Stromer ST1 Ebike Review

April 20, 2013

The Stromer ST1 is one of the most exciting electric bikes to be released and one of the best production ebikes I have gotten to test so far.  A complete redesign from last years bike, the Stromer ST1 sports higher quality components than last year’s Stromer, and a price tag of $3,500-$4,000.  For this extra price you are getting a boat load of special features including: Magura hydraulic brakes, regenerative braking, carbon forks, purpose built frame, torque sensor, and all around quality components. I rode last years Stromer, and was not that impressed (read review).  It seems like Stromer, which has since then had an ownership change, has decided to step up their game and take some real gambles by offering a fast and expensive electric bike with some unique features  to the public. Is it worth the high price?  We will take a close look in this review.

Stromer is offering  two new models. I tested both the  “Elite”  and the “Platinum” versions of the Stromer ST1.  Since these bikes are very similar, I will try to cover both in the same review. Let me start by stating the differences between these two models.

 Elite and Platinum…little differences

stromer st1-2838 stromer st1


The Elite bikes comes with a 9-speed Shimano Sora, an 11.5 amp-hour battery, and has a top speed of 20-MPH. The Elite has more low end torque and is  a little better for hill climbing. The Elite comes with the carbon rigid fork only. The Platinum comes with a 27-speed Shimano XT, 14.5 amp-hour battery and has a top speed of 30-MPH. The Platinum does not have as much low-end torque, but for accelerates from 10-MPH and up, it’s faster than the Elite.  Their controllers hardware is the same, but with different software for the Elite and Platinum.  Basically the Elite has a power cut off  once the bike reaches  20mph, and the Platinum has no cut off. The motors are wound different for the Platinum and Elite, the Elite is designed for torque and acceleration, the Platinum for top speed.

The Stromer ST1 Elite is $3,500 and the Platinum is $4,000.

9 speed vs 27 speeds

stromer st1 crank

I am a big believer in the idea that an electric bike rarely  needs more than 9 speeds unless the battery dies. The 27 speed on the Platinum requires a front set of derailleurs with three chainrings, an extra shifting cable, and an extra shifter on the handlebars. This adds to the  complexity of  riding and maintaining the bike.

I think the electric bike industry should take  a page from the fixie movement (no-geared bikes)….more gears aren’t always better.

For this and other reasons mentioned later in this review, I actually would advocate saving the $500 and going with the Elite.

Purpose Built Frame

stromer st1 platinum

The most special thing about the Stromer compared to other ebikes is its purpose built frame.  Its expensive for an ebike company to hide the battery pack in the frame this well. The Stromer features a swappable  battery pack in the downtube. It has a key lock to keep it from being stolen. Only a few electric bike manufacturers go the route of a purpose built frame, and it definitely is a big improvement over the most common option of welding a rear mounted battery pack.

The purpose built frame makes  it possible to provide perfect balance, with the weight of the battery up front, and the motor in the rear. Also it makes for ultra clean awesome looking ebike. You will be hard pressed to find an ebike that looks better than this one.  Maybe the Neo Jumper?

The Stromer is offered in 3 sizes of frame, something most ebike manufacturer don’t bother with.  This way you are able to get the right sized frame for your “standover” height, handlebar reach, and the proper pedal-stroke posture. It is attention to detail like this that makes the Stromer ST1 so special.

Both the Elite and the Platinum are offered in a  step-through frame. If you are a short person or a lady, the step through could be a no brainer. I really like step-throughs in electric bikes. Remember, an electric bike weighs a lot more than a traditional bike and you never feel the weight more than when you are stepping on and off the bike. If you do not mind the aesthetic looks of the step through, it is a good option. Both frames are plenty strong and come with a 10-year warranty.

Battery Packs and Range

stromer st1 battery pack

To fit into that  purpose built frame , the Stromer has proprietary battery packs consisting of 18650-format Samsung cells in a unique configuration that fits in the downtube of the bike.  They are offered in both the purple colored  Elite version and the Gold Platinum version.

Samsung offers some of the highest quality cells available for electric bikes, and it shows Stromer’s commitment to quality that they spent the extra money to equip their battery pack with name brand cells. For the end user this will result in a battery pack that will last for years to come. In fact the Stromer battery pack is warrantied for a industry leading 3 years.

The purple:  36V 11.5-Ah, 414 watt hours, Cost:  $549

The gold: 36V 14.5-Ah, 522-WH, Cost: $699

One important thing to realize is that either size of these battery packs will work in both the  Platinum or Elite. The Stromer battery packs are fairly small and easily backpackable if you want to ride with an extra one, to double your range.

Stromer advertises a 25-50 mile range on the Platinum which seems like a fair estimate. Thank you Stromer for being honest and not exaggerating your numbers.

On the Elite, Stromer advertises a 20-40 mile range.

stromer battery\

New Stickers and New 30-MPH Top Speed!

Pedego Interceptor-2916


Pedego Interceptor-2916-2

Stromer lost the Swiss flag stickers it previously wore, and instead has very nice understated “Stromer” stickers. This is a simple but effective upgrade in itself.

And most exciting, where other ebike companies have several cheesey warning stickers plastered on their bikes (wear a helmet, abide traffic laws etc)  the Stromer ST1 Platinum comes with a warning sticker that says  off road use only. (see above)

What an awesome sticker!  That is because its 30-MPH claimed speed breaks the 20-MPH federal limit.

It is so exciting that a big electric bike manufacturer has decided to claim such a high top speed, and openly declare their bike is “illegal” for road use. Pretty ballsy for a bike that is obviously intended for road use.

