- The RX is Super73's flagship electric minibike for 2021, available online and from a growing global network of dealers, with two eye-catching colors and a one-year comprehensive warranty. Integrated lights with brake activation, high-volume horn, and full coverage plastic fenders allow for safe and dry city commuting
- Motorcycle-inspired design features an aircraft-grade aluminum alloy frame, heavy-duty spokes with extra-wide hub spacing, and a triple-clamp fork complete with bump stops. Premium full suspension from DNM provides excellent travel and full adjustment controls for preload, rebound, and compression damping
- Easily exceeds 30mph thanks to a massive 960 watt-hour battery pack driving the 2000-watt peak rear hub motor, control pad is unobtrusive and intuitive to use, companion smartphone app pairs easily and offers rich information readouts and advanced settings. Defaults to Class 2 configuration for widest legal acceptance and safety on multi-use trails and bike lanes
- Only available in one small size that is difficult to pedal especially for tall riders, still quite heavy at 81.7 pounds and difficult to transport up stairs or in vehicles, limited availability can mean long waits for initial orders or replacement parts, poor side visibility due to no side reflectors or light cutouts.
Warning, in some configurations this electric bike is classified as a moped or motorcycle and may not be ridden on cycling trails or paths. It may require licensing, insurance and lights when used on public roads.
This in-depth review was produced free of charge, but I would like to thank eBikes USA for providing a test bike for me to use. My goal is to be transparent and unbiased with you, this video and writeup are not meant to be an endorsement of Super73 products. I welcome your corrections, additions, and feedback in the comments below and the Super73 electric bike forums.
- Super73 has five different models available at the time of this review. The RX is the most premium and feature-rich out of the lineup, as well as the most expensive at $3,245 USD. On the more affordable end of the spectrum is the ZI which comes in at $1,260 USD, but it’s significantly less powerful, lacks suspension, and has a small frame that it won’t fit most adult riders.
- Many minibike-style ebikes feel a lot like a scooter with some pedals slapped on as an afterthought. The RX is similar… but it feels closer to a motorcycle than any other ebike I’ve ridden. The single-speed drivetrain means you have to rely on the throttle if you want to get anywhere near top speed, the thumb throttle on the right is right where it should be to make motorcyclists feel at home, and the wide triple-clamp fork is complete with bump stops to protect the suspension stanchions and frame from damage.
- Many customers buy their bikes directly from Super73, so I was surprised to learn that the company has dozens of dealers around the globe, especially in the US and Europe. Having access to a dealer is great for test riding before purchase, and of course for repairs and maintenance! The RX comes with a one-year comprehensive warranty, and two years of coverage for the battery.
- The battery is a massive 960 watt-hour pack, shaped and positioned like a motorcycle gas tank. The high capacity will provide plenty of range even when only using the throttle, Super73 estimates 40 to 75 miles of range and based on my ride test I think that is accurate. I have heard that they use high-quality Samsung cells for their batteries but I wasn’t able to find official confirmation on that.
- The geared rear hub motor is quite powerful in unlimited mode, drawing anywhere from 1200 to 2000 watts of power at full throttle. I spent some time riding around in downtown Denver and found that it’s capable of maintaining 30-32mph cruising speed, even on some slight uphills. I couldn’t find any official numbers on motor torque but it is a bit lackluster compared to the Juiced HyperScorpion, so I estimate around 50 to 60 newton-meters of torque for the RX. Acceleration does pick up at around the 20mph mark which feels quite nice when riding on busy city streets!
- Hydraulic disc brakes from Tektro feature a large 203mm rotor up front and 180mm in the rear, quad-piston calipers, and integrated motor inhibitors that will cut power to the motor immediately when activating the brakes. These are excellent brakes and provide ample stopping power considering the weight and speed capabilities of the RX.
- Good integrated lighting from Roxim, with the headlight mounted in the front faceplate and the taillight positioned right behind the banana-style seat. Both lights are connected to the main battery and activated from the control pad by holding down the up arrow, and the taillight is brake-activated, even when the lights are switched off – a great safety feature! The headlight is rated at 600 lumens and plenty bright enough for night riding without blinding other riders (for reference, the average car headlight is 1300 lumens).
- A horn is included, mounted low on the “seatpost tube” and activated via a button on the left grip. It is very loud and capable of getting the attention of vehicle drivers when riding with traffic.
- The frame is exceptionally sturdy with a unique parallel tubing design, constructed from aircraft-grade 6165 and 7071 aluminum alloy, much stronger than typical ebike frames which use 6061 alloy. It feels rock solid on any terrain, and I also appreciate the plethora of mount points, positioned well for mounting bottle cages, additional batteries, racks, or even passenger foot pegs. Yes, you can take two on the RX (although it would feel pretty cramped) and the listed weight limit is 325 pounds.
