Wired: An Affordable Electric Cargo Bike

I was just going to note that I’m seeing more electric cargo bikes around town. And, one with two kids on it at the Sub Pop Festival. Then, noticed Wired’s review of an affordable electric cargo bike, the RadPower Rad Wagon.

Their take:

Affordable. Home delivery and mobile assembly available. Five assist modes from a water-resistant electric system. 21 speeds. Extended rear rack with a plethora of accessories. Disc brakes.

At $1500 it’s less than half the cost of the Tern GSD, its range is also limited to 45 miles, where the GSD can go 150 miles with dual battery packs.

The GSD is positioned as a car replacement and the Rad Wagon more of an addition to your garage at that price.

The mom who was riding one told me she got it to get up the hills and for all the other benefits of a bike in the city: faster commute, no parking worries, saving gas, not polluting.

I’ve not ridden the Rad Wagon, but plenty have, Wired’s complaint about it is the lack of stock and lower specs

Goes out of stock quickly. A Shimano or Bosch e-assist system sure feels a lot nicer. Short battery life. Lower top speed.

Where I’d recommend a more upmarket cargo bike like the GSD or Yuba, it’s great to see more choices in the market and parents moving the kids around town by bike instead of an SUV

Rad Power Wagon Specs

  • Powerful 750W Shengyi direct drive hub motor with regen braking
    48V 14Ah (672Wh) Lithium-Ion battery using Samsung cells Rated for 800 charge cycles
  • Total Payload Capacity: 350 lbsRear Rack: 120 lbs
  • Kickstand: 100 lbs
  • Running Boards: 40 lbs per side
  • 20 mph top speed
  • Estimated 25-45+ mile range
  • Half twist throttle and intelligent 5 level pedal assist
  • Full LCD display including speedometer, wattmeter, and odometer
  • Integrated headlight
  • 28’’ cargo rack with wood panels (20 mm diameter tubing)
  • 21-speed Shimano Altus drivetrain
  • Dual-leg, spring-loaded kickstand
  • 180 mm Tektro mechanical disk brakes
  • 26″ x 2.3″ Kenda K-Rad Tires
  • Bike Weight: 72 lbs