time for an ebike - but which one?

Discussion in 'Bikes and Buying Advice - What Bike?' started by kynikos, 10 Aug 2018.

  1. kynikos

    kynikos Well-Known Member

    Years of (for the most part enjoyable :cheers:) bodily abuse has left me with two stents, a paunch, early onset COPD and a somewhat reduced ability to climb hills! My current bike's sat in the garage feeling lonely and unloved and I'm missing cycling so...

    I've been thinking about a bit of assistance for:
    • my one day a week commute to the office - 12 miles return
    • local shopping - similar
    • couple of days a week out and about - mixed road/bridleway/towpath etc - aim for 20/30 miles?
    Oh, and a stepthrough - using it for shopping and a touch of arthritis means it would be easier.

    A bit of research leads me to think something with a Bosch Active Line Plus and hub gears (no more cleaning the crud) might fit the bill and I've been looking at (in order of current preference):

    1. Gazelle Ultimate C8 MBH
    2. Riese & Müller Swing Nuvinci
    3. Koga E-Nova White

    There's a lot of similarities but on paper the Gazelle is in front of the R&M and I can't get excited about the Koga:
    • Alfine 8 or Nuvince N380 - not sure on this one as I'm not familiar with stepless other than on a test ride. I do like to know what gear I'm in and the Alfine is click shift as opposed to twist grip which may be better for arthritic fingers, moving forward. And a bit more efficient. I may be missing a trick here though.
    • R&M has fatter tyres and front fork suspension as opposed to the in the headset of the Gazelle - overall less of an urban bike so in some respects it's down to what I use it for.
    I've ridden the R&M - liked it a lot - and will try the other two out next week so will see what transpires.

    In the meantime comments and observations are welcome (and sorry if it's a long post)!
  2. welsh dragon

    welsh dragon a permanent vacancy now exists

    @Pale Rider and a couple of others will be able to offer advice. I have no doubt they will turn up soon. @raleighnut is another who can help.
    raleighnut likes this.
  3. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    Each of the three on your shortlist is good quality.

    You may be right about changing 'gear' on the NuVinci, the twist grip requires a bit of effort.

    Hub gears - apart from Rohloff - don't have enormous range, so make sure lowest is low enough and highest is high enough for your needs.

    I've been pleased with my Riese and Muller/Rohloff, but it is a lot of money.
  4. raleighnut

    raleighnut Guru

    On 3 Wheels
    Mine (and Maz's) are conversion kits though, @ the £500 mark. The advantage is that they're fitted to standard bikes so can be easily swapped to another bike/trike.
    Cycleops and welsh dragon like this.
  5. Salar

    Salar Über Member


    I've been pondering for the last year, :rolleyes: Should I or shouldn't I.

    Anyway what about this bike, chain drive, the only downside for me is it has front suspension, which I'd change if I bought one.

    Step through which doesn't bother me.

  6. Rockn Robin

    Rockn Robin Senior Member

    I'm in a similar situation to you, although I don't commute to work anymore. Been retired for a few years now. I don't have your health issues, but I do have a few of my own; type 2 diabetes, and hypertension. All brought about by my own stupidity through life. But, I'm trying to reverse it the best I can through proper exercise and diet. I do ride when I can, but as I age, pedaling is a bit tougher.

    I ride a folding bike which allows for easier commuting, especially if you are on and off a bus. Just simply fold it and carry it on board. Then when you get to you place of employment, you can fold it and bring it inside. One nice thing about a folding bike is that you don't have to lock it up outside a store or building. Just bring it inside with you. This way, it isn't left outside for potential theft. Whatever locking system you use, thieves will find a way. I own a Brompton folding bike, and I'm in the process of finding an appropriate electric motor kit for it. There are, however, other electric folding bikes out there. One thing I like about mine is that I can ride to a grocery store and turn the bike into a grocery cart. A lot of times, my wife and i will travel with the bikes. Just put them in the back of the car and off you go. Whenever you stop, you don't have bikes hanging on a rack exposed to thieves and weather.

    Brompton 02.jpg Brompton at R M Park 01.jpg DSC03751.JPG Shopping With Brommie 03.jpg
    kynikos likes this.
  7. OP

    kynikos Well-Known Member

    I'm interested to know how a Brompton rides - what effect do small wheels have for instance. I think they're rolling out e-bikes but only in the UK at the moment.

    In the meantime, I've placed an order for one of these:
    e-nova nuvinci.PNG

    a Koga Nova Nuvinci. It has the Nuvinci Harmony setup so more or less fully automatic if you want it. Sadly there's none available until the next production run which is not until December :sad:
    Last edited: 17 Aug 2018
    Rockn Robin likes this.
  8. Rockn Robin

    Rockn Robin Senior Member

    That looks very nice indeed. Sad that it's not available until December. But in the mean time, you have time to look around and if you find something that suites you, you can always cancel the order.

    Well, as far as how a Brompton rides; It is a little different than a regular bike because of the narrower handlebar width, and of course, the smaller wheels, but it doesn't take long to adjust. Just for fun, if there is a Brompton dealer near you, go give one a try. It rides like any other bike, but the narrower handlebars will only take a short while to adjust to. I've had it up to about 20mph, but that was pushing it. I can't do that now as I'm not in shape. It will be a major huff and puff event. HAHAHA!! For me, I'm sold on a folding bike for it's great versatility. I'm now hoping for a motor conversion kit for pedal assist. I sure could use that now. There have been times when I would go out for a ride and not notice how far I have gone. Just going along enjoying the ride, then i would realize, "hey, you silly fool, your getting tired and you have to ride back home." That's where pedal assist would be a welcome addition.

    Whatever bike you settle on, I hope it's right for you and what you desire it for. I wish you the very best.
    kynikos likes this.
  9. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    Nice bike, although December is a long time to wait and bike dealers' quoted delivery times are famously flexible.

    Other makers fit the NuVinci hub.

    Riese and Muller could probably sort you a similar spec bike sooner.

  10. OP

    kynikos Well-Known Member

    Quite - a ride out this week convinced me that it's too long to wait so I've cancelled the order for the Koga and now have the R&M on order with an early October build. It's the Swing Nuvinci:

    Which model do you have PR?
    Pale Rider and Rockn Robin like this.
  11. Rockn Robin

    Rockn Robin Senior Member

    Very nice.
  12. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    i have a Charger with a Rohloff hub and twin batteries.

    Hopefully your delivery date is accurate.

    My bike is a year or so old, but turned up a week or two early.

    R&M - like Koga - are nicely made bikes, so you should be pleased with it.
    kynikos likes this.
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