Matthew BeedhamEditor, SHIFT by TNW
Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls. Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls.
UK-based GoCycle has just announced its 4th generation of fast-folding ebikes, which look set to further refine the company’s current format of two-wheelers.
Despite their hefty price tags, we’re fans of GoCycle’s range of folding bikes. They’re unique, well-designed, and practical. But yeah, that price tag, they’re some of the most expensive bikes in their class on the market, there’s no denying that.
We haven’t had the chance to get our hands on one of the new GoCycle’s yet, but based on the information we have at the moment, it seems there won’t be any major changes over the previous Gx models. Instead, the G4s get a series of subtle updates that see them drop some weight, and gain some power.
Let’s take a look at what’s new.
There are three models in the G4 family, the standard G4, the G4i, and the range topping G4i+. Those familiar with smartphone naming conventions will feel quite at home here.
Before we get to the new features, let’s address the elephant in the room: the price. Check them out below.
- G4 MSRP: $3,999
- G4i MSRP: $4,999
- G4i+ MSRP: $5,999
Like I said, they’re not cheap, but you are getting one of the highest tech ebikes on the market. For reference, the GXi, similar to the G4i, retailed for $4,799, so prices have gone up a little over the previous models.
As with the previous generations, the GoCycle G4s are powered by a front-hub motor, that’ll get you going as fast as your local ebike regulations allow.
GoCycle says its new “G4drive” motor is smoother and quieter than previous models. Whilst the noise of the GX was never an issue, it was slightly noisier than other contemporary ebikes.
The motor has also been revised to offer more torque at lower revs. This should mean that the motor picks up a bit quicker as soon as you start pedaling.
What’s more, the new GoCycle charges its battery faster than ever before. The G4 now charges in just three and a half hours, compared to the four to seven hours required for the GX range.
For the G4, GoCycle is also revising part of its frame design.
Aesthetically, the G4 looks very similar to the GX. However, its mid-frame, the part that connects the drivetrain and the large front section has been updated and is now made from carbon fiber.
The carbon fiber front fork has also been reengineered to save weight.
Altogether, these weight savings add up to 2.2 lbs (about 1 kilogram). Overall, the G4i weighs 36 lbs (just over 16 kg). This puts it in the same ballpark, weight wise, as the Specialized Turbo Vado, an ebike that my colleague Napier lauded for being so light, that he forgot it was an ebike.
Thanks to how compact the GXi folds down, I never found it a challenge to lift it up the stairs into my house, but one less kilo is always a welcome addition — or should that be a reduction?
The G4 range also feature a couple of neat improvements for smartphone integration. There’s an integrated one amp USB port, so you can charge your phone on the go.
GoCycle has also introduced low energy Bluetooth standards to provide better phone and app connectivity, it should also help battery life too.
Putting the new motor to one side, most of GoCycle additions to the G4 are neat incremental improvements that add another layer of usefulness and practicality to the already pragmatically designed bikes.
It’s not surprising given that the company has been working on this design for over a decade now, and the G4 represents the most refined version of the platform.
The new motor is by far the most notable change to the G4 over the outgoing GX models. For that, the proof is in the riding. We’ll be waiting to get our hands on a review unit to see how much it has improved, and whether that $200 increase is worth it.
If GoCycle’s claims of improved torque, and swifter engagement of the assistance are true, there won’t be much left to refine.
Do EVs excite your electrons? Do ebikes get your wheels spinning? Do self-driving cars get you all charged up?
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