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Urban electric transportation is more essential than ever. Your personal mobility vehicle saves you time and money, but it can also keep you healthier. So, what about the RadCity Step-Thru 3. Is it worth the hype?
There are all types of ways to get around an urban setting, as evidenced in this article: 10 ELECTRIC VEHICLES FOR PERSONAL TRANSPORTATION
Table of Contents
Rad Power Electric Bicycle
Rad Power Bikes is a Seattle-based bike manufacturer. They have a reputation for producing quality e-bikes that are within the reach of a budget-minded consumer.
The RadCity Step-Thru 3 is an affordable urban e-bike that will get you where you need to go and be a fun ride.
It is not a trail or off-road bike but is perfect for transport on paved streets.
A class 2 electric bike, the RadCity is a pedal assist and/or throttle up to 20 mph assist and 750 watts max. This makes it ideal for zipping around a city.
Let’s look at some of the specifications of the RadCity Step-Thru 3.
Electric Bike Specs:
Samsung 18650 35E cells Lithium NCA, 48 volts, 14 amp hours, 672-watt hours, 6 hour charge time, weighs about 7.7 pounds. Rated for 800 charge cycles.
Shengyi 750 watts brushless direct-drive hub, rear-mounted, gearless, 40-newton meters and regenerative braking
7 Speed with Shimano Acera derailleur and Shimano Shifter
Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes. 180 mm rotors. Motor cut-off sensors in brake levers
48 volt, 2 amp Rad Power Bikes smart charger, 119 V or 230 V ac outlet
26” x 2.3” Kenda K-rad tires with K-Shield puncture-resistant liner. Reflective striping on tires.
Velo Plush. Seat has a lifting handle.
5-level pedal assist with 12 magnet cadence sensor
Class 2 electric bike.Pedal-assist and/or throttle. Up to 20 mph.
A min range of 30 miles and a max of 50 miles
Weight of bike:
65 pounds. Without a battery, it is about 57 pounds
Weight capacity of bike:
275 lbs., includes both rider and cargo combined
The Step-Thru 3 comen in one size that fits riders from 4’10” to 6’
Half twist throttle with an on and off button
Suntour suspension fork with 80 mm of travel, preload adjustment, and lockout
Front: Rad Power Bikes integrated LED front light, focused beam, 80 lumens, with light sensor option
Rear: Integrated Spanninga Solo LED with three modes, solid, flashing, brake activation
White with orange lettering, brown seat and handle grips
Black with orange lettering, black seat and handle grips
RadCity Step-Thru 3 City Bike Review
The RadCity is a popular electric bicycle that consistently ranks high on review sites.
While the RadCity Step-Thru 3 is a primary city ebike, it has a great combination of features that make it comfortable, sturdy, and fast and fun to ride for recreational purposes too.
Let’s look at the features of this electric bicycle.
The Step-Thru 3 has a 6061 aluminum frame made with thick tubing and reinforcements that help the bike to reduce flex.
A Suntour spring fork smooths the ride by adding suspension.
An advantage for all size riders is the 17” standover height, making it easy to mount and dismount from the RadCity. You don’t have to swing your leg over a top tube bar, which can get old quickly.
With the step thru, this city bike can accommodate riders from 4’10 inches up to 6 feet tall.
RadCity has made the step-thru customizable in both the seat height and the handlebar location with an adjustable stem.
Being able to make these adjustments affords the rider a personalized and comfortable ride.
Some might think a step-thru would not be as strong as a top tube bar, but that is not the case with the RapCity Step-Thru 3.
This model has a reinforcing gusset from the headtube to the downtube connection. This connection helps the bike retain its strength.
An additional feature in this area is the ability to attach an optional front rack that can support up to 22 pounds of cargo, making it a handy accessory to have.
RadCity added other reinforcing to the Step-Thru 3. They reinforced the step-thru location itself on their electric city bicycle.
An extra reinforcing aluminum tubing runs from the downtube to the seat tube while wrapping itself around the battery.
Extra reinforcement means that you won’t experience any significant flex from the frame even when cornering quickly.
Shengyi Drive System
A 750-watt Shengyi direct drive rear hub motor. These motors have no moving parts. An external controller will direct the flow of the current inside the motor.
