electrical bike Cowboy 3 overview | TechRadar
The Cowboy 3 is a really spectacular hybrid-style e-bike for fuss-free city driving. It gives an extremely clean journey due to its highly effective motor, use of a carbon belt rather than a sequence, and absence of gears.
The Cowboy 3 is extraordinarily straightforward to arrange and journey. The fast-start information walks you thru the method, and even contains the Allen keys essential to regulate the seat peak and straighten the handlebars. Cowboy gives its personal restore and upkeep service so there’s no have to ebook an appointment at a motorcycle store (whose workers would nearly definitely be unfamiliar with the Cowboy’s uncommon design).
Cowboy says that intention was to foretell what customers will want, and we imagine it’s performed so with aplomb, factoring within the want for fast begins at visitors lights, speedy restoration after low-speed accidents, and visibility in poor situations. Even the mudguards have been redesigned to higher accommodate the bumps of cobbled or patched streets.
The chief draw back is that the Cowboy 3 solely is available in one body dimension, which is designed with the peak of the everyday man in thoughts. It fits a variety of heights, however will likely be too massive for the typical girl. Hopefully the Cowboy 4 will make the tremendous clean journey accessible to extra individuals.
Some e-bikes, just like the Ribble Hybrid AL e, may very well be simply mistaken for typical bicycles, however the Cowboy 3 wears its electrical coronary heart on its sleeve. The rear hub motor is small and unobtrusive, however the massive energy pack on the seat tube and built-in lights imply there are not any questions on its nature.
It’s smooth and fashionable, with no flashy graphics, however it positively does entice consideration. Taking it on the prepare, we overheard a number of fellow passengers commenting on it – significantly the carbon belt, which replaces the standard oily chain to reduce upkeep and hold your garments clear and reduce upkeep. If there’s no chain and equipment rings, there’s nothing to slide.
At 16.9kg (2.4kg of which is the battery), the usual spec Cowboy 3 is certainly one of many lighter e-bikes round. The non-obligatory mudguards solely add an additional 1kg, and are a really sensible addition in the event you’ll be utilizing it for commuting. Nonetheless, in the event you’re planning to shoulder it, remember that the situation of the battery pack and motor imply it’s considerably extra heavy on the again. Stability it accordingly, and take care on stairs.
The driving place is pretty upright, providing you with an excellent view of the highway forward. It is only a disgrace that there is just one body dimension. Cowboy says that is optimized for riders between 5′ 5″ and 6′ 4″ tall, which is able to swimsuit the everyday man, however leaves out most ladies, whose common peak is 5’3” within the UK and Australia, and 5’4” within the US.
The tires have been revisited for the reason that Cowboy 2, and are actually puncture-resistant, and hydraulic disc brakes for loads of stopping energy (important when a motorcycle accelerates as swiftly as this).
Whereas there’s no substitute for a stable Offered Safe lock, the Cowboy 3 additionally has an anti-theft system, which warns you if the bike is being moved if you’re not inside Bluetooth vary). It is going to additionally let you know the bike’s location, which is extraordinarily helpful if it’s good to get the police concerned.
We additionally like the truth that the battery can solely be eliminated with a bodily key. It pops off simply when unlocked, however is in any other case secured firmly in place. Thieves typically goal e-bike batteries and promote them for scrap (it’s a lot simpler than stealing a complete bike), so both taking the battery away with you or locking it in place will make their lives a lot more durable.
The power to simply take away the battery additionally makes for simpler charging – you may merely plug it in underneath your desk to cost reasonably than having to maneuver your complete bike near an outlet.
The Cowboy is provided with built-in entrance and taillights, which illuminate robotically if you unlock the bike, and could be turned on and off with a fast faucet of a button within the app. We’d strongly advocate retaining them switched on always for additional visibility – partly due to the bike’s matte black body, and partly as a result of it’s so extraordinarily quiet. Extra on that in a second.
