The Best Electric Bikes for Large People


Staff member
Hi guys! I'm moving some content off of the main site and into the most relevant categories of the forum. This post was originally made on January 24th 2017:


Electric bikes can empower you to overcome physical challenges that might be getting in the way of riding a traditional unpowered bicycle. I discovered the technology in 2012 when a knee injury started making my commute to work uncomfortable… I was still capable of pedaling but there was discomfort towards the end of long rides and especially up hills. I made this video way back then explaining what ebikes are and showing my commute.

I’m not a big person myself at 5’9″ and 135 lbs but with a backpack full of work gear, balanced somewhat precariously, I began to understand what it must be like. Several of my family members struggle with weight and one of my friends is very tall so this guide is meant to present some options for different types of large people, whether it be fat and weight gain for plus sized individual or long legs and torso for those who are extra tall. I have ridden and reviewed ebikes of all sorts and some were too small for my body size and I banged my knees and felt cramped on the frame so I feel like I understand some of the challenges and hope this helps :)


Good Electric Bikes for Overweight Riders
These models offer a large saddle, upright body position, sturdy frame and include racks so you do not have to endure the added strain of weight on your back. They can be great for people who are overweight or just heavier in general.

May 12, 2015
Pedego Classic Interceptor Review
  • MSRP: $2,995
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A sturdy, powerful cruiser style electric bike with large 500 watt geared motor and 48 volt Lithium-ion battery. Balloon tires, comfort saddle, suspension seat post and oversized handlebars create a relaxed upright ride...

July 7, 2015
Pedego 24″ Step-Thru Interceptor Review
  • MSRP: $2,995
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A smaller version of the Interceptor that's easier to mount, it offers great power thanks to its smaller wheels paired with a 500 watt geared hub motor and 48 volt battery. Offers twist throttle and five levels of assist for increased range, throttle override puts you…...

July 24, 2015
E-Lux All-Trac Electric Cruiser Review
  • MSRP: $1,999
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

An electric fat bike designed for comfortable cruising with large oversized handlebars, a suspension seat post and smoother tires. Basic drivetrain with seven speeds, throttle on demand and five levels of pedal assist, full…...

October 16, 2015
Daymak Florence Review
  • MSRP: $1,999
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015, 2016

A stable, three-wheeled electric bike (trike) with front and rear cargo baskets for hauling supplies or groceries. Full length matching fenders look great and keep you dry, the basic headlight and large…...


Good Electric Bikes for Tall Riders
These models are available in several frame sizes so you can choose what fits your body type, they are also solid feeling, have racks and larger motors for moving the added weight that height brings.

August 8, 2015
OHM Urban XU700 16 Review
  • MSRP: $4,199
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A high power, high speed, urban style electric bike with nearly every accessory you could, great for commuting or trekking. Extremely quiet drivetrain, four levels of assist and regen with variable speed trigger throttle, removable…...

July 12, 2015
Kalkhoff Tasman Classic Impulse 8 Review
  • MSRP: $3,799
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

One of the most capable step-thru cruisers around, excellent range, stiff frame, good weight distribution and safety features. Aluminum alloy fenders and rear carry rack are painted to match the frame (and they…...

March 23, 2015
  • MSRP: $5,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A stylish fat tire electric bike with unique camouflage paint job, stylish Old Man Mountain cargo racks and integrated Motion Stella 300 headlight. Offers 11 speeds with a quality SRAM X1 drivetrain, second generation electronic systems by Bosch...

February 28, 2015
Haibike XDURO Trekking Pro Review
  • MSRP: $4,650
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015

A long-range capable touring our commuting style electric bike that climbs well, has a balanced weight distribution and offers 27 speeds for a steady cadence at most speeds. Excellent accessories including LED lights, full-length fenders and sturdy rear-rack with spring latch...


Good Electric Bikes Kits for Large Riders
Maybe you already own a bike that fits your body perfectly but are struggling to ride? These kits are higher quality, fit a range of bicycle frames and offer more power for moving big people.

July 17, 2015
e-RAD 750 Watt Mid Drive Conversion Kit Review
  • MSRP: $950
  • MODEL YEAR: 2014, 2015

The most powerful but still legal mid-drive electric bike kit I've tested, can be unlocked for increased speed if you intend to ride off-road or on private property ~40 mph top speed. Perfect for cargo style ebikes, fat ebikes and other heavy duty applications, pairs with cassettes,…...