Now if you plan to ride your illegal Stromer on the street, read this article and peel off that sticker. Stromer claims the sticker is “tamper resistant.” But I found with a little help from my fingernail I was able to peel a sticker right off.

That’s the good news. The bad news is I am not sure if the Stromer Platinum can fairly be considered a 30-MPH bike. I am not even sure if the Platinum would be deemed  illegal if put to a speed test. It is serious work to get this bike up to 30-MPH, and without peddling…forget about it. The federal law says theres a 20-MPH limit without pedaling. It feels like the Stromer Platinum would just barely break 20-MPH without any peddling,

On the other hand, the Stromer ST1 Elite hits its claimed 20-MPH top speed with little pedaling effort.  These two bikes are a lot closer together  performance wise than you would assume from reading  claimed speed numbers. My guess is that under “real world” conditions, the Elite is a 25-MPH bike, and the Platinum a 28-MPH bike. Where as Stromer calls the Elite a 20-MPH bike (low balling estimate) and the Platinum a 30-MPH bike (high balling estimate).

In any case its awesome that a major ebike company has decided to release an ebike that breaks the federal speed limit. Great job Stromer! Now on to the Killjoy:

Stromer, You, and the Police

Pedego Interceptor-03972

So does this mean you can get into trouble with the Police for riding your Stromer ST1 platinum?  Most likely not.  I believe this sticker is put on the bike to protect Stromer as a manufacturer  from liability of  selling a bike that is capable of 30-MPH.  But if you want to be on the safe side, and you plan on riding this bike on the street, the first thing I would do is peel off that sticker. The last thing you want is proof that your electric bike is illegal.

Most police  do not know the law when it comes to electric bikes, and if they did they have no way of telling if your bike is within federal limits (does it go over 20-MPH without pedaling? Does it burn more than 750 watts).  I know several people who ride 6,000 watt plus 50-MPH ebikes, and they put a “750 watt” sticker, just in case they are pulled over by the Police….and just claim they can pedal really fast.

Read our story on how to get away with riding an illegal ebike on the streets

Read our complete story on the legality of Ebikes in the USA.


Look No throttle!

stromer st1 handgrip

A 30-MPH claimed top speed is pretty ridiculously cool. The next brazen thing I noticed about this new Stromer is that it has no throttle. That will make many people scratch their heads and make many people opt out. This bike is pedal assist only. No way to cheat this bike, you have to put in your fair share of pedaling if you want to go fast. This appears to be the trend for factory E-bikes from the big manufacturers.

Most high end electric bikes (including last years Stromer) provide both throttle and pedal assist options, and they let the rider choose. Usually, riders will prefer using a throttle because it is less work…and lets face it most Americans are lazy (especially the type of American who spends $4K on an electric bike).

Stromer has imposed their  ethics on the people, by deciding that pedal-assist is the “right way” to go, and eliminating the throttle all together from their bike. This reminds me of a friend of mine who runs a popular electric bike store in San Francisco (Brett Thurber) who not only does not believe in throttles on electric bikes, but exerts his will by trying  not to offer  throttle controlled bikes in his store.

For a bicycle purist, pedal-assist makes a lot of sense.

Pedal-assist  (sometimes called “pedelec”), greatly improves range because you have to assist the bike during start up which is the most energy-draining time for a hub motor which is wound for high speed. Most riders using pedal-assist with a good torque-sensing system will get a 50 percent range increase over just using a throttle. They will also pedal a lot less in pedal mode, than they would in pedal-assist mode.

I will be honest…I am a throttle guy. However, the Stromer made a believer out of me concerning the beauty of pedal-assist. Because it does not  use  a throttle, Stromer was able to do away with the cheap hand grips that are synonymous with most electric bikes and instead uses some really nice hand grips that do a great job of softening the ride and adding to the feeling of control. Riding the Stromer with pedal-assist felt liberating and I found myself wanting a pedal-assist bike. I would definitely get in better shape if I rode one of these instead of my throttle bikes.

Also, you can now ride at full speed with no hands! 30-MPH, sipping a drink and waving at gawkers…what a thrill.

Torque Sensor


stromer st1 torque sensor


The Stromer features a torque sensor built into the rear drop out (most are located in the bottom bracket).  I rode last years Stromer (read review) and it was not nearly as clean of a pedal-assist feeling. It felt jerky the way the power came on and off, and was a constant reminder that you are riding an electric bike. I opted to ride with throttle only on that bike (last years Stromer offered both pedal-assist and throttle). The ST1 seems to have alleviated that problem with some really nice firmware that bring s the power on in a nice and smooth transition.

A torque sensor is an expensive feature, only offered on the highest-end electric bike,s and is different from a cadence sensor which only measures how fast your are pedaling…and not how hard you are peddling. Read our complete  article on torque sensors. 

The Stromer torque sensor feels great the way it applies power. You feel bionic when you ride on this bike, and if you try…you can forget you are riding an electric bike and just feel like a well conditioned athlete.

Carbon Fork and Schwalbe  tires

stromer st1 front fork

Last years Stromer used cheap suspension forks and I was not impressed with the ride or the look.

The Stromer ST1 is the first production electric bike I know of to come with a carbon fork.  Where as most electric bike companies are suck in the 90’s and bringing bikes with cheap front suspension forks and cheesy Chinese suspension seat posts, the Stromer goes with a slick carbon model. The idea of carbon forks is that they provide a little bit of spring. Also they add to the aerodynamic look of the bike.

The Stromer also has nice thick  Big Ben Schwabe tires, that do a great job of absorbing bumps. This, and the before mentioned hand-grips make for a very smooth ride. Not at any point during my test ride did I wish I had suspension, even when going up and down curves. For road riding this is a  helluva sweet package, and leaves nothing to be desired….

