Rad Power Bikes RadWagon 4 Review

Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Electric Bike Review
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Bafang G060 Planetary Geared Hub Motor
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Removable 48 Volt Battery Pack
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Tool Free Adjustable Angle Stem
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Branded King Meter Display Panel Grayscale
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Velo Rubberized Grips Ergonomic
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rear Rack With Two Yepp Child Seat Windows
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Satori Telescoping Seat Post Extra Tall
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rigid Steel Fork Puncture Protection Reflective Tires 22 3 Size
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Custom Headlight With Ring And Focused Beam 80 Lumens
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 180mm Disc Brake Rotors Tektro Aries
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Spanninga Solo Rear Light Blinking Brake Activation
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Bottle Cage Bosses On Downtube
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Clear Plastic Skirt Guard Shimano Acera Derailleur With Steel Guard
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Steel 46 Tooth Chainring With Alloy Guide Neoprene Slap Guard
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Sturdy Double Leg Kickstand Steel 12 Magnet Cadence Sensor
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Ebike Charger
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Portable 2 Amp Electric Bike Charger
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rad Mobile Services Van
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step White
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step Black
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step Orange
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Electric Bike Review
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Bafang G060 Planetary Geared Hub Motor
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Removable 48 Volt Battery Pack
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Tool Free Adjustable Angle Stem
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Branded King Meter Display Panel Grayscale
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Velo Rubberized Grips Ergonomic
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rear Rack With Two Yepp Child Seat Windows
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Satori Telescoping Seat Post Extra Tall
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rigid Steel Fork Puncture Protection Reflective Tires 22 3 Size
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Custom Headlight With Ring And Focused Beam 80 Lumens
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 180mm Disc Brake Rotors Tektro Aries
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Spanninga Solo Rear Light Blinking Brake Activation
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Bottle Cage Bosses On Downtube
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Clear Plastic Skirt Guard Shimano Acera Derailleur With Steel Guard
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Steel 46 Tooth Chainring With Alloy Guide Neoprene Slap Guard
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Sturdy Double Leg Kickstand Steel 12 Magnet Cadence Sensor
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Ebike Charger
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Portable 2 Amp Electric Bike Charger
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Rad Mobile Services Van
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step White
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step Black
Rad Power Bikes Radwagon 4 Stock Mid Step Orange

Summary

  • An affordable but refined electric cargo bike with custom 22" x 3.0" tires that improve stability and comfort while still keeping the cargo holds low and easy to load. Approachable but stiff mid-step frame comes in three beautiful colors. Reflective tires and quality integrated lights help keep you visible and safe
  • Powerful fat-bike rated 80nm geared hub motor provides excellent power for starting, hauling gear or passengers, and climbing. Steel torque arm spreads motor forces into frame instead of chewing up the dropouts. Respectable 11-34 tooth cassette is nickel coated for durability, upgraded Shimano Acera derailleur should be reliable, and is protected by a steel derailleur guard.
  • Extra-strong steel double-leg kickstand keeps the bike stable for loading and unloading, wide plastic fenders keep you dry, aluminum chain guide protects the chainring and your pant legs or dress ends, neoprene slap guard protects the paint and reduces noise from chain bounce. Lots of adjustability for fit including telescoping seat post, tool-free adjustable stem, and swept-back handlebars.
  • No suspension fork, but the high-volume tires and ergonomic grips improve comfort while reducing weight, cost, and frame flex. Mostly sold direct-online, but Rad has three physical locations in US, Canada, and Europe, as well as mobile delivery vans for setup and service. Basic shifter and grayscale LCD that's not removable, but it does have a USB charging port built-in

Video Review

Introduction

Make:

Rad Power Bikes

Model:

RadWagon 4

Price:

$1,499 (Free Shipping in Contiguous US and Canada)

Body Position:

Upright, Upright Relaxed

Suggested Use:

Neighborhood, Urban, Cargo, Commuting

Electric Bike Class:

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

Warranty:

1 Year Comprehensive

Availability:

United States, Canada, Europe

Model Year:

2020

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

76.7 lbs (34.79 kg)

Battery Weight:

7.7 lbs (3.49 kg)

Motor Weight:

8.7 lbs (3.94 kg)

Frame Material:

6061 Aluminum Alloy

Frame Sizes:

13.5 in (34.29 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

13.75" Seat Tube, 21.5" Reach, 23.5" Stand Over Height, 29.25" Minimum Saddle Height, 42.25" Maximum Saddle Height, 28.25" Width, 53.25" Wheelbase, 79.75" Length

Frame Types:

Mid-Step

Frame Colors:

Satin Orange with Blue Accents, Pearl White with Gray and Orange Accents, Satin Black with White Accents

Frame Fork Details:

Custom Rigid Steel, 100mm Hub Spacing, 9mm Axle with Quick Release Skewer

Frame Rear Details:

175mm Hub Spacing, 12mm Threaded Axle with 10mm Flats, 18mm Nuts

Attachment Points:

Fender Mounts, Front Rack Mounts, Rear Rack Mounts, Running Board Mounts, Passenger Peg Mounts, Bottle Cage Bosses

Gearing Details:

7 Speed 1x7 Shimano Acera Derailleur, DNP Nickel Plated 11-34 Tooth Freewheel

Shifter Details:

Shimano SIS Index Thumb Shifter with Optical Gear Display on Right

Cranks:

