This week I’ve been having way more fun than probably anyone should as part of their job; that’s because I’ve been riding around a couple of awesome new electric bikes from a company called Wave.
In case you don’t know, electric bikes (or eBikes) are simply bikes with electric motors. Wave’s eBikes have two different electric modes. There’s an all-electric mode which means you don’t even need to pedal — the bike will propel itself. And the other mode is the pedal assist mode which makes pedaling a lot easier and means you can ride further with a little added oomph from the motor.
You can definitely ride these bikes around recreationally (like I’ve been doing for the past week or so) but they also work great as a mode of sustainable transportation.
Wave recently introduced some new models to their lineup and I’ve been testing out a couple of them. More specifically I’ve been testing the Wave 2.0 and the Folding Wave and comparing their new features to the original Wave eBike (I guess that technically means I’ve been testing 3 different bikes then).
The 2.0 is a beast of a bike: it’s has a top speed of 25 MPH and an all-electric range of 23 miles (that’s 23 miles you can ride without ever having to pedal). With the pedal assist mode the 2.0 is capable of going up to 40 miles per charge.
The Folding Wave is really, truly, seriously a bike that folds in half. It can be folded/unfolded in just 60 seconds. The reason why this is so cool is that you don’t have to have a bike rack to take it with you — it can stash right in your trunk. It’s also nice for being able to store the bike in a closet if you’re short on space. It’s also styled more like a mountain bike (as you can see from the shocks) and I like the look of it the best of the Wave models I’ve tested.
The Folding Wave is a bit less powerful than the 2.0. It has a top speed of 20 MPH and go go 18 miles in all-electric mode. With pedal assist it has a range of 30 miles.
Over the course of my testing I’ve had several people try the bikes and every single one ended up telling me they wanted one for themselves. I was even getting offers from people to buy them from me. It appears that as soon as you try a Wave bike, you want to own one.
You may or may not know that the Wave eBike started as a really successful crowdfunding campaign. The reason for it’s initial success was probably that you can’t find a cheaper electric bike with these awesome specs. Apparently the competition doesn’t come close.
But the crowdfunding campaign hit some bumps in the customer service and logistics departments and unfortunately there were delays and slow customer service response times. And then, also, the original wave had a regulator that kept it functioning below it’s top speed, it had to be professionally assembled, it was heavy because it was made from steel and it had heavy battery rack.
Long story short, all of these issues made Wave want to do better with their next generation of eBikes. Design improvements were implemented, customer service concerns were addressed and the company hired an entirely new logistics team. And I’ve been having a blast riding the results of these changes around for the past week.
In terms of specific changes introduced on the Wave 2.0, it has a lighter aluminum frame (instead of the heavy steel that was used in the original), it’s got upgraded brakes, it’s got a new top-of-the-line Samsung battery and the clunky old battery rack has been totally redesigned. Those are all pretty exciting, but I think the improvements manifested in the Folding Wave are what will have a lot of people really stoked.
Aside from being able to fold in half, the Folding Wave has no battery rack, the whole bike is more compact and, importantly, it doesn’t require professional assembly. I was able to put the Folding Wave together myself in 10 or 15 minutes without even looking at the instructions.
If you’re wondering why you might want an electric bike in the first place there are several reasons. They’re environmentally friendly and sustainable, can be operated for a fraction of the cost of other forms of transportation and, of course, you can get some exercise while you’re enjoying the outdoors.
The main reason most people probably don’t own an eBike yet is just because of the price — they can be pretty expensive, So it’s cool that the Wave bikes are fairly affordable for what they do — especially when comparable models can cost around $1,800. Some Wave models can currently be had for as little as $999!
If you’re looking for the best affordable electric bike then the new Wave eBikes are definitely worth a look.
Editor’s note: this post includes paid promotion.