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Which e-MTB for lady?


Nic H
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My wife is an average rider looking to upgrade from a hardtail to a dualsus e-MTB. Currently looking at the Giant Embolden E +2 at around R80k. Are there any other bikes she should consider or does anyone have any opinions on the Giant? Thanks

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Nic I have done almost 5 500 km on my Giant e-bike in the last 24 months.  I also did 2 400 km on a hardtail Darrvin Connect, used with gravel tires for road rides.

 

Few random notes of things I noted in this period :

 

1. RANGE ..... I have bust knees and get 11 to 13 km per 100 W.h of battery.  Wind, long hills and higher speeds SUCK that battery dry.  Translation - I used most of two 500W.h batteries for the Argus.  Most ebike riders finish the event on a single 625W.h battery, though a bit slower.  Entering Camps Bay the one lady told her husband that her ebike battery had just switched off - that must have been a tough last few kilometers.

 

Then again, you say your wife is a decent rider, so if she has reasonably strong legs then she will get a lot more range .....

 

Either way, a 500W.h is small.  Most new bikes come with a 625W,h battery.  And many now come with even larger batteries.

 

10 months ago Giant charged just over R20k for a new battery ! :eek: :cursing:

 

2. SPECIFICATION .... It hurts to say that this is an entry level dual sus bike, with most dual sus bikes now starting way North of a R100k.

 

So the fork may or may not be up to what you want to use the bike for ....

 

The 1x10 setup is actually okay for an ebike.  You dont need a close ratio on the cassette.  You DO want at least a 36 ring in front, which the specs do show. :thumbup:

 

With a decent e-bike KMC chain you can get more than 4 000 km on a chain, before it reaches 0,5%.  Giant delivers the bike with the KMC chain.  Actually replacing the chain on my bike this week, just shy of 4 000km on it.  

 

I dont see a dropper post ..... Maybe see if they can add one at discount, IF that is important to your riding.

 

 

3. WATER BOTTLE  ...... Near impossible to fit a small water bottle in the Medium frame .....  CHECK the shock position at full shock compression - the lock-out lever touches the bottle.  I had to put a sticker below the top-tube to prevent the bottle from scratching the frame.

 

 

4.  TIREs .... Giant delivers the Trance E with 2,6 wide tires.  These large volume tires are NICE on the trails !!!! :clap:  I see this bike is delivered with 2,4 .... see if they are willing to upgrade that to 2,6, well worth it :thumbup:

 

 

5. BRAKES ..... Tektro at this price point ?? :eek:    At least it is on 203 discs.

 

6. APP ....  The Giant Ride Control app is a very nifty tool, IF you want to play with the setup.  The bike works perfectly without fiddling as well.

 

7. ASSIST SPEED LIMIT ..... Giant typically comes with a 32km/h speed assist limit in SA (make sure it is not limited to 25km/h)

 

For sales AND after sales service .... speak to JP at Recycles.

 

 

Other options ....

Darrvin has a nice new full sus in their line up - https://darrvinshop.com/ebikes/darrvin-rove

1x11 .... SRAM NX .... :thumbdown:  In fairness, this seems to be the norm on most entry level bikes.  (Disclaimer - I AM a Shimano fan boy)

KMC :thumbup:

36 ring :thumbup:

Tektro on 180mm ... uhmm...

29x2,5 :thumbup:

also no dropper ....

App ... not sure ...

Assist limit .... not sure, just ask Gert  (My Darrvin has a 32km/h limit)

The BIG advantage with this bike ... the larger battery capacity.

 

I have had EXCELLENT service from Gert at Darrvin in Cape Town  (his contact details is on the link above).  He rides the Tygerberg trails often.  I am sure you can arrange to meet up and properly test the bike.  You might even turn his arm to buy one of his demo Rove bikes ....

 

 

 

Few others ....

 

Most known brands start North of R100k.  Trek has one at 95k ....

 

Closer to your budget I see this one -

https://www.cyclelab.com/product/1013799-e-bike-mtb-merida-eone-forty-500-2021?utm_campaign=15893043498&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=575223632548&utm_term=&adgroupid=137963759411&gclid=Cj0KCQjwmuiTBhDoARIsAPiv6L-HPo4A4bTbBtIA7b8wflLTjdNAowlk1AMzWO9PT1vp1IWd6gS1flAaAhKBEALw_wcB

Seems like an interesting option ....