It should be noted that all Stromer ST1 Platinum buyers will be offered the option of a SR Suntour front suspension fork at no extra cost. I only recommend this option if you plan to do a lot of off-road riding. As described above, I feel the Carbon rigid fork is too sweet a package to opt out of.

Magura Hydraulic Brakes and Regenerative Braking

stromer st1-2850

I have to say this is the nicest braking package I have seen on an electric bike.  Not only do you get Magura hydraulic disc brakes that have plenty of stopping power, but the brake levers have cut off switches, that when activated not only shut off the motor, but also activate regenerative braking which will add up to 20% range to your ride. (read our article on the low down on regenerative braking). Regen will also add so much to the electric braking effect, that your brake pads will not get as hot on a long downhill, which is a great safety feature.

One bothersome about the Stromer St1 brakes is that they do squeak.  I have experienced this on multiple ST1’s I have ridden, and have heard this reported from other riders.  The squeak is not so bad but definitely audible and on long downhills can be annoying (thank heavens for regen brakes which are silent). I have heard from one bike mechanic  that upgrading to a higher quality brake pad can help.

Proprietary Dashboard

stromer st1 dashboard

The Stromer dashboard is a clean looking package designed just for the Stromer. It offers four levels of assist, shows the speed or the time of day, and also the very important battery charge-level indicator.

High Quality components

One thing I notice is that many ebike companies have a few name-brand components, but then really cheap out when it comes to random components such as pedals, stem, crank set etc. I was impressed with the Stromers component choices. This bike has quality components all the way around including the FSA stem and crank set, nice pedals, nice hand grips, good rims, etc. You can tell that Stromer was taken over by a bicycle company (BPM) because this bike is build with quality bicycle parts.

Gearless Hub Motor

stromer hub motor

Where as most of the newly designed electric bikes are using geared hub motors, the Stromer has decided to stick with a gearless hub motor…a  500 watt hub motor. Notice this motor is fairly large, compared to the geared motor on the Neo Jumper for example. The direct drive hub motor on the Stromer is larger and slightly heavier than a geared hub motor but offers the advantage of  being more reliable, quieter, and offers regenerative braking.

The motors on the Elite and the Platinum are wound slightly differently. The Elite is wound for torque and acceleration, the Platinum is wound for speed.

Usually a direct drive motor is super reliable because it has only one moving part. However, the Stromer motor has the controller built into it, greatly reducing its complexity and also its chances to fail.  This seems to be  the same motor (Ultra Motor) which is used on the A2b and does not have the best track record when it comes to reliability. However, a new Stromer owner will be relieved to know that the motor is covered by a 3 year warranty.

The direct drive motor has the advantage that it is extremely quiet.


Stromer accessories

Stromer is offering accessory kits and option like the “City Package” pictured above which includes  front and rear fenders, custom rear rack and a B&M or Super Nova front and rear light system.

The City package cost $200-300 depending on how bright you want your lights to be.


Ride Report

stromer st1

Riding this bike on the street, knowing it is  a law breaker, I was a little nervous that it would give me that familiar thrill ride associated with fast built home bikes I have ridden. Not so. The acceleration on the Stromer is very mild, and if anything, maybe even…disappointing? However it is definitely an ultra smooth experience.

What can  I say, you put together all the components listed above, and this bike just rides great.  I was very impressed with the ride quality, like night and day compared to last year’s Stromer. It accelerates fairly slowly and takes a minute to get to top speed, so it doesn’t have the feel of speed that some electric bikes do, where you can just peg the throttle wide open. But it does have that bicycle feel going for it, where you feel like a well conditioned athlete riding a well tuned performance bike. I heard no annoying jankiness or squeaks while test-riding this  bike, even when going up and down curves. The Stromer ST1 is built solid.

Everything together, the braking system, the torque sensors, the geometry, nice tires, and the quality components all the way around, really make this bike a pleasure to ride. Of course I wish the acceleration was faster, but this bike will be fast enough for most everyone else, and is faster than most every other production bike on the market. To get faster than this you will have to go with an expensive Stealth Bomber or Optibike.

Stromer Warranty and Replacement Parts


Stromer is now offering a 10-year warranty on its frame, and 3-year warranty on all other components including battery. This is an industry leading warranty and on an electric bike, the warranty is extremely important. For example the replacement cost on the Platinum battery pack is $750.

One contingency to consider: Stromer has not yet established itself as a big player in the USA market…yet. The only reason for this is the high retail price of their bikes, in a less than stellar economy. One possible contingency is that Stromer could bite the bullet and end up in the ebike graveyard if these high-priced bikes fail to sell. Very few ebike companies are prospering in the USA market and more are failing than are succeeding.  Stromer seems solid, especially now that it has been bought out by a major bicycle company (BMC), but…you never know.

Because the Stromer has many proprietary parts (custom battery pack, etc), if they did go out of business down the road, it could be a big problem to get replacement parts. When you spend this much money on a quality electric bike, you probably plan on keeping it for many years, even decades. Getting replacement parts when you need them is critical.