Aluminum Alloy, 170mm Length, 46 Tooth Chainring with Alloy Guide

Pedals:

Wellgo B087 Aluminum Alloy Platform with Reflectors, CrMo Axle, Standard 9/16" x 20 TPI Threading, Black

Headset:

Semi-Integrated, Sealed Cartridge, 1-1/8" Straight

Stem:

Satori EZ3 AHS, Tool-Free Adjustable Angle 0º to 80º, 80mm Height, 100mm Length, Two 10mm Spacers, One 20mm Spacer, One 15mm Tapered Spacer, One 10mm Spacer, 31.8mm Clamp Diameter

Handlebar:

Aluminum Alloy, Swept Back, 40mm Rise, 150mm Backsweep, 710mm Width

Brake Details:

Tektro Aries MD-300 Mechanical Disc with 180mm Rotors, Four-Finger Tektro Levers with Rubberized Edges and Bell on Left and Motor Inhibitors with Brake Light Activation

Grips:

Velo Comfort, Ergonomic, Rubber, Black and Gray

Saddle:

Velo Plush with Lifting Handle

Seat Post:

Satori Telescoping, Aluminum Alloy, (34.9mm-30.9mm, Remove Set Screw with 2.5mm Hex), Max Length 440mm

Seat Post Length:

440 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

30.9mm, 34.9 mm

Rims:

Shinning DB-X50, 6061 T6 Aluminum Alloy, Double Wall, ETRTO 457x45, 45mm Inner Width, 50mm Outer Width, 18mm Height, 36 Hole

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 12 Gauge, Silver with Nipples

Tire Brand:

Custom Rad Power Bikes, 22" x 3.0" (76-457)

Wheel Sizes:

22 in (55.88cm)

Tire Details:

35 to 65 PSI, 2.4 to 4.5 BAR, Reflective Sidewall Stripe, Punture Protection

Tube Details:

Schrader Valve

Accessories:

Wooden Deck on Rear Rack (Two Yepp Child Seat Windows Below Deck, 28.5" Rack Length), Clear Plastic Skirt Guards on Rear Rack, Steel Spring-Loaded Double-Leg Kickstand, Custom Plastic Fenders (95mm Width), Steel Derailleur Guard, Rad Power Bikes Integrated LED Front Light (Outer Light Ring, Focused Beam, Aluminum Alloy Heat Sink, 80 Lumens), Integrated Spanninga Solo LED Rear Light (Solid, Flashing, Brake Activation, 1 LED), Neoprene Slap Guard, Optional Caboose Surround Bars for Rear Rack, Optional Deckhand Handlebars for Rear Rack, Optional Running Boards, Optional Deckpad, Optional Passenger Pegs, Optional Front Rack, Optional Small Basket, Optional Large Basket, Optional Platform, Optional Ballard Cargo Bag Pannier, Optional SR Suntour NCX Seat Post Suspension, Optional RAM Torque Handlebar Phone Mount X, Optional Small Basket Bag, Optional Large Basket Bag, Optional Small Insulated Delivery Bag, Optional Large Insulated Delivery Bag, Optional Yepp! Maxi Child Seat, Optional ABUS Bordo 6100/90 Folding Lock

Other:

Locking Removable Downtube-Mounted Battery Pack, 1.1lb 2 Amp Charger (Operates on Both 110V and 230V AC Power Outlets), Fully Potted Motor Controller, Stainless Steel Torque Arm, 350lb Maximum Weight Rating (120lb Rear Rack, 30lbs Per Running Board)

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Bafang G060, RadWagon Specific, 5:1 Planetary Reduction

Motor Type:

Rear-Mounted Geared Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

750 watts (250 Watts in Europe, 500 Watts in Canada)

Motor Torque:

80 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Samsung 18650 35E 3500mAH 13S4P Configuration

Battery Voltage:

48 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

14 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

672 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium NCM

Charge Time:

6 hours

Estimated Min Range:

25 miles (40 km)

Estimated Max Range:

45 miles (72 km)

Display Type:

Rad Power Bikes Branded King Meter SWLCD, Fixed, Adjustable-Angle, Backlit, Grayscale 2.75" LCD, Integrated 5 Volt 1 Amp USB Type-A Port Below Display

Readouts:

Battery Indicator (5 Bars), Trip Meter, Odometer, Current Speed, Average Speed, Max Speed, Pedal Assist Level (0-5 as Eco, Std, Power, Speed), Light Icon, Motor Power Watts

Display Accessories:

Independent Control Pad on Left, Buttons: Up, Mode, Down, (Lights: Hold Up and Mode, Cycle Readouts: Press Mode or Hold Up, Settings: Hold Up and Down, Walk Mode: Hold Down)

Drive Mode:

Cadence Sensing Pedal Assist, Twist Throttle (12-Magnet Cadence Sensor)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)(25KMH 15.5MPH in Europe)


Written Review

My goal is to be transparent and unbiased with you, this video and writeup are not meant to be an endorsement of RPB products. I welcome your corrections, additions, and feedback in the comments below and the Rad Power Bikes electric bike forums.