- Premium full suspension from DNM looks and feels excellent! Up front is an inverted coil suspension fork with air assist and 120mm of travel, adjustable preload and and rebound damping, complete with front-facing plastic guards to protect the stanchions from damage and debris. The rear suspension is a single coilover piggyback shock, also with adjustable preload and rebound, as well as a preload dial at the top of the coil. This makes for smooth riding on city streets and excellent off-road capabilities for more adventurous riders.
- Semi-integrated cabling is well managed and contributes to the rugged and powerful look of the RX, I loved the appearance of my test bike with a Carmine Red frame accented by black components. It has a strong dirt bike asthetic and feel, thanks in part to the upright riding position and thumb throttle positioning on the right grip.
- The minimalist single-speed drivetrain has a 36-tooth chainring and a 16-tooth rear cog, complete with a chain tensioner to prevent derailling. Normally you wouldn’t need a chain tensioner on a single-speed setup, but since the cranks are positioned farther forward than usual (to help with pedaling) the tensioner is a good choice here. Pedaling feels best at medium speeds of 10 to 20 mph, and Super73 does sell a 10-speed upgrade kit if you want to pedal more at higher speeds. I like single-speed setups as they are simple and easy to maintain, and there’s also a bash guard on the outside to protect the chainring, as well as keep your pants from getting snagged in it.
- The seating position is surprisingly comfortable for such a small bike, even for my lanky 6ft 3in frame. I was able to sit in an upright relaxed position, there’s room to slide forward and backward on the seat and the handlebars can also be adjusted forward and backwards somewhat, so a wide range of riders should at least be able to sit comfortably. Pedaling is a different story (more on that in the cons section below).
- The BDGR 20″ rear tire is extra wide at 5″, even wider than the monster tires on the SONDORS LX that I covered last week! The front tire width is more narrow at 4.5″, another motorcycle similarity; by contrast, most ebikes have the same size of tires for front and rear. A smaller front tire provides better agility and control as well as helping to reduce weight. The thick tread looks like something you would find on an adventure motorcycle designed for both pavement and off-road riding, traction felt great on a wide variety of terrain during my test rides.
- The spokes are quite thick with 10 gauge rear and 11 gauge front where a standard ebike would have 12 or 13 gauge for both, and the hub spacing is 200mm (rear) 150mm (front), wider than the standard fat-tire ebike spacing of 170mm and 140mm respectively. This wider angle provides a better support angle for the spokes and translates to more strength. Also factor in the thick axles of 18mm rear, 15mm front, whereas most ebikes have 10mm in the rear and often only a 5mm quick-release front axle… put all this together and you get an impressively sturdy bike that feels excellent at any speed.
- The display is a simple circular LCD with excellent contrast ratios for viewing in any lighting, unobtrusive, and intuitive to control. I like this setup as it minimizes fiddling with controls so that I could focus more on riding. I was impressed that it also has readouts for pedal cadence and motor wattage, although the motor wattage readout isn’t able of going above three digits so it isn’t very useful for the 2000-watt capable RX.
- For more advanced settings, informational readouts, and even GPS navigation, Super73 has a smartphone app which pairs with the RX. Many ebike companies are touting their mobile apps and to be honest I don’t like most of them; they tend to be buggy and the pairing process is usually time-consuming and frustrating. That was not the case for the Super73 app, pairing took less than 30 seconds and I was able to figure out the app settings without any need for a tutorial. Great design, I hope other companies take note! As a bonus for reviewers it’s also easy to un-pair the app and bike later, this is also good if you buy a used Super73 model or sell yours at some point in the future. The RX can also receive OTA firmware updates via the app, a huge convenience compared to most ebikes that must be taken to a dealer to receive updates!
- The RX arrives pre-programmed in Class 2 mode, which allows for pedal assist or throttle use up to 20mph. This is the most widely accepted configuration for legal use, and I strongly recommend keeping your bike in this mode if you ride in bike lanes or on multi-use trails. Using the smart phone app you can switch over to Class 1 or Class 3, which disable the throttle and allow a pedal-assist top speed of 20mph or 28mph respectively. For off-road and private property use, you can also enable “unlimited mode”, tapping the full power of the motor and allowing throttle speeds of up to 32mph. Note that this doesn’t appear to be a hard limit and you could probably hit more on a downhill stretch, but 32mph was the highest speed I could reach on my test ride.
- The standard charger is rated for 5 amps which means much faster charging than the typical 2 amp charger, much appreciated considering the massive battery pack.
- Despite its small appearance the RX is quite heavy at 81.7 pounds. I think this is a fair price to pay for the excellent strength and durability, but it will certainly be inconvenient if you live in an upper-floor apartment and want to store your RX safely inside! By the same token, transporting in vehicles will be more difficult and the RX will not fit on most bike racks.
