Motiv Electric Bikes—Racy Red Rocket.
The title is a little misleading, as this cool E-bike comes in many colors and color combos. I got to choose the one I liked for this test and all red with black trim seemed to really pop. What was even greater, Cameron from Motiv brought me two bikes for the week, one in this great shade of red and a dark green metallic one too. The green bike was for my wife to enjoy during Saint Patrick’s Day ride we did with the EBF (and during the week too). Yet, beauty is only skin deep, let’s peel off some layers and see what motivates these Motiv E-bikes.
During this test I got to try all the power and battery options the Motiv can be had in. The 36 volt bike comes with the standard 10Ah battery, or for a little extra, you can have the LR (long range) 15 Ah battery. Motiv also has a 48 volt E-bike with a 10 Ah set-up that offers a little more kick in the power department and some added range too. I got to ride two of the 48 volt bikes, one a military green and the other in an all black scheme.
The 36 volt bikes really have all the power you need. With the 500 watt geared brushless rear hub motor you are assured of hill climbing power that doesn’t quit. Smooth, quiet motor operation and ease of use are the name of the game with the Motiv line-up. They are controlled from the half-grip hand throttle and that makes it simple to add the power-assist in the right amounts as you pedal your day away with a smile.
I did find the 48 volt version to have more juice (naturally), but the throttle operation was just a bit on the touchy side. I was more comfortable on the 36 volt bikes and loved the LR battery’s ability to extend my rides by quite a bit. If I were in the market for a Motiv electric bike, that’s the one I would choose. Each of the bikes rode great and I have to admit that bright red racy color really turned some heads as I cruised the roads and beach paths around here.
Your other choice in addition to the power systems and colors, is in a step-through or standard frame (made from hydro formed aluminum). Like so many beach cruisers, the step-through is a smaller frame for people who need a smaller bike. I want to mention a little bit more on the colors. You can mix and match for a look all your own. Plus the tire type and colors, and the saddle and grip colors can also be picked for just the combo that matches your desires.
Cameron designed the bikes and has been having great success with sales and getting them in many shops around the country. He spent several years in the E-bike industry with a couple of the big players and decided a ways back to market his own E-bike with the features he liked and a style that speaks California. Centered in the Orange County area, the Motiv web is increasing all the time. On the Motiv internet site (link below), you can find all your options and dealers.
Like always I let many people ride the two bikes Motiv brought me. The red/black color combo drew their interest and the power-assist sealed the deal. Each one who climbed aboard couldn’t say enough about how much they liked it. I get this kind of reaction all the time, but the comfortable beach cruiser seating, the smooth ride and the electric boost on the Motiv seemed to be the words they repeated. I too got a big kick out of the bikes on every cruise I took.
With a 6-speed drivetrain and some good-looking powerful disc brakes on each end, the feel of the ride is even better. Under the big cushy saddle is a suspension seat post to make you that much more comfortable The big beach cruiser tires add to that in their own way. Appearing very simple, this E-bike has all the modern pieces that match the electric power boost system. Good looks and a good ride make for some good times.
I put a lot of miles on the red one during the week. Several waterfront rides on roads and the bike paths confirmed to me how enjoyable it was to spend time mounted on this E-bike. Although shifting isn’t needed as much on an electric bike, it was easy to choose the gear I wanted. The chain guard covers up the drivetrain and if I had been wearing long pants I needed not to worry about getting them greasy. In fact I don’t remember being concerned about anything but having a good time.
The battery mounts in the center of the frame in a low-slung way. It can be charged on or off the bike, your choice. It slides out easily, being retained by a key lock. Unlike many with this set-up, there is no sloppy seat tilting mechanism. To slide out the battery, you just remove the saddle and seat post for access. It is a little inconvenient, but much better than having the cheapo tilting mechanism that moves around and will probably break before long.
I never ran out of juice on any of the long rides I took. The red bike came with the LR 15Ah battery that will take you more miles than your rear end can generally handle. The included charger worked great and never took more than 4 hours to bring the battery back to full ready for the next long ride. The LR battery option adds to the price point, but is well worth it. There is a battery level indicator on the handlebars and one on top of the battery housing that will keep you abreast of the power left for riding.
On the final day I had the bikes, Cameron and Colby met us at the EBF (Electra Bike Forum) group ride/picnic. The four Motiv E-bikes (the two that I had and the two they brought for them to ride) blended in well with the large group. The EBF group are known for their custom cruisers and for once we were riding bikes that belonged in that category. It was a great day. As the four bikes got packed into Cameron’s pick-up, it was no fun to watch them leave, yet the wonderful time I had with them made it all worth it. Thanks for the fantastic time Motiv.
Cruising on a E-bike? Why not? Turbo Bob.
“When I’m on my bike I forget about things like age, I just have fun.”—Kathy Sessler.
Motiv on the web and on Facebook.
I shot several videos of the bikes and during rides. These are the two on the bikes, and if you look around on my channel you will find the others.