HOT 119: VanMoof S3 Hands-on

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What are your thoughts about today’s show? We’d love to hear from you!

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Interested to see this. Big fan of e-bikes (for fitness) and have been thinking recently a cargo bike would work for 95% of what I use the car for. Big growth in e-bikes here in the UK. Nice to see all my local bike shops doing well after years of barely surviving.

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My wife swapped in her car for a cargo e-bike last summer. She rides it nearly every day to work (she used my car this week as she had to do the Christmas party shopping for the daycare centre where she works and that was easier with the car).

She tried a few and ended up with the Tern GSD. It has smaller wheels and therefore a longer frame (it is about as long (including wheels) as a conventional bike and therefore has more luggage capacity on the back (up to 150Kg can be transported and in the USA, a seat for 2 kids is available, not legal, here in Germany). She has the platform on the front as well and the luggage rack on the back and saddle bags.

The platform on the front is just the right size for a crate of beer and you can get 12 1L milk cartons in a single saddle bag.

She rides around 40 miles a day with the bike and it is fairly hilly here. If she uses a lot of turbo on the hills, the battery lasts 1 day, if she rides more carefully, she can get 2 days out of it. In winter it is a bit less, she ended up getting the second battery and neoprene sleeves for the batteries - she also takes the batteries into work with her and stores them in her locker in winter.

There was a manufacturing defect with the stand, it broke twice in 6 months, Tern eventually replaced it with a different design. I think it was moulded steel and it would just break. The new stand has been on since the spring and hasn’t had any problems.

She tried a lot of different bikes, including several with overly long fronts, but she never felt safe on them, because you have to push the nose so far out into traffic, before you can see what is coming. The GSD can be ridden almost like a standard bike, although the rear-end is a little light, when there is no load, so needs a little extra care when the roads are wet or slippery.


I’m very tempted. Looks fun :+1:t2: That VanMoof is a bit too bespoke for me - I know my way around a Bosch motor, batteries etc.

We’ve already gone down to one ICE car. But I cannot see me replacing that in the near future with an EV (cost), so thinking keep the big car for the very occasional use + a cargo bike.

The only obstacle is where to park it securely.

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Well, it meets all of my requirements!!! :grin:

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Abus has a special chain that connects directly into the frame of the bike, it was made in conjunction with Tern, AFAIK.

My wife had to buy the chain in order to insure the bike.

It can also be parked vertically, there are stoppers on the end of the rack, you can pivot it up onto the back wheel and leave it standing up, I believe it was designed like that for people who live in flats, so they can fit it in the lift.


…now that is neat.