Competition Comparison

easy motion stump jumper

There is only one bike that I know of that compares to the quality (and high cost) of the Stromer and thats the Neo line up by Easy Motion especially their Neo Jumper (read review). If you are considering the Stromer ST1, take a look at the Neo Jumper, which offers many of the same features plus full-suspension for the same price as the Stromer ST1 Platinum. The general quality of components and the speed of the Stromer beats out the Neo. So its really just a question if you are into full-suspension or not.


stromer St1

Stromer has really raised the bar, and has come to market with a potential game changer. The only draw back to this bike is the price. Offered at $3,500 for the Elite  and $4,000 for the Platinum, I feel this bike is well worth the extra money instead of  the $2,500 generic Chinese-made bikes which are currently flooding the USA market. The day before I test rode this bike, I test rode the Pedego Interceptor (read review) and really, there is no comparing these two bikes…not even in the same ball park. The Stromer is designed in Switzerland and made in Taiwan. As bicycle people know there is a big difference between China-made and Taiwan-made in terms of quality. Whether you are spending $2,600 or $3,500 you want your electric bike to last a lifetime. The Stromer ST1 is so high quality, it could stand the test of time and be a prized possession for decades to come.

If money is an issue, I actually prefer the $3,500 ST1 Elite over the $4,000 Platinum. The only big difference between these two models is the slightly larger battery pack, and you can always add the bigger battery pack later. I prefer the 9 speeds on the Elite over the 27 speeds on the Platinum. And I do not see a big performance difference when riding these two bikes side by side.

The Stromer ST1 ( Platinum or Elite) is probably the best electric bike I have reviewed so far under $5,000.  It is simply a super sweet package and leaves little to be desired. I will list its stand-out features, many of which are not offered in any other electric bike:

  • Purpose-built frame offered in 4 different sizes, and 2 styles (standard top-tube and step through)
  • Ultra clean looking bike
  • Proprietary battery pack, consisting of quality Samsung cells.
  • Industry leading braking system, which includes regenerative braking and Magura hydraulic brakes
  • Slick looking carbon fork
  • Schwalbe Big Ben tires, the nicest tires I have seen on a production ebike
  • 30-MPH top speed on the Platinum
  • torque sensor with improved software programming that provides a smooth power delivery
  • Industry leading 3-year warranty
  • Obvious quality of components all the way around on this bike

Now let me struggle to come up with a list of cons:

  • High Sticker Price
  • Relatively heavy at 62/65  pounds.
  • No throttle will be a big turn off for some buyers.
  • Motor and controller are built into the hub, which is not as bulletproof as keeping the two separate.
  • Proprietary battery will be hard to replace if company goes under
  • Direct drive hub motor is larger, heavier and less stealthy than a geared hub motor
  • No suspension on base models


Manufacturer Specifications:

 Motor  36V / 600W Brushless Direct-Drive (Gearless) Hub Motor
 Battery  36V / 11AH Li-Ion Battery (36V / 14.5AH for Platinum) w/ Patented Removable Battery System (In-Frame)
 BMS  Smart Battery Management System (BMS) providing SOC indication, cell balancing, and over heat protection
 Charger  UL listed Smart Charger w/ LED Status Display
 Controller  Variable 36V Controller
 Top Speed  Up to 20+ mph w/ Elite
Up to 30 mph w/ Platinum
(dependent on rider weight and terrain)
 Range  Up to 40 miles in PAS, or up to 20 miles w/ Throttle on Elite
Up to 60 miles in PAS, or up to 30 miles w/ Throttle on Platinum
(dependent on rider weight, terrain and input)
 Drive  Rear Hub Motor, 9-Speed (Elite) or 27-Speed (Platinum) Shimano Sora w/ Thumb Shifter
 Brakes  Magura MT2 Hydraulic Disc Brakes
 Wheels  26″ Double Walled Alloy Rims
 Tires  26″ x 2.15″ Schwalbe Big Ben Tires
 Fork  Stromer Carbon Fiber Fork
 Crank / Pedals  Wellgo Dual-Compound Pedal
 User Controls  LCD Dash – battery life, speed, distance, odometer, etc. (optional throttle)
 Saddle  Stromer Saddle
 Frame  Aluminum 6061 Hydro-formed w/ Internal Battery Compartment
 Frame Size  16.5″ or 20″
 Net Weight  62 lbs (Elite) 65 lbs (Platinum)
 Warranty 10 years frame 3 years everything else


Check out the photo gallery below, click on a pic for a high resolution image. My adventures with the Stromer St1.


Written by Eric, April 2013

Eric has been involved in the electric bike industry since 2002 when he started a 6000 square foot brick and mortar Electric Bike store in downtown San Francisco. He is a true believer that small electric vehicles can change the way we operate and the way we think.


    BTW – The Easy Motion is a pretty darned good e-bike too. It’s got some excellent features and has one of the best price-points on the market for what I consider to be an up-scale electric bike.

    • ElectricBIke

      Yes I agree, its a very nice bike.

  • ElectricBIke

    Yeah sure, feel free to link to our articles. Thanks!


      Thanks ElectricBike. You guys have some of the best e-bike information on the internet. I appreciate your content & clarity.

      • ElectricBIke

        thanks so much for the compliment.

  • opimax

    Thanks for the review. I am comparing the Plantinum to the Bio Planet bike to replace my current original Stromer. Both claim 30-MPH but then the many differences start. I am looking forward to more info and reviews such as this to make an informed decision. If the Easy Motion was could hit 30 I would add that to the list. Are there any other quality built bikes that are bikes 1st that claim 30-MPH?

    • ElectricBIke

      Not that I know of…the juiced rider odk feels to be almost as fast as the Stromer.

  • Patrick

    Thx for the test. I own a ST1 since the first of April 2013. I agree 90% with your test. You don’t tell us about the squeaky disk brakes (brake pads are pure sh*t. The 7.3 labeled pads must be replaced for the quieter 7.1). Each acceleration from 2-3 mph is accompanied by a vibration…on the front wheel! The regen feature is almost useless. To optimize the autonomy, braking is forbidden. A new riding style needs to be used: constant speed and very low acc/decelerations. Regarding the autonomy I make 18 miles flat out (sensitivity 70, power 4) consuming 60% of the 522 WH battery on a parcour mix of trail, road and urban with lots of accel/decelerations.