This lack of moving parts reduces wear inside the power drive. A hub motor eliminates tension on the chain, too.
The RadCity is a Class 2 electric bike that is a pedal assist and/or throttle up to 20 mph and 750 watts at max.
40 Nm of torque is all that you need for urban commuting or recreational city riding.
However, The RadCity may feel a bit sluggish when transporting a heavier payload or going up an incline.
An advantage of the Shengyi motor is that it is smooth and quiet.
Having no internal gears, the direct drive motor is much quieter when you compare it to a geared hub motor.
When the brake levels are engaged on the step-thru, the Shengyi motor provides regenerative braking that will give a little extra battery charge.
This helps to take off some speed while the front and rear brakes still provide the majority of the stopping power.
It also prolongs brake wear and gives the rider a downshift option to slow their descent.
Payload On A RadCity
Standard on the RadCity is an integrated cargo rack on the rear of the ebike. You can support up to 45 pounds of cargo on the rear rack.
Carry your cargo via panniers, a basket, or a kid’s seat.
Remember that if you get the optional front cargo, which holds 22 pounds, and also use the rear rack to its 45-pound capacity, you will still have 208 pounds of payload you can add.
Which means pizza for lunch is still an option.
If you are interested in accessories, see them here: RadCity Accessories
The handlebar on the RadCity adjusts to your preferred reach and height. Finding your preference on the step-thru will make for a ride that gives you more control.
The swept-back handlebars have a comfortable wrist position for the average person. An adjustable angle stem allows you to dial in the style that you feel most comfortable in.
You can also adjust between an upright and shorter reach down or a position that is lower and has further reach.
The left side of the handlebar has a faux leather grip, ergonomically shaped. The handlebars’ left side also has the front Tektro brake lever, control pad, and integrated bell.
The control pad consists of up and down arrows that adjust the pedal assist levels.
The center button on the control pad turns the city ebike on/off and is the way you will cycle through information on the display.
The right-hand side of the handlebars features the same faux leather. The right-hand side also has an ergonomic shape to help support your wrist.
It also has a twist-grip throttle, the rear Tektro brake lever, and the Shimano 7 speed shifter. You can use the twist-grip throttle for a boost when you are using the lower pedal assist levels.
Or just use it as a throttle without the pedaling. The Shimano 7 speed shifter uses its smaller cogs to ride in flat terrain; you’ll access these with the lower push button.
The higher push button will give you the upper cogs for climbing hills.
Battery On The Electric Bike
The RadCity Step-Thru 3 has a locking removable seat tube-mounted battery pack. You are provided with two keys to unlock the battery.
The beauty of this battery is that it is cross-compatible with all other current Rad Power ebike models.
The battery will assist you for 25 – 45 miles on a single charge. Once empty, it will take about 6 hours to recharge.
RadCity uses three bolts for the battery mount, making it more secure.
It features three positions for the battery, unlocked, locked to frame and powered off, or locked to frame and powered on.
When the battery is unlocked, it will slide up and off the frame. The battery pack can be charged both on and off the bike.
On the top of the battery itself, there is a charge level indicator illuminated by pushing a white button to the left of the indicator.
Remember to store your battery when off the bike, in a cool, dry palace. As with any type of battery, extreme heat will damage the cells.
Extreme cold will inhibit the battery’s effectiveness and limit your range temporarily.
Tucked neatly out of the way, cabling for the RadCity is directed internally by routing it through the large downtube.
It gives the ebike a cleaner look, but it also affords a lot of protection to the cables and keeps them from getting dirty or damaged.
Fenders On RadCity
Wide fenders of durable plastic will keep you dry and prevent dirt from the road flinging up on your legs.
Both lightweight and sturdy, the fenders don’t add noise to the bike.
The fenders also have flexible mud flaps one the ends to keep the dirt down and protect the fender themselves.
LCD On RadCity ebike
A backlit LCD is located conveniently in the center of the handlebars. On the screen you will find:
- Trip Distance
- Battery Level
- Pedal-assist level
- Watts the motor is putting out
You can engage the backlight option on the display when you are riding in low light.
Turn it on using the up arrow and mode button on the control pad. When you do so, it will also turn on the front and rear lights.