July 30, 2014
BionX D-500 Review
  • MSRP: $2,499
  • MODEL YEAR: 2015, 2016

Top of the line 500 watt electric bike kit with a focus on acceleration and low end torque for climbing. Unique center-spoked design for improved comfort and wheel durability, narrow casing accommodates a larger cassette…...

May 21, 2014
Falco Hx 750 Review
  • MSRP: $2,195
  • MODEL YEAR: 2014

A modular, open source electric bike kit with powerful 750 watt gearless motor. Works in torque sensing, cadence sensing or throttle mode for different applications...

May 20, 2014
E-BikeKit 500W Direct Drive Kit Review
  • MSRP: $862
  • MODEL YEAR: 2014

Value electric bike kit in multiple wheel sizes, works with front or rear, throttle only design. Excellent support and warranty, easy to install, multiple battery options for weight or range...


This guide isn’t comprehensive and new models come out every year but I hope it serves as a starting point and guides you towards brands that make e-bikes that work well for big people. One of the best ways to relax, connect with your community and stay healthy (either by reducing stress or getting a cardiovascular workout) is cycling. You can do it almost anywhere and work it in to a busy schedule by making it part of your transportation routine… even if that’s just running to the local store or riding to a friend’s house. I spoke with my Uncle about his experience riding to work and back every day in this video interview and it was really inspiring to hear how his health had improved since he started (and how much he enjoyed it). Electric bikes aren’t as cheap as normal bicycles but they can help to make cycling fun or even possible again for those with physical challenges or rigorous terrain.
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Following are some of the original comments that were made on that post:

Under bikes for overweight riders – what about the rest of the cargo bikes? RadWagon, elMundo, Pedago Stretch, Xtracycle Edgerunner, HPC SuperMundo, etc. Most if not all of them can handle over 300lbs.

That’s an excellent point! Thanks for adding those bikes in the comments, I’ll update the list above with a cargo bike section because you’re correct that they do tend to offer greater strength for carrying heavy loads and most are adjustable to suite a wide range of rider heights as well :)

We have found the Juiced Bikes ODK U500 (Cargo Bike) to be excellent for overweight people. The simplicity of the bike makes it easy to ride. The power is great, too. It holds up to 400lbs with no problem.

Good call Tom! Thanks for chiming in about this model… I re-reviewed the ODK V3 recently and plan to post it soon. I’m excited to come visit your shop sometime. Hope business is going well!

Court, thank you, sincerely for all of your work. I need to get active again and I was going to get a regular mountain bike to use around town and take camping with me for some trail riding. After coming across a review you did on youtube I made the decision to go electric. I love this section for overweight people, as I am 300 lbs, but I noticed that these are all cruisers. Is there anything suited for a big guy that needs to get around hilly atlanta, with dirty ambitions for the weekend??

Great question Mike! Yeah, I leaned towards cruisers primarily to improve comfort… they offer a more relaxed upright ride and that could reduce strain on the back, shoulders, neck and arms for someone who has more weight. If you’re excited about the mountain bike style and want to go off-road a bit then you could certainly go for a trail bike and even swap the handlebars for mid or high rise or even cruiser to sort of approximate an upright ride. Many ebikes say they limit rider weight to ~250 lbs but I see many people go beyond this (especially with gear). My friend Sam who runs the Electric Bicycle Center in Fullerton, CA is 260 lbs and he rides everything (and takes them off-road too). So it might come down to choosing a good bike with decent power. Here’s the mountain ebike section of the site, just explore that and consider your height, whether it has a top-tube that you can clear easily and how much you want to spend. The 2016 IZIP E3 Peak has a really powerful mid-drive motor and smaller 27.5″ wheels (vs. 29ers on many hardtails) and the price is decent. Good luck and report back what you decide and how it works out for you :D

Mountain bikes can be a good choice IMO, as they’re built to take more strain. From what I’ve read, spokes and rims are the critical components to handle extra weight, followed by forks and welds. Low gauge spokes (12 or lower) and double rims would be what to look for, I believe. Perhaps someone can chime in to confirm.
The other good choice is cargo bikes – they’re designed to handle heavier loads. Not as good for off-road though :)