The Cowboy 3’s motor kicks within the second you push off, providing you with a a lot quicker and simpler begin than a traditional bike. It’s noticeably quicker to interact than different e-bikes we’ve examined lately, and makes the bike glorious for stop-start metropolis visitors, permitting you to maneuver off rapidly at lights and making hill begins a breeze.
We had the chance to check the Cowboy 2 in London final 12 months, and there have been a number of refined however noticeable upgrades to the bike’s third iteration. These embrace a brand new transmission system, which is now designed for a prime pace of 27-28km per hour, is cleaner, requires much less upkeep, is hid higher, and is much less noisy.
In truth, the Cowboy 3 is the quietest electrical bike we’ve ridden thus far. The motor is just about inaudible, even when working flat-out, there’s no chain noise, and no sound of fixing gears. On a clean stretch of tarmac, the one noise is the puncture-protected tires on the highway.
Cowboy estimates a typical vary of 43.5 miles, which is spectacular, however as a result of there are not any energy ranges to select from, you’ll have to ‘lock’ the motor and journey unassisted on the flats if it’s good to eke out some additional distance.
Earlier than utilizing the Cowboy 3, we strongly advocate investing in a handlebar mount on your cellphone, which is able to turn out to be a helpful bike pc with help from the Cowboy app.
It’s easy to make use of (rather more so than Mahle’s considerably patchy Ebikemotion app), providing a handful of easy controls and turn-by-turn voice navigation. Simply zoom out of the map, faucet the place you wish to go, and the app will calculate the optimum route. It’s a disgrace there’s no method to enter a vacation spot utilizing a postcode, however that’s a minor criticism – significantly contemplating maps are utterly free (in contrast to these in Ebikemotion).
When you’ve put in the Cowboy app (accessible for each Android and iOS), created an account and paired your bike utilizing the equipped QR code, you may unlock the bike everytime you’re close by by merely holding a button on-screen for a number of seconds. You can too choose to have the bike unlock itself robotically if you’re inside Bluetooth vary.
The bike isn’t immobilized when ‘locked’ – it merely signifies that the motor gained’t kick in when somebody begins driving. You’ll nonetheless have to spend money on an excellent high quality bike lock, and watch out the place you permit it. The Cowboy 3 is a looker, and positively attracts consideration.
The bike may detect in the event you’re in a crash, utilizing in-built sensors to detect if it’s all of the sudden stopped and gone over whereas strain was being utilized to the pedals. If this occurs, the bike’s lights will start to pulse, and the appl immediate you to reply to affirm that you simply’re all proper. When you don’t accomplish that rapidly, the bike will ship a message to an emergency contact, together with your location (decided utilizing GPS).
Moderately embarrassingly, we did handle to slide at one level and take a fall throughout testing, however hadn’t arrange the emergency contact on the time. We are able to, nonetheless, affirm that the bike nonetheless labored completely after a sideways knock that might most likely have dislodged the chain on a unique bike.
First reviewed October 2020
Purchase it if
You commute in a metropolis
The Cowboy 3 is right for metropolis driving due to its mild weights, quick acceleration at visitors lights, and good touches like built-in lights and mudguards.
Your not snug with bike upkeep
Setup is easy, and with no chain or gears and puncture-proof tires, there’s little or no to fret about. Cowboy’s personal restore service is readily available if essential.
You might have a hilly journey to work
The Cowboy 3’s highly effective motor will iron out the bumps in your journey, with solely just a little additional enter from you leading to a giant enhance in output.
Do not buy it if
You take pleasure in tinkering
The Cowboy 3 is designed to be as maintenance-free as potential, which is superb in the event you merely wish to get on and journey, however much less so in the event you like getting your bike up on a stand and getting your fingers oily.
You’re beneath 5’5” tall
The Cowboy 3 is just accessible in a single body dimension (medium/massive), which is an actual disgrace and its largest disadvantage.
You don’t have safe bike parking
This bike is undeniably engaging, and will certainly stand out within the crowd. Automated theft detection is a good instrument, however not one you wish to ever use.