Electric longtail cargo bikes are a versatile and eco-friendly way to transport goods and people. They are especially useful for urban areas with congested traffic and limited parking. However, with so many options on the market, it can be difficult to know which one is right for you. In this post, we'll go over some key factors to consider when choosing an electric longtail cargo bike.
1. Load capacity: The most important thing to consider when choosing an electric longtail cargo bike is the amount of weight it can carry. Look for a bike with a high weight capacity, typically around 180 - 200kg.
The Veloe cargo bike can carry up to 200kg.
2. Battery range: Electric cargo bikes can be powered by a battery and an electric motor, you should consider the range of the battery, which can vary from 50-80 km. Be sure to choose a bike with a battery range that will meet your needs, as a longer range will allow you to cover greater distances without needing to recharge. Some bikes allow for a double battery - if you are intending to go for long enough journeys or don't want to charge your battery too often, that may be a solution for you.
3. Motor power: Motor power is measured in watts, the higher the wattage, the more powerful the motor. In general, cargo bikes will have a higher wattage than regular electric bikes, around 250-750 watts. Look for a bike with a powerful motor to ensure it can handle steep hills and heavy loads
4. Brakes: Safety is always a top priority, so be sure to choose a bike with good quality brakes, with options like hydraulic disc brakes more robust and reliable, and will stop you in any weather.
5. Price: Electric longtail cargo bikes range from about €3500 to over €8000 euros. Be sure to consider your budget when choosing a bike and look for the best value for your money.
6. Add-ons: Some electric longtail cargo bikes come with extra features, such as built-in lighting, rear racks, and even child seats. Think about your specific needs and choose a bike that has the add-ons that will make your rides more comfortable and convenient.
Frame Material: Electric longtail cargo bikes are typically made from steel or aluminium. Steel is the most common and affordable option, but it's also the heaviest. Aluminium frames are lighter and more expensive, but not as durable and comfortable as steel.
The Yuba Fastrack is made of aluminium, making it a light bike
Wheel size: longtail cargo bikes typically come with smaller wheel sizes than traditional bikes, and range typically from 20" to 26''. Smaller wheels lower the centre of gravity, making the bike more stable. Some bikes also have different front and rear wheel sizes, making it easier to load but keeping the bike stable.
Power Assist: Electric cargo bikes typically come with different levels of power assist, which is measured in pedal assist levels (PAS). This means that the motor will only provide power to the bike when the rider is pedalling. The best known systems are Bosch and Shimano Steps.
Service and maintenance: your local bike shop will have the expertise to maintain your bike or activate a warranty if there is a faulty part. If you buy a cargo bike online, check if your LBS is happy to do repairs on it - if it is not possible for them to get parts or if the bike runs on a system that is not recognised, your LBS will probably not be able to help you if there is an issue.
- Availability: since Covid, bicycles are like unicorns, and lead times can be a bit frustrating. Luckily, we at Rothar have the possibility of having your longtail cargo custom built by the wonderful people at Achielle, and your especially designed and unique to you bike will be available within a month!
Rothar is happy to help you with any query you have, and is a Shimano and Bosch accredited shop.