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Bosch vs e-Trike Motor Comparison and a BIG Question

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Bosch vs e-Trike Motor Comparison and a BIG Question

Old 09-16-22, 01:39 PM
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Bosch vs e-Trike Motor Comparison and a BIG Question

I recently switched from a cadence-based (e-Trike) to a torque-based (Bosch) e-motor on my Catrike Villager. I want to relate my experience to compare the two here. Perhaps my thoughts will help someone who may be on-the-fence over which one to buy. Remember - this is only my experience. I also want to ask an important question about the Bosch at the end of this post

I made the switch to the Bosch because I didn't feel that I was getting enough of a workout with the e-Trike and felt that a torque-based motor would give me that. Boy, WAS I RIGHT! Today, I took the exact same route with the Bosch that I took 4 weeks ago with the e-Trike - about 13 miles and hilly (at least for me). The Bosch took me an extra 35 minutes to complete the route, and I was more tired afterwards. For me, that's a good thing because I want a workout but others might not be happy with that.

Here's what I find about each:

E-Trike Positives::

- more power and speed overall

- throttle available if/when you need it. (This is a BIG plus in my book.)

- lower overall cost

- Trike still has 30 gears available

e-Trike Negatives:

- too easy for you to "cheat" by ghost-pedaling, even if you don't realize you're doing it. (This might be a positive for some, but not for me)

- controller screen is almost impossible to read in sunlight.

- BIG gaps between power levels. (I had trouble matching my natural cadence with any of the levels. In effect, I was often "between" levels,) Ideally, I'd wish these gaps to be smaller.

- These big gaps and the nature of cadence-based means that you lurch forward when changing power levels.

- relatively short warranty.

Bosch Positives:

- no "cheating". ie - you get out of it only what you put into it. (ie - a better workout).

- crystal clear controller screen under all lighting conditions

- 5 year warranty

- more "elegant" battery mount

- more natural pedaling feel, at least for me. It evens out my uneven cadence by immediately "filling in the gaps". With the e-Trike, I was always "clunking" the chain. (Hard to explain what I mean).

- Changing power levels is much more smooth - no lurching.

Bosch Negatives:

- no throttle available. It would be nice to have in an emergency, like outrunning an unleashed dog, etc.

- You lose 2/3 of your gears. because the motor is on the crank so replaces your front triple crankset with only one.

- Relatively low power overall and difference between power levels is, if anything, too small and subtle. Slightly bigger gaps between levels or availability of one or two more power levels in the upper range would be nice at times.

- relatively expensive

That's all that come to mind right now.

Here's my question about the Bosch:

On today's ride the "miles remaining" showing on the controller screen dropped pretty fast (ie - from 103 down to 45 in Eco), due to the hills, I guess). However the bar symbol showing the remaining battery strength remained at 5 bars. (The bars on the battery itself remained at 5 as well). So, which of these should I trust? I don't want to run out of battery power all of a sudden. - Remember this was over only 13 miles.


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