Observations:

  • It sounds like the $1,499 price point is a temporary pre-order special. Later on, once the bike is fully released, the price may rise slightly to $1,599 USD.
  • Starting in 2020, customers in some major cities including Austin, Seattle, Sacramento, and Vancouver Canada can pay $149 to have the Rad Mobile Service van deliver, assemble, and provide maintenance service for their bike. The company is also offering demo rides and post-purchase service, including warranty work. I got to see the van and interact with some of the Austin and Vancouver team members, and was impressed with this unique service that blends the predominantly online presence of Rad with a local shop feel
  • This is the 4th generation RadWagon product! It was a solid product before, with all of the kinks having been worked out, but they completely updated it for gen 4 with a custom wheel size. The tires are small enough to keep it stable and make loading the racks easy, but large enough (and with special 3″ fat tires) to offer comfort, stability, and a lower attack angle for comfort. I would rate some of the hardware components as mid-tier to keep the price down… those include the non-locking grips, square tapered spindle, 9mm quick release vs. thru-axle, Shimano Acera derailleur, and freewheel vs. cassette.
  • Rad Power Bikes introduced a new metallic head tube badge, updated headlight with LED light ring and focused beam, and smoother twist throttle that foregoes an on/off toggle switch for this generation of bikes. The reps I spoke with explained that the new throttle is more reliable and tends to be less confusing for riders who would occasionally turn off the original throttle by accident, and then become concerned. For European customers, the twist throttle changes to “twist power assist” that basically kicks the assist level up to 5 (the highest level) as long as you are pedaling… This way, the bike still qualifies as a Class 1 pedelec, but offers convenient access to power and speed without having to interact with the display and button pad

Pros:

  • Rad Power Bikes custom engineers their frames and puts a lot of attention into the details of which components are used… The Gen 4 RadWagon offers a perfect balance of utility and comfort. The custom wheel and tire size keeps the bike low enough that loading children or cargo onto the rear rack is made easy, while still providing comfort and stability
  • Most Rad Power Bikes are sold in just one or two colors, but the RadWagon is available in three! Pearl white and high-visibility orange are stock, and they’ve got a satin black limited edition model as well
  • The tires offer puncture protection and have reflective stripes on the sides, which greatly improves your visual footprint. I like that the front wheel has quick release, making tire and tube fixes easier, but the rear wheel can be more difficult because of the motor power cable and derailleur. There’s no quick release in the rear and this is one trade-off when compared to a mid-drive electric cargo bike… rear wheel maintenance can be more difficult (so make sure the tire pressure is kept between the recommended inflation of 35 to 65 PSI
  • All Rad ebikes now have integrated lights that run off of the main rechargeable battery pack. The headlight provides a focused 80-Lumen beam as well as a “be seen” LED ring that protrudes a bit from the housing. This keeps you visible from many angles and helps you stand out in broad daylight. The rear light only uses one LED but provides a large reflective surface. It’s protected by the rack tubing and positioned in such a way that child seats, bags, and panniers won’t block it. The rear light goes bright whenever the bike is powered on and the brakes are pulled (even if the lights haven’t been activated). You can also set the rear light to flashing mode by pressing a little rubber button on the lower left edge of the housing. In my opinion, these lighting solutions are way ahead of most competing electric bicycles, even some of the more expensive ones
  • By default, the RadWagon come with durable plastic fenders. They’re extra wide to keep you dry (as I tested in the video review above). They are lighter than metal, but also very quiet because of the multiple attachment points.
  • A big focus for the new RadWagon is the custom 22-inch wheel size and 3-inch tires. They elevate the frame enough to offer good ground clearance, but don’t go so high that the racks are difficult to load. They offer a lower attack angle than competing 20-inch wheels and tires, but would still be a little jarring if it weren’t for the increased air volume. The tires are stable, and provide a wide 35 to 65 PSI (air pressure) rating, so you can dial in comfort on an unloaded bike with lower pressure or raise it up to avoid pinch flats and rim dings with a fully loaded bike
  • Rad chose a hybrid tread for their new tires, which reduces rolling resistance and noise. This sacrifices traction for dirt and gravel, but the wider 3″ sizing compensates… they performed well during my grass and gravel tests, even on softer terrain
  • Despite not having a suspension fork, the bike is very comfortable. I think the increased air volume of the tires, tool-free adjustable stem, swept-back handlebars, ergonomic grips, and long telescoping stem all contribute. I do think it would be possible to use a seatpost suspension here, but the stock Satori telescoping post might have to have a set screw removed to make this possible at taller heights. Or, you could use a standard 34.9mm seatpost suspension and completely forego the extra length of the Satori telescoping design
  • I was told that the adjustable angle stem has been custom made to stay tight and uses hardened materials that won’t dull as easily as some competing parts. This is important to me, because the RadWagon is heavy and whether you’re lifting by the handlebars or just riding over bumpy terrain, some adjustable stems can get loose over time and start to feel unsafe
  • By not using a suspension fork, the RadWagon saves money, weight, and improves overall stiffness and strength for hauling. It actually makes the bike feel more stable; I was able to ride no-handed without issue, and the frame didn’t flex very much at all when I shook it (which does happen on many traditional longtail cargo ebikes)
  • I’ve tested a bunch of bike saddles over the years, and the one that Rad chose for the RadWagon (and most of their other models) is soft enough, but not so wide that it will chaff your inner thighs while pedaling. It has a handle built into the back for easier lifting of the bike, which is especially useful when deploying the double-leg kickstand
  • I like that Rad Power Bikes is using the same battery pack for all of their 2019+ models. This means you can purchase a additional electric bicycles from them and easily swap the packs around, extending your adventures. The battery itself uses high-quality lithium-ion cells from Samsung, is warrantied for a year, and is cheaper to replace because it doesn’t contain the bike controller. You can charge this pack on or off the frame, and it has three key positions for unlocked, locked to frame but powered off, and locked to frame powered-on. This helps you to deter tampering with the bike without having to take the battery pack off. For best results, store the battery in a cool, dry location. Extreme heat can damage the cells and extreme cold will stunt them and limit your range temporarily
  • Even though the battery and controller box are mounted externally, this is a purpose-built electric bike with internally routed cables and wires. The black wires and controller box are more prominent on the white and orange frames, so it’s neat that Rad is offering a limited run of black frames here. I found that the battery and controller box were very well protected by frame tubing, and positioned to keep weight low and centered on the frame. I also appreciate the flat portion of frame tubing and three-bolt mounting design for the battery pack slide
  • Overall, the frame is very well balanced front to rear. I was impressed that it didn’t tip backwards when lifting from the nose of the saddle (as I weighed the bike). Considering that it uses a rear-mounted hub motor, it’s great that the bike isn’t especially rear-heavy
  • Note the gussets and additional welds on the top tube and downtube to improve frame strength. Also, note the stainless steel torque arm on the left rear dropout that keeps the motor axle from chewing into the softer aluminum alloy over time. This is an important feature, especially given the high torque 80nm rating of the hub motor
  • One of the big changes from Gen 3 to Gen 4 for the RadWagon is going from a heavier and lower torque gearless hub motor to a geared one. It offers great power for starting, navigating soft terrain, and climbing (especially with the smaller wheel diameter). Offering the 750 watt max limit for US ebikes (500 watt for Canada, 250 watt for Europe), you get 80 newton meters of torque in all locales, which is very capable.
  • Rad is using the same fat-bike specific geared hub motor for this bike as it uses on the RadMini, RadRunner, and full sized RadRover products. This means that they had to custom design the rear wheel with a wider 175mm hub spacing. Ultimately, this improves the strength of the wheel with a sturdier spoke bracing angle… and Rad chose extra-thick 12 gauge spokes
  • I like the sturdy Wellgo platform pedals, alloy chain guide, and steel derailleur guard on this bike because it means you won’t slip off as easily, won’t have the chain bouncing off, and can keep the sensitive shifter parts and motor power cable from getting bent or snagged if the bike tips, is parked at a crowded rack, or gets tossed around in shipping
  • In addition to the standard fenders, rear rack, and bottle cage mounts, this bike offers sturdy front rack mounts (for their optional tray or baskets) and a second set of bottle cage bosses to mount a folding lock below the downtube! Rad sells a bunch of accessories that all work well together on this and other models, they’re mostly interchangeable (except for the rear seat pads and bars). Note that if you remove the wooden deck, there are two child seat windows designed to work with Yepp products
  • I love that the LCD display panel is fairly large, has adjustable backlight brightness, and offers a full size USB charging port built into the bottom. This is very convenient if you are using the optional phone mount for GPS and need a bit of extra juice for your mobile devices on long rides
  • For me, the three-button control pad that’s mounted near the left grip is easy to reach and simple to use. You press up or down to raise and lower assist, you press mode to cycle odometer and trip meter, you hold up to cycle current speed, average speed, and max speed, and you can hold up and mode simultaneously to activate the lights or hold down to activate walk mode. Walk mode is especially useful if you’ve got the bike loaded up with gear or a child seat and just want to play it safe without over-exerting yourself up a hill or through a technical section of terrain. Hold up and down simultaneously to get into the settings menu and adjust wheel size, top speed, and backlight brightness
  • The RadWagon uses a high-resolution 12-magnet cadence sensors, which makes starting and stopping more predictable. I love that they also included motor inhibitors on both brake levers (which also activates bright mode on the rear light!) It seems like they really dialed in the controller settings too, because the motor is smooth and predictable when starting vs. delayed or jerky
  • The throttle setup on all of the Rad Power Bikes is perfect, in my opinion. It provides you with full power, anytime the bike is turned on. This means that you can zip around without pedaling in assist level zero, without worrying that you might accidentally activate assist by moving the cranks as you get on and off. It also means that you can override assist levels 1-4 with full power to climb a hill or catch up with friends… all without clicking buttons or looking down, just twist and it goes! For people who don’t want a throttle, there’s a quick disconnect cable right near the handlebar that’s easy to access, and doing this will convert the bike to Class 1, which is legal on more mountain bike trails
  • The double-leg kickstand is super sturdy and very stable. It worked flawlessly in soft gras and loose gravel during my test rides… even on a sloped surface. This is a very important feature for loading the rear rack, because a single sided kickstand allows the bike to tip. In order to stow the stand, just walk the bike forward a bit.
  • A deflopilator spring (aka stabilizer spring) keeps your front wheel straight and stable when loading the cargo area and may also assist in steering heavy loads. You can see this spring connecting the front fork to the downtube in the stock photos above
  • Great drivetrain on this ebike, Rad has chosen an 11 to 34 tooth freewheel over the conventional 14 to 28 tooth design. This provides a wider range of pedal options for easier climbing and more comfortable high-speed riding. The cogs are nickel coated, which makes them rust resistant and a lot smoother to shift. The Shimano Acera derailleur is lighter and more reliable than Tourney or Altus (the two lower levels)
  • A huge win for this electric cargo bike is that it’s much less expensive than almost all competitors… and it’s actually better than some of the more expensive ones, in my opinion. The thing is, most people also need to spend on accessories for their cargo bikes, and that’s no different here… so expect to spend more than just $1,500 USD, but at least you’ll be starting from a lower price point
  • I think the standard free shipping is a great option from Rad, in addition to their three retail outlets (Seattle, Vancouver, Netherlands), and Rad Mobile Service vans in other major cities. They’ve also spruced up the cardboard box packaging with some fun artistic graphics. Note the plastic handles built into the sides of the cardboard box for easy lifting and dragging (I suggest asking a friend to help you move the box safely, because these are heavy machines… especially the wagon)