A very handy adaption for the RadCity is the USB charging port under the display on the handlebars.
You can plug in your phone, tablet, or other device and not be concerned about running out of juice.
Brakes On The Electric City Bike
Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes and large 180mm rotors give you good stopping power.
While some riders prefer a hydraulic disc brake, the disc brakes are cost-effective, and RadCity Step-Thru is one of the better bikes for those who are budget conscious.
As mentioned before, the bike has regenerative braking that can be engaged by lightly tapping or holding the brakes.
The bike will automatically reduce power and slow your speed without you having to engage your brakes.
Each brake lever has a rubber surface to provide a solid grip in both wet and dry conditions.
Integrated into the front brake lever is a bell. Ring the bell by pulling on a small lever.
The bell is probably loud enough for other nearby bikers or pedestrians to hear, but it is not going to be any real assistance as a signal device.
Tires On RadCity
The RadCity Step-Thru 3 sports medium-sized tires at 2.3″ in width and 26″ high.
The tires have a checkerboard tread. This tire tread is best for roads rather than any off-roading trips.
The Kenda K-Rad tires have a K-shield puncture-resistant liner.
Another nice feature is the reflective striping around the tires as an additional safety feature.
Pedal Assist With 5 Levels
The pedal assist on the RadCity offers additional speed. The amount of the extra speed provided has been preset.
The higher the level, the more battery power is engaged to add to your speed. When riding in traffic, levels 1 and 2 are great.
When going along at a faster pace, levels 3 and 4 will help you get cruising.
The highest level, 5, will give you the most assistance and works for you when you want to do the least pedaling.
Have A Seat
It may seem like a small thing, but one of our favorite features on the RadCity is the handle on the back of the Velo Plush seat.
It makes handling the bike and moving it around much more manageable.
The RadCity uses a longer seat post binder lever, making it a lot easier to unlock and tighten.
If it is just you using the ebike, you might not use it that often, but it is a nice feature.
The seat itself is comfortable, although you can purchase an optional suspension seat post, which would provide an even smoother ride.
Lights On The Subject
An LED headlight is attached to the front fork of the bike and receives power from the ebikes’ battery.
It is a bright, 80-lumen beam. While the light focuses on the path ahead, it also has a secondary LED ring to keep you visible as a rider.
The flatter beam on this headlight is angled so that it does not shine up into traffic or the eyes of other riders.
A welcome detail is the aluminum alloy heat sink built in the top of the headlight itself to dissipate the heat.
Use the center button on the handlebar control pad to turn the headlight on, holding the up arrow.
Attached to the rear rack on the RadCity is the LED taillight, also powered by the ebike battery.
The light can flash or stay solid and also displays when the brakes are engaged.
The RadCity has a double chain guard, not only to keep the 46 tooth front chainring safe but also to provide a measure of protection from catching your pants’ legs.
The wide platform of the Wellgo aluminum pedal has reflectors on each side of the pedals. The reflectors are on the small side and as they will be down low on the bike, don’t rely on them for others on the road to see you.
A Shimano Acera rear derailleur has a guard to protect it if the ebike drops on that side. The derailleur shifts through the 7-speed freewheel with an 11 tooth to 34 tooth range.
The kickstand has an adjustable height so that you can decide on how much tilt you want when parking the electric bike.
The RadCity has a standard bottle cage mount and other mounting points for adding a front rack and a frame lock.
Pros Of The RadCity Step-Thru 3:
- Smooth, quiet ride
- 750-watt motor
- Rear cargo rack
- Step thru frame makes it easy for anyone to ride
- Battery is both lockable and removable
- Even at $1400, the RadCity is excellent quality for the money
Cons Of The RadCity Step-Thru 3:
- Mechanical disc brakes
- The bike is a heavy 65 pounds
- Not as capable at climbing steep hills
The RadCity Step-Thru 3 is an affordable and quality built electric commuter bike from a popular and trusted company, Rad Power bikes.
Combining a solid feel, functionality and comfort oriented, the RadCity Step-Thru 3 will meet all of the challenges you would encounter in getting around a city setting.
Budget priced, the RadCity is not lacking in the features that make it the perfect choice for fun urban electric transportation.
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