After a few weeks waiting the first GEPIDA has arrived. We’ve chosen the RUGA, it’s a 29er that uses the latest and greatest of the BOSCH line of electric bicycle crank driven systems. BOSCH produce “Classic”, “Active” and “Performance” lines. The “Performance” line is their top line and this is what is installed on the RUGA. The battery is also by BOSCH and is 36V 11Ah in capacity (400wH). We were mighty impressed with the first test ride. It’s very silent, perhaps even a touch quieter than a hub driven system, and the power comes on beautifully whilst pedalling. You can choose between 5 levels of pedal assist and the motor activates in response to the pressure put upon the pedals. This is a more advanced system than a typical pedal assist system, where they are cadence sensors rather than torque sensors. There is no throttle.
Everything about this bicycle is top quality, ROCKSHOX forks, SHIMANO SLX gears, MAGURA hydraulic discs etc. There is nothing that has been compromised – though a nicer set of pedals may have worked well. The display is extremely tidy, it comes with an LCD screen that measures any parameter you may be interested in and there is an additional simple button conveniently located next to the left thumb that allows you to press + or -, these will increase or decrease the motor power in response to pedal power. This also inversely affects your range of course. The motor only assists up to about 25-30km/h but you can pedal over this to any speed you like. Apparently there is a little dongle thingo that you can purchase for $200 that will allow you to fully open up the power of the motor. Allowing the motor to power up to 50km/h! For off road use only of course.
All up it’s a great electric bike and one of the finest on the market. It is expensive though, recommended retail is $4400. You get what you pay for though and if you are looking for a silent crank driven electric bicycle then this one will be hard to go past. Some of the HAI bikes are also worth a look at though if you have no budget. It’s certainly more advanced that a hub motor system. Recommendations for road use would be changing to slick tyres, otherwise it’s ready to roll.