Cons:

  • As with most heavy-duty metal kickstands, this one bounces around and produces some noise when riding off-road. Overall, this is only a minor gripe, and the stability and strength it offers outweighs the noise, in my opinion. The chain can also bounce, and it seemed like it was rattling against the clear plastic skirt guard in the rear when I was in lower gears riding off-road
  • Extra-long compared to traditional bicycles, which could make storing difficult for some. The full length I measured was 79.75-inches vs. 72″ on a normal city bike
  • Fairly heavy at 76.7lbs (that’s actually ~3lbs heavier than the original RadWagon), this makes lifting and maneuvering the bike difficult. You might removing the battery pack to shave ~7.7lbs off. The heavier weight is the result of additional tubing and gussets that reinforce frame strength for hauling, as well as larger tires, wider fenders, and the wooden deck
  • Custom tire and inner-tube size means you’ll have to buy replacements from Rad Power Bikes vs. a local shop or Amazon. I’ve been told that they have a good supply ready, and I want to compliment how well they’ve supported past products (still stocking and selling last-generation batteries, for example)
  • The battery and controller box are mounted on top of the frame vs. being integrated for a more streamlined stealthy look. By separating the pack from the controller, they make replacements a lot more affordable while also reducing heat buildup… so it’s a good design decision, and both seemed well protected by the frame tubing (should the bike tip over or get bumped at a rack)
  • The RadWagon is only offered in one frame size, and the reach is fairly limited. This means that average sized riders will feel comfortable, but extra tall riders might feel a bit squished. Still, the telescoping seat post will allow tall riders to get full leg extension, and the adjustable stem can either raise the handlebar or put it forward. There are a good number of options for dialing in comfort… and very few electric cargo bikes seem to offer more than just one size
  • Rad Power Bikes has been using the large Shimano SIS index shifters since the beginning, and they present a couple of trade-offs. You have to reach up with your thumb to press the main paddle to get to lower gears, which requires a bit of hand flexibility and might compromise your grip. The shifter is also more exposed to damage at bike racks and seems to require more hand effort to engage. I much prefer trigger shifters, but they might not fit with the twist throttle and they could be less intuitive for new riders (often having smaller optical displays). One positive of the big shifters is that they are easy to click if you’re wearing gloves since the paddles are so large
  • The Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes get the job done, and I appreciate the large 180mm rotors and rubberized levers (that aren’t as cold or uncomfortable to pull as pure metal), but these brakes are definitely a price compromise. Hydraulic disc brakes would be easier to actuate and more consistent. The rear brake (right brake lever in North America) often requires more hand effort since the cable is longer. Hydraulic disc brake levers usually offer adjustable reach, which can be easier to use for individuals with especially large or small hands. It is possible to install hydraulic levers and calipers aftermarket, but requires additional hardware, an experienced mechanic, and some time to do… which might be better spent choosing another ebike with factory installed hydraulic brakes
  • No suspension fork and extra effort required to add a suspension seat post. The Satori telescoping seat post is great, but the top portion uses a set screw that has to be removed (possible with a 2.5mm Hex Wrench) in order to mount a traditional 30.9mm seatpost suspension. Otherwise, you’ll need a 34.9mm post or shim to fit one into the actual bike seat tube, and it won’t reach as high
  • The display is large and easy to read but not removable, so it could take extra weather wear and possibly get scratched at a bike rack. I appreciate that it’s well protected at the center of the handlebar, and that the electronics on the bike can be completely disabled by turning the key to the locked-off position (between locked-on and unlocked), so nobody can turn your bike on and mess with the throttle while it’s parked
  • It would be nice to have more than five bars to indicate the battery charge level, on the LCD readout. As it stands, each bar represents a 20% drop vs. 10 bars representing 10% drops, or even a written percentage such as 42%. This could really help riders to make it home without completely depleting the battery
  • If you opt for a front tray rack, the headlight will have to be moved onto the base of the tray because otherwise it would get blocked. The thing is, the light isn’t as adjustable in this position (it tends to point more down than forward) and it no longer aims where you steer because the front rack is frame mounted – fixed inline with the frame itself
  • All of the Rad Power Bikes use the same charger (just like the interchangeable battery packs), and it’s fairly lightweight, but it only puts out 2 amps, so charging can take up to six hours if the battery is completely drained. This would be faster if they used a 3 or 4 amp charger like some other companies have started doing, but it might raise the price
  • The RadWagon no longer offers regenerative braking, since it switched to a geared hub motor vs. gearless in the past. Geared motors tend to produce more noise and wear down faster due to friction inside. This is still an incredibly reliable motor, and you get more power while reducing weight… but there are trade-offs. Most ebike companies have moved away from gearless motors in recent years

Useful Resources:

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  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

An updated 5th generation full sized, high-step, fat tire electric bike from one of the originators in this category; Rad Power Bikes. Features comfortable 4" wide knobby tires with puncture protection and reflective sidewalls. It's stable and capable in soft terrain like mulch and sand if the tire air pressure is lowered. Features a curved top-tube, short sturdy stem, and mid-rise handlebar for approachability and comfort.. Adjustable suspension fork offers preload adjust for heavy loads and lockout for smooth terrain. Upgraded…...

