Stromer ST1 E-Bike Review An excellent commuter e-bike, but is it right for you?

The Stromer ST1 feels like an electric tank from the future. While some electric bikes feel zippy and light, like carving down the road on your childhood bike, the ST1 lumbers, powerfully. You move down the street, nearing its 28 mph limit, with a confidence that feels more at home in a small car or on a moped. There are no rattles, no shakes, no plastic creaks. Just smooth, weighty power.

The ST1 is one of the more expensive e-bikes that we have seen, with a starting price of $4,199. With that price, though, you certainly get a lot of capability. The Stromer runs off a Stromer CYRO Drive II with 550 watts of power, 35Nm of torque, and a 48-volt 500Wh battery that promises a maximum range of about 55 miles depending on which of the three levels of assist you use. The battery charges in just over three and a half hours, and you can upgrade to higher capacity batteries if you are looking to go even further.

The bike comes equipped with thick, heavy duty 54mm tires capable of rolling over even the roughest roads and dirt trails. It went from tarmac to freshly graded dirt road without breaking a sweat and maintained traction from its hub motor. The bike has a 9-speed drivetrain by Micro Shift with easy to push thumb levers. The bike lumbers, and accelerates with pedal assist slowly but confidently. The shifting can feel clunky at times, but the braking from the Stromer HD922 by Tektro disk brakes, with 2 pistons on the front 2 pistons on the rear, slowed the heavy bike confidently. 

The ST1 is also supremely equipped with convenience features including built-in, hardwired lights. These are not safety blinking light, or weak rechargeable lights. The headlight has 600 lumens that impressively light the road surface. It’s great to have a light that works well and doesn’t need to be recharged separately from the main battery. The bike even has a powerful horn that sounds like a car’s horn to let any driver know they’re encroaching upon your space or warn any pedestrian to stop stepping off the curb.

The bike is also exceptionally comfortable and convenient to ride. Both the front and rear wheel have fenders to keep anything from the road surface coming up at you, and the rear wheel is complete with a built-in rear rack capable of carrying nearly 50 pounds. The saddle is plush and easily adjustable while the hand grips are wide and squishy to reduce hand and arm strain. The pedals are easy to use with wide, flat platforms with plastic studs that stick out to give you more grip. Even the battery is designed for comfort. If you want to bring it inside to charge, all you have to do is pull off the battery cover and then push the battery out through the hole in the opposite side of the frame. No more fumbling with bruised fingers to wrestle a battery out. And when you do go inside to charge the battery, the bike can stand on its own with the built-in kickstand.

Most impressively though, the bike comes with a toptube mounted, bluetooth enabled, full color touchscreen display. It makes the bike feel like something from The Jetsons. The screen is responsive and easy to navigate. On the bike, from the various menus available from the screen, you can change units from miles to kilometers, adjust the power of your brakes, change the torque sensor sensitivity, set a locking pin and enable a theft alarm to protect your investment. You can customize almost every aspect of your ride and even connect to Stromer’s app.

With all this power and all these features comes a lot of weight, though. Even with the aluminum frame, the bike weighs in at a heavy, and cumbersome, 62 pounds. I’m an in-shape guy in my late twenties and I would describe the process of putting this bike in the back of my pickup truck as a struggle. Even as I lifted, the heavy front wheel and bars swung to the side, nearly pinching my fingers. Any rider using this bike will almost certainly want to store it on the ground level or in a garage. The idea of lugging this up and down the stairs everyday would have me taking a walk instead of a bike ride. Similarly it’d be a poor fit to take along as an RV extra vehicle. Thankfully, though, if you find yourself in an area with your bike where you need to walk it, not ride, like up a pedestrian bridge or a neighborhood pathway, you can put the bike in walk mode and it will slowly propel itself, saving you from fatigue.

The ST1 feels like a tank; it drives confidently with the power and distance to replace your car for many urban and suburban trips. Once you’re on the bike, it’s supremely easy and intuitive to use. But all of its capability becomes a liability if you need to move it off of a flat surface. If it fits your life, its solid build and generous 10-year warranty will have you using it every day. But if you need to move it up or down any stairs? Well, we’d go for a lighter bike.

$4,199; stromerbike.com