The newly released RadRover 6 Plus marks the biggest update that Rad Power Bikes has ever brought to the market and features brand new components such as improved hydraulic disc brakes, new dual-screen displays and a completely redesigned semi-integrated battery.
Rad has launched several new models in recent years, and 2021 is evolving to be similarly packed with bikes.
When the RadRunner 6 Plus was unveiled last year, it wasn’t clear whether the nickname “Plus” would follow future models, but the new RadRover 6 Plus reinforced Rad’s intentions to offer both entry-level and higher-end e-bikes all of which combine the company’s reputation for value-driven bicycles and industry-leading service.
In my many conversations with Rad Power Bikes co-founder and CEO Mike Radenbaugh, the phrase Mike used to describe Rad’s model is “democratizing electric bikes.” That means bringing high quality e-bikes with a reliable support system to the masses at a price that most people can afford.
When it comes to quality, the new RadRover 6 Plus definitely raises the bar. Check out my video review below to see how I ride Seattle in style on the new e-bike. Then read on to get all of my thoughts on this big bike line update!
RadRover 6 Plus video test
Technical data of the RadRover 6 Plus
- Engine: 750W geared rear hub motor
- Top speed: 32 km / h (20 mph)
- Range: 45-72 km (25-45 mi) depending on the gas or pedal assistance
- Battery: 48V 14Ah (672Wh)
- Load capacity: 125 kg (275 lb)
- Frame: 6061 aluminum, high step or step-through
- Suspension: 60 mm travel suspension fork with spring preload adjustment and lockout
- Brakes: Nutt hydraulic disc brakes
- Extras: Dual displays, battery indicator with higher accuracy, front and rear LED lighting, 5 speed levels, half throttle, USB charging ports with higher power (optional), bracket for front and rear luggage racks, mudguards included as standard, newly designed battery, motor with higher torque torque
So much is new, where do we start?
There’s so much to talk about here, I don’t even know where to start.
Let’s start with the new batteries. It’s a brand new design developed by Rad that is a huge improvement. The batteries are semi-integrated so that they sit in the frame tube instead of resting on top. This gives you more space in your frame and simply looks slimmer.
The old plastic case has been replaced with extruded aluminum and the battery also loses its old key lock which is now housed in the frame instead of coming with the battery.
The capacity is the same at 672 Wh, but the whole thing is simply a much nicer solution. It’s a little longer, which makes it narrower and easier to hold in the hand. There are integrated rails on the sides that make gripping even easier. And it even has that satisfying “popup” when you turn the key to open it, like it’s just asking to be grabbed.
Next up we have a new engine that is more torque and therefore offers better mountain rides. However, terms like “better mountaineering” are relatively relative, so Rad hit us with some tough numbers, saying that the new motor helps the RadRover 6 Plus maintain a 25% higher speed when mountaineering.
I didn’t just believe the word of the company – I took the bike and its new engine up some steep hills and put it to the test. See it in action in my video above.
It continues with new hydraulic disc brakes that use ceramic pads for the best braking power. The levers are adjustable to fit large and small hands, and the hydraulic brakes allow for more comfortable one-finger braking. This is a practical factor for everyday use, but especially for off-road driving when you want to keep more fingers on the handlebars while modulating the brakes.
They’re also a low-maintenance component, which is less of a headache. No more pulling out a 5 mm Allen key and adjusting the brake cables!
There is also a new screen – or rather two screens. This one struck me as strange at first as it looked like it was just populating the bars.
But as soon as I started with the new RadRover 6 Plus, I totally got it. As you can see, the main display in front of you offers the information you want at a glance, e.g. B. Your speed, power, distance, etc. This screen is centered on the bars so it’s easy to look down and the information you will review often.
On the left side of the bars is the remote control that controls the lighting and the setting of the pedal assistance, and it also has a large screen that shows your pedal assistance and the battery, as well as a light icon that lets you know when your lights are on are . These are items that you only look at occasionally, so they don’t need to take up space on the main screen. Also, the buttons that control this information are right next to the display, meaning you don’t have to look left to find the pedal assist settings buttons and then look back to the center to see what level of pedal assist You have chosen. It’s all right in one place.
The buttons are also much larger, which is great if you’re bouncing around the terrain and need a big target, or if you’re wearing gloves in the winter. Older drivers will particularly appreciate the larger buttons and display.
The frame has also been revised. While it was always a good fit for taller riders (the RadRover is a big bike, make no mistake!), The frame now also fits shorter riders better, as the saddle can now go even deeper. The new frame has improved ergonomics and a lower center of gravity, partly aided by the new semi-integrated battery. The entry-level model also has an even lower entry, as it is no longer clogged by the battery mounted on the frame.
The lighting has also been updated. The front gets a halo headlight and the rear light is relocated to the fender so that it can no longer be covered when transporting luggage or a luggage rack.
After personally testing the bike, I can say that the RadRover 6 Plus is by far the best RadRover that has ever existed. In fact, it’s one of the best thick tire e-bikes I’ve tested, even among the more expensive offerings.
One little thing irritates me, but it also offers a cool feature that leaves me with mixed feelings. The built-in USB charger from the previous RadRover is gone. Now there’s an improved USB charger that offers more power and can be moved front to back (in case you want to power a device in your bag on the luggage rack or in a tail bag). The only problem is that it is now an additional accessory, not included. On the plus side, you can daisy chain up to two in the front and two in the back to power four devices from your bike. On the other hand, you would have to buy four USB accessories.
Overall though, I think Rad made great decisions when it came to this new era for the RadRover 6 Plus.
Rad spent money where it was needed and saved money where it made sense. For example, unseen upgrades such as ceramic brake pads instead of standard brake pads offer the driver safer and more responsive braking. This is money well spent, even if you don’t immediately notice it when you look at the bike. On the other hand, the 60mm suspension fork is an economical and effective solution to provide good suspension but without the added cost of air forks that we find on many higher priced electric bikes.
This is something I specifically asked Mike about, as I now find it particularly interesting that this new RadRover 6 Plus for $ 1,999 will bring both the budget-conscious rider with inexpensive $ 1,099 worth of e-bikes to the bike appeals to higher quality customers. “For me, it’s all about whether something offers real added value for the customer. If not, I don’t want it on the bike, ”Mike explained. He described that adding more powerful parts like an air fork to a heavy electric bike would be silly where the weight savings aren’t worth the added cost. But investing in better quality brakes, a more user-friendly battery, and a user interface that provides a better driving experience all speak in favor of the company’s goal of ensuring that every component adds value.
At $ 1,999, Rad Power Bikes is definitely entering a different league with the RadRover 6 Plus. But from what I could say about my day with the new model, they are doing it right.
The bike has a number of major updates and new features propelling it into more premium territory. By maintaining a healthy range of models in both the entry-level and premium range, Rad Power Bikes offers something for everyone under one roof. I just hope we’ll see even more models with the “Plus” treatment in the future.
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