Since its beginnings in 2007, Rad Power Bikes has cemented itself as a key player in the e-bike world and ranks as North America’s most popular e-bike company.
Some time ago we reviewed the Radrunner 1 Electric Utility Bike, but much of Rad Power Bikes’ popular acclaim stems from its flagship model—the RadRover. The RadRover 5, released in 2020, quickly received plaudits from casual riders and industry experts alike, and it has since earned the title of America’s number one selling e-bike.
This year, the manufacturer is seeking to build on its successes with the latest iteration of the RadRover model—the RadRover 6 Plus. By upgrading the technology and updating the design, the RadRover 6 Plus represents Rad Power Bikes’ most ambitious e-bike yet.
Does the RadRadover 6 Plus really improve on its predecessors? Let’s take a look.
The RadRover 6 Plus aims to take forward everything that has made previous models so successful—a powerful engine, adaptability to various terrains and stylish features—whilst incorporating the latest in e-bike technology: an updated braking system, a new battery, an upgraded motor, a reengineered frame.
The sum of all these changes is a high-spec, all-rounder bike which will cost more than you would normally expect from a Rad Power Bike. For the first time, Rad Power Bikes is making inroads into the premium end of the e-bike field—previously uncharted territory for a manufacturer that, historically, has focused on affordable, entry-level bikes.
Overall, though, the RadRover 6 Plus is a solid entry into the high-end e-bike market. It measures up to its competitors in most facets. Boasting a sleek design, some strong performance metrics and a variety of convenient features, the bike ticks a lot of boxes and will impress seasoned riders as well as casuals.
For the full rundown, read on for our RadRover 6 Plus review.
Motor: 750W geared hub motor
Battery: 48AV 14Ah Samsung or Panasonic 35E battery pack / 672 watt. Rated for 800 charge cycles.
Charge Time: Six hours for a full charge.
Max Mileage/Range: Up to 42 miles.
Max Speed: 20 mph
Braking System: Front and rear hydraulic brakes.
Tires: 26” x 4”
Max Load: 275 lbs.
Bike Weight: 73.4 lbs.
Product Material: 6061 aluminium alloy.
With so many new features to cover, it’s hard to know where to start.
One improvement that Rad Power Bikes is promoting with this new model is the upgraded 750W motor. Steep inclines are surmounted with ease and top speed is reached at a faster rate, meaning that the rider can relax as the bike puts in the hard graft.
The new motor is powered by a—you guessed it—new battery. While the specs on the battery remain the same as the RadRover 5, the design has been reworked for a sleeker and more usable design. The battery fits directly into the frame and can be popped in and out with one hand for ease of access.
Other notable features include the hydraulic disc breaks—the first time that Rad Power Bikes has used such a mechanism on one of their models. These give the bike a much smoother feel, ensuring that the rider has maximum control at all times.
An enhanced display is also a nice touch. The bold display in the centre of the handlebars gives you all the important stuff: speed, ride time, milage. To the left, you have the Rad User Interface where you can adjust things like your pedal assist and also view battery life. It’s a really functional design.
With all that said, we’re still only scratching the surface. Get the juicy details on design and performance below.
Design and Build Quality
If you can turn a blind eye to the weight of the RadRover 6 Plus, then you’re going to love its design and build. Aesthetic features and practical adjustments combine to create a bike that looks good and rides comfortably.
The frame has been remodelled to better accommodate a wider range of rider heights. With an adjustable suspension fork, ergonomic grip pads and mid-rise handlebars, any rider will feel at home on the bike.
Looks are subjective, but it’s hard to deny that the RadRover 6 Plus possesses a more pleasing, streamlined look than its predecessor. The aluminium frame benefits from the semi-integrated battery and the matte black finish completes an understated but stylish look.
Rad Power Bikes loves to leave room for accessories on its bikes, and this one is no different. The RadRover 6 Plus can accommodate all your favourite accessories (which, of course, come separately) such as racks, baskets, chargers and phone mounts, making for a more functional ride.
We’re also fans of the lights on the bike. They consist of a halo headlight, taillight and brake light which work automatically to improve visibility whether you are riding in the day or at night.
The main drawback of the bike’s extensive and high-spec set of components is the weight. Coming in at over 70 pounds, this isn’t the kind of bike that you can lug around onto public transport or up staircases. At this weight, pedalling to the nearest charging point when you run out of fuel wouldn’t be much fun either, so make sure you pay attention to the battery life and have a rack on hand for the times when you need to transport it.
Performance and Range
The RadRover 6 Plus’ performance figures are a bit of a mixed bag. The bike certainly improves on its previous models, but when comparing against other e-bikes in this price range it falls just short in some areas.
Let’s start with the positives. It deals with hills very well. Rad Power Bikes tell us that the 6 Plus climbs hill 25% quicker than its predecessor. Riders can therefore tackle inclines with minimal pedalling and without having to break a sweat.
Another clear advantage of this model is the new hydraulic braking system. This helps to give the rider more control over their braking power by turning away from the spongy feel of mechanical brakes. Hydraulic brakes also require less day-to-day maintenance than their wired counterparts, which is good news for every rider.
The RadRover 6 Plus is also a great fat bike. It has 26” x 4” tires of rugged, puncture-resistant rubber that can deal with a variety of different terrains. Whether you’re riding across gravel tracks or snow, you can rest assured knowing that you have some of the most durable tires around.
The battery is decent, but it isn’t anything to write home about—it offers all the same specs as the RadRover 5. 14Ah is powerful enough, but it is bested by some of its competitors. This means that you can get more juice out of other bikes in this price range before needing to recharge. 800 charge cycles is positive, though; even the most regular riders will be able to use their bike for years before having to replace the battery.
Another area for improvement is the top speed. Considering all the e-bikes now clocking in around the 25mph mark, it’s a shame the 6 Plus can only reach a top speed of 20mph. Whilst these performance specs aren’t overwhelmingly damaging, you could reasonably expect them to be a tad better when considering the price range that you are now dealing with.
What We Like About the RadRover 6 Plus
- Features. This is a bike that does a lot of things well. It retains all the functional features that Rad Power Bikes prides itself on whilst beginning to make headway on the premium e-bike field with more advanced features like the hydraulic brakes and upgraded motor.
- Design. It’s a nice bike to look at. The integrated battery means onlookers have to look twice to realise that this is actually an e-bike rather than a top-of-the-range mountain bike.
- Display. The display system has been tidied up to optimise functionality. The central display provides riders with all the key information, whilst the controls to the left are easily accessible for adjusting the pedals.
What We Don’t Like About the RadRover 6 Plus
- Price. The RadRover 6 Plus is Rad Power Bikes’ most expensive ever bike. The price is justified by some great specs, but when you’re at this end of the e-bike market you may be able to find better value for money.
- Weight. The weight of this machine may border on impracticality for some. If you’re going to buy one, make sure you also get a suitable rack for transportation.
- Top speed. For adrenaline junkies and time-strapped commuters, there are e-bikes out there that get you from A to B quicker.
How can we sum up this review of the RadRover 6 Plus? The RadRover 6 has a lot of merits. New features help to elevate this model above its previous iteration. The RadRover 6 is therefore a good option for Rad Power Bikes fans who are looking to upgrade to a more advanced spec.
For some people, though, the added cost and weight may be a turn-off. Prospective buyers are encouraged to survey other options in this price bracket, as there may be other e-bikes that better suit the individual’s needs.
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