- Super73 does have quite a lot of dealers scattered around, but you’re still largely at the mercy of the company when it comes to support. Most of the electronic components are proprietary, for example the motor bears no third-party branding and Super73 doesn’t disclose who makes the internal parts. This can mean long delays and potentially expensive repairs, and most ebike shops will not be willing or capable of working on the proprietary components. The RX seems exceptionally well made but even the best components wear out or break down eventually, so do some research for your area to make sure you’ll be able to get the support you need in the event of a malfunction!
- Speaking of replacement parts, the lack of availability is another thing to consider. I looked through the replacement parts listed on their website and found that most of them are sold out, and they don’t even list replacement batteries for the R series or motors for any of their bikes, or any controllers. Presumably this means you would have to contact support directly or work with a dealer to get parts which could be time consuming and difficult if you don’t live near a dealer.
- I read through the Super73 warranty document and it left me fairly confused as to what is actually covered and in what situations. At face value it seems standard – one year comprehensive, two years battery – but the fine print has some limitations that paint a different picture. For example, the warranty states that the warranty is only valid if “…The bike was used in accordance with its intended purpose. TheSuper73 bike is intended for use on paved road.” Given that the RX is practically begging to be taken off-road, will that really void your warranty? I recommend reading through the warranty in full before purchasing, you can find all information here.
- The RX is only available in one size, and it’s a small size. While I felt comfortable enough sitting on it I also looked a bit silly, although that’s a minor complaint. You can slide forward and back on the seat, as well as adjusting the handlebar a little bit forward and back. It does support two riders with the optional foot pegs, but I can’t imagine that being even remotely comfortable unless both riders are quite small, probably a good fit for a short adult and a child.
- The pedaling experience is not great especially at my height of 6ft 3in, I felt a bit silly with my knees coming up well above the battery pack. The cranks are 125mm in length and much shorter than the standard 170mm cranks, further limiting pedaling efficiency. Pedaling feels best at medium speeds and cadence is brisk by 20mph, I was able to get up to 25mph with my feet going ridiculously fast but couldn’t sustain it for long. Super73 does sell a 10-speed upgrade kit which is nice if you want to pedal more often, but it can’t be ordered installed on the RX – you have to install it yourself or pay someone to do it – and at the time of this review it is sold out on their website.
- The taillight is bright and I appreciate the brake activation, but it’s poorly positioned behind a rear frame bar that almost entirely blocks the taillight when viewed from behind at average car-driver height. You can still see the glow of the light around the edges of the bar so it’s better than nothing, but positioning it on the back of the frame itself would be a much better location.
- There are no side cutouts for the lights and no reflective stripes on the tires, and not even any side reflectors on the spokes… so side visibility is quite poor on the RX. Most accidents involving cars and bicycles involve a side collision because the car driver didn’t see the cyclist, so I recommend adding some lights of your own to increase safety when riding at night.
- Most configuration options require the paired app which will be a bummer for anyone who doesn’t own a smartphone. Powering the bike off and then on again also resets it back to Class 2 mode, which can be annoying if you always ride in one of the other modes, adding extra time and fiddling with the app before you can start riding. I own a smartphone but I prefer to leave it at home or in my bag when riding, so it would be nice if you could at least change the riding mode from the standard display.
- The speed and power capabilities of the RX are unsafe for multi-use trails and bike lanes, so please make sure you use the Class 1 or 2 settings if riding there! Even in those modes some trails may restrict your access based on the power rating of the motor or presence of a throttle (regardless of whether it is disabled), so be sure to check regulations in your riding areas before purchasing.
- No USB ports for charging electronics, normally this isn’t a huge deal but considering how many features can only be engaged via the companion app, having a USB port for charging would go a long ways. Super73 does sell a huge variety of phone-related accessories and there are some extra unlabeled wires near the front of the bike, so it’s possible these might be useable for phone charging.
- The small-diameter of the wheels means a higher attack angle for bumps and potholes and thus a rougher ride compared to a wide diameter wheel, although this is well balanced by the premium DNM suspension.
- I appreciate the power of the charger but it is significantly large and heavy at 2.8 pounds, not very convenient if you want to carry it in a backpack, hopefully the high capacity of the battery will mean that you can leave the charger at home for most rides.
- The pedal assist sensor is cadence-based, meaning it measures crank revolutions only and isn’t as responsive as torque-sensing systems. This also means a delay of a revolution or two before the motor kicks in, and a similar delay before the motor shuts off when you stop pedaling. Overall this cadence sensor is a good fit for the RX considering most riders will be relying more on the throttle, and since it’s difficult to put a lot of pressure on the pedals due to the geometry.