Rad Power launches a lightweight e-bike for $999

Less weight, less cost.

Sponsored Links

Rad Power Bikes

The way we get from A to B is changing. With the climate crisis looming and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic making public transit less appealing, traditional methods of transport are becoming increasingly unsustainable. Enter e-bikes, designed to make getting around quick, cheap and easy. As demand has slowly but surely increased, we’ve seen all kinds of innovations in e-bikes in recent times — now, Rad Power Bikes has launched a model that tackles some of the biggest barriers to uptake.

The RadMission Electric Metro Bike is a stripped back e-bike designed for commuters. It doesn’t come with any fancy add-ons or wild innovations, but it does pack in a punchy 500W geared hub motor, a top speed of 20mph and a battery smaller than, but just as powerful as, previous Rad Power Bikes’ iterations. And it costs just $999.

At such a shockingly low price, many e-bike enthusiasts would rightly be suspicious of the RadMission. Other e-bike companies that have carved a niche in affordable models have entry points much higher – VanMoof’s S3 e-bike starts at $1,998 for example. But Rad Power Bikes has already established a solid reputation for itself, predominantly in the utility and cargo sector, although it’s been making commuter-style models for a while.

The pared-back design (and accompanying price) has created another USP for the bike: it’s a lot lighter than previous models, weighing in at just under 50lbs, or 15lb less than the company’s standard e-bike weight. This, the company says, makes the model more appealing to city residents living in walk-up apartments — no-one wants to be lugging a heavy bike up and down stairs all the time. Of course, it’s still heavier than your regular analog bike, but the reduced weight does demonstrate that e-bike makers are aware of pain points in adoption, and that things can be done to mitigate them.

In a blog post, Rad Power Bikes co-founder Ty Collins explains that the bike is a homage to the “no-frills bike culture I saw while living in San Francisco’s Mission District in my early 20s.” CEO Mike Radenbaugh, meanwhile, says that the RadMission has been designed as an entryway to e-bikes. “I’m really hoping that this is the first e-bike for people who are just waking up to the fact that they don’t need a car to survive anymore. Bikes like these can get you from Point A to Point B, cut down on emissions, save money on gas, and ultimately change the entire transportation game.”

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Popular on Engadget