I appreciate that you did this section. I am over weight and out of shape. I used to exercise all of the time but 4 kids later not so much. I am 5 foot 4, over weight and always found bike riding hurt my butt even when I was in better shape. Any recomendations under $2500-2000? Thanks

Hi Amy, I really enjoy the Pedego Interceptor and they produce a “mini” version for shorter riders making it easier to mount and stand over. This bike is tough, sturdy, powerful and well made. It costs a bit more but they do offer a more basic mini-cruiser for those on a budget who don’t mind foregoing pedal assist. Hope this helps! There are other smallish cruisers out there but Pedego has a great network of dealers and it seems like these two fit your budget pretty well. If you pedal a lot I suggest swapping the saddle out for something more narrow so you don’t chaff the inside of your thighs but that might sacrifice the squishy supportive comfort of the saddles they come with stock… decisions, decisions ;)

I think this section was well written, and in my case I have been looking for a e-bike to re-energize me back into riding again like I used to. I am 310 lbs. and was more than 100 lbs lighter some time ago ago when I last rode to keep in better shape. I found the Specialized Turbo x (2015 model) has worked well for me. I live in a hilly park of Kansas City where the roads are rough, not too many trail options, so I needed a bike that was up for the job of not just helping me up a hill. Im happy to say in the case of this bike (200W nominal motor) its worked just as I want. It will get me up the large hill and keep me exercising (as the other bikes in this section indicate they would do as well). Thanks Cort, you helped me!

That’s wonderful Mitch! Thanks for sharing your experience and the compliments, I do my best. Ride safe out there and have a blast ;)

Hi all. I’m ridiculously out of shape and 350 lbs. I bought a Kalkhoff agattu xxl model in 2013 and absolutely love it. Out on the bike every chance I get. They are rated to 170 kg (374 lbs). At the time there were no Kalkhoff dealers in Atlanta and I ordered from 50 cycles in London (no tax made up for shipping) but there is a kalkhoff USA now. Great quality German bikes. There is another bike coming out now for 2017 season the Staiger ENA (rated to 150 kg (330lbs) again quality bikes. These two come in different sizes too small 45cm, medium 50cm and large 55 cm.

Nice! Good for you Pat, glad the bike has been working out well and appreciate your specific feedback about the weight rating of the model you chose. I’ve got more Kalkhoff reviews in the works which will be posted hereeventually and the same parent company makes Focus and Gazelle which I’ll be posting on later this year :D

Hi, I really like you reviews, well done and thorough. I have a question I need some help with. I have a cruiser bike I’m comfortable with and want to put a front wheel emotor kit on it. I’m 6’0″ and weigh 220lbs, so which category would I fit in, large people??? Also, what size motor should I be considering, 250, 500, or 750 watts? I have to keep the price as low as possible. Intend to ride neighborhoods and town only.

Hey Robert! Many electric bikes have a maximum weight load of 250 lbs so I think you’re alright that way but given your height, intended use in neighborhoods and around town along with your budget I’d aim for a 500 watt or stronger kit (e-RAD makes some good ones) or get a fully built cruiser like the ones E-LUX makes (The Newport is their most affordable model at under $2k). They are cheaper than Pedego but still very powerful. I always prefer built bikes vs. kits because they look better and kits can be tricky to install… It seems like you always have to make trade-offs because the frames are slightly different from bike to bike. Hope this helps!

Hello! I am a 6’6″, 230-pound, 50 year old man. I am in very good shape and I am seeking an electric offroad bike that can handle my size. Thank you! Fergus

Hi Fergus, I’d suggest asking around in the forums as well as the comments here. Are you interested in full suspension, a hardtail, or do you have a set budget? Maybe I can list a few options with that info for you ;)

I want to strengthen my heart after significant health problems and an electric bike would be very helpful. I’ve narrowed it down to the RadCity with a 750w gearless hub motor and the Surface 604 Colt with a 500w nominal geared hub motor. I am at the top of the weight capacity for both bikes. I heard that the RadCity 750w is the peak and not the nominal wattage. I also live in an area in the hills of the San Fernando Valley. Which motor would be the better choice?

Hi Ken, if you can afford it, I’d probably go with a mid-drive ebike given your weight and the hilly conditions. This might be an ideal platform… otherwise, Rad Power Bikes offers great customer support and their gearless motor should be very durable.

