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IZIP E3 Dash Review

14 January, 2015, 3 Comments, on Electric Bikes

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IZIP E3 Dash Review

 
Summary:
 

  • High performance city style electric bike that offers throttle mode up to 20mph and pedal assist up to 28mph
  • Comfortable ride with oversized 700x45c tires, suspension fork with lockout and updated Velo Street saddle
  • Available in three frame sizes for improved fit, quick release on both wheels, excellent warranty and support

 

Introduction:
 

  • Make / Model : IZIP / E3 Dash
  • Price MSRP : $3,495.00 USD (Optional 17 ah Battery Upgrade $3,895)
  • Body Position / Suggested Use : Forward / Commuting, Urban
  • Electric Bike Class : Speed Pedalec (Class 3), Speed Pedalec (Class 3) – Learn More about Ebike Classes
  • Warranty : Lifetime Frame, 2 Year Motor, 1 Year Battery
  • Availability / Model Year / Overall Rating : United States / 2015 / 10 of 10

 
Electronic Details:
 

  • Motor Type / Nominal Output : Rear-Mounted Gearless Direct Drive Hub / 500 watt – Learn More about Ebike Motors
  • Motor Torque : 5.8 Newton meters
  • Battery Voltage / Amp Hours / Watt Hours : 48 volt / 8.7 ah / 417.6 wh
  • Chemistry : Lithium-ion
  • Estimated Charge Time / Estimated Min and Max Range : 5 hrs / 25 to 45 miles (40.23 to 72.42 kilometers)
  • Display Type / Readouts / Accessories : Backlit Monochrome LCD, Fixed with Swivel Adjust / Speed, Odometer, Battery Capacity, Assist Level / Independent Button Pad on Left Bar
  • Drive Modes / Top Speed : Advanced Pedal Assist, Twist Throttle / 28 mph (45.06 km/ hour) (Up to 20 mph Throttle Only)

 
Bicycle Details:
 

  • Total Weight : 49 lbs (22.23 kg)
  • Frame Types / Frame Sizes : High-Step / 15.7 in (39.88 cm ), 17 in (43.18 cm ), 19 in (48.26 cm )
  • Frame Material / Frame Colors : 6061 Aluminum Alloy, Integrated Wire Channels / Matte Black with Gloss Black Accents
  • Geometry Measurements :(Wheelbase 1098 mm, 1115 mm and 1125 mm, Stand Over Height 745 mm, 770 mm and 810 mm)
  • Fork Details : SR Suntour Suspension NCX D-EB LO with 63 mm Travel and Lockout
  • Attachment Points : Rear Rack Bosses, Fender Bosses
  • Gearing Details / Shifter Details : 10 Speed 1×10 SRAM X7, 11-36T / SRAM X7 Triggers on Right Bar
  • Pedals : Wellgo Aluminum Alloy Platform, Black
  • Headset / Stem / Handlebar : VP Semi-Integrated Ahead / TranzX 3D Forged / TranzX Low Rise
  • Brakes Details : Shimano M375 Mechanical Disc with 180 mm Front Rotor and 160 mm Rear Rotor, Levers with Motor Cutoff Switch
  • Grips / Saddle / Seatpost / Seatpost Length / Seatpost Diameter : Velo Dual Density / Velo Street / TranzX Microadjust / 350 mm / 31.6 mm
  • Rims / Spokes : Alex DH19 Doublewall with Eyelets / Stainless Steel
  • Tire Brand / Wheel Sizes / Tube Details : CST Hybrid, 700 x 45c / 28 in (71.12 cm ) / Presta Valve
  • Accessories / Other Details : Chain Guide, Matching Kickstand, Optional City Kit with Fenders and Lights, LED Power Level Display on Battery / Light Sensor on LCD Display for Automatic Backlighting, Removable Battery Pack, Quick Release Wheels Front and Rear

 
Video Review:
 

 
Written Review:
 

The first generation E3 Dash launched in 2014 and was well received because it offered a large powerful motor and battery system that could easily reach 28 miles per hour in “speed-pedelec” pedal assist mode. The bike was relatively comfortable and efficient to ride with oversized slick tires and a suspension fork with lockout and it offered a solid warranty with industry leading support from Currie Technologies that has one of the largest networks of dealers in the US. These benefits remain true with the updated second generation version shown in this review and it improves on the original in several key ways. Those improvements including a sturdier display panel, sleeker control pad that’s easier to reach, a fancier paint job, higher end drivetrain components from SRAM and a reinforced motor assembly. It performs best on paved streets but is capable of handling light trail riding and is a bit more aggressive than the other upright cruiser style city bikes from IZIP including the Path+ and Zuma.

 
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Driving this electric bike is a powerful 500 watt gearless direct drive hub motor located in the rear wheel. It’s powerful, fast and extremely quiet to operate but doesn’t offer regeneration modes as some other models do. I’m a bit torn on this because I realize regenerative braking systems add complexity and expense without much improvement in range but they do limit hand fatigue and wear on brake pads, especially when coasting down large hills. One highlight here is that both the front and rear wheels feature quick release which makes changing flats and servicing rims and spokes much easier. The power cable that connects the motor to the control system has its own little quick release point just below the left chain stay. One downside that most gearless direct drive motors suffer from, including the Dash, is cogging. This happens when the permanent magnets lining the outside of the hub motor repel the electromagnet stators when the system is not operating under power (this is demonstrated in the video review). Still, gearless hub motors are known for being reliable because they contain fewer moving parts than geared motors. For this second generation of Dash ebikes IZIP made some improvements in the glue and hardware used to build the motor after several bikes had issues in 2014. These bikes were all serviced under warranty and Currie Technologies acknowledged the problem which was great.

 
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The battery powering the 2015 IZIP E3 Dash offers 48 volts of power with ~8.7 amp hours of capacity. Many electric bike companies are switching to 48 volt systems like this because they deliver electricity more efficiently (extending range) and offer a zippier ride experience. The actual cells used here are 18650 sized and contain a Lithium-ion chemistry which is known for being light weight and long lasting. The pack itself locks to the downtube when riding but can be charged on or off the bike. Having a removable battery like this is convenient for times when you need to transport the bike and want to reduce its weight or those times when you just need to top the battery off without bringing the entire frame inside. Ultimately, the downtube location of the pack keeps weight low and center which balances the frame but it does take up the spot where a water bottle cage might otherwise mount. As far as range, you can expect at least 25 miles per charge all the way up to 45 if you rely on lower levels of pedal assist and help the system out. Air resistance begins to have a significant impact on bicycles and their riders when operating above 20 miles per hour and since this is a speed pedelec, capable of reaching 28mph, you can extend range by choosing to ride a bit slower.

 
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One of the big improvement areas on this second gen IZIP Dash is the display panel which now mounts to the center of the handle bars with two arms instead of just one. On the one hand it feels sturdy but it can also easily be adjusted, swiveling forward and back, to reduce glare. The display panel itself is not removable which is a bit of a drawback if you plan to store this outside frequently or in sketchier neighborhoods but as a result you may experience fewer connection issues that have to do with contact pads wearing out. The display shows remaining battery capacity, speed, pedal assist level or throttle mode indicator, distance traveled and range expected with the remaining battery level. There’s also neat light sensor built right into the upper left corner of the display that activates backlighting for use at night. The display itself does not have any buttons built into it, instead there’s a nice little control pad that sits right up against the left grip and this has also been improved for 2015. The new design is easier to reach than the old one and seems to be sealed against water and dust better thanks to a seamless rubberized coating. The pad lets you power on the bike, navigate through four levels of assist up to throttle mode and engage cruise control.

 
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For people who are interested in a sportier ride with higher top speeds that’s best suited for city and neighborhood use the IZIP E3 Dash is a solid choice. The new design looks beautiful, operates very smoothly and benefits from excellent customer support and warranty terms offered by Currie Technologies. You can pay a bit extra for a fender kit or lights directly from IZIP that operate off the main battery pack and there are threaded eyelets on the seat stays for adding your own aftermarket rack. With ten speeds to choose from it’s easy to climb or accelerate with this bike and the updated SRAM X7 cassette, derailleur and trigger shifters work flawlessly. The price on this bike is about right given the mix of larger motor and high powered battery with mid-level components. You get mechanical disc brakes vs. hydraulic and the front rotor is larger than the rear (keep that in mind if you need to replace them). The brake levers are upgraded and do cut power to the motor which is nice and the saddle has also been upgraded to offer a bit more comfort. Any electric bike can feel jarring with extended use and with speed pedelecs like this that is especially true. For this reason I really appreciate the suspension fork and oversized tires but might also consider a suspension seat post if you have back and neck issues.

 
Pros:
 

  • Front and rear wheel feature quick release system for easier wheel and tire maintenance, quick-disconnect point on cable for rear hub motor
  • LCD display has a built-in daylight sensor that automatically activates backlighting when it gets dark out
  • Battery pack locks to downtube, is keyed to deter theft and is removable for safe storage or charging off of the bike itself – this also reduces overall frame weight for easier transport
  • Battery pack weight is kept low and center on the frame for improved balance and maneuverability
  • 500 watt gearless direct drive hub motor is extremely quiet, durable and fast reaching ~28 miles per hour in pedal assist mode four
  • Pedal assist is activated through a combination of torque and speed sensing for smooth, fluid activation
  • Updated button pad on left handlebar activates the bike, initiates cruise control, navigates four levels of assist and changes display from speed, distance and estimated range
  • Twist throttle activates the motor up to 6 miles per hour in pedal assist mode or 20 miles per hour in throttle mode
  • Frame is available in three sizes (small 15.7″ / 40cm, medium 17″ / 43cm, large 19″ / 48cm) for improved fit
  • Suspension fork offers basic travel adjustment and lockout for improved efficiency on smooth, flat terrain
  • Solid aluminum alloy Wellgo pedals offer great traction in wet or dry conditions but feel a bit narrow at times
  • Aluminum alloy chain guide keeps the chain from falling off and doubles as a bash guard to protect the front chain ring
  • Threaded eyelets on chain stays and near rear dropout for adding a rack or fenders (optional lights and fenders available from IZIP)
  • Solid 12 month warranty on the battery and frame, two year warranty on the motor
  • IZIP is a large nationally distributed brand (part of Currie Technologies) making it easier to find a dealer, take a test ride and get service

 
Cons:
 

  • Gearless direct drive motor doesn’t offer the same feeling of torque and climbing as equivalent sized geared options, does not offer regenerative braking and also experiences some cogging due to internal magnetic resistance
  • The first generation E3 Dash was introduced in 2014 and several customers reported motor issues (which were resolved by IZIP and corrected with a materials improvement including a stronger adhesive). All 2015 models feature the stronger materials and many 2014 Dash’s have been retrofitted
  • LCD display panel is not removable for protection or storage but does swivel to reduce glare when riding
  • No built in water bottle mounting points, space on the downtube is taken up by the battery pack, consider adding an after market adapter

 
Rating:
 

IZIP E3 Dash Electric Bike Rated 10 out of 10 by ElectricBikeReview.com on August 25, 2014

 


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