Review by Michael Smith (Veshengro)
Many readers in Britain will, by now, no doubt, have seen the TV advert for the Gtech eBike or the adverts for it in many of the national newspapers of the country. Well, now here is a review of the bike by someone who cycles (or walks) everywhere as he is a non-driver.
They do say that first impressions are important and count and the first impressions came already with the delivery, for sure, and they were very positive indeed.
The way the bike was delivered by Arrow XL with two friendly and helpful drivers, and with full tracking information and courtesy call from the drivers around 30 minutes prior to arrival was absolutely second to none. If only every delivery company could work that way that would be so nice.
The bike came in the box fully assembled, only the handle bars had to be straightened into the right direction, and the seat height adjusted. When doing that also use a 15mm spanner and check that the pedals are proper tight. That is something that I should have checked but did not do and one of them worked itself loose after only a few days. I shall let that serve me as a reminder to always check. Also it is, as with every new bicycle, to check that everything is tight still after a month or so and it is always good to check that all nuts and bolts are tight at a regular basis.
Also one specific heads up: when dismounting and pushing your bike for any distance other than a very short one do turn off the battery as a brush at the pedals and moving them just slightly can cause the bike to surge forward.
Taking it on its first outing to the local shops I was surprised at the – allow me to call it thus – take off speed that the bike has. So much in fact that I switched to low power for much of the time initially in order to get used to the way it works. I am very much impressed and I do not impress easily; it takes some doing.
When you have got used to pedaling a bicycle the normal way using a bike like the Gtech eBike feels very much like cheating, but a very positive cheating, I hasten to add.
All adjustments to the eBike can be done with one single tool, which comes supplied. Only when dealing with the back wheel, such as taking it off for a puncture repair in addition a spanner is required, and the same applies for the brakes. It just could not be simpler.
Here where I live, in a large Park, the terrain is a good testing ground for the Gtech eBike and one short though steep incline in particular. It is one where I would normally dismount and walk up with any bike. Not with this. The motor just gives you a lovely push – though I use the high power setting on inclines, hills and rough terrain – while going up with almost no effort whatsoever.
There is one particular area that I have to traverse at a daily basis to open up a small nature reserve within the park – generally with an ordinary bicycle – that is taxing on the legs to say the least, though it is but a short run of a hundred meters of so. The Gtech eBike makes easy work of this and is whizzing along like a dream with very little pedaling.
I allowed a friend of mine who used to commute from Cheam to Kew with an e-bike for about two years a go on the Gtech eBike and he very much prefers it to the one he used to ride. It was good to get input from someone who used to use an e-bike before as I had never had the chance to ride one previously. He was rather taken by the take off power and speed as well.
I have run the bike on one battery charge for almost a fortnight although using it for short distance of between half a mile to four miles and it held up well despite on and off and on and off, and changing between low (normal) and high power, though mostly run on low power. High power only for hills and rough terrain. Distance covered in this stop and start test around the 25 miles mark.
I also took the bike for a trial run on a very steep inline hill that is a difficult one even with a good geared bike and the Gtech eBike took it in its stride with just normal pedaling. I wish I had been able to take the bike for a real good long run in the Surrey countryside but, alas, that has not, as yet, been possible due to the fact that each and every time I would have had the time the weather had other ideas. The road up to box Hill would have been a great place to test the bike as regards to hills but so far the weather, as said, has not allowed to it.
At the heart of the Gtech eBike is our latest Lithium-ion battery, the same lightweight, high performance technology that is used to power electric cars – giving you a range of 30 miles. Plenty for a day's adventure or most trips to
work and back.
A built in computer continually measures your pedalling, smoothly adjusting the power delivered to the maintenance-free motor, giving you a boost when you need it. Everything is automatic; if you pedal, the bike will help you up to 15mph, but you can pedal harder if you like and go faster. You will feel its power most if you reach a hill and start to slow down.
Riding the Gtech eBike is very simple, you pedal to go faster and brake to slow down. There are no confusing gears and the oily chain has been replaced by a clean carbon belt drive as used on high-performance motor cycles.
The battery easily removes from the frame for charging. A mains charger is supplied, which will fully recharge the battery from flat in just 3 hours.
The eBike has an easy to read LED display, to tell you how much charge you've got remaining.
You can choose from two cruising speeds at the touch of a button, or turn the power off to ride it like an ordinary bike.
The frame of the Gtech eBike is made from the same material used in modern aircraft - light, strong and designed to last. The aluminium alloy is also rust resistant, capable of withstanding the elements whether you are using the bike on roads or country paths.
Thanks to its lightweight construction, the Gtech eBike weighs 16kg, so you can ride it easily with or without the power turned on.
From what I have seen and experienced so far I will have to give the Gtech eBike more than likely a 10 out of 5, even though the pedal did come off. Oh, now that number somehow does not compute. But, oh well, so be it. I think that the Gtech eBike will be the standard that others will have to come up to or beat if they want to have a chance, and not just with regards to the carbon belt drive it uses, but in all aspects.
To say that I like this bike would be the understatement of the year. I have proposed marriage to it if possible.