Yep, Court, the “Heavy Riders” and “Tall Riders” sections are overdue for an update (when you have the time!)! Love what you do, and really man, THANK YOU! :-D

Thanks for the reminder… and yeah! I’ve just been buried with travel and new bikes lately. I’ve actually got 35 models filmed but not yet posted. My hope is that these out of date bikes are still a good guide and can expose brands that have done a good job, even if they aren’t the latest models ;)

Hi; always wanted a good, sturdy ebike…I’m large gal 267 at 5 foot 8 and 1/2. Goal is to lose weight in a healthy manner…have a bad back & knees. Any ideas on a budget

Hi Corie! This year especially, it seems like ebikes have dropped in price and you can get a decent product from a shop (who will set it up right and fit you) for $2k to $2.5k but there are some online electric bikes in the $1.5k range which could work for occasional use or if you don’t need the range and support assembling etc. One of my favorite bikes for someone who might need comfort and an easier mounting/riding position if price was not an issue is the Riese & Müller Homage but something similar at a lower price is the Surface 604 Rook which isn’t as efficient but does have a throttle for easier starting and is still fairly comfortable and easy to mount.

Hi, what do you suggest for a 5’7″ 231 lb gal for an electric bike? I have to go down hills and then back up them. Also, at a real reasonable price. Can the electric bike be used on sidewalks or are they road only? Do the laws differ from stat to state? I’m in Washington state here.

Hi Rosy! I recommend exploring the affordable ebike reviews section to see what jumps out style and price wise. Most ebikes can handle up to 250 lbs so you should be okay but may have to get spokes tightened and more tuneups to keep it rolling perfectly smooth. Going over bumpy terrain with added weight can result in things coming out of alignment. Regarding laws, yes, each state (and even city) can have different rules but I have found that if you ride safely and try to be respectful, you can spend a bit of time on sidewalks to avoid being so close to cars. The key is to pull over for walkers and to try to use bike lanes when they exist. I hope this helps! If there’s a local shop nearby, definitely go in and test ride some bikes. I realize the prices may be a little higher than online bikes but the proper setup and maintenance support could be well worth it because that can cost $100 per hour if you bought the bike somewhere else and the shop might not even be able to get you parts. If you’re going to be riding a lot, it can save you money in the long term to get a bike in person. Also, Rad Power Bikes is in Seattle and they have some good prices but also have their own store.

Hello, what do you suggest for someone who is 6ft, 350 pounds?

Hi Heather! It depends on what kind of riding you plan on doing, if you want a relaxed cruiser feel then I suggest the Pedego Interceptor with the mag wheels upgrade because they will support more weight than spokes without going out of true, but you could also get a more active electric bike like the Giant Quick-E+ which comes in four frame sizes. I don’t know of many ebikes that are rated up to 350 lbs but reps from the companies mention that people in this weight range often do purchase and enjoy their products so I feel like they understate what is possible. Another cool bike that was designed specifically to be approachable but also sturdy and efficient is the Corratec LIFEBIKE. I hope this helps and I welcome you to share what you choose or discover. You can also ask around in the EBR forums here.

Howdy! I’m thinking about getting the new CrossCurrent S when to comes out in two weeks. Is JuicedBikes a very reputable manufacturer? I don’t want to be stuck with a lemon. I’m in Moses Lake Washington, a small town without electric bike shops. I ‘d just go to the local bike shop for repairs. Can I trust JuicedBIKES to use quality parts in this new bike? I’m looking for something that will last for a while. And everything I see about the CrossCurrent S seems to hit me in my sweet spot.

Hi Gerry! I feel like Juiced Bikes is in a transition period… going from lower volume, slightly more expensive and custom e-bikes, to ones like the CrossCurrent S which is super affordable and high volume. I have heard from some shops and commenters that there have been issues and adjustments in some cases but I cannot confirm. In one case, an actual electric bicycle dealer told me that he was concerned about some quality issues. There are systems out there which will probably be much more reliable (like Bosch, Brose, Yamaha) but those do cost more. I feel that Rad Power Bikes has a great reputation for quality and affordability along with Surface 604. Feel free to explore what other people are saying about Juiced Bikes in the forum and whatever you choose, please share your experience back here and I hope that it works out well for you. The first ebike I ever purchased was a disappointment because of quality, handling, and I felt that I should have spent more to get something that was better made.