    • ElectricBIke

      Thanks for your insight. Owner feedback is always appreciated. I was only able to ride the bike for an hour or so, but i will admit that one of the 2 bikes i rode did have squeaky brakes. I liked the regen..seemed to work great. You’re right it does require changing your riding style to optimize it.

      • Patrick

        I will check if its possible to setup the brake handles so the regen feature activates without the brake pads making contact with the disks i.e. on long descends. Regarding the power, I live in Germany, and here we get the ST1 in 3 flavors: 250 Watts limited to a pedaling assisted top speed of 25 km/h, 500 Watts limited to 33 or 45 km/h. The 500 Watt versions requiere a license plate and an insurance. I am not able to ride sustained at/over 45 km/h. My average lays around 33 km/h with a sustained “not to much effort” speed of 38-40 km/h. My bike is the 45km/h version.

        • Pastrin

          Forgot to say, I have never ever used the middle end small chainrings. Considering seriously to remove them and substitute for my favourite oval shaped rings fabricated by Rotor.

  • Instructor Henry

    A well written review. Just received my second Stromer, an ST1 Platinum. Owned the previous Elite for a year and absolutely loved the machine. However the ST1 is in a class of its own.

    Did some careful testing and logging of top speed on the College’s fourteen Siamesed tennis courts here at Amherst, which are presumably as flat as a pool table. Here are the results: With a fairly strong 175 lb rider aboard (me), zero wind, 55-PSI in both tires, and multiple runs, I averaged between 28.6 to 28.8 mph. Some wonderful E-bike physics!

    Also read your report of the Specialized Turbo which has to be the most stylish E-bike ever produced. However the Stromer’s greater speed, longer range, smoother ride, and most importantly, lower price make the ST1 Platinum king of the road…We do indeed live in interesting times.

  • rommell

    how do I buy electric bike

  • RobotCruncher

    I just bought a Stromer ST1 Elite. I love it so far. Today is my second day with it and I have a flat tire already–and of course, it’s the back tire with the hub on it. But before that, an awesome bike! Hopefully my local bike shop won’t have any problems changing the back tire, where the hub is. Disappointed that the tire already went flat as I am on fairly simple terrain like sidewalk and bike bath. But I’m in Colorado and we have some wicked thorns lying around. I’ll give a more comprehensive review after my flat gets fixed…

    • RobotCruncher

      Ok, so a long past due follow up from me: the flat was changed and fixed fine by a local bike shop (I have no bicycle repair experience at all). I’ve been commuting every day for the last 22 days. 15 miles round trip. Plus on weekends I take it out for a few hours. No problems whatsoever. Love this bike. It’s a dream and as I’ve become more fit, I’ve notched down the power assist, so it’s more me, less machine. Still a great ride. And if I am super lazy or tired after work, I notch up the pedal assist power and basically just easily pedal home like a boss! I love this bike and it’s gotten me totally interested in bikes now, as I just bought a single speed this past weekend. My Stromer St1 Elite has a range of around 40 miles for the charge–fairly hilly terrain, but I only weigh 155 lbs.

      The only issue I have is that I don’t feel I know all of the options for the control panel. It’s not really explained what the power settings are as in: eco, city, tour (on other that I can remember right now). I have no idea how that relates to power or charge longevity. I just keep it on “city” all the time since I live in a city, Colorado Springs. And switching between pedal-assist power settings takes a few buttons/menus and you have to type in a code,”1004″ to change, then pick 50, 60, 70, etc. Not intuitive at all. I wish there were more documentation about that.

      Those issues aside, I love this bike. and most people have no idea it’s even an e-bike, which is what I like about it, since I ride it on trails, sidewalks and street. Out of all the people that have looked at my bike or chatted with me, only one, asked “is that an electric bike?” And he definitely liked it. All, in all, this is probably one of the best purchases I have ever made.

      Right now, I am looking up a solar panel generator hook up so that I can charge this bike with sunshine.

      • Mike

        Changing from ‘eco’ to ‘city’ to ‘tour’ to ‘power’ and back to ‘eco’ is as simple as touching the ‘+’ and ‘-‘ buttons! — Just leave the ‘fine tuning’ of each mode at ‘default’ (factory settings), that’ll be just fine!

  • Jill Phillips

    OMG…I have had my Stromer Elite for just a year. I looove this bike. Stromer reports exactly as is. If you ride full Pod in city you’re looking at 12 miles. With pedal assist it’s 45 miles easy. Amazing bike.

  • Jason W.

    I’ve been mountain biking for over 20 years now and decided to invest in a pedal-assist bike to help increase my range.

    Ive owned my ST1 Platinum for 3 weeks now. The bike is a beauty and fun to ride. Its max speed is 48km/hr which is not easy to sustain unless you are very athletic. The bike is well balanced, making cornering and riding with no hands very easy. The battery has never ran out on me and gives me enough juice to ride to and from work (42km round trip with hills) with about 30% battery life left. The 3 chain rings really give you efficiency you will need if you decide to ride the bike with the motor off.

    -The hub motor failed on me after only 80km of total riding! It was the 2nd day of riding the bike, the motor seized up and was unable to ride it or walk it. I brought it in for a warranty replacement.

    -The 2nd motor has failed me 5 days /140km after getting it. I have never rode this in rain, I don’t over torque the motor by standing up while pedaling or attempting wheelies. I ride on paved roads only and rarely use the highest power mode.

    -The brakes are very squeaky.

