Before you start reading this review, you may want to put on a helmet as we are about to go for a ride. A ride not on a Ferrari nor on a rocket but once you go for a ride on this piece of machinery, you may as well call it one. This ride is the Pedego Interceptor generation 2 and it is not a toy but a beautiful piece of machinery.
Over a year ago I went to the opening of the Pedego store here in Cape Town and that was the first time I rode an electric bike. It was definitely love at first sight and since that day, I have been dreaming about being back on one.
So when I received the Pedego Interceptor to review, I knew that I was in for a lot of fun, and it definitely has been. I received the red model to review which is pretty symbolic as in the movies when a young boy dreams of owning that super cool bicycle in the shop window, it is always red. Why is it red you may be thinking? When you think of getting a Ferrari, you usually think of red. I have a photo series in my office of red Ferraris. So it is not a coincidence that I have the red model as this is one super fast bicycle.
Powered with a 500 Watt motor and 6 Speed Shimano Gears, the Pedego Interceptor is powerful. Without any peddling I easily reached 32km/h. With a drop of peddling I was getting speeds of 42km/h. If you think of the speed limit of the roads around Cape Town, that is pretty fast. You can easily ride up hills without any pedalling though depending on the hill, you may need to pedal a bit. The motor which is a Brushless Gearless Hub Motor is on Rear wheel and I must say that it is not obtrusive and you actually don’t notice it.
The Pedego Interceptor comes with a 48 Volt 10 Ah (480 Watt Hours) Lithium battery which sits at the back of the bike, above the rear wheel and is removable. You are looking at a range of 50km on a charge which takes about 4 hours more or less. The great thing about Pedegos is that it is classified as a bicycle so you can ride anywhere where bicycles are allowed. At the end of the day the Pedego Interceptor is a bicycle so if you are riding and the battery is low, you can always pedal unlike other forms of electric rideables.
There are no shocks on the Pedego as it is not meant for jumping off the pavements like I do on my mountain bike. Luckily the tyres are Schwalbe Fat Frank Balloon Suspension tyres which are extra thick to absorb the impact of small bumps. It is still advised to not jump of pavements!
There are two ways to get the Pedego Interceptor to go. Firstly you can use the throttle which is really fun. It is very responsive but it won’t throw you off like a motorbike if you apply full power. Secondly you can use pedal assist which encourages you to pedal. Pedal assist can be turned on via the onboard computer. You can set the level of assistance given as you pedal with 1 being the least and 5 being the highest amount of pedal assist.
Since you are reaching some serious speeds you will need some serious stopping power. The Interceptor has Avid BB-7 Front Disc Brakes and Dia-Compe Locking Rear Band Brakes. I mostly used the back brake with a bit of the front brake which were both really effective. I use the back brake mostly as I’m scared of flying over the handle bars of any bicycle I ride!
As soon as you apply the brakes, the motor cuts off to prevent any serious accidents. You will find that in pedal assist mode, when you stop pedalling, the motor still gives a bit more power. So it’s best to use pedal assist when you have loads of space and not when maneuvering around people.
The bike does weigh more than your normal bicycle considering it does have a battery and motor. The bike is made out of 6061 Light Weight Aluminium which is good. The bike alone weighs 23 kilograms while the battery weighs 4 kilograms. Together you are looking at 27 kilograms. All the weight is at the back of the bike so watch out for that if you need to carry the bike down a few stairs.
Overall I have really enjoyed riding the Pedego Interceptor. The bike only uses the best parts which means you are looking at one of the best electric bicycles in the market. Someone said that they can buy the same thing for a few thousand rand. I told them straight out that it will never be the same. I actually let a middle aged man go for a ride. He had just sold his motorbike and said he may be interested in buying one. So if you are a bicycle lover like me or struggle to cycle, you should really take the Pedego Interceptor for a ride and you will be hooked!
To purchase a Pedego, please visit the Pedego website!