January 27, 2020

Rad Power Bikes RadCity 4 Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

A feature-complete, comfort oriented, hybrid electric bike with regenerative braking, built-in USB charging port below the display, modular battery pack that works with all other Rad models, and integrated lights. The headlight offers a bright 80 lumen center beam and a unique LED circle to keep you seen, while the rear light offers solid, flashing, and bright mode when the brakes are activated. Sturdy adjustable angle stem and long 350mm seat post improves fit for a wide range…...

January 23, 2020

Rad Power Bikes RadRover Step-Thru 1 Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

An approachable step-thru version of the renowned RadRover full sized fat tire electric bike. Features comfortable 4" wide tires, an adjustable suspension fork, short sturdy stem, and mid-rise handlebar. Available in matte white or satin black with matching faux-leather grips and saddle. Excellent puncture resistant tires with reflective sidewall stripes for safety, great headlight with outer "be…...

January 22, 2020

Rad Power Bikes RadRhino Step-Thru 1 250W (EU Version) Review

  • MSRP: $1,699
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

An approachable step-thru version of the RadRhino full sized fat tire electric bike. Features comfortable 4" wide knobby tires with puncture protection and reflective sidewalls. Stable and capable in soft terrain like mulch or sand if the tire air pressure is lowered. Available in matte white or satin black with matching faux-leather grips and saddle. Excellent puncture resistant tires with reflective sidewall stripes for safety, great headlight with outer "be…...

January 21, 2020

Rad Power Bikes RadMini 4 Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

The high-step version of Rad's folding, fat tire, off-road capable, compact electric bike. Custom 3.3" wide tires have reflective sidewalls, puncture resistant lining, and all-terrain checkerboard tread. This is the fourth generation RadMini, and it comes standard with wide plastic fenders, integrated lights, and a spring suspension fork with preload adjust and lockout. Only available in one frame size and one color, but the handlebar and seat height…...

January 20, 2020

Rad Power Bikes RadMini 4 (EU Version) Review

  • MSRP: $1,699
  • MODEL YEAR: 2020

The first folding fat tire model from Rad Power Bikes to become available in Europe! Custom 3.3" wide tires have reflective sidewalls, puncture resistant lining, and all-terrain checkerboard tread making them off-road capable. Fourth generation RadMini hardware has all of the kinks worked out, and it comes standard with wide plastic fenders, integrated lights, and an adjustable spring suspension fork with preload and lockout clickers. Only available in one frame size and one color, but the handlebar and seat height…...

August 22, 2019

Rad Power Bikes RadRunner Review

  • MSRP: $1,199
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An extremely versatile and affordable mid-fat tire bike, unique 20" x 3.3" tires provide comfort and good traction on any terrain, optional passenger kit turns the rear rack into a seat with foot rest pegs and skirt guard. Integrated lights and reflective tires keep you visible, two frame color options keep it fun,…...

August 17, 2019

Rad Power Bikes RadBurro Review

  • MSRP: $5,799
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

A commercial grade, heavy-duty, utility style electric trike with four bed options including flat, truck bed with sides, hot/cold insulated box, and covered pedicab passenger seat. Borrows components and hardware from mopeds and motorcycles for added strength and durability, 6-ply 17”…...

August 15, 2019

Rad Power Bikes RadRunner (EU Version) Review

  • MSRP: $1,299
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An extremely versatile and affordable mid-fat tire bike, unique 20" x 3.3" tires provide comfort and good traction on any terrain, optional passenger kit turns the rear rack into a seat with foot rest pegs and skirt guard. Integrated lights and reflective tires keep you visible, two frame color options keep it fun,…...

April 24, 2019

Rad Power Bikes RadWagon (EU Version) Review

  • MSRP: $1,799
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

A European-specific cargo electric bike with twist throttle mode and pedal assist, classified as L1e-A, available in 2 colors with lots of accessory options including bags and child seats. Maintains the powerful 750watt gearless direct-drive hub motor, it is heavier but super quiet, durable,…...

