“We started with the tires fully inflated for some street riding. They make a good noise
riding down the street.”
The bike also ships with a cool-looking, motorcycle-style, open-face
helmet in its own sleeve for protection.
Ours was matte white, but there is also
an option for matte black or matte red.
When you ;rst turn the bike on, the
Bafang display comes to life and offers
you the information you need on a big,
easy-to-read monochrome screen that
shows speed, battery life and pedal-assist level. Throwing a leg over it is
easy, and it’s even semi-step-through,
as the curved top tube stays relatively
low near the seat tube.
As with all fat-tire bikes, you can do
a lot with the tires to affect the ride. We
started with the tires fully in;ated for
some street riding. They make a good
noise riding down the street. You don’t
really need the bell, because people will
hear you coming! Looking over the bars
and down at that wide tire, you feel a bit
like you’re on a motorcycle.
Going off-road, the tires grip even
better if you drop the tire pressure.
This won’t be much of a drag, literally,
since the 750-watt motor provides
ample power. On soft sand the tires just
roll across, even when in;ated to just
5–7;psi. Those big tires take out some
of the small bumps when you roll over
them. The pierced rims, reminding us
of the Mongoose BMX version from the
’80s, shave some weight but also allow
a little more ;ex from the tires/tubes,
offering an even cushier ride.
Bigger bumps actuate the Top Gun
fork. It’s okay for small bumps, but
overall, we ;nd that fork to be a bit
;imsy overall. It’s ;ne for bumps in the
road, but if you go off-road, you might
yearn for something more responsive.
The relatively laid-back, 68-degree
head tube angle makes for a very
stable ride. Steering isn’t twitchy in the
slightest. The saddle is comfortable,
and overall ride, though a little noisy, is
Bafang makes motors for much of
the electric bike world. They’re powerful
and reliable, but in high-drain bikes, they
can have an annoying drawback. When
the bike is fully charged, going down the
street it performs pretty well. There are
nine—yes, nine!—power-assist levels on
this bike, and when riding in one of the
higher assist levels and climbing a hill,
you’ll almost always lose one bar on the
battery gauge right away.
The bike has a cadence sensor only.
There is no torque sensor. This means
that as long as you turn the pedals,
you’ll go the speed of the power-assist
level chosen. Since there are so many,
this translates to level 9 getting you to
20 mph, level 8 to 19 mph and so on,
without you having to actually put in
effort pedaling. For experienced cyclists,
torque sensors are more natural. For
non-cyclists, often cadence sensors
are simpler and easier to use. Pedaling
takes a second to engage the motor,