    Its a great bike with a lot of new technology that hasn’t been perfected yet. I’m very disappointed that my motor died twice. But at the same time, that’s what the 3 year warranty is there for. People say the bike is overpriced. I do not think so. A good mountain bike can easily run you $3,500 with NO pedal assist or motor. Aside from its defective motor, the bike is very solid and you will be impressed with how smooth it is.

    This company needs to get a grip on QUALITY control from its motor manufacture, or they will get a bad rep and can forget about trying to penetrate the US markets.


  • Stan Lebahn

    How do I attach a cargo / pet trailer to the ST1? I have an 85 pound black lab.

    • Shawn

      I test rode a friend’s last night. He used a skewer mount.

  • Gregg Stauffer

    Great review. I read the review for the Neo Jumper too. I have tested both the Stromer St1 Elite and the Jumper. I actually preferred the Neo Extreme after I tested it. I am torn between getting the Neo or the Stromer. I know the differences etc. What would help me make the decision: Which is better for San Francisco style hill climbing? It would seem the Stromer would be better (Elite), because of the motor, but it is a heavier bike than the Neo. Really like Newwheel here in SF, wish they carried the Stromer.
    Any opinions appreciated on this question.

    • ElectricBIke

      Buying the bike from a dealer in SF is important. If you want the stromer the only dealer in SF would be Blazing Saddles which would offer great support on that bike (they have great repair department). Out of the 2 bikes (the neo and the stromer) I have actually tried the stromer platinum on SF hills and it performs great. It can climb just about anything and has temperature sensors which will dial it back if it overheats. I believe the neo would feel under powered compared to the Stromer.

      Also the 500wh pack of the stromer platinum is a real nicety.

  • Nica Lorber

    I want to buy this bike but I have a couple reservations:

    1. Will it work for my 35 mile commute (mostly flat…. I weigh around 145)

    2. I live in the Bay Area and will need to take it on CalTrain. I’m worried about lifting it up the stairs because I have a little bit of a bad back. Has anyone done this?

    3. I with the components were better (brake levers, shifters). Has anyone had any issues with these?

    4. Why no 8 inch rotors? Does anyone know why this is the case? Seems like an 8 inch rotor would be the way to go on a heavy bike like this.

    • Nica Lorber

      Ok. I got it and here is my report:

      I was able to get to work with 38% battery left (35 miles – mostly flat w/little stop and go). I used Eco mode most of the way to make sure that I wouldn’t run out of battery. Next time I will try tour mode. I was not able to get faster than 24mph on Eco mode, but was able to get to 27mph on City mode.

      As far as answering the CalTrain question – in case there are others out there with this issue – It was really hard. I still don’t know how I’m going to deal with it. I struggled to get it both on and off. I may need to just start working out more to figure that part out.

      Also – the rear brake does squeek.

      Overall – I’m happy but have some reservations about how it will hold up over time.

      • MauiOrigin

        Did I read correctly you ride 70 miles round trip on your daily work commute? That’ might be why your back…(?)

        • Nica Lorber

          I only did that one day. When I ride in, I generally take the CalTrain one way – so it’s 35 miles – still a long haul.

      • soohum

        How’s your bike commute going a year later? I’m a gal too and had a similar reservation as you–getting my bike lifted onto the rack on the ferry. I wouldn’t be able to lift the 65lbs myself. I commute on the ferry and the right ebike will solve the rest of it once I get into the city. I decided on the Eflow instead. It has 2 advantages over the Stromer: 1. it has on-demand throttle (like the Stromer 2012 that I LOVED) which helps for steep hills and starting at stoplights. 2. It has the battery under the seat, designed such that it can be easily lifted out and put aside so the bike lightens up considerably and can be lifted onto the rack. That sold me. It also has better low-end torque for starting out when lights turn green–this is also similar to the old-model Elite. Heard from a shop that they have fewer warranty issues than Stromer. I was skeptical at first because it appears the bike is produced by Currie (they seemed low end and groanish when I test rode before) but it’s actually a Swiss bike just distributed by Currie. If you have issues with your Stromer, you could check out this alternative.

    • Nica Lorber

      One other thing I was a little surprised by was the fact that the free hub body is really loud (sounds like it’s poor quality) when you pedal backwards. Sounds like a skateboard on a ramp. I know this is a small detail, but I feel like there a lot of funky things with this bike that makes it feel a little less awesome than it could be (ex: levers, shifters, cranks).

      But I’m trying so not worry about any of that unless it makes the bike fail on some level.

      • ElectricBIke


        Thanks a lot for your input.

        Yes i have found too that the hydraulic brakes on this bike often squeek.
        Remember the bike has a 3 year warranty and beyond that bike components are cheap and easy to replace.

        The thing you really need to worry about holding up is the battery..and that is your most expensive component to replace (around $500).

        I feel the Stromer is one of the more reliable electric bikes out right now. To get more reliable (and better components) you would have to go with the Specialized Turbo for $6000 but it doesnt have a 3 year warranty.

        I think you will get use to dealing with the the awkward lifting of the heavy ebike on caltrain (put front wheel up first etc) and it will become easier. Also you will naturally build those lifting muscles in your arms 😉
        Congrads on a good purchase. If you stick with doing that 35 mile commute you will pay for the bike in a year or so. Ride the hell out of it for these 3 years while the bike is under warranty and please report back on how it continues to hold up, and how you hold up doing that 35 mile commute. I really hope you stick with it. One less car is a great thing.

        • Nica Lorber

          Thanks Eric.

          Rode in again today – playing with how much I can use Tour mode vs. Eco mode without running out of battery. Today I arrived at work with 20% of my battery left.

          Do you know if it’s bad to run the battery to zero?

