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Specialized Vado 4, Gazelle Ultimate, or other option?

Old 06-21-24, 03:28 PM
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Specialized Vado 4, Gazelle Ultimate, or other option?

Hi Everyone,

My Trek 7500 hybrid was stolen last month and thinking of replacing it with my first ebike. I narrowed down my choices to the Specialized Vado 4 for $2750, Gazelle Ultimate T10+ for $2699, or Gazelle 380+ for 2999. Candidly I would prefer to spend less and almost bought a Priority Current for $1999, but for $750 more get a name brand motor and local support. What are your thoughts? I'm looking for something primarily for riding around the neighborhood and rail trails (paved & gravel).
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Old 06-21-24, 04:31 PM
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All good options but Gazelle Ultimate 380+ would be my choice out of them all. Bosch makes a great reliable e-bike system that has looooooooong term support. Gazelle has been around making bikes since the late 1800s and they made their first e-bike back in 1936 with the help of Phillips. That particular model has a belt drive which is no maintenance and then it is paired to the Enviolo hub which is also no maintenance (minus replacing cables and housing once and while) and it is a really great bike. Plus the 380+ at that price is a steal (be careful it is from a legit authorized seller otherwise you are out on warranty)

If you are interested in spending less than spend more at the beginning. Low initial cost bikes are expensive bikes long term and can be more of a headache. I want good support and quality parts because that is the real cheap stuff not cheap in a bad way but actually low cost for someone who is riding it more than once in a blue moon.
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Old 06-21-24, 06:07 PM
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I am a big fan of Bosch equipped e-bikes so I would go for the Gazelle. One does pay more but the better quality justifies the higher cost. The torque sensor on a Bosch equipped mid-drive e-bike provides for a smooth delivery of power compared any of the hub drive e-bikes.
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Old 06-21-24, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes
All good options but Gazelle Ultimate 380+ would be my choice out of them all. Bosch makes a great reliable e-bike system that has looooooooong term support. Gazelle has been around making bikes since the late 1800s and they made their first e-bike back in 1936 with the help of Phillips. That particular model has a belt drive which is no maintenance and then it is paired to the Enviolo hub which is also no maintenance (minus replacing cables and housing once and while) and it is a really great bike. Plus the 380+ at that price is a steal (be careful it is from a legit authorized seller otherwise you are out on warranty)

If you are interested in spending less than spend more at the beginning. Low initial cost bikes are expensive bikes long term and can be more of a headache. I want good support and quality parts because that is the real cheap stuff not cheap in a bad way but actually low cost for someone who is riding it more than once in a blue moon.
I love your recommendation, but I have one question... 1936 was their first ebike???
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Old 06-21-24, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by tds101
I love your recommendation, but I have one question... 1936 was their first ebike???
Actually it might have been 1937 or possibly even earlier in collaboration with Phillips another Dutch company.

https://www.researchgate.net/figure/...fig1_330943376


Crazy stuff!
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Old 06-22-24, 03:29 AM
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Thanks for the feedback! My main hesitation is that most of the Gazelle line is based on older technology and appears to be due for a refresh (motor, electronics). If I stick with the Gazelle, it is between the T10+ (with Deore XT Components) vs belt/hub for $300 more. The Specialized was refreshed in 2022.
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Old 06-22-24, 10:07 AM
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Solely from looking closely at the Gazelle line they would be a strong contender for me. Build quality, component choices, belt drive on the top models give me confidence they would give long, dependable service and be a pleasure to ride. Have not seen the Vado in person but specwise it seems to compete well and of course, for service and parts there is a huge infrastructure behind it. Priority seem to be lots of bike for the money and the pricing through Costco is even better.

Good luck!
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Old 06-22-24, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by yatesd
Thanks for the feedback! My main hesitation is that most of the Gazelle line is based on older technology and appears to be due for a refresh (motor, electronics). If I stick with the Gazelle, it is between the T10+ (with Deore XT Components) vs belt/hub for $300 more. The Specialized was refreshed in 2022.
Honestly the newness of refreshment is not as important as some companies do a refresh to do a refresh and some do a refresh because it is needed. In the end the Ultimate is a fantastic bike and especially with a belt drive. Don't get me wrong Specialized makes a great bike and the newer Bosch motors are fine motors but that gen of Bosch motor is also awesome. My R+M Supercharger2 Rohloff HS is a great bike and it is right before the smart system and no issues no worries and still have support.

