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Rad Power Bikes: RadCity 5 Plus Review

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eBikes seem to be exploding in popularity lately, and it’s easy to see why—they’re fun, fast, and make commuting or running errands a breeze. They can even be a decent replacement for a gas-guzzling vehicle for many trips around town. Personally, I love a good eBike because I live at the top of a fairly lengthy hill, which I have no desire to ride up after leg day at the gym or a long hike up a mountain. And in the summer, when it’s hot, an eBike can mean the difference between showing up to the office or a lunch date covered in sweat or, you know, not.

We also appreciate an eBike’s capacity to haul heavy stuff like groceries, climbing gear, or even six-packs with ease. Throw a couple of panniers on an eBike, and you basically have a small car. So we tested out the RadCity 5 Plus from Rad Power Bikes. This is a pedal-assist bike, meaning you do have to pedal to power it, but there’s a throttle for temporary power bursts. The brand offers a wide range of bikes and accessories—from bikes with seating for an extra person to cargo bikes, folding bikes, and fat-tire bikes.

Removable battery for easy charging and replacement (removable with a key).

Why didn’t we test a fat-tire bike? Honestly, because while the website says it’s for off-road adventures, it’s not full suspension, so it still can’t be classified as a mountain bike. It’s more of a commuter bike with bigger tires, which are generally harder to ride. We figured the most useful and versatile bike for most people is the RadCity 5 Plus. It’s designed like an around-town commuter-style bike, with medium-width tires perfect for pavement and packed dirt paths, front suspension, safety lights, a comfortable upright riding style, and a rear rack for mounting anything from boxes of new hiking boots to panniers loaded with freeze-dried backpacking meals.

Fit and Finish

Let’s get into it a little deeper, shall we? The model we tested is the orange color, but there’s also a white and charcoal gray version available if you prefer more muted tones. It has a step-through style frame, which isn’t usually my favorite. I tend to prefer a more traditional style of bike with a top tube, but the step-through design makes more sense for this ride, given how heavy it is and how small I am. The bike itself weighs 64 pounds—it’s a hefty ride, not one of those lightweight, easily portable eBikes. And if I add panniers to the rear rack, the extra weight makes it difficult to tilt the bike at an extreme angle to swing my leg up and over a top tube without losing balance.

That said, if you’re taller than 33 inches (the distance between the floor and your crotch), Rad recommends checking out the high-step version instead. As for aesthetics, this is very clearly an eBike. There’s a giant battery pack on the down tube, which is hard to miss. While it may look a bit dorky, it’s not an issue if you’re not concerned about staying incognito.

Components

Regarding components, the quality varies. The shifters, for example, are Shimano, but they’re pretty basic and might not last long if you’re rough with your handlebars. The kickstand seems sturdy, and the front chainring guard is made of metal, not plastic, which is a nice touch. This eBike is a one-by, meaning it has only one gear in the front and seven in the back—ideal for most commuting needs. The front shocks are adjustable, but the adjustments don’t seem to make much difference.

The throttle placement is convenient—on the right handlebar, requiring a twist toward you for extra power. The LCD screen and power functions are easy to read, even while riding. The bike comes with front and rear fenders, but I removed the front fender immediately because it was cheap plastic and could catch your boot while turning. One notable miss is the absence of a water bottle mount. This makes it difficult to carry a bottle while riding, requiring additional accessories or placement on the rear rack or panniers.

Final Thoughts

The assembly process took a bit over an hour, but the instructions were straightforward. The included tools were of low quality, so it’s best to use your own if you have them. Accessories like panniers are functional but not particularly special. The ride itself is smooth, with the 750W hub motor providing ample power. The disc brakes work well, and the bike is stable during turns and starts. Overall, it’s a solid choice for first-time eBike owners or those not obsessed with components.

The external cable routing is a bit of a mess.

Looking for something a little less aggressive and stealthy? Check out our review of the Ride1Up Gravel Roadster V2.

Click the button below to check it out for yourself and see current pricing.