The iGo Urban
The ultimate commuter bike.
Whether you are going to work, college, or just a nice long ride, it would be hard to find a more flexible bike then the iGo Urban. The fact that it is an eco-friendly direct drive electric bike makes an even better choice.

Rather than rattling off a bunch of numbers (which are pretty impressive) let's look at specific features of the iGo Urban to see what the mean to you.

Direct Drive

When comparing the options for powering an ebike there are three common types

  1. Hub motor with planetary-gears which do not benefit from the bikes derailleur
  2. Hub motor with Direct drive which also do not benefit from the bikes derailleur
  3. Direct Drive which does benefit from the bikes derailleur
The benefit of direct drive according to iGo and others is that "Direct-Drive produces 3 times more torque than other electric bikes. The Direct-Drive system is located in the center of the bikes balance, in the crank. Since the system drives the chain and not the wheel,... the power transfer from the chosen derailleur speed, provides seamless hill climbing power to the rear wheel.

In simple terms, our motor drive system powers our bikes the same way a human powers a bike, by the chain. So the derailleur effects the power of the bike the same way a conventional bike is powered."
The video below shows the normal deraileur action as well as the no drag pedaling
(Sorry for the noise in the background - apparently this was shot at a convention.)

Lithium-Polymer Battery

When comparing battery types typically there are a three options

  • Sealed Lead Acid (called SLA) Lowest cost shortest battery life, highest weight
  • Lithium-Ion (called LiIon) Higher cost better battery life, lower weight
  • Lithium-Polymer (called Li-Po) Highest cost, best battery life, lowest weight
iGo uses this explanation for using Li Po. This battery type "is believed to be the best of battery technology at this time for products that demand power on different levels, and can recover quickly to supply the demand.

  1. Provides 36V/10Ah for great power
  2. Quick connected to the bike and protected with a key lock
  3. Weighs only 6 lbs.
  4. Can be charged more than 750 times*"

Tektro Novelo Front and Rear Disc Brake

Having ridden bikes in the rain and the mud, I am a fan of disc brakes. I like that the don't get as wet and they don't typically collect mud and junk as rim brakes can when riding after a rain. When dry and clear - both Rim brakes and Disc brakes are very effective. I've just had to ride by bike to get home or get to work and Disc brakes win the battle for me.

Low Entry

Given the option of a high bar (Titan) and a low bar (Urban), I like the low entry of the latter. It's just easier under all conditions.

Think of it this way, I have owned a half dozen convertibles, all allow me to jump in over the door or open the door and get in like a normal person. Same goes with swinging your leg over the rear tire you can do it hard way or the easy way.

Miles per Dollar

OK this might to a stretch but here goes.

It costs about 8 cents to charge the Li Po battery. The battery will take you about 20 miles with minimal pedalling based on terrain and your personal wind resistance and weight. So using that high school math that we never thought we would use again... here goes.

$1.00 / 8 cents = 12.5 charges.

12.5 charges x 20 miles per charge = 250 miles with minimal pedalling!

So let's put that in perspective.

If your ride to work and back is 10 miles round trip... it would cost you 4 cents a day.

If you and your friends went for a 15 mile bike ride every other day for a month...

     It would cost you 90 cents!

And that's if you didn't pedal!

One of the additional benefit is that by using the gears you can improve battery life. Hub motors have fewer options. Once you decide on the bike, the motor gears don't change. Up hill or on the flat, its all the same gear. Add more power to go faster. More power means more battery use, more battery use means shorter trips.

With Direct Drive, change gears and adjust the power level to maximize your speed and distance.

Good Photo of Mid Motor Drive

What that means to you is that when you are going up a hill with a Direct-Drive motor, and you shift into first as you normally would if you were pedalling, the iGo ebike motor benefits from this, where a hub motor wouldn't.

Watch this video of a 30 degree hill climb - This is steep!
iGoElectric Urban Review