Thank you Court for your quick response. Reading through the comments above, it seems like I ended up exactly where you would suggest. I too thought a mid-drive was a better choice than a rear hub, and ended up really enjoying the giant E plus review you did. I was going to try it out in Portland in the next week. I just wish it had more color and more reflective materials for night riding.
Thank you sincerely for all the work you do putting out these reviews. I thoroughly enjoyed them, and found them to be an invaluable tool as I try to figure out which of the 358,000 bikes I would like to own :)
I realize you’re busy, so no need to reply. But again, thank you.

Hey Gerry! I hope you enjoy the Giant ebike and welcome your thoughts down the line if it meets, exceeds or falls short on any of the points I shared. As you probably realize, I do my best “reviewing” but the bikes are all brand new and it ends up being more of an overview. It’s always nice to receive a thanks here and your comment made me smile. Ride safe :D

I’m 5’11 and nearly 300 lbs, the RIESE MULLER is impressive and expensive. I’m considering the BULLS LACUBA EVO 8 with the belt drive and internal gears in step-thru frame model. ANY CONCERN WITH THAT CHOICE?
best regards, MATT

Hi Matt, I did hear from one owner that the Bulls Lacuba Evo 8 felt a bit wobbly at speed (the front wheel was getting some speed wobble) but I didn’t experience that during my ride tests. My guess is that either bike would be fine, and I love the deep step-thru on the Bulls and lower price, but the best thing to do is really test ride at a shop if you can. Again, I don’t mean to freak out about stability, if you are riding with both hands on the bar and have the seating and handlebars positioned correctly I would think that both could handle you even though you’d be right near the max weight rating. Maybe ask a shop that carries both models like Propel in New York City to see if they have advice too.

Thank you so much for what you do, Court! I am learning a lot watching your reviews. I’m, 5’3″ and 290 lbs. Plus I drive a Fiat 500 so I am looking at possibility of a folding electric bike. Suggestions? I’m looking at RadMini, which says weight limit is 275, and Sondors Fold X with limit of 300. Wonder what you think of those, and any other suggestions? Btw, I test rode a Pedego Interceptor 26″ and I felt a little unsteady steering through tighter spaces with those wide handlebars, so I didn’t love it. Thanks again!

Hi Elizabeth! I have not yet tried the Sondors X but am hoping to do so (or get my friend to help review it) soon. I did enjoy the RadMini and appreciated the comfort of fat tires and the stability they added. It’s a unique bike, low enough to mount easily, folding so you can save some space (not a lot, since it’s a fat-tire bike) and powerful with assist and throttle modes. I had a nice time test riding it on the beach in Mexico, was very impressed that it actually made it through sand. Whatever you get, feel free to chime in again with a comment about how it works for you :D

Hi, I enjoyed looking over your reviews, and I have narrowed it down to 2 choices, both of your recommendations, the Magnum Peak and the E-Glide ST. I am looking for a bike I can take both on and off road. Which is the best bike?

Hi Victor! Both of these models should perform well on road, but the tires on the E-Glide ST are a bit more designed for pavement and could be quieter and offer better traction… however, when you go off-road, the opposite is true. The tires on the Magnum Peak are knobbier and will grip the terrain better. If you intend to ride more off-road, I would suggest the Magnum Peak probably, but you could always get the E-Glide ST and just upgrade the tires if you like it better for some other reason :)

I found (Link Removed - No Longer Exists). I weigh 350 6’5″ and this was one looks awesome. Good range and Power and it says up tp 350 lbs, Heard of it?

Nice, it looks exciting and the price is decent. I honestly feel that this bike would be similar to many of the products reviewed here that advertise a lower weight rating. I think the bigger companies are more conservative and careful with that sort of thing, but I have never heard of Cyrusher, maybe someday I can ask or review the bike and try to get more answers vs. speculation. It sounds like you are a taller rider, so the high-step wouldn’t be so much of an issue. When comparing models, think about or try to observe the components between two, because you might be opting for one based on a weight rating that is actually very similar or comparable to another that is available locally or fits your style or budget better. I hope this helps :)

Great article. Kent, did you get this bike and if so how did it work out for you?