April 11, 2019

Rad Power Bikes RadRhino 750W (EU Version) Review

  • MSRP: $1,799
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

A European-specific fat tire electric bike with twist throttle mode and pedal assist, classified as L1e-A, modeled after the RadRover, available in two colors with lots of accessory options including bags and child seats. Sloped top tube makes it approachable, shorter stem and mid-rise handlebars create a comfortable upright…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadRover Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An affordable, powerful, electric fat bike with responsive 12-magnet pedal assist and twist-throttle on demand, available in two colors with lots of accessory options including fenders and racks. Only one frame size but the top tube is sloped and the shorter stem pairs…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadMini Step-Thru Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An approachable, folding, fat tire electric bike that's stable and off-road capable, complete with integrated lights, custom reflective tires, an adjustable suspension fork with lockout, and comfortable Velo saddle. Only available in one frame size and one color, but the handlebar and seat height…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadMini Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

The high-step version of a folding fat tire electric bike from Rad Power Bikes, reinforced frame with sturdy gussets, secure locking latches for both folding points, adjustable suspension fork with lockout. Powerful 750 watt Bafang rear hub motor with strong 48 volt battery allows for climbing…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadCity Step-Thru Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An approachable, comfortable, and relatively affordable, city style electric bicycle that comes in one frame size, two colors, has an adjustable stem, swept-back handlebar, and suspension fork with lockout adjust. Ready for all sorts of ride conditions and applications with full-coverage plastic fenders, integrated LED…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadCity Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

A sturdy, fairly comfortable, and relatively affordable, city style electric bicycle that comes in one color and two frame sizes, riser handlebars and adjustable stem improve fit range. Ready for all sorts of conditions and applications with full-coverage plastic fenders, LED lights, custom…...

January 31, 2019

2019 Rad Power Bikes RadWagon Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2019

An affordable, feature-rich, electric cargo bike with cadence sensing pedal assist and throttle on demand operation, available in one frame size with adjustable bars and two color options. Gearless direct-drive hub motor is heavier but super quiet, durable, and capable of regenerative braking…...

December 21, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadBurro Review

  • MSRP: $5,500
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

An affordably priced, heavy-duty, utility style electric bike with four bed options including flat, truck bed with sides, hot/cold insulated box, and covered pedicab passenger seat. Borrows components and hardware from mopeds and motorcycles for added strength and durability, tough 17”…...

December 18, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadCity Step-Thru Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

An approachable, comfortable, and relatively affordable, city style electric bicycle that comes in one color and one frame size, swept-back handlebars and adjustable stem improve fit range. Ready for all sorts of ride conditions and applications with full-coverage plastic fenders, LED lights,…...

December 18, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadMini Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

A compact, fat tire electric bike that folds to save space, the suspension fork and larger 4-inch wide tires add comfort and allow it to ride on soft sand and snow if you lower the tire pressure, or you can lockout the fork and raise pressure for efficiency on pavement. Only available in one frame size for now, but the handlebar height is adjustable along…...

December 18, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadCity Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

An affordable, feature-rich, city style electric bike that comes in two sizes, two colors, and offers great adjustment in the stem and handlebar position for comfortable upright body position. Responsive 12-magnet cadence sensor provides faster starts and stops, both brake levers have motor inhibitors,…...

December 18, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadRover Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

An affordable, powerful, electric fat bike with responsive 12-magnet pedal assist and twist-throttle on demand, available in two colors with lots of accessory options including fenders and racks. Only one frame size but the top tube is sloped and the shorter stem pairs…...

December 18, 2017

2018 Rad Power Bikes RadWagon Review

  • MSRP: $1,599
  • MODEL YEAR: 2018

An affordable, feature-rich, electric cargo bike with cadence sensing pedal assist and throttle on demand operation, available in one frame size with adjustable bars and two color options. Gearless direct-drive hub motor is heavier but super quiet, durable, and capable of regenerative braking…...

November 13, 2016

2017 Rad Power Bikes RadMini Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

A funky miniaturized folding fat tire bike with two cargo racks! Truly capable of sand and snow riding, LED lights guide and keep you safe, the bike offers assist and throttle drive modes. Basic seven speed drivetrain from Shimano, plastic chain guide keeps things on track, metal derailleur…...

November 3, 2016

2017 Rad Power Bikes RadCity Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016, 2017

A value priced but featured packed urban commuter style electric bike with everything from fenders, to LED lights, rear carry rack and regenerative braking. Solid driving and braking performance with a 750 watt gearless hub motor and 180 mm…...

October 11, 2016

2016 Rad Power Bikes RadRover Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

Strikes an excellent balance delivering high power with mid-level components for a reasonable price, you get throttle and pedal assist with an on/off on the throttle! solid one year warranty for the original owner, flat rate $175 shipping in the US. Even though the battery and controller box are bolted on vs. integrated into the frame,…...

April 19, 2016

2016 Rad Power Bikes RadMini Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2016

A folding fat tire electric bike with front and rear cargo racks and double-tube frame for improved strength (good option for larger riders). Powerful 750 watt internally geared fat-bike specific motor paired with a large 48 volt 11.6…...

August 23, 2015

2015 Rad Power Bikes RadWagon Review

  • MSRP: $1,599
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015, 2016

Affordable, feature rich cargo style electric bike with a stiffer and lighter frame because it's not quite as long as some others. Offers five levels of pedal assist, throttle mode and throttle override as well as regenerative…...

August 16, 2015

2015 Rad Power Bikes RadRover Review

  • MSRP: $1,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015, 2016

An Indiegogo funded electric fatbike with a powerful 500 watt motor, ample 48 volt battery and seven speed drivetrain. Comfortable saddle, ergonomic grips and suspension fork with lockout, two color choices but only one…...


Comments (18) YouTube Comments

Warren Edmond McCutcheon
1 month ago

Please don’t say, “these ones”. It’s bad grammar. Simply say, “these”.

  Reply
Court
1 month ago

Thanks for the tip, Warren! I’ve been doing my best to learn better grammar in general, specifically around comas. Sometimes my spoken words use a friendly colloquial style… saying things like “they did good” instead of well. I guess with ebikes, you can do good and well at the same time ;) feel free to point out any other annoying incorrect things, so I can continue to improve.