 

 

Let's hope @Titan Racing Bikes wades in here and provides some input on their current range of ebikes .....  I AM a Titan fan, but they did not do ebikes when I bought mine, not sure what they have at the moment.  Would expect them to offer good value for money ....

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@ChrisF I am starting to think e-bike vendors are now just taking the mickey out of all the people who are willing to buy their bikes.

Commencal e-bike for 120'000.00 ZAR's . . . with the same spec on the entry level Spez Stumpy available for 40k. How the flip does one justify such bullshittery?

Either the Stumpy is massive value for money or Commencal are just taking everyone for a poephol . . .

I mean, taking your price of 20k for a second battery I can only think that I am cured from wanting an e-bike.

I rode Hoogekraal two weeks ago and as I was getting ready two chaps arrived back in the parking lot and stood there waiting for the missus to come fetch the one oke who's battery on his e-bike was flat. He had to either wait for his vroutjie to fetch him or push his bike up Vissershok.

Ja, mense kan maar vir my lag op my analogue fiets, maar ek is die battery. En ek kan baie verder gaan.

https://www.commencal-store.co.za/commencal-meta-power-tr-ride-gun-metal-c2x35378867

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Rail 5 

 

500wh battery 

Same 250cx bosch motor that comes on the very top model.

1x12 shimano deore 

mt200 brakes but the big rotors give it decent stopping power.

its got A rockshox 35 that performs well with the additional weight helping with that small bump sensitivity.

 

Bosch Purion controller is not compatible with the app , but really not needed.

 

95k all in (tires aren't TLR tho ) 

 

Rail 7 is the best value trek ebike imo...

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20 minutes ago, Robbie Stewart said:

I mean, taking your price of 20k for a second battery I can only think that I am cured from wanting an e-bike.

I rode Hoogekraal two weeks ago and as I was getting ready two chaps arrived back in the parking lot and stood there waiting for the missus to come fetch the one oke who's battery on his e-bike was flat. He had to either wait for his vroutjie to fetch him or push his bike up Vissershok.

 

Jip, more than 20k for a battery is daylight robbery .... 25k if have thee S....

 

4k for a new battery for the Darrvin Connect that givez the same range and performance

 

The least they can do is add some Vaseline to the deal .....

 

 

 

Range and getting stuck .... I had a CLOSE call in December .... charged and ready for a long ride ...  cycle from home to Meerendal, do the full lap, even up Dorstbeg.

 

Over the road and into Oatlands corridor .... gate is LOCKED, not the regular club lock..... 

 

Not a biggy. Tar down towards Hoogekraal, koffee at Dairy shed .... but for some reason the battery level is dropping faster than expected ....

 

And the bulb goes on .... I have the 500Wh in the bike, not the 625Wh .... Oooo cr@p !!!

 

I was down to 1 bar, ie 12km range, by the time I reached the second mast .... almost 25km to get home ....

 

That was some serious battery management to get home .... red light came on as passed the old Kriges pub.  Almost 3km to go, but mostly downhill.

 

 

 

Price vs specs .... sickening to see entry level components on R150k ebikes ....

 

I still want a demo ride on hardtail with plus size tires ..... some almost decent deals on hardtail ebikes.

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10 hours ago, ChrisF said:

 

Jip, more than 20k for a battery is daylight robbery .... 25k if have thee S....

 

4k for a new battery for the Darrvin Connect that givez the same range and performance

 

The least they can do is add some Vaseline to the deal .....

 

 

 

Range and getting stuck .... I had a CLOSE call in December .... charged and ready for a long ride ...  cycle from home to Meerendal, do the full lap, even up Dorstbeg.

 

Over the road and into Oatlands corridor .... gate is LOCKED, not the regular club lock..... 

 

Not a biggy. Tar down towards Hoogekraal, koffee at Dairy shed .... but for some reason the battery level is dropping faster than expected ....

 

And the bulb goes on .... I have the 500Wh in the bike, not the 625Wh .... Oooo cr@p !!!

 

I was down to 1 bar, ie 12km range, by the time I reached the second mast .... almost 25km to get home ....

 

That was some serious battery management to get home .... red light came on as passed the old Kriges pub.  Almost 3km to go, but mostly downhill.

 

 

 

Price vs specs .... sickening to see entry level components on R150k ebikes ....

