We’ve sold many folding electric bikes. In the early days, we sold nothing else. But we’ve never sold a folding electric bike with Yamaha motor before.
And we’ve certainly never sold one with Automatic Support Mode.
For those reasons and others (like the price) the 2020 BH Rebel Volt is a folding ebike we’re excited to offer to UK customers for the first time.
Yamaha PWseries-TE motor
Regular readers will know that we have a soft spot for Yamaha motors. They invented mid-drive motors about three decades ago, so have a strong claim as the original electric bike innovator.
I ride a Yamaha-powered bike every day (the Winora Yakun Tour), which comes with Yamaha’s high-performance PW-X motor.
Yamaha have since upgraded their PW-X motor (which was already seriously impressive) releasing the PW-X2 for 2020.
They also offer the PWSeries ST all-round motor as well as the PWseries-TE for casual and urban riding.
We’ll cover the various motors in another post. It’s the Yamaha PW-TE mid-drive we’ll focus on here.
The TE version confirms Yamaha’s wider commitment to electric cycling, with components suitable for every day riding, not just weekend adventures.
Automatic Support Mode
All three motors come with a new Automatic Support Mode. This works a little like the eMTB mode that appeared on Bosch motors a couple of seasons ago, but the response was mixed, if we’re honest, as it didn’t quite hit the spot out in the wild.
Automatic Support Mode actively adjusts the amount of motor assistance you enjoy as the terrain changes. It starts you off in Standard mode but then, once you’re cruising along on the flat, it’ll switch to power-saving Eco mode.
If you encounter a slope, it’ll boost assistance back to Standard and even into High support mode if the gradient increases further.
The end result for you, the rider, is a fine-tuned, user-friendly ride. The algorithms are created individually for each drive unit to create an experience appropriate for each riding situation.
If you wish to shift between assistance modes manually, you can, of course, turn the Automatic Support Mode off.
So how does it do this?
The Quad Sensor System
This is the first time any of our bikes have used a tilt sensor, it’s surprising none of our motors have come with one before. Well done, Yamaha!
Buy the new Rebel Volt folding electric bike
The 2020 BH Rebel Volt folding electric bike with Yamaha PW-TE motor and Automatic Support Mode is now available to order exclusively from 50cycles electric bikes for £1995 including VAT & UK delivery.
How does it compare to other folding e-bikes?
The pricing of this folder is very welcome. It’s been well over a decade since we’ve been able to offer a mid-motor folding electric bike under £2,000.
But the Rebel Volt has dramatically more power, range and sophistication than the Honda and Panasonic folding electric bikes of 2003-2004.
And unlike them, it comes fully-equipped with front and rear mudguards, luggage rack, front and rear lights, plus a kickstand, disk brakes and puncture-resistant Schwalbe Big Apple tyres.
It’s also much more affordable than Bosch-powered models from the likes of Hercules, Tern Vektron as well as the new folding GoCycle.
They’re each in the £2,500 to £3,000 range but without the power, range or capability of the Rebel Volt. If you’re considering a folding electric bike, the Rebel Volt is a serious contender.
Further specifications of the Yamaha PW-TE drive
Torque 60 Nm
Speed 25 km / h
Support levels 4 (Eco+, Eco, Standard & High)
Support level up to 280%
Motor weight 3.4 kg