          I think I may have figured out the Cal Train. If I grab it by the seat tube between the top tube and the down tube, it’s closer to the center of balance point, so it’s easier to lift.

          Will let you know how it continues to function.

          • ElectricBIke

            It is not bad to run the battery to zero but technically it takes a tiny bit of battery life out of the battery (how many charges the battery will last before useless)

            I would not worry about it and just run it to zero. It is great you are using the bike to that extent….and by the time the battery fails you will have gotten thousands of miles off the bike. I think it is rated for 500-1000 charges…and dont forget the 3 year warranty.

            Keep notes on how far the battery takes you now when run to zero so you can make a warranty claim down the line if the battery significantly degrades in next few years.

          • Mike

            The ‘BMS’ (Battery Management System), a computer chip, will not allow to drain the battery to zero! Draining a Lithium Battery to zero would kill it! Power will be cut off at about 10%.
            I’m a bit surprised that the ‘experts’ at ElectricBike don’t know about this fact :-

          • Ian

            The battery dying at 10% is one of my biggest complaints about the Stromer ST1. The computer design and programming is the most problematic piece of this bike as it seems poorly integrated into the bike’s design. This battery issue could be solved by simply calibrating 0% as it’s shown on the screen to 10% charge. Thankfully the computer can be replaced and/or loaded with updated firmware if Stromer gets around to it.

          • Mike

            Also, if you press and hold the ‘+’ button the bike will run without pedaling!… In Germany only up to 20 km/h (it’s the law!). In North America probably up to 20 mph, as the law here allows this higher speed for eMotor power. :-)

  • ATX Bill

    I have been looking to buy an ebike. I weight 260 lbs so test driving was important. Rode the Neo Jumper. It has a 350 watt motor. Did ok but seemed to struggle a little on steep hill. Great looking bike but I think I need more hill climbing ability cause of my weight. I did not rent the Jumper to give it a good test like I did the Stromer. Then I test drove the Stromer Platinum. Its heavier, 60 lbs vs 48 lbs for the Jumper. It has a 600 watt motor and bigger battery. 15 amp hour vs. 10 amp hour. The Stromer was very impressive. I live in Texas hill country. I went 29.1 miles on full power setting before battery gave out. Much further than I expected because it was pulling 320 lbs. In Eco mode I suspect it really would go 40 miles or more. Stromer took my big A** up some pretty steep hills that I completely avoided on a regular road bike with ease. I averaged 20 mph even with the hills. It would do 28 mph on flats with little effort. I really like the triple front derailer and larger battery capacity that the Elite does not have. On the steep hills I needed the extra gearing. Ended up buying one tonight.

    • SeaGen

      Any updates on your new ride?
      I’m in Seattle with some pretty good hills and I run a good 240 lbs. Looking at the Platinum but want to know that the Platinum motor can handle the hills.

    • paulo sampaio

      ATX Bill,

      how was your experience with driving uphil? Did Strommer meet your expectations in uphill driving? I am considering buying a Stromer to take my daughter to school and going to work. But our weight together would be 160 kg, or 374 pounds, so I believe a high performance in torque would be needed to go uphill in this case.

      • soohum

        Try the Elite, NOT the Platinum. It has better torque. Or the Elfow. It has torque like the Elite PLUS on-demand throttle like the old Stromers.

  • wojtek1425

    I just started to ride the ST1 Platinum and one thing I have to say (comparing to the original version) is that only fit people, with a decent cycling background will truly benefit from this model.
    On my first ride I ended up pacing one of the best young riders in US. All the gears do make sense as long as you operate in variety of terrain (again, you must be skilled in using these gears properly).
    No, this bike is not intended for lazy people, and will provide a significant exercise (esp. at the high speeds). Those who look down on e-bike as vehicles for wimps will be surprised.

    • Nica Lorber

      Agree. I rode to work, and it was still a work out. It just feels like someone is pushing you though.

  • Boredinmin

    I have three weeks on my Stromer and it still blows my mind. It looks and operates like a bicycle, yet its in a completely different class of vehicle. Typical bike to work is 40 min but the Stromer cut that nearly in half. And don’t be fooled by the power – you have to pedal smooth and hard to get the most out of this ebike.

  • MauiOrigin

    Jason W’s posting about two burned motors with less than a week of riding does not seem credible, does he work for a competitor (officially or not)? Notice he states he bought it to increase his range in Mountain biking, this is not a mountain bike. Also, a real customer with two burned motors would not simply list that matter-of-factly under “cons”, seems like that would be the central theme.

  • Larry Frank

    just got my st1, has anyone changed the fork to an adjustable? i would like to be a little more upright

    • Marvin Schmidt

      did not only the stem but the handle bars (intalled ape hangers to ride more upright…wonderful differnce

  • K.T.

    When I look at the Stromer website for the US, the warranty on the bike is 3 years but the battery is only 2 years. Did they lower the warranty because of too many problems with the battery?

  • mark

    I took this line from the article here about the new Bafang 750 watt mid-drive motor: “Maximum efficiency (best battery range) was attained near 11A (roughly 520W @ 48V)”.

    I have a new Stromer Platinum and was wondering if this type of information was available for it and at what actual speeds this would be? Ideally for each of the 4 different power modes. I believe the manual states between 6 and 20 mph for best range, but specifics would be great.

    On my 2nd ride I did all eco-mode, I did 46 miles w/15% left on the gauge and avg of 16 or so, some power off or regen while going down hill, slow take offs ,etc.

    Thanks, -Mark

  • Stephen Tannenbaum

    Are you sure that you tested this bike because without peddling it would go 0 mph ?

