The Yuba elBoda Boda offers the classy vintage styling and features of Yuba’s standard non-electric Boda Boda bicycle but includes a built in BionX 350 HT motor system. Given that this is one of the best aftermarket electric bike conversion kits available, offering regenerative braking and intuitive LCD control system, the combination works very well! And while Yuba does offer the Boda Boda and BionX systems separately, you’ll spend a lot more time and effort trying to adapt the system yourself so it’s wonderful that they offer an “el” version of this bike directly.
Yuba is known for their fun beautiful designs, fun colors, sturdy rear racks with running boards that can be used to carry a second passenger and overall quality of construction. I had the chance to try one of their early ebike conversions which used a more basic motor and control system that was unimpressive. It’s great that the company is looking forward to electric bike systems and working out the kinks and I’m very impressed with the new BionX based design here on the elBoda Boda. This bike is comfortable to ride and the electronics are worked in seamlessly.
Powering the system is a 37 volt 9.6 amp hour battery pack constructed with Lithium-ion cells. It’s light weight, fits seamlessly under the rear rack and can be charged on or off the bike. In terms of power, 37 volts is about average so it won’t carry larger riders and cargo up hills without a bit of pedal help but that’s where the pedal assist mode comes in. The BionX system offers four modes of assist and four modes of regeneration so you can put energy back into the battery when coasting down hills almost like an engine brake on a car. The bike offers eight gears for pedaling on a standard cassette at the rear including one oversized ring for climbing steep inclines.
The motor powering the elBoda Boda is a 350 watt gearless design located in the rear wheel. Since both the battery and hub motor are on the rear, this bike can feel imbalanced when lifting or maneuvering it but that’s a standard design pattern many ebikes follow because it applies force to the strongest part of the frame and where most of the weight is distributed when riding. Being gearless, the motor is nearly silent and coasts super smooth. It’s less likely to wear out over time because there aren’t gears rubbing around inside and again, BionX makes great hardware and offers good customer support so expect it to go many many miles without fail.
All things considered, you’re getting a cool bike from a trusted brand with an efficient and well designed motor system from another trusted, well worn brand. Support, replacement parts and service shouldn’t be an issue with these two companies and if you like the idea of adding a child seat or adolescent bars and pad in the back this is one of the few bikes setup to make it easy right from the get-go. If you’re thinking about converting your existing non-electric Yuba Boda Boda I’d recommend hiring a shop to help you but it’s nice to know the bike works so well with this configuration.
- Metal chain protector and optional rear wheel skirt to keep pants and straps clean and clear of getting snagged
- Beautiful wood accessory plates for the rear rack and running boards
- High quality BionX PL 350 HT (high torque) drive system with regenerative braking
- Offers trigger throttle mode and pedal assist modes with four power settings
- Lots of great accessories for baskets, racks, children’s seats or a rear pad and rear handlebar for kids learning to ride
- Oversized kickstand stabilizes the bike and works very well
- Sprung seat smooths out the little bumps
- Offered in step-through and high step frame styles
- Built in rear light for safety
- Awesome bell :)
- Medium sized narrower tires don’t offer a lot of shock absorption, no shocks on this bike
- Gearless hub motor offers less torque than geared
- Accessories are expensive
- Colored tires look nice but wear out faster than black
- No front light or fenders
- Heavier than other similarly powered ebikes (due to rear racks)
- Regenerative brake only activated with one brake lever vs. both as with other ebikes