Electric bicycles or E-bikes are more common sight on the streets. There are a large variety of E-bike models for different use. The marketing has changed. When previously e-bikes were marketed for elder people, now they are more mainstream and marketing is targeted to a larger audience including hobbyist and commuters.
The Haibike Sduro Hardnine SL
Two weeks ago I bought Haibike Sduro Hardnine SL 2016 e-bike and decided to write a sort of review about it. Haibike is German brand know best for Mountain Bikes (MTB). It’s no wonder that Sduro Hardnine SL is also a MTB bike. Sduro is the Yamaha motor line, Hardnine indicates hard tail with 29″ wheel size. In the SL model there is one front sprocket and 10 gears back.
Riding the Haibike is quite pleasing. Haibike is a big and heavy bike (21kg) but it’s not noticeable due the Yamaha 36 volt, 250-watt motor, that gives 80 Nm torque. Motor assistance works speeds under 26 km/h (16 mi/h). This is a small drawback, the electric motor feels powerful enough to give even more power than is now used.
29″ wheel size is good. Big wheels need less pedaling and small obstacles are not a problem. There is also much more ground clearance thanks to bigger wheels.
Battery and brakes
The battery is Yamaha’s Li-Ion battery with 400Wh. Battery charges from empty to full in 3.5 hours. It can be charged on a bike or it can be removed from the frame and charged elsewhere. The maximum distance is 130 km when using the Eco+ mode. In day to day use, I drove 4 days and 80 km on one charge, using mostly high or standard assistant modes. The battery has an operation temperature from -20 to 40-celsius degrees, which are far better than in Bosch system (-5 to 40). In Finland, temperatures can easily fall -20 in winter months. The battery should las up to 1000 charge cycles. If one charges battery ones every fourth day, like I did the battery should last.
Tektro Auriga brakes feels powerfully and give good brake response. I have previously used mechanical disc brakes, which are like on/off switches compared more discreet hydraulic disc brakes on Haibike.
Haibike Sduro Hardnine SL is a mountain bike in every way. Pedal assistance makes it possible to climb really steep slopes and hard trails. It will be interesting to see how a bicycle works on snow and ice during the winter season.
Haibike Sduro Hardnine SL 29 can be considered as an expensive bike costing around 2400€. The thing is that it can not be compared to regular bike – more to a moped or a second car. Best thing is the easiness, you really don’t have any excuses when leaving to work in the morning. Hills and headwinds do not bother and you don’t feel tired after arriving at work.
The e-bike is its best in an urban environment. You can use trails and sidewalks. You don’t have to relay to other traffic as much compared to the car. I drove 10 km to work in 25 minutes daily when with the car it takes 20 – 30 minutes depending on the traffic.
The bad sides of e-bikes is the weight and the battery has to be charged to be able to travel in a pleasant way. This means that if you are planning to ride long distance bike trips, the trips are limited by the battery (130 km). I have been riding road bikes before and I’m not that familiar with mountain bikes. This means that the riding position is so much different that it takes time to get used to.
Maintaining e-bike is much cheaper compared to a car. No insurance, no fuel cost, no taxes. You still have to maintain it to keep it functional and drivable. If you’re handy, you can do it by yourself or take it to repair shop. E-bike is a good way to save money and still travel comfortable.
The experience riding the Haibike Sduro Hardnine SL 29 is very pleasant and I’m looking forward to seeing how it will work in winter. If you have questions don’t hesitate to ask.
Originally posted 2016-07-03 10:31:54.