  Reply
Valeus
1 month ago

Hello and thank you for this excellent review. Do you think this bike will be comfortable for a 1.85m (6.0695 Feet) person?

Thx! And bisous from France.

  Reply
Court
4 weeks ago

Hi Valeus! One of my best friends is French, it’s nice to meet you here :D To answer your question, yes! I do think that you would fit and be fairly comfortable. I’m 5’9″ (1.75m) and the bike worked great. Reach isn’t as far as a city or mountain bike, but that creates an upright body position that works well when you’re chatting with a friend or riding in traffic, trying to stay alert vs. aerodynamic. The adjustable stem and long seat post will ensure that you’re not hitting your knees while pedaling, it’s not really that cramped, and they did a more vertical seat post vs. angled back, so it wouldn’t compromise the gear you can carry. In short, the reach is a bit limited and will feel slightly shorter on this ebike, but it is still comfortable for people who are in the 6-foot range. Mangez bien, riez souvent, aimez beaucoup.

  Reply
Lacy
3 weeks ago

Hi Valeus, Have you gotten a response from Rad about the certificat d’homologation that is needed to receive the prime for electric bikes in France ? Are you planning on doing the immatriculation for the wagon ?

Merci,

Lacy

  Reply
Valeus
2 weeks ago

Hi lacy.

The new radwagon 4 doesn’t need immatriculation. The bike, if you buy it from Europe, is ready to go.

In France you will have to join your bill to your city bike service for the prime.

Sorry for my English.

Bye

Nick
4 weeks ago

Great review! Do you think that this would be a decent commuter bike even if I don’t have to carry large loads all the time? I am planning on taking my kid for a ride occasionally, but I would like to mainly use it to commute to work daily (6 km each way, flat terrain, Edmonton, AB)

Thanks!

  Reply
Court
4 weeks ago

Hi Nick! Yeah, I do think it would make for a great commuting platform. The way I categorize these bikes is based on having fenders and integrated lights… plus, the RadWagon 4 also has reflective tires! Normally, a bike without any suspension can be abrasive for regular commuting (especially if the roads are bad), but the new RadWagon has the high volume tires that reduce some of that discomfort. It’s a great bike for sure, and I can see why you’d consider it. Even if you only use the longtail occasionally for a passenger, or for groceries or supplies, it’s still a good all around city electric bicycle ;) just keep in mind that they aren’t out quite yet, still doing preorders.

  Reply
Nick
4 weeks ago

Great! I pre-ordered the bike this morning. Too bad that will come in September only, can’t wait to try it out!

Shantanu
4 weeks ago

Thanks for the detailed review. I have pre-ordered the bike and this review confirms I made a good choice.

Shantanu

  Reply
Court
4 weeks ago

Good for you, Shantanu! I hope you enjoy it :D you’re welcome to comment anytime about how the shipping, assembly, and riding go.

  Reply
nc1
4 weeks ago

Thanks for the review! I was never really interested in the old RadWagon, but I’ve been looking for a replacement for the HSD S+, and guess what… This actually might be a good alternative! This frame offers the possibility of replacing the Bafang hub motor with a BBSHD kit if/when the stock motor can’t handle what I need it to do. I like mechanical disks because I can fix them myself, although they aren’t as powerful as hydraulic brakes. I absolutely want smaller wheels for a cargo bike, as the 26″ wheels on my current ebike (not the HSD) make it too top-heavy loaded down. The RadWagon doesn’t scream “expensive ebike!” like the HSD does (I’ve had more than one person approach me about the HSD and I feel afraid to leave it locked up anywhere for a length of time.) RadWagons are common around my town as rental bikes, so they blend in. Last but not least, my experience of RadPower customer service is very good. So, in spite of the cheap components, I like it better than the HSD! The caveat being, I’m weird and think the RadBurro is more zippy and fun to ride than the marshmallow slug of the HSD S+, so take my opinion with a grain of salt :)

  Reply
Court
3 weeks ago

You’re not that weird ;) thanks for the perspective on owning such an expensive bike… feeling comfortable about using an ebike means that you’ll probably use it more often and enjoy the overall experience more :D

  Reply
Kenneth
3 weeks ago

When is the Rad Runner Plus Review going to drop?!?! My anticipation grows everyday lol

  Reply
Court
3 weeks ago

Glad you’re excited, Kenneth! I’ll reach out to the company and ask about the RadRunner Plus. I haven’t covered it yet ;)

  Reply
Chris
3 weeks ago

Thanks for the awesome review! Were you able to test the bike with a considerable amount of cargo on the back? I’m asking because my kids are 4 and 6 and I’d like to know how the bike would feel/ride with 2 kids compared to a bakfiets type for example.

  Reply
Court
2 weeks ago

Great questions, Chris! It looks like the Bakfiets cargo ebikes mostly use front-mounted hub motors. The rear mounted fat-tire motor that Rad has used should offer better traction, easier lighter steering, and the added width of the casing and internal windings and magnets should provide even more torque. I’d say that it will be at least as good, if not better than Bakfiets. However, NO, I did not test the bike with extra weight. I’ve done it on past reviews of RadWagon and other similar models like the RadRunner with a full sized adult… here’s that review, check out the video ;)

  Reply

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