First Time E-Bike Purchase

jspiegz

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Apr 3, 2023
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Toledo, Ohio
Hello I want to buy an E-Bike for my 8 mile commute to work (one way). It is mostly flat terrain with bike paths or wide sidewalks in northwest Ohio. I am considering getting two bikes from Costco. The Jetson Adventure Electric bike is $1000 ND the reviews seem ok but not great. Anyone had any experiences? I am also considering the the SONDORS Smart Step LTD Electric bike for $1500. This gets better reviews but wondering if it is worth the extra $500.

Overall I am planning on riding most days that it is not raining in the spring and fall. So I want to make sure the battery lasts. I am hoping to use the battery assist on my way to work so I don't get super sweaty and mostly pedal on my way home. Any input or other suggestions? I really want to buy these from Costco because of their 100% return policy. Thanks!
 
Hello I want to buy an E-Bike for my 8 mile commute to work (one way). It is mostly flat terrain with bike paths or wide sidewalks in northwest Ohio. I am considering getting two bikes from Costco. The Jetson Adventure Electric bike is $1000 ND the reviews seem ok but not great. Anyone had any experiences? I am also considering the the SONDORS Smart Step LTD Electric bike for $1500. This gets better reviews but wondering if it is worth the extra $500.

Overall I am planning on riding most days that it is not raining in the spring and fall. So I want to make sure the battery lasts. I am hoping to use the battery assist on my way to work so I don't get super sweaty and mostly pedal on my way home. Any input or other suggestions? I really want to buy these from Costco because of their 100% return policy. Tha
Ok understand about the Costco return policy, but there are so many other choices out there many with much better features and benefits. Have you checked with any local bike shops to see what they have to offer.
 
Honestly, looking at the specs, the Jetson with a 250W motor, 36V, 8.7 battery ..... Sanders 350W, 36V, 10.4 battery

I wouldn't buy either unless you must have new, and the prices are the absolute maximum you can afford. At a minimum I'd be wanting 500W, 48V, 14Ah battery. A used one in perfect condition with these type of spec would be a far better buy.
 
Check out the KBO Breeze. It has the 48v 16.5 ah battery, 500 watt/750 peak motor, front suspension, 180mm disk brakes, 2.4" wide tires, front and rear fenders, head and tail lights, brake light, and other features that make it a good buy at $1100-1200. One of the most important things I almost forgot is the brand of batteries. KBO uses Samsung. Some other manufacturers use cheap off brand batteries that may not last very long and the battery is the most expensive item on the bike to replace.
 
Check out the KBO Breeze. It has the 48v 16.5 ah battery, 500 watt/750 peak motor, front suspension, 180mm disk brakes, 2.4" wide tires, front and rear fenders, head and tail lights, break light, and other features that make it a good buy at $1100-1200. One of the most important things I almost forgot is the brand of batteries. KBO uses Samsung. Some other manufacturers use cheap off brand batteries that may not last very long and the battery is the most expensive item on the bike to replace.

MUCH better choice.

Don't underestimate the value of the rear carrier. You'll likely want one so that cost needs to be added straight onto the price of the original possibilities.
 
Yes, KBO comes with the rear carrier rack standard. One thing to consider is if you put a bag on that rear rack, it makes it more difficult to swing your leg over when getting on the bike. This is not an issue with the step through, only the step over style.
 
Yes, KBO comes with the rear carrier rack standard. One thing to consider is if you put a bag on that rear rack, it makes it more difficult to swing your leg over when getting on the bike. This is not an issue with the step through, only the step over style.

Only if you put a really big bag on it, or a milk crate (which I have on my 'fishing machine'). On the Norco mid drive I have (its very light and so suitable to shove 2 of em in the back of the SUV when towing the caravan) I have one of those fold out type bags (done up about the size a loaf of bread). Top expands up, and 2 panniers come out the zipper sides. Even in its expanded state its still lower than the seat height. So it makes no difference to getting on the bike. I easily get my phone, car keys, wallet, bike lock, rain jacket, etc in, and even some grocery shopping.

With the KTO I'd go for the 'conventional' frame over the 'step through'. It's cheaper, but mainly because it has an external mounted battery. Much cheaper to replace if/when its time is up.
 
Welcome to the forum, @jspiegz .

My commute is very similar to yours, and I have loved my Aventon Pace 500 for the purpose. If commuting, just be sure to buy the add-on rear rack and front/rear fenders (don’t want splatters on your spiffy work pants ;) ).

Good luck!
 
Thank you all for the input! After doing some additional research I am going to with KBO Breeze. I did not consider the battery manufacturer. Also it does come with all the extras like fenders and a rack. Thank you for the recommendation. Hopefully spring won't be too rainy!
 
100% return policy is tempting, but you're more likely to need it, in the case of the Jetson. I think it's just an American name brand for cheap Chinese bikes. 24 V is pretty weak, too.