 

I still want a demo ride on hardtail with plus size tires ..... some almost decent deals on hardtail ebikes.

Not too much different from hitting the proverbial wall on an analogue bike at the bottom of Patrick's psycho plunge when the car is parked at bloemendal. 

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2 hours ago, Mamil said:

Not too much different from hitting the proverbial wall on an analogue bike at the bottom of Patrick's psycho plunge when the car is parked at bloemendal. 

Now that must have been pure torture getting back to the car. I can only imagine the pain.

And I am wondering if e-bike batteries are like cell phone batteries that start to fade after a few months. If so you can ride i.e. 100km on a full charge when the bike is new, and soon a full charge only goes 75km and before long you struggle to hit 50km, or am I reading too much into this?

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16 hours ago, ChrisF said:

SNIP

Let's hope @Titan Racing Bikes wades in here and provides some input on their current range of ebikes .....  I AM a Titan fan, but they did not do ebikes when I bought mine, not sure what they have at the moment.  Would expect them to offer good value for money ....

We currently offer two ranges relevant to this thread, one with two models and one with the full spread.

 

Charge: Recreational / Entry Level Hardtails

https://titanracingbikes.com/bikes?jsf=jet-engine&tax=range:102

 

DSCF0338.jpg

 

Nitric

https://titanracingbikes.com/bikes?jsf=jet-engine&tax=range:105

 

1AC7C0B8-ED2B-47B2-BD63-A99AC1FD7879.jpeg

 

We also have the eTransporter range that caters for commuters

https://titanracingbikes.com/bikes?jsf=jet-engine&tax=range:106

 

And will soon launch the Charge Junior Range...

https://titanracingbikes.com/bikes?jsf=jet-engine&tax=range:104

Edited by Titan Racing Bikes
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1 hour ago, Robbie Stewart said:

Now that must have been pure torture getting back to the car. I can only imagine the pain.

And I am wondering if e-bike batteries are like cell phone batteries that start to fade after a few months. If so you can ride i.e. 100km on a full charge when the bike is new, and soon a full charge only goes 75km and before long you struggle to hit 50km, or am I reading too much into this?

 

Early days .... only 24 months and 5 500 km, split between the two batteries.  But thus far the batteries are holding steady.

 

I DO take great care to store it at 50 to 70% state of charge.  It only gets fully charged the night before a ride.

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15 minutes ago, ChrisF said:

I DO take great care to store it at 50 to 70% state of charge.  It only gets fully charged the night before a ride

I want to jump on my bike and ride at a whim, this kind of pre-thinking is ok for planned rides, but not all the time.

 

As mentioned, I'd be seriously upset if one of the running costs I need to factor in to owning an e-bike would be regular battery replacements.

Also one of the things that worries me about electronic shifting (DI2 etc.). i keep my bikes for many many years, will the battery last long enough ?

 

Off Topic slightly

I've got a Canon 50D sitting in my cupboard, I used to use it all the time without a worry about the batteries. With the battery grip and 2 batteries I could shoot all day on a single charge. Now the one battery is dead and the other is on its last breath, I'm reluctant to buy new batteries because I no longer use the camera all that often anymore.

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My 2 cents worth.

Personally I think an e-bike is a waste on any able bodied rider.

- For a decent speced bike, you are looking at close to 100K 

- They are bloody heavy

- Cost a fortune to maintain

- Are only beneficial if you are riding undulated trails with climbs that will warrant an e-bike

- Unless you have a good technical ability, they are not all that conducive to technical trails

That said, everyone and anyone is fully entitled to their own choice.

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2 hours ago, FondTF2 said:

My 2 cents worth.

Personally I think an e-bike is a waste on any able bodied rider.

I get what you're saying, but the main e-bike benefit in my opinion is that it enables riders of different fitness levels to ride together. My wife is not nearly as fit as I am so when we ride together I hardly break a sweat and have to constantly wait for her. If she was on an e-bike she would be able to keep up with me much easier.

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28 minutes ago, Nic H said:

I get what you're saying, but the main e-bike benefit in my opinion is that it enables riders of different fitness levels to ride together. My wife is not nearly as fit as I am so when we ride together I hardly break a sweat and have to constantly wait for her. If she was on an e-bike she would be able to keep up with me much easier.

conversely if she put in the training to be on the same level as you she would most likely be in a better position health and wellbeing wise. 

its an egg vs chicken scenario

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