Hi Court, I am 5’9″, 275 pounds, and 64 yr young. I am looking at getting an ebike so that I could get back in shape and use it to run errands and commute when traveling with my motor home. I live out in the country where there are a lot of hills and country roads. Having read your reviews I am still not sure whether I should get a middrive motor or a rear hub motor due to the stats above. Can you recommend one that would be under $3000? Also, how does a 350W midrive motor compare with a 500W rear hub motor?

Hi Sara! Thanks for sharing your details so I can try to help offer some guidance. Sorry this page is a bit outdated with older ebike models… I need to update it at some point ;) If you want the most affordable and bang for your buck, the RadCity Step-Thru is a really fun bike that is powerful, has a throttle so you can take a break pedaling, and is very affordable. It has a gearless hub motor that should do alright on hills… but it won’t be as efficient as a mid-drive or as powerful as a geared hub motor (check out the RadMini for that, it has smaller wheels so it’s easier for the motor to turn them and it’s lower to the ground). Most of the premium Bosch, Brose, Yamaha, Shimano mid-motors are very efficient, but don’t offer throttles. I’m a sporty rider and I always pedal, so I don’t miss the throttle much, and I feel that those motors last very well and are so responsive that they become fun to use! If you’re willing to spend a bit more, I would recommend checking out the Gazelle Avenue C8 because it offers amazing accessories (lights, fenders, a nice rack) and is quite, but also powerful enough to climb AND you can shift gears at standstill which makes stopping and starting easier. I realize it may be confusing to see 350 watt mid-drive and then 500+ hub motors. In my experience, mid motors can be very effective at a range of speeds and powerful for climbing, if you shift gears thoughtfully. And again, the internally geared hub option with the Avenue C8 helps with that. Just to toss one more option out there, Specialized has a new bike called the Turbo Como that fits your budget and offers a nice Brose motor and some good step-thru options. I’m assuming that you’re a woman? The Step-Thru frame tends to be more feminine and it’s fun to have some color choices… so I hope this helps! Feel free to share your story here or in the forums, I’d love to hear what you end up with ;)
Hello EBR. Another tall guy with a big belly and a bad knee here; looking for the right ebike, hoping to tap in to the wisdom of @Court and the experienced people on this forum.

I’m 6‘ 4” and weigh 350 pounds. Up until couple weeks ago, when I test rode three bikes, I hadn’t been on a bicycle in 15 or 20 years.

Like most people I’ve started with Google search and ended with emails, phone calls and a couple of LBS sales person conversations. I’ve been through telling my wife, “it’ll be about $1000” as that’s what Amazon says all the way to freaking her out by telling her I have to spend $5000 on a Pedigo platinum interceptor with mag wheels so I don’t break the bike.

I believe that that getting a bike online is probably not going work for me. There are two local bike shops near me that work on, or sell, ebikes. One of them recently stopped working on any ebikes other than the brands they stock and the other one, which agreed to assemble something I purchased online, turned out to be untrustworthy as they told me several lies along the way. (“Those roller breaks on last year’s townie go are far superior to hydraulic disc brakes”, etc.).

I have test rode an extra large Specialized turbo Vado 5.0, a Specialized Como 5.0 and an 2018 Electra Townie Go 8i. Of these, the Vado was the fastest by far, the Como looked the slickest and was an upright ride but I found myself just enjoying the Townie go much more. With the plates in my neck and all the extra weight around my middle, I think an upright bike or cruiser is the design for me. I was about to purchase it but found out that, on the townie, I would have to pick between roller brakes and the more Powerful Bosch motor as this year’s model has hydraulic brakes but has gone to the lower tier motor to keep the price point down.

Talking to Electra recently, that’s where I learned about the brake and motor changes, they suggested the ace of spades townie go. It has the Bosch performance motor as well as hydraulic disk brakes. The super friendly rep, Taylor, said their local big tall guy prefers it as it is based on their longer Rat Fink and Ghost Rider hydroformed frame.

Now, ’m ready for my search to be over so that I can actually get my fat ass moving.

I’m hoping you can help me with:
1. Any experience or thoughts on the Electra ace of spades?