Sondors is a good brand, and it would have been worth the extra $500, I think. However, it's a folder and you didn't mention needing that function, so there's no need to pay the weight penalty for it. (not to mention cables bending every time you break it down) 36 V is still pretty weak; I had a 36 V bike with smaller wheels and it was a help but not much.

That Breeze looks nice, and the nice orange step-over is $200 off now!

Three things to add right away: Some kind of luggage for the rear rack, a bell and a Suntour NCX suspension seatpost. If you decide to go with panniers for luggage, PM me. I have a set of like-new previous generation Bontrager nylon ones I'm trying to sell. They're very nice.
 
KBO Breeze comes with a bell. I agree about the Suntour NCX suspension seat post. It makes a huge difference especially if you have back problems like a lot of us do.
 
Be aware that a LOT of specific brand-name recommendations are in fact paid advertisements. Look at a few dozen, examine the differences, learn to understand what they mean, look for a LOCAL DEALER, unless you are proficient in both bicycle and electrical repairs. Your distance is minimal for almost all models, ability to pedal likely above average, you have not mentioned your weight, which is a major, major factor. Also needs for suspension, portable battery, cargo capability, etc. Commuter for work so reliability is important, look for models that have been in production for at least two or more years, more is better.

Also no mention of desired speed, amount of stops on trip, traffic, etc.
 
I recommended the KBO Breeze and KBO does offer some kind of a spiff if a recommendation turns into a sale. I think the spiff is probably some sort of accessory for your bike that is available to anyone that recommends their product as far as I know. I'm sure other manufacturers will do the same thing if you ask them and can verify that your recommendation resulted in a sale. My recommendation is solely based on my experience with the KBO Breeze. I would still recommend this bike as it has been fantastic so far.
 
The only ones "paid" are the YouTube guys that do reviews. I know they are "paid" with free ebikes that they evaluate, but beyond that I don't know. I don't think recommending a product on a forum for the remote possibility of receiving a free accessory is considered "paid". Hopefully that's not what you were referring to. I think most of us would recommend the ebike we purchased if we are happy with the product. I apologize if I misunderstood your comment regarding " paid".
 
Thank you all for the input! After doing some additional research I am going to with KBO Breeze. I did not consider the battery manufacturer. Also it does come with all the extras like fenders and a rack. Thank you for the recommendation. Hopefully spring won't be too rainy!
By now you should have the bike, eh? How do you like it?
I looked at it, and it is something I would buy too. Here are my thoughts on it:
  • 3 A charger. This is nice, 50% faster than competing 2 A chargers. That's a nice feature when you decide you want to go for a long ride after having commuted all week with only an hour's notice.
  • Panasonic tires? Great! I didn't know Panasonic was in the tire business, but I DO know that everything they do, they do well. Tires are important, too. A lot of eBikes these days come with fat knobbies, which are not efficient at rolling on pavement and with the lugss acting like little fan blades. and that translates into less range.
  • 48 V headlight? That's gonna be a POWERHOUSE. Good!
  • Mechanical disc brakes: They're going to screech eventually. They'll take more squeezing power to stop the bike than hydraulic, but should be good enough.
  • The rear rack looks nice. It has a lower set of bars for hooking panniers onto while letting you still potentially use the rack for a basket or trunk bag.
  • The mechanical shifter is a basic Shimano one, but I always liked that one. It lets you blast down through all the gears at once as you roll to a stop, so you can start in a low gear and help the motor as much as possible.
  • The saddle looks like a comfortable shape, but one can never tell until one rides it for awhile and adjusts it to his liking. (speaking of not only height, but also tilt)
  • Full fenders. This makes a big difference in my commuting. I can ride just after rain and not worry about getting too dirty. The front fender doesn't go down low enough, but VERY few do. (only Specialized, from what I can see) You might think about adding a mud flap.
  • 500 W motor (750 Wpeak) is enough, since you have relatively efficient tires. I've never had more than a 500 W motor, and I have no problem hitting 25 mph. 28 mph takes a bit more time.
  • The 768 Wh Samsung battery pack, if you do some of the work, I think a 55 mile range is doable. With my similarly spec'd Aventon Level.2, I got over 55 miles on a charge by just using PAS 1 for hills and headwinds, and could still maintain at least 13 mph the whole time.
  • 900 charge cycles; that's questionable. 500 is a more realistic lifespan, since by 900, you will have lost at least 30% of the battery's capacity.
  • Brake light; that's a nice feature at dawn, dusk or nighttime
  • Display is basic, but it seems to have what you need
  • 62 lb. weight is not bad, considering it includes a rack and fender set. My Aventon is 65 lbs. It's heavy to get moving when you haven't got electric turned on, or when climbing hills, but is fine otherwise. Cheap bike racks that strap on the back of the car are going to be questionable.
  • Removable battery pack is nice. If you take the charger with you, you can charge at work. (or buy a second charger to leave there)

Did you get the step-through or step-over model? These days, I like step-through better, and I'm not even too fat to step over. I got used to stepping through and it is nice.

Give us a report when you get some miles on it!
 
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