Certainly the new Vado line is a lot better than the old stuff which is less true for the Como (which is still a great bike but I think the older model has a few more upsides I think. With the Vado you can get the Automatiq hub which is kind of cool if you don't love shifting.

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Old 06-26-24, 07:35 AM
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I have a Priority Apollo 11 gravel bike, and it was a good buy. (though it's not electric)

For my main electric bike, I have an Aventon Level.2; great bike at half the price of these ones you're looking at. I've got about 1200 miles on it and no problems so far. One problem, though it might be self-inflicted. The side of the rear tire is coming apart a bit; the rubber is coming away from the cords. I think I may have caused it while spraying chain cleaning solvent on the rear sprocket.

I admit I would like a belt drive for my next commuter eBike, but I'm not sure I'd spend close to $4k for that.

I feel like too much stock is given for Bosch mid drives. Not that they're not good, but are bikes that use them a good value? If you're not climbing steep hills pretty often, I would say not. (and you'd be surprised how steep of a hill a humble 500 W hub motor can pull you up with just a bit of your own pedal power added in.)

How is Gazelle support in the USA? I've never seen one on the road here. Specialized probably has a much bigger dealer network, if you go the high-dollar route.
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Old 06-30-24, 04:38 AM
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Thanks everyone for your help! I picked up a Specialized Red Turbo Vado 4 yesterday. Ultimately, a local dealer had it in stock and sold it to me for $2,500.

Only put about 10 miles on it so far, but very pleased. Usable without power, easy in Eco mode, and fast in Turbo. I am also happy that I went with class 3 since I regularly took it over 20mph and hit 30mph for brief bursts (I am not in shape).

Now I need to buy accessories!
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Old 06-30-24, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by yatesd
Thanks everyone for your help! I picked up a Specialized Red Turbo Vado 4 yesterday. Ultimately, a local dealer had it in stock and sold it to me for $2,500.

Only put about 10 miles on it so far, but very pleased. Usable without power, easy in Eco mode, and fast in Turbo. I am also happy that I went with class 3 since I regularly took it over 20mph and hit 30mph for brief bursts (I am not in shape).

Now I need to buy accessories!
The Garmin Varia E rear light is a great one, I have it on my Vado SL and it integrated in nicely.

Also keep in mind the MIK and Racktime compatible bags are interchangeable you just need the correct bottom plate. However the Basil bags which are generally native MIK compatible are quite nice.

Also Ergon grips always Ergon grips except no substitutes.
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Old 07-02-24, 02:01 PM
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Very nice pick-up. You'll thank yourself for buying the bike with the properly-long front fender, in time.
It's already got a rack, fenders and light set. What else are you going to add?
Tail bag? Panniers? Bottle cages?

If I ever wear out my Aventon Level.2, I think I'll try the belt-driven version of your bike.
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Old 07-02-24, 05:20 PM
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New Ride


I added a rear bag, bottle cage, cell phone holder, folding lock, tire patch kit, and mini pump. Most of the items are stored in the rear bag. I chose the red because it was in stock locally, but really enjoying the color.
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Old 07-02-24, 05:31 PM
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Too early to say if I made good choices, but this was my shopping list:

Bottle cage:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...0?ie=UTF8&th=1

Rear bag:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Cell phone holder:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...0?ie=UTF8&th=1

Folding lock:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...0?ie=UTF8&th=1

Bike tool:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...1?ie=UTF8&th=1

Mini repair kit:https://www.walmart.com/ip/Slime-Pee...0?from=/search

Mini pump:https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...TF8&th=1&psc=1
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Old 07-02-24, 06:45 PM
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Unfortunately fakes and knockoffs and stuff bought from un-authorized sellers is a poor idea anytime.

For the lock portion, ABUS does make good locks but again get it from an authorized dealer for the biggest point you can get a full keyed-a-like set which means you can have a frame lock, battery lock and folding lock that are all the exact same key which will make your life so much easier.
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Old 07-02-24, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by yatesd

I added a rear bag, bottle cage, cell phone holder, folding lock, tire patch kit, and mini pump. Most of the items are stored in the rear bag. I chose the red because it was in stock locally, but really enjoying the color.
Nice looking bike; IMO, you can't go wrong with Specialized.
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Old 07-12-24, 10:06 AM
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That's a killer bike; I think it was a good decision.

That "JX f*ck-all" branding on the trunk bag is kind of bad. I'd probably hit that with a black permanent marker.
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