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You can get motorcycle thrills from an e-bike, and this is the one to buy

Ride1Up Revv1 direct left side view in front of a rail fence.
Ride1up Revv1
MSRP $2,395.00
“Close your eyes, and the Revv1 feels more like a motorcycle than an e-bike.”
  • Solid, smooth ride
  • Responsive performance
  • Excellent brakes and suspension
  • Full complement of lights
  • Excellent value
  • Pedaling is not much fun
  • Mirrors are not standard

Let’s cut to the chase: The Ride1Up Revv1 quickly became one of my favorite e-bikes while I was testing it. With its sturdy frame, supportive seat, full suspension, and moped street tires, the Revv1 feels like a motorcycle. The smooth, stable ride inspires confidence, especially at higher speeds. It’s a candidate for anyone’s list of the best electric bikes.

While it doesn’t have the largest battery or the most powerful motor among e-bikes, it’s still one of the fastest e-bikes available. You can push it up to 37 mph with “unlock” codes for off-road riding, with some caveats we’ll get into below. But there’s even more to this e-bike’s story than pure speed.

A secure, comfortable ride

Ride1Up Revv1 right side view of rear wheel showing moped tire, single gearing, fender, and rear shock.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

At 93 pounds, the Revv1 isn’t light, but the solid frame and robust components contribute to the secure feeling when you’re riding. Four-inch wide CST Scout moped street tires on 20-inch Bafang mag wheels add strength and traction. If you inflate the fat tires under maximum pressure, the added flex of the tire walls, plush seat, and dual suspension provide exceptional comfort. I’ve ridden it for moderate to long distances without feeling tired or strained.

The Revv1’s motor provides up to 90 newton-meters of torque, suitable for accelerating from a stop and climbing inclines.

Ride1Up’s focus on comfort and control is apparent. The Revv1 has adjustable crown forks in front and an adjustable shock softtail suspension at the rear. It also has hydraulic disc brakes with 203 mm disc rotors, which proved sufficient for fast stops.

For $600 less, Ride1Up sells another Revv1 model with no rear suspension, dubbed the Revv1 HT (“hardtail”). In addition to having no rear shock suspension, compared to the tested version, that model has a smaller battery, less powerful controller with no boost mode, a lower-grade front suspension, less capable tires, and no turn signals. I imagine it’s a nice e-bike, but not a competitor to the Revv1 FS.

All the power you’ll need

Ride1Up Revv1 left rear three-quarter view parked on grass next to a wooden rail fence.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

A Bafang rear hub motor delivers a continuous output of 750 watts in Class 2 and Class 3 modes and peak power of 1,500 watts in its unlocked “off-road” mode. A “boost” mode further cranks peak power to 1,820 watts.

The motor provides up to 90 newton-meters of torque, which proved its worth on my long, steep driveway. With most e-bikes, I have to build up speed on the road to make it up the driveway without pedaling or stalling. It’s even more challenging with e-scooters. The Revv1, however, could climb right up it from a dead stop with zero motor hesitation.

The Revv1 has just a single physical gear, but five levels of powered pedal assistance act as virtual gears. Ride1Up rates the Revv1’s range at 30 to 60 miles, depending on power assist level, speed, acceleration, rider weight, terrain, and many other factors. Fully charging the 20-amp-hour battery with the 3-amp charger should take more than six hours. Charging from 20% to 80% takes about half as long and might be sufficient for most owners.

Ride1Up is justifiably conservative about giving out the codes to unlock speeds above the 28 mph maximum: You’ll need to call, verify ownership, and sign a waiver. Most e-bike companies are less stringent, with the notable exception of Rad Power Bikes, which won’t even let models like the RadRunner 3 Plus crack 20 mph. The most significant concerns are overall rider safety, riders going too fast on bike paths and sidewalks, and unlicensed riders driving in regular vehicle traffic with e-bikes that aren’t registered or insured.

Using unique codes obtained from Ride One Up, the Revv1 can reach 35 to 37 miles per hour. Thanks to its durable moped-style tires, the performance is impressive on- and off-road. A special “boost mode,” which increases the battery controller’s maximum power output to 35 amps, improves acceleration even further, but you’ll still end up around the same top speed.

Ride1Up Revv1 left front view with optional smartphone mount on handlebars.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

Revv1 comfort and convenience factors

The Revv1 has several appealing safety features, including a 120-lux motorcycle-style headlight with high and low beams, brake lights, front and rear turn signals, and a horn.

While the horn probably isn’t loud enough to catch the attention of someone in a car listening to music, it’s louder than most other e-bike horns and could help alert pedestrians or bicycle riders. Turn signals are manually activated and deactivated with a slide switch near the right grip; a blinking indicator on the display will help you forget not to turn them off. Mirrors are not included, which is a drawback. However, the handlebars have ample space to add mirrors or other accessories.

On the road

Ride1Up Revv1 left front view with headlamp onb on kickstand in front of a rail fence.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

Pedaling without battery power can be challenging with the Revv1, and not just because of the weight. The tubular sections of the frame around the battery got in the way, and my knees were too high. The seat is comfortable, but it’s not height-adjustable. I’m 5’8″, and the bike is designed for people ranging from 5-foot-4 to 6-foot-4 inches, according to Ride1Up. Awkward pedaling isn’t a huge drawback for me because I prefer pedal assistance and throttle control most of the time, but if you want to pedal without power, the Revv1 isn’t your bike.

On the plus side — and this could be a long list — the Revv1 isn’t overly sensitive in pedal-assist modes. Some e-bikes have binary, all-or-nothing power delivery with pedal assist, which can be disconcerting when you barely touch the pedal and the motor applies full power. The Revv1 responded more evenly with both pedal assistance and the half-twist throttle. More modulated power delivery is instrumental when riding in traffic, allowing you to pull away from a stop or navigate intersections smoothly.

I’ve used the Revv1 bike to visit friends 10 or 12 miles away, riding along the river and in rolling New England hills. These trips were easy and comfortable. I never felt like the bike was underpowered. Connecticut’s legal limit for a Class 3 e-bike is 28 miles per hour, which I kept within. When I rode private roads in off-road mode and wanted to go faster, the Revv1 easily held 34 to 35 mph on level ground and peaked at 37 mph a few times.

Top of its class

Ride1Up Revv1 left side view in front of a rail fence.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

The Ride1Up Revv1 is my favorite out of the 50 to 60 e-bikes I’ve ridden in the past six years. At $2,395, the Revv1’s exceptionally smooth and controlled ride, power, and speed are hard to beat.

The Revv1 is fast, but it’s not the only fast bike nor the fastest available. Comparable e-bikes for performance and rideability comfort but more expensive include the $3,595 front-suspension-only Super73 S-Adventure Series and the $3,995 full-suspension Super 73 R Adventure Series. The Aerial Rider Grizzly, with dual batteries and front and rear motors, is faster than the Revv1 but costs $3,500. The Ariel Rider X-Class 52V e-bike with dual suspension, similar power, and a $2,400 price is probably the Revv1’s closest competitor.

If you want a solid, comfortable ride and a fine-looking e-bike, I highly recommend the full-suspension version of the Ride1Up Revv1.

Editors' Recommendations

Bruce Brown
Digital Trends Contributing Editor Bruce Brown is a member of the Smart Homes and Commerce teams. Bruce uses smart devices…
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