Derek is a good friend of the shop and a great dad, so when we needed someone to put one of our newest bikes through the ringer, we gave him a call. All we asked for in return was an honest review and some silly photos. One week, a turkey suit, a Christmas tree, and countless smiles later, he provided plenty of both. Thanks, Derek!
“Be the change you want to see in the world”
That quote neatly sums up the joy, excitement, and adventures of Yuba Cargo Bikes that I have experienced with my wife, Brittany, and our two young daughters. We are a biking family that initially started out taking trips to school and the park with a Burley trailer. The trailer serves its utilitarian purpose, but its nature did not foster conversation or a sense of adventure because the girls were removed from the bike. We discovered Yuba Cycles last year and currently own an electric Boda Boda and a Spicy Curry.
The Yuba long-tail cargo bikes fostered more adventure and conversation on rides due to the fact that girls could ride on the bike with us instead of in a trailer. They were a part of the experience. In short, we love our Yubas and ride them as much as possible throughout all four seasons in Colorado. The newer electric assist bikes have extended our adventures and are taking the place of our cars for most trips in the city.
We recently had the opportunity demo the new electric Supermarche Bosch front box / cargo bike from Adam at SloHi Coffee + Bike. The box bike is a big departure from the longtail style of bike we currently own.
At first, it appeared as if it would be challenging to navigate tight corners and bumpy stretches of road. The bike, I was pleased to discover, was extremely intuitive. On top of the surprisingly nimble handling, the Bosch motor provides 4 ranges of e-assist which they term eco, tour, sport, and turbo. My daughters always begged for Turbo mode so that they could maximize their sense of speed.
The Supermarche Bosch is by far the most fun bike I have ever ridden. The front-loading box is efficient for loading kids in and out and doubles as a pick-up truck replacement for trips to the local hardware store or to pick up the family Christmas tree. We managed to squeeze four small kids in the box and bundle them up with blankets for a Christmas Light Tour around the neighborhood on a cold December night. You don't get 360 views like that from a minivan!
The component spec is the best I have seen yet on Yuba. The Magura hydraulic disc brakes were very powerful and the twist grip shifter was easy to use and never missed a ship. The steering is surprisingly balanced for a long bike and it felt stable. The Bosch CX Motor felt as good as the one on my Spicy Curry and performed flawlessly.
If I have one gripe, it would be that the battery seemed to run down pretty quickly. I would guess that the heavier bike requires more work from the electric assist and in turn diminishes the distance. The front box is also a bit loud over bumps and cracks in the street. I would expect that Yuba will refine the box and add some rubber washers between the contact points to quite the ride and feedback. [Editor's Note: That's a good idea. If SloHi develops that, you'll see it first on the blog!]
All in all, this bike was fantastic. The kids loved it and were sad to see it go. It is a head turner and you can’t help but smile when you are riding it.