2. Any thoughts on “when is enough enough” when it comes to researching the perfect ebike?

3. What is reasonable distance to travel to local bike shop? As it seems that I’ll need regular maintenance and inspectors (especially spokes), convenience seems to be a factor. There is a Pedigo store about an hour away from me but the thought of having to drive all the way down there when I could take a 10 or 15 minute ride or drive to something closer seems to be a better option.

4. Are there any bikes that, after reading about my search so far, you think I should consider prior to pulling the trigger on the Ace?

Thank you so much for such a wonderful repository of knowledge and experience. I’m hoping this last leg of my purchase journey will leave me on the right ebike for me.

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You have particular needs. I think it is very important to get a bike that fits those needs. I think it is important to find out what manufacturers say about your specific needs and whether their bikes are suitable for them.

I think you are absolutely on the right track in shopping at local bike shops, test-riding, and looking at major brands that hopefully will stand behind their products.

Since you mentioned Pedego: My local Pedego dealer recently refurbished a bike that has 20,000 miles on it, for its original owner. Up to that point, the only service the bike had had was basic maintenance. It was still using the original battery, as well. So, yes, $5,000 is expensive but it could be a bike for your lifetime. Whether Pedego or any other brand, when considering the cost of a product, think about how many years you plan to use the product. I look forward to putting 20,000 miles on my ebike, too. I'm at 3,000 and counting.

Happy shopping! :)
Can you get those mag wheels on a City Commuter from Pedego? They would be a bulletproof nice setup to ride. Their support is first class also.
@ebikemom thanks for the quick response.

While I have not tried a Pedigo, I looked at their cruisers online. They seem to have a large following but I don’t know that I want the throttle as I might be tempted to use it more than necessary. I liked the look of their Ford Cruiser but it doesn’t have the mag wheel option. I am partial to an all-black or gray look and some of their models don’t seem to offer this. Additionally, I like the mid-drive with the internal gearing as opposed to the standard derailleur because I value the ability to shift gears without being in motion.

@Saratoga Dave - the Pedego commuter with mid drive does have the mag wheel option but I was hoping for more of a cruiser style.

What I’m hearing you both say is that Pedego is the way to go. I really don’t see the clear differences to justify the price point but maybe I’m missing something.

Any thoughts on the Electra?
As far as cruisers go, you might want to check out:

Electric Bike Company Model C
E-Lux Tahoe (classic or sport)
Ariel Rider W-Class

All have throttles though
They seem to have a large following but I don’t know that I want the throttle as I might be tempted to use it more than necessary

I can't tell you that Pedego is the way to go, because I'm not YOU. I'm just sharing what I know. And, I know that Pedego has features on their ebikes that are designed to serve large riders (like the mag wheels you mentioned). And, I have no experience with the other bikes you are considering. I don't have a bias against the other brands, I simply know nothing about them.

I had them remove the throttle on my son's ebike. They disconnect and remove the throttle, and then place the "short" grip with a standard grip. You can't even tell the throttle was ever there. In a sense, the throttle is an option on the bike, not a requirement, though the default is that it comes equipped with a throttle. I did have them put the throttle back on my son's bike, BTW, after he got used to riding it. He uses it to start up, but otherwise pedals.

The throttle is great for getting started from a stop if you are in a high gear or faced up hill or whatever reason it is difficult. The throttle is also lovely for if the chain falls off--you can throttle to a safe spot to flip the bike over and put it back on. My chain almost never falls off, but when I first got the bike it happened a few times. Don't know why.

Happy Shopping! :)
Like ebikemom, I'm another happy Pedego owner. I looked for almost 2 years before buying. Like you, I'm a big guy at 6'2'' 260# which narrowed the selection of suitable bikes considerably. I've had my Platinum Interceptor for a year now and have ridden just over 1000 miles. I bought before the tariff increase last year and the price was just under $4000. Except for a defective controller, which Pedego promptly replaced, I've had no problems. As is the case with you, the mag wheel option caught my eye. Due to my weight and the type of riding I do, I've had spoke problems on almost every other bike I've owned.

I also wasn't happy with a throttle but I bought the bike anyway since it was one of the very few that had the other features I wanted. Now, I'm glad I have the throttle. Yes, I have to resist the urge to use it instead of pedaling but like ebikemom says, it comes in handy when getting a heavy ebike started while going uphill. I also like the safety it affords if there is a mechanical or health related issue. I also use it occasionally to ease butt pain during long rides. I can stand on the pedals and let the throttle do the work while I take the pressure off my posterior. Before, I would have to stop for a couple of minutes every 10 miles or so. Another use is to "walk" the bike up a steep incline or even stairs. I use mine to walk the bike up a ramp into the bed of my pickup. The throttle is easy to disable or remove completely so don't let that be a major factor in your decision.

There are other models out there for us heavyweights so check them out. Keep looking and as others have said RIDE BEFORE YOU BUY!

Good luck with your search.
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I am same height and a little lighter. I went with Biktrix ultra 1000. Went with the large battery. It is rated for 400 pounds. I did change the tires as I ride on the road mostly. With its 1000:watt motor it flys up hills. I was looking at Specialized Como, but there were delivery issues and they have a weight limitation of 250-285. There may be an owner in your area to try it out.
I am same height and a little lighter. I went with Biktrix ultra 1000. Went with the large battery. It is rated for 400 pounds. I did change the tires as I ride on the road mostly. With its 1000:watt motor it flys up hills. I was looking at Specialized Como, but there were delivery issues and they have a weight limitation of 250-285. There may be an owner in your area to try it out.

Thanks @Gege Hughes

I love the online options but am having a tough time finding a reputable bike shop near me that works on ebikes they don’t sell themselves.

As a big guy, this is tough as a manufacturer will tell you you can ride it but then you hear the weight limit is lower than your weight. I spoke to the local Pedego store yesterday and they pointed me to their bike. I’m already feeling a bit self conscious without riding something that looks so obviously designed for carrying cargo.
I’m already feeling a bit self conscious without riding something that looks so obviously designed for carrying cargo.
Very handy to be able to carry cargo! People of all sizes ride cargo bikes. Methinks that folks who see you on your bike, whatever kind you get, will see a guy riding a bike and maybe even will be inspired to get moving themselves!

I sometimes regret I didn't get a cargo bike. I do lots of errands and grocery shopping with my bike. I did go back to the Pedego store to try their cargo bike a few months ago. I ended up with a bit less regret because it is heavy, and I do lift the back of my bike sometimes to get it in a good position when I'm riding in the city and using a lot of sidewalks (like when I am stopped at a light and want to aim the bike in a different direction to go across the street). But I think a cargo bike could be a great choice! :)
I brought up Pedego not as some red hot recommendation per se, but because they are tanks but still fun to ride. My wife has a City Commuter and it’s just a monster as far as solidity goes. Too much for her, as it turns out, since it’s too heavy for her to comfortably manage. It has sat in the basement the past season and will do so again unless I just sell it and go find something lighter for her... a lot lighter.

All that said though, do they still make the Ridge Rider? That’s another tough one that has the battery in the downtube where it belongs and is a gas to ride. Tried one a few years back but I wanted a mid drive. It was one tough bike, though.

As noted somewhere above, your problems are liable to manifest themselves in visits to the bike shop to replace spokes. I speak from experience! Those Pedego mag wheels are certainly the cure for that.

Don’t forget also that this will be your first ebike, and probably not your last. I doubt there’s too many people here whose bike preferences haven’t evolved once getting into the sport/activity. There’s lots of weight loss and health success stories around here because these things are so much fun! Who knows what you’ll be riding in two more summers.
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Oh yeah, and if you want to drive your wife right out of her mind, Riese and Müller have what I think they call the GH versions of a few of their bikes. They are rated quite a bit more than the mainstream models. Bring lots of money.
I also went with Biktrix, a Stunner LT. The fat tires work great for large sized people like us. The bike looks proportioned correctly and the tires handle the weight. Go with the largest battery you can; our weight makes the motor pull more amps to assist so you will drain the battery quicker than a smaller person.
Ask all the dealers for the warranty before you buy, and confirm the bike is rated for your weight. If you are over the max weight the warranty will be worthless as you misused the product . Don’t let the salesman tell you it can carry more weight, etc. “You voided the warranty, by exceeding the max weight. A new motor costs $1,000.00”. They want to make the sale, and you are screwed. After I bought my bike I found a local shop where the owner understood why I bought the bike I did. He has no issues with servicing my bike, if it needs it. I bought a number of accessories and he has a new customer. Get the largest motor and battery.