One of the first questions we get asked about our Electric Tribe Bikes is ‘how long does the battery last?‘. It’s a difficult one to answer, as it really depends on how hilly your ride is, how much stop/start you are doing and how much you are relying on the electric assist.
We hate it when the advertised battery life of things is only achievable in perfect lab like conditions (ever bought a laptop that promises 8 hours battery life and found your battery dying half way through a movie!?), so we thought the only way to test the battery was with some real life riding. Below are the results. Spoiler alert: the battery lasts plenty long enough for most riding you’ll do with your kids.
Railway corridor adventure
Our chosen testing ground was Newcastle’s Fernleigh Track, an old railway corridor that has since been converted into a cycleway. There’s some good gradual hills on the track which give the battery a good ‘real life’ test.
With battery charged and snacks packed we set out on our adventure.
The electric assist has 6 levels of ‘assist’. I set the bike at level 3 and kept it there the whole ride. I find this is a nice balance between giving enough assist and giving you a bit of exercise. The battery is a few months old with every other day use, so not a brand new battery but not an ancient battery. Like all lithium ion batteries, expect performance to gradually deteriorate over time.
How far did we get?
Both rider and passenger had had enough before we completely drained the battery. Depending on what you believe as the source of truth we either covered 40.7km according to the onboard odometer, or 39.64km according to Strava. We’d hate to think we didn’t make 40km, so we’ll trust the onboard computer.
At the end of the ride the battery level indicator was flicking between 1 and 2 bars (5 bars is a full battery), so we think we had a little left to burn, 50km on a ride like that is not un-attainable.
For those interested in Stats, below is enough data to keep you going:
40km is a big adventure for both parent and passenger, however my passenger didn’t complain once. I don’t think I would have had any chance of getting that far in a rear rack carrier. With little ones up front there’s opportunity for games, snacking and spotting wildlife to pass the time.
We covered some serious ground, including a little loop around the beach on the way home to get us to 40km. We also averaged an impressive 18kmh. With the electric assist I was comfortably travelling at ~15-18kmh up the hills.
The Fernleigh track has a gradual rise of about 100m, it takes about 2km to complete this climb, so certainly not a steep hill, but a hill nonetheless that kicks the electric assist in quite a bit. We did the climb twice as it was an out and back ride. Steep hills will certainly drain the battery quicker, but this was definitely not a dead flat ride.
We hit over 30km/h on some of our descents. This feels fast on a bike of this size, I wouldn’t recommend attempting to go any faster, but the bike felt safe at 30kmh on a flat cycleway.
Plenty of juice for family adventures
On dead flat roads with low electric assist, 60km+ is attainable on a Tribe Bike. Under normal riding conditions expect 40-50km. This is more than enough for our family adventures, giving the bike a pass in our books.
Nevertheless, if you plan some all day family adventures or just want to ensure you never get caught short, you can purchase spare batteries in our store.
We’d love to hear how far you’ve gone on your Tribe. Send us an email or tag us in your socials.
Ready for Family Adventures on 3 Wheels?
Tribe Bikes are available now. Priced from $1,990, delivered fully assembled and ready to ride. This includes free delivery to NSW, Victoria, Queensland and ACT.