Electric cargo bikes didn’t get my attention much until I realized the benefits, but now that I have a four-year-old grandson and another one on the way they’re looking better and better. One option I’m considering is from Eunorau, and we’re going to take a look at it.
It can be really challenging to pedal a bike with kids or cargo on the back. This is where the benefits of an electric motor make tons of sense. You can still get a nice workout, without exhausting yourself. A benefit of all ebikes is that they tend to get ridden much more often and for farther because they’re much more fun and practical to ride, especially if you struggle going up hills or do want to bring along a passenger.
There’s no better ebike to choose for carrying a passenger than a cargo bike. The wheelbase is longer to accommodate a passenger or other cargo. In the case of the Eunorau Max the wheelbase is 52″, compared to the standard 45″ wheelbase found on most bikes. This gives enough room for a passenger, or maybe a couple of small children to safely and comfortably ride behind you.
While we’ll be looking at the rear hub motor cargo bike from Eunorau, there is also a mid-drive option.
Mid-drive motors are more efficient when climbing hills because they can utilize the bike’s gears and for other reasons, so if you will be riding in an area with killer hills, you might want to opt for the mid-drive for a few hundred dollars more. Another benefit of a mid-drive motor is that servicing the rear wheel, such as changing a tire, is much easier.
So what are the advantages of a hub motor? Well, they’re less expensive, have fewer parts to maintain, don’t strain the chain, and operate independently of the bike’s drivetrain. With a hub motor, the chain can fall off of the bike and the motor will still deliver power and take you home.
So, basically if you’ll be riding up steep hills, I’d suggest the mid-drive. It’s worth the extra money.
For me, since I live in Central Illinois where it’s mostly flat, I can get by with a hub motor, though it is very tempting to get the mid-drive for easier rear tire maintenance.
Here are the specs for the Eunorau 24″ Max Electric Cargo Bike:
Max Speed: 20 MPH
Range: 30 Miles
Battery: 48 V 11.6 Ah battery (14 Ah optional)
Price: $1599 bike only; $1799 with rack kit
Motor: 750 Watt Motor
Charge Time: 4 hours
Lights: Integrated front and rear lights
Accessories: Includes fenders, rear foot platform, kickstand
Rack kit is available for additional $200
Tires: CST 24″ X 2.4″
Derailleur: Shimano Acera 7-Speed
Shifters: Shimano Altus
Chain ring: 48T
Brakes: Tektro 180 mm mechanical disc brakes
Pedal Assist Sensor: Cadence sensor
Throttle: Yes, Thumb throttle
Other: Adjustable/foldable stem
Total weight: 72 lbs
Min Seat Height: 32″
Standover Height: 21″
Warranty: 2 years for battery and motor; 5-year frame; 1-year other electric components
Taking a look at the specs, Eunorau did a good job selecting the components for a cargo bike. 180 mm disc brakes are must-have on such a heavy bike. I’m glad they didn’t choose 160 mm for cost savings.
The Shimano derailleur and shifters are a step above entry level components and are tried and true for reliability and ease of use.
Including fenders for no additional cost is also appreciated. For a city commuter/cargo bike they’re needed to keep you and your passenger or cargo clean and dry from road moisture.
Having a throttle on a cargo bike is also a must-have on my list because it will help greatly when taking off from a dead step or on an incline. A throttle is also great when you’re just want a break from pedaling or crossing an intersection more quickly.
24″ wheels are also ideal because it keeps the bike lower to the ground for greater stability. It also makes it easier to get on and off the bike.
Payload capacity isn’t listed but this is a bike that should easily handle 300 lbs, probably more, when considering its beefy frame and power.
The value of the bike in terms of price is very good, especially for the mid-drive version. You usually expect to spend more than $2000 for any type of mid-drive motor. To get one for around $1900 or so is a very good deal.
It would be nice to have hydraulic brakes but I wouldn’t expect them so much at this price. You can always upgrade later if you don’t care for mechanical disc brakes.
There’s no front or rear suspension but that helps keep the weight down from an already fairly heavy bike. Since this is a bike that will be staying on the pavement primarily, suspension isn’t needed as much. A suspension seat post could be added if you want some extra comfort.
Overall, this looks like a strong contender in the electric bike cargo market. With a two-year warranty on the motor and battery, and five years on the frame, it’s also less risky.