you were a big person. Yet they say it can handle people who weigh up to 300 lbs. The sizing doesn’t add up.
  6. Having a single speed, and again a 750 watt motor, doesn’t make sense. It would be hard to be able to pedal at a decent cadence and go much faster than 10 mph. I know here on your review you call it a 500 watt motor (750 peak), but they repeatedly refer to it on their website as 750 watt motor. So which is it?
  7. The front hub motor is a specialty motor, with no spokes, and it means there is no aftermarket offering if this fails, so you’d HAVE to go back to the manufacturer for sure if it ever needs replacement. Thats not going to be field repairable, and no ebike shop would likely want to touch it. So who does one go to for repair on this trike if they have no dealers?
  8. The only reason I can see going for a direct drive motor, especially one that is so heavy, is to be able to put it in reverse. Again, that is a small scooter function, where you are only going 3 to 6 mph. 750 watts again, seems like overkill here.
  9. 80 lbs for any trike is very heavy, but for something you are going to characterize as portable, or taking on a plane, that is very conflicting specification.
  10. It seems convoluted to have a trike that can be pedaled and only have a throttle. So you have to activate a throttle and pedal at the same time. Usually on something with only a throttle, there is no pedaling. (again, a portable scooter)
  11. It seems like it would be very tippy, and you mention having to shift your weight in turns, but with it having such a narrow wheelbase, that would make it a higher tendency to tip in turns that most regular trikes, and also with people who are taller, and heavier.

Overall I can perhaps see this as a substitute for the other portable mobility scooters, that have very small wheels (only 5 or 6″ in diameter), and this being able to go a few more places than those same small scooters that only go 3 to 6 mphs, but can’t really see this being a typical e-trike where adults who want to go a lot of places like a regular bike could go, but having 3 wheels helps with someone who might have balance issues. It would be very heavy to try to pedal without using the motor, but also very awkward to pedal and use a throttle, so how would you get an exercise with this vehicle, assuming that would be the purpose of being able to pedal ?

In summary it seems like a very limited use mobility vehicle, and maybe for people with a lot of physical limitations who maybe want to go a little faster than what a portable scooter would offer, and maybe a tiny bit further.

  Reply
Court
2 weeks ago

Hi Mark, you’ve made a bunch of really good points and shared some useful insights. Thanks for taking the time to do so… I like that the Liberty Trike exists, and it could be a great option for a specific group of people… gearless hub motors tend to be very durable and quiet. Maybe they needed this higher wattage to get the torque rating up, even if it is still a bit low compared to geared motors and mid-drives.

  Reply
Vesa
1 week ago

Liberty Trike Electric Tricycle looks exactly what I need. Where can I order it in EU?

  Reply
Court
1 week ago

Hi Vesa! Great question, I reached out to the inventor of this trike, and founder of Liberty Trike to ask on your behalf. He said “At this time, we only ship to the contiguous USA and Canada, we get asked about Europe frequently and would love to sell there but are working on keeping up with demand here first so we can provide great support”

Sorry, this probably isn’t what you wanted to hear. Perhaps you can find a freight forwarding company or other creative way to get one over to Europe… or maybe there’s a similar product where you’re at that could be found by asking in the electric trike forums here.

  Reply

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