Gazelle, epowered by Bosch is a range of electric bikes in the tradition of the Royal Dutch Gazelle bike so loved by the Dutch since 1892. These bikes exude craftsmanship and quality that is so hard to find in a mass-produced bike.
So, it made sense for Gadgeteer Erik who hails from the Hague and has a Gazelle back home, to do the review. Erik is a tall, athletic, 30-something and probably the last thing he needs is an electric bike to supplement his fitness.
Before we get into his review, let’s look at the electric bike and some of its options.
What is a Gazelle?
Gazelle (Australian website here) means it is one of several Gazelle designs powered by a mid-mounted Bosch electric motor. The motor is attached directly to the pedals. It transmits power to the rear wheel via the traditional chain and bike gear system. The only other differences to a normal bike are a battery (either mounted under a rear carrier rack or integrated into the frame) and a trip computer.
Frame styles include step-through (mistakenly called a women’s bike) and top bar (men’s bike). For unmatched convenience and accessibility, the step-through design is more popular. Prices range from $3,499 to $5,199.
The difference between Gazelle epowered by Bosch and lower-cost or retrofitted e-bikes is that it is perfectly engineered bike offering a true bike style ride.
You control the level of assistance
The level of assistance is controllable by you. It depends on your level of fitness and perhaps level of laziness.
The motor assists you on hills and to achieve speeds of up to 25 kph (maximum assistance permitted by law). Yes, you can go much faster if you want. A trip computer measures speed, distance travelled, and theoretical battery life remaining (shown in kilometres).
The choice of Bosch motor and battery capacity comes down to the terrain you traverse and the distance you travel. If in doubt get as large a battery/motor as you can.
Most e-bikes have front or rear wheel motors, but Gazelle uses Bosch mid-mount.
Why? Because mid-mount makes it very easy to change a tyre, use standard bike running gear, and feels more natural than front/rear drive bikes. The Catch-22 is they are a little more expensive.
I won’t go on. There are many choices in the type of brakes, gears, chain case, battery design and more.
Gazelle has a full tutorial here. The moral of the story is that Gazelle epowered by Bosch can be customised to your needs. Many lower cost e-bikes are just retrofitted bikes and don’t last the distance.