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- Standard and Low Step-Thru Options
- Different Sizes For Varying Heights
- Easy Storage With A Unique handlebar and pedal fold-away design
- Front and Rear Lights for Easy Visibility
- Removable Battery for easy charging
- Water Bottle Cage Mounting Location is Poor
- Some People Had Problems With Tire Pressure
Charge Bikes Company
Charge Bikes was founded in 2004 by Nick Larsen with the goal of making cycling and bikes more accessible to the masses. From the early onset of the Charge Brand, Larsen was looking to solve many problems that he saw with the current bike industry and over the years he has solved many of those problems and made amazing bikes accessible to casual riders at a reasonable cost.
Charge Bikes started out as a normal bike company but when electric bike technology emerged, Charge Bikes evolved into an electric bike company because Larsen saw the potential to make bikes even easier to use. You no longer had to worry about hills or difficult terrain. You could just let the electric battery and motor do the work for you. You could commute to and from work now without breaking a sweat! Many people had the thought to bike to work but no one wanted to be sweaty or smelly getting to work. Electric bikes solved that problem. You could bike 20 miles to and from work without breaking a sweat.
After realizing that there were a ton of benefits to switching over to electric bikes. Charge Bikes made the move with the help of Cannondale’s VP of Product Peter Vallance. Vallance was an old friend of Larsen, so they came together to make the amazing Charge Electric Bikes. Through this collaboration, the Charge Bikes Electric Bike line was developed and brought to where it is today. Now Charge Bikes makes some of the best electric bikes for city commuting.
Charge Bikes equips their Charge City E-Bike with a powerful 250w Bafang Hub Drive motor. With their 250W Geared Hub motor which delivers 45 nm of torque, you can reach a max speed of 20 mph with electric power assist. The speed limit of 20mph is due to the US electric bike laws. A 250w motor is good for a commuter bike in the city but it isn’t overkill like many of the other e-bikes on the market.
There are some electric mountain bikes that come with up to 1000w motors. A 1000w electric motor will be better for climbing hills and will give you more acceleration. However, since they are made for steep climbs, they can be very aggressive and jerky on flat ground because it has too much power.
If you just plan on using your new electric bike as a safe commuter bike around the city then you don’t need a mountain bike. The Charge City E-Bike is a great choice. However, if you need it to be able to climb steep hills and want very fast acceleration, you may want to check out different e-bikes.
The battery on the Charge City Electric Bike is a 36V 11.6 Ah Removable Rechargeable Li-Ion Battery with Samsung Cells. Samsung is a quality brand for electric bike batteries. Their batteries have great battery life and provide great performance. Basically with e-bike batteries, the bigger the battery pack the longer the distance you can ride. With this battery, you can ride up to 50 miles on a single charge! Although this varies due depending on external factors such as terrain, wind resistance, weight, etc.
Unlike many bike companies, Charge Bikes only offers one size frame for the Charge City. Although they only offer one frame size, they do offer a low step frame and a regular frame. The low step frame has a lower top tube so it is easier to step over the bike.
The Charge City Electric Bike comes with integrated front and rear lights. Integrated lights mean that the lights run off the electric bike’s battery. So, as long as your e-bike is charged, your lights will be charged. This will keep you safe when you’re riding your electric bike.
There have been so many times when I’ve forgotten to charge the lights on my bike before going on a ride. I typically notice about 20 minutes into my ride when my lights die on me. Having integrated lights can be a lifesaver, literally.
The Charge City bike has a unique feature with its handlebars. You can turn the handlebars to go in line with the bike in order to make storing your bike easier. If you’ve ever tried to store your bike in an apartment or a compact area, you know how annoying the handlebars can be when trying to find a spot to store your bike. The inline handlebars, pictured below, make it way easier to store your bike in compact spaces.
The fact that the handlebars spin is a great feature but in addition to that, the handlebars are made with a lightweight 6061 Aluminum. The handlebars have a 60mm rise which provides a heads-up posture for more confident riding.
Wheels and Tires
This electric bike comes with amazing puncture-resistant Goodyear tires. I’m sure everyone is familiar with the Goodyear tire brand in terms of cars! You get the same quality tires but for your bike, so you have nothing to worry about when it comes to tires.
They have great traction and amazing durability. On top of that, they are puncture-resistant, so, they won’t puncture as easily from going over your typical road debris and hazards. These tires are great for city riding, if you are looking for a Charge Bikes offroad bike or gravel bike, check out the Charge XC, it comes with all-terrain tires that are great for light offroading.
Both wheels are 700c alloy wheels but the front wheel comes with a 32 hole double-wall rim while the rear wheel comes with a 36 hole double-wall rim. The Rear wheel also holds the 250w Bafang Rear Hub Motor.
On top of the rear wheel, you also get a great rear rack. The rear bike rack is a necessity on a commuter bike because it gives you a place to store your stuff when riding around town. Whether you’re commuting to the store and need to store your groceries or you’re commuting to work and need to mount on a briefcase or bag; a rear rack is perfect for the job.
Brakes and Safety
The brakes on the Charge City E-Bike are pretty solid. It comes with cable-actuated disc brakes with 160mm rotors on both wheels. Hydraulic disc brakes are great brakes but many people complain about disc brakes being very temperamental as a whole. They always feel like they need adjusting and maintenance on them is harder than mechanical brakes. However, the stopping power and safety that hydraulic disc brakes provide are unmatched.
This Charge bike features 5 different levels of pedal assist modes. You can also use the full thumb throttle mode when you don’t want to pedal, this is great for when you get tired on longer rides and just want to take a break. Just note that the stronger the pedal assist, the faster you will drain the battery. Throttle would essentially be the highest pedal assist mode since the motor is doing all the work. So, throttle mode will drain the battery the fastest.
The Charge City bike comes with both front and rear full fenders. On a commuter bike, I feel fenders are pretty important. If you’re using your bike to commute, you may be wearing normal street clothes that you don’t want to get dirty.
When you don’t have fenders, your tires can pick up road debris such as dirt, sand, water, or even muddy water and throw them up on your clothes.
When I cycle I’m typically riding for exercise, so getting a little dirt on my cycling clothes isn’t a big deal. However, if you’re riding to work or the store, you don’t want to walk around with dirt on your clothes. So, if you’re planning on using your bike for commuting, fenders are a feature I would definitely look for.
The LCD display on the Charge City isn’t super complex. As seen in the picture above, it’s a relatively simple display. It shows you the current power assist level that you are in and gives you the ability to change your power assist level. It has real-time speed indication. It also shows you your current battery level so you can judge whether to keep riding or head home.
Test Ride and Return Policy
Charge Bikes has a growing network of retailers around the US. If you would like to go test ride your bike before buying it, you can go to one of these locations. They have a test location locator here.
However, if you want to have your bike delivered to you or there aren’t any test locations near you, they also have a good return policy. If you aren’t satisfied with your order in the first 30 days from the purchase date, you can request a return. As long as the bike is in new condition, they will accept the return, however, you may have to pay for return shipping.
Wrapping It Up
The Charge City E-Bike is a great Electric Commuter Bike, it will get you around the city with ease and with great comfort. The bike has many amazing features that will keep you safe such as hydraulic disc brakes and integrated front and rear lights.
Overall, for the money, this is a great option for an electric bicycle for city riding. In terms of power and performance, I wouldn’t say this is the best e-bike on the market, however, for commuting and city riding in its price range, this is definitely one of the best e-bikes. You can learn about other e-bikes from our other articles.