Too often, electric bikes are heavy, complicated, and laden with fragile wires that are susceptible to jiggling free or short-circuiting. That’s why we’re thrilled about the Electra Townie Go!, a new balloon tire cruiser bike with electric assist functionality concealed in the rear hub. The trim battery sits inconspicuously in the rear rack, and the single, weatherproof cord that connects it to the hub is concealed within the rack’s tubing so that there’s no exposed wiring to snag or fail. Power comes from the new SRAM E-Matic hub, an elegant 135mm design (wisely built to this bike standard) that uses a sensor to monitor rider input and automatically shift between high- and low-torque modes in order to deliver the right amount of electric assistance. Basically, the electric assist turns on when you need it, kicks down to low gear when the going gets tough, and turns itself off when you’re coasting. With no shifters or displays to clutter the bars, the system is smart, seamless, and infinitely simple—the perfect compliment for Electra’s easygoing cruiser.
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