  • Wim Broekman

    I Bet nobody has driven this bike for 3 years, 8000 miles each year. That is what I am doing for my commuting. Will this bike be able to do this job. And what about the battery. Will this last for so long, if the demands are that serious. I am considering this bike. I ride a Raleigh Dover Impulse at the moment and had motor-failures 3 times within 5000 miles of biking. Since the manufacturer dismantled the speed-limiter it works well. Despite all the nice words written about the Stromer, I am not convinced yet.

  • gSPIN

    IF itz riding an ebike widdout hanz wutz bloez da wind up yerz skurtz then just install a CC.

  • James Roberts

    I purchased a Stromer ST1 Platinum here in rainy Vancouver BC last November. I ride 5 days a week from home to work and back, a 39k commute that takes about 31-minutes each way. Through rain, snow and cold weather the bike performs well. Battery range declines in sub-zero temps but an extra charger under my desk at work makes it possible to add shopping trips or added distance. In my case the fact I don’t have to pay for gas and parking means the bike will be paid off in 2 years and the battery has a 3 year warranty meaning it should save me in the long run. Bottom line, this thing is cool.

  • Mike

    I have had my Stromer ST1 Elite now for almost three months, and I love it! It’s not an exaggeration that it has given me, at age 68, a new lease on life – except for two problems:
    I do a lot my riding of my ST1 Elite in the canyons around Salt Lake City. The beginning part of my route is mostly uphill, running down the battery, and I rely on Recup mode on my downhill runs to be able to get home. The only problem is – sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. While my LCD display says “Recup 1″ there are no arrows lit charging the battery. Moreover, there is no difference in “feel” between Recup mode and non-assisted mode. There are no charging arrows when braking either. When Recup mode is working, the bike goes downhill slower, similar to a car that you throw into a higher gear descending a hill. The difference in recharging is remarkable. Coming down Millcreek Canyon for example, when recup mode is working, the battery starting at 22% charge at the top of the canyon, will be at 40% by the bottom of the canyon. When it’s not working, it might only go up 2% to 24% by the time I get to the bottom.
    I spoke to my dealer about this. The first thing he said was that it was “normal,” that regen is not really supposed to work very much! The second thing he said, was turn the system off, and then back on, that that might make it work. It doesn’t.
    One more issue, I don’t know if it’s connected or not. Yesterday, I was riding up Big Cottonwood Canyon. My power dropped to just one bar. I thought I should have at least 15 minutes left. But suddenly, without warning, the system just died – no assist and nothing showing on the LCD panel either. I was at an elevation of 8,162 feet at the time. If I pressed the power button, I would briefly see the word “off” alternating with the word “Stromer” but nothing else. I started riding back down the canyon, and after a mile, tried to turn the power on again. and it did come on. I put it in Recup mode 1 and I did get some regen, having 22% power by the bottom of the canyon. It wasn’t enough to get me home, however. I had to walk the last half mile uphill. After I charged the battery, which did take a full charge by the way, I found that the whole system had been reset. Even my Odometer, which should have read about 432 miles, was reset to zero. Also my speed, which had been displayed in miles per hour, was changed to kilometers per hour.
    Anyone have any ideas about what’s going on here, and how this differs from normal, if it does, and how it might be solved?
    Thanks for your help.

    • Ian

      Mike, I would disconnect and clean out with compressed air or manual air blower, every connection between the computer and the motor and the rear brake lever, and perhaps even the connection between the battery and the bike. The most suspect connections are those between the motor and the bike opposite the rear derailleur. In my experience those connections can be problematic and improve with cleaning.

      • Mike

        Thanks, Ian. I will keep that in my notes.

  • Stromer Commuter

    I purchased my Stromer ST1 Elite on Halloween 2013, now 10 months later have 2,500 miles on it. I happened to have purchased the bike from the same store the review is done from Electric Bikes LA, and they are wonderful. I built a bike from a kit around ten years ago, and I find it much better to just go to the store if I have any problems. I am happy being a bike rider rather then mechanic.

    My wife takes the bus to work, and my hope was that I would be able to see our second car with this bike as the main replacement. After a few months, I sold the second car, and we have been a one car family for 6 months now. Of course there is a lot of financial savings (registration, insurance, etc) but I have also found not having the second car mentally relaxing.

    I went for this bike because I ride up a large hill, and then down a big hill to work everyday. I felt the torque and hydraulic brakes would make the commute more fun. I really enjoy the ride, and don’t like it when I have to take the car instead.

    Here is my commute to work in goggle maps:

    Goggle = 1 h 29 min (This takes me 45 min with the ST1 Elite)
    12.3 miles
    1,060 ft (Go all the way up)
    417 ft·(and then go down)

    The commute back is the reverse of course.

    So this is about 100 round trips that I have made so far. The battery has just started to limited the full charge to 97%. It normally takes 65% of the battery to get to work, and 45% to get back. The first set of brakes squealed, but the second set don’t. I have the short u-lock (bulldog, I think), and it fits nicely on the front of the frame which puts the weight up front. I have a small frame bag to carry the charger with me, with a open metal basket on the back fender of the city kit.

    When riding the bike I like the regen, because it slows me down on the big hills. However, it does not charge the battery much. If you think about it the regen is not going to charge the battery any faster then plugged in charger, and that takes 4 hours for a full charge. I don’t know about your commute, but I don’t brake for that long. The biggest saving for the battery is setting the computer to neutral, and just peddling. Use the motor to get up to speed, then just keep going with out the motor. The bike is really well balanced and I find I can keep 18-20 going for a long way before adding a little juice.

    Anyway, I enjoy the bike a lot. It has helped me keep in shape, when I have very little free time to keep up my fitness. After having the bike for 5 months I ran the LA Marathon, and I don’