- Adventures Blog
We added two new E-bike brands the end of 2022, Denago and Euphree.
Why Denago, and why another brand when we already had 8 brands? Seemingly overnight, there are hundreds of new E-bike brands in the world, and it's overwhelming to figure them out, even for us. But to give you the best options and product possible, we started researching a few dozen brands.
This happened several years ago when Paddle Boards came onto the market. Suddenly there were over 100 brands of paddle boards and many of them looked exactly the same, just with different logos. Only a fraction of those companies are still around today. There are a lot of people who can find a manufacturer that already has bikes, put their logo on them and import them.
So we've spent the last few months talking to a lot of E-bike companies, to figure out who not only has a great product but is also a legitimate bike company with all the right personnel and systems needed to follow through on support. We've had a lot of E-bikes brought to us for repair, where the company that sold them didn't have personnel or systems to follow up on support.
When evaluating Denago, we first got on LinkedIn to find out who started the company and who worked there. The experienced team they've put together is impressive, with decades of experience in the industry. It looks to us like they're poised to be a major player in the industry and they have the expertise to support their bikes and not just sell them. They're also based in the Dallas area, so it's great to have a company located so close, that can get products here quickly.
The sent us demo models of their bikes for us to evaluate. We found the bikes to be of great quality and rode well.
So with that, let's look at their bikes. They've got 3 models, all Class 3 (pedal assist up to 28 MPH) and with throttles. One is for paved trail use, one for paved trail / and gravel/dirt riding and one that will also do off road riding. Also, all of their bikes have a customizable code. This makes the bike inoperable in pedal assist mode without the code. Another really cool feature is that on different settings, the Denago's can be programmed to be either a Class 1 or 3 E-bike, so if one is an area that specifically doesn't allow Class 3 E-bikes (our area does not address this) then you're in compliance. The bikes will even allow you to set the maximum at 11 MPH, if desired. So if you've got riders of different experience levels, it's nice to have a bike that will limit the top speed. The Commute and Fat Tire models also have a torque sensor, which is gives it a natural pedal assist feel. All Denago's have a 1 year warranty on the mechanical and electronic parts, and lifetime warranty on the frame.
One drawback is the lack of water bottle attachments on the frames. I'm not sure why they didn't add these to some of their bikes. In some cases, the battery doesn't allow it. I know that putting a water bottle in a step through also can make it tougher to step around the water bottle, but an option would be nice. On the other hand, this is not uncommon for even premium step through E-bikes at the upper end of the price range and it's easily fixable with water bottle attachments that strap to the handlebars or frames.
First is the Denago City at $1,499
This bike comes in both a step through and step over version, as a one size fits most bike. The step through says it fits riders 5'2" to 5'11" and the step over best for those 5'3" to 5'10", with the ability to fit taller riders. We'd agree with this assessment. If you're looking for a lightweight, simple E-bike with the power you need to get up and down the paved trails, this is a great option. The handle on the back of the seat to help you lift the bike is a great add on! If you want a rack, fenders, and lights, those can all be added. But if that's the case, we'd highly recommend looking at their Commute Bike. There are not a lot of sub $1,500 E-bikes that go 28 MPH. Each model comes in 4 colors.
Next is the Denago Commute Model 1, coming in at $1,999.
Commute Model 1 was named "best new commuter eBike" by the editors of Bicycling.com and appears on their list of "18 best electric bikes you can buy right now."
This bike has more bells and whistles than the City Model. It not only comes in two frame styles, but also in two sizes per model, enabling it to fit a wider range of people, from about 4'11" to 6'5". Like the City Model, it also has the handle on the back seat, allowing you to lift it off and off a rack more easily. This isn't a minor feature - it helps a lot.
The bike has built in front and rear fenders, headlight and a rear rack. Like the city model, the stem is adjustable for a variety of riding positions. It also adds a shock in the seat post for a more comfortable ride.
As to colors, Denago has one choice, so you like the color or you don't. The bike has 8 mechanical gears and a 500 watt motor. It does have 2.6" wide tires, while many bikes of this nature keep the width under 2.25". This better enables the Denago to navigate gravel/dirt roads and makes for a cushier ride, though adds a little weight. If someone wanted to put skinnier tires on one, that would be easy to do, though we see no reason for that.
Finally, we have the Fat Tire Step Through Model at $1,999.
Think of this as basically the commute model with 4" wide tires, a more powerful motor and bigger battery. The bike is also the only in the lineup with both front and rear integrated lights, and the rear also is a brake light.
As with all fat tire bikes, I have my opinion on them as do others. They are fantastic for riding dirt/gravel roads. You can explore such roads at top speeds while really feeling secure. This is where the fat tire bikes really excel. We've seen a lot of people get them for hunting and farm use as well. If you're looking for riding only or mainly pavement, I'd encourage you to look at the other two models. Yes, the Fat Tire bikes will do it, but you do sacrifice weight, it's harder to find racks to carry them and frankly, skinnier tires are better on pavement. It's also harder to change a flat tire on fat tire bikes. The bike weighs 79 lbs, which is considerably more than the Commute Model. Most bike racks top out at 60 lbs per bike. So if you're looking for off road use, this would be your #1 choice in the lineup. If it's pavement riding you're after, I'd encourage you to look at the other two as well.