A few tadpole trike manufacturers are offering electric motorized models. One of them is TerraTrike. I applaud this as having a BionX unit installed on my Catrike I really love having it. I have a friend I ride with who has a BionX unit installed on his TerraTrike Rambler. The BionX unit is a great unit as long as everything works right (mine doesn’t), but it is expensive. This E.V.O. model is far less money although feature-wise I much prefer the BionX unit. That being said, this Falco unit is 750 watt vs. the BionX 350 watt and it offers a 2 mph reverse as well as a crawl forward from a standstill. BionX has neither. Of course, the thing about this deal which is a real turn off for me is the fact that it is a TerraTrike trike. I just am not impressed with them as I think they are poorly designed and built. I would much rather spend $250 more and get a high quality well designed trike such as Catrike Villager. And for $305 less one could prchase a Catrike Eola and have a far superior trike. It is relatively easy and low cost to motorize either of these. So many TT owners admit that they regret not buying a better quality trike. For me personally there is absolutely nothing about the Rambler (or any other model TerraTrike offers) that appeals to me. It would have been a good candidate for a book entitled “unsafe at any speed”. And they are hard to work on. Many mechanics want nothing to do with them. Our largest local bike shop (LBS) used to be a TerraTrike dealer but they dropped them as they think they are poor quality and want nothing to do with them.
UPDATE: When I first wrote this article TerraTrike was offering only the Falco hub motor but later they also started offering the Bosch crank drive motor and upped the price to $4500. That is a thousand dollars more for a higher cost motor but still on a poor quality trike. HERE is their webpage for this model.
Now on with my original posting … (Please note – from here on everything which appears in this article is someone else’s writings and not mine.)
$3,499.00 … 750 watt Falco hub motor with 2 mph reverse and crawl forward from a dead stop feature
Drive System Derailleur, Falco 750W 5 Phase Motor
Battery Type/Weight Li-Ion / 36V / 11.6 Ah / 417 Wh
Max. Assisted Speed 20 mph
Range 97 km (60 miles)/Charge
Frame Chromoly steel
Rims/Wheels TerraTrike Black Double Wall
Tires Schwalbe Energizer 20 X 1.75
Crankset Driveline Durabi 400 170mm
Bottom Bracket RPM Sealed Square Taper
Chain KMC Z72 8-speed
Front Derailleur MicroSHIFT Triple
Rear Derailleur MicroShift 8-speed
Cassette/Rear Cogs SRAM PG-830 11-30, 8-speed
Shifters Microshift Mezzo Trigger
Brake Levers Promax Linear Pull, Locking
Brakes Avid BB7 Mechanical
Pedals Comfort Pedal
(subject to change without notice)
TerraTrike’s Electric Vehicle Option (or “E.V.O.” for short) will transform the way you ride and will increase your range by degrees of magnitude. It will allow you to climb hills that were previously daunting, it will keep you spinning through rolling terrain. The Rambler E.V.O. is not intended to be an electric trike. The E.V.O. was designed to help you along your journey while you still get the cardio benefits of trike riding. You will hear and feel the motor turning on and off as it senses your need for assistance. You will still be shifting the trike as you normally would; as the hills get steeper or as you come to a stop.
With a generous range of up to 60 miles per charge, you will have nearly limitless potential. The lithium ion battery can be charged overnight with the included “smart” charger. Simply plug the charger into a nearby outlet, or the battery can be easily removed from its case for charging in a different location.
TerraTrike figured out the ideal torque sensor setting and assist level so that it is very predictable and optimized for assistance and range. The top speed is governed at 20 mph. The Rambler E.V.O. motor control accessories available are ‘Wired Plus Minus (WPM)’ ‘Wired Console’ and ‘Wireless Console with Plus Minus’. The trike will still be limited to 20 mph, but you will be able to adjust the level of assist (low, medium, or high) or you can put it into one of three regenerative modes which actually charges the battery on long descents.
The optional Wired Plus Minus (WPM) switch also adds a reverse gear. You will need to back pedal while it is backing up due to the drivetrain of the trike. But don’t worry, max speed in reverse is 2 mph. The WPM accessory can also help climb hills by providing a “crawl” feature. It too is limited to 2 mph and is merely intended to get the trike rolling so that you can begin your pedal stroke. After the trike starts to move and you start to pedal you can let go of the plus button and the motor assist will kick in as appropriate.
– Electric Assist Hub: The E.V.O. is available in a traditional deraillured system external hub with electric assist
– Direct steering: Horizontal handlebar position provides responsive leverage to steering inputs, and provides a tight turning radius
– Steering stack with bushing/bearing combination for smoother steering
– Chromoly steel frame is lightweight, smooth riding, and capable of supporting up to 300 pounds
– Comfort mesh seat for extra lateral support
– Simple operation, seamless experience
– Powerful 750W direct-drive hub motor
– No pedal resistance when battery isn’t used
– 5 phase motor provides more torque & power
– Up to 1000 recharge cycles per battery
– Industry-leading 5 year motor warranty
Although the following is not a very recent article it is still helpful …
A FREE GIFT awaits you!
Trident trikes has come out with a model which appears to be aimed at competing with TerraTrike’s Rover and Rambler models. The Trident Spike comes in 3 different models … Spike 1, Spike 2 and ESpike. The Spike 1 model is just under $1000. The Spike 2 model is just under $1300. The ESpike sells for just under $2500 which is by far the lowest cost electric motor pedal assist trike I am aware of.
Here is what Trident says about their Spike models:
Spike is a no compromise Sub $1k Folding Trike. Don’t let the price fool you though- Spike is packed full of features that you won’t see in other brands at twice the price. Our customers spoke and we listened. Not everyone is ready to commit $3,000 to their first Trike, but everyone wants something nice and easily upgradeable.
Some notable features of Spike include Trident’s exclusive Aluminum Seat that adjusts for both height– 14 5/8 Inches (370mm) to 16 1/2 ” (420 mm) and angle (42-52 degrees), a Folding Chro- Moly Powder Coated Frame, an Anodized Aluminum Boom, Aluminum Seat Frame with Water Bottle Cage attachment bracket, Shimano 7 Speed Deraileur/Shifter, Mechanical Disc Brakes, a Safety Flag and Alloy pedals- all STANDARD.
For those who want a Spike with better performance and components, Trident offers the upgraded 24 Speed Spike 2.
Spike 2 upgrades include a Truvativ Triple Crankset, Microshift Front Derailleur, Microshift Marvo LE Rear Derailleur, an 8 Speed 11-32 Cassette, and finally Avid BB5 Disc Brakes- all for the unbelievable price of $1299.00!!!
E Spike is a modified 8 Speed Spike 1- It uses an integrated system by a Japanese company called Dapu. It ifeatures a 350W Geared Hub Motor, a special Cranket with sensors, a 36V 13 AH Rack Mounted Battery with built in light, and a Digital Display. With this system you can choose between throttle only or 6 different levels of pedal assist.The 36v 13AH battery is much larger than other manufacturers use and will give you a much longer range- about 30 miles electric only and up to 75 miles using pedal assist. This entire package only adds 18.5 Lbs to a Spike!
An accessory kit with a full set of 3 fenders and a sturdy rear rack is available for $148.00
A Deluxe Accrssory Kit which includes 3 Fenders , Rear Rack, Accessory Mount, Rear Light and Mirror is available for $179.00
A Spike 21 Speed Upgrade kit is also available which includes a Truvativ 52/42/30 Crankset with 165mm Crankarms, a 3 Speed Shimano Revoshifter, a Microshift Front Derailleur, Cable Housing, and a Cable Noodle to go through the boom , This kit sells for $209.00
All Spikes have Direct Steering. It is only available in Silver. Spikes come 95% assembled and adjusted. They are not “kits” like many other brands of Trikes. All you have to do is put the seat on and adjust the boom length (and in some cases adjust the chain length).
Standard Boom length on all Spikes gives you an X- Seam range of 36 1/4” – 43 3/8”
Long Booms are available at no charge (exchange for your standard boom) which will give you an X Seam Range of 36 1/4 – 47 1/4 “
Here is the Spike
Here is the Spike folded
As you can see the seat must be removed in order to fold the trike. Although this is something I would much prefer not to be necessary at least this seat appears to be easier to remove and reinstall than some other trikes I have seen. The Spike 2 trikes come with Avid BB5 disc brakes which is what I started out with on my Catrike Trail. I hated them as they would not stay adjusted and were a real pain to adjust. I upgraded to Avid BB7 brakes and most of my daily headaches I experienced with the BB5s went away. I would do the same with this trike if I bought one.
Trident will sell and ship their trikes directly to the customer for $125 shipping charge. There are some Trident dealers around. I talked to one dealer recently here in Indiana. He told me that he could order the trike in and have it direct shipped to the customer for the same price ($125 and no sales tax) or sell it to the customer in the store where sales tax would be charged. Either way there is an advantage to buying it from/thru the dealer as then they will provide service and warranty work. This particular dealer even offers lifetime free adjustments. I assume that for those who buy directly from Trident they would work with customers who need warranty work and arrange such thru their dealers whenever possible, but this complicates and delays things so it just makes sense to deal with the dealer to begin with. Mind you I don’t know what all the dealers offer. I am only stating what this one dealer told me. You would need to check the particular dealer nearest you as to their offerings and charges.
As the product description says Trident ships their trikes out 95% assembled so upon arrival all that is needed is to install the seat and adjust the boom length to fit the rider which, of course, may or may not involve modifying the chain length. This makes it very nice for the customer as many trikes arrive and require a lot of assembly before they can be ridden.
I assume the toe in adjustment is properly set at the factory, but I would suggest checking it anyway to be sure it is correct. It is just a good idea. I received my Catrike from the dealer after they set it up and the toe in was one inch off. My front tires lasted only 30 miles before becoming completely worn out.
Here is the ESpike
The handlebars on the ESpike I find quite objectionable … awkward and ugly … a quite uncomfortable position to use. The trike looks fine otherwise, but those handlebars are ridiculous in my opinion. Among other things they put your hands right out in “harms way” as you ride along. I don’t know what the overall width between the handlebars is but it sure looks like they stick out far more than the wheel width. That’s crazy! This needs to be redesigned. I see no reason why they could not have handlebars that are further in and vertical vs. horizontal … handlebars which allow the arms to be down by one’s side instead of having to be held up and out like these do. The Spike 1 and 2 have normal handlebars like I am talking about.
With this trikes’s seat height and boom height one’s legs/feet are angled downhill instead of the more typical straight forward or slightly uphill angle found on most tadpole trikes.
Folding & UnFolding the Spike 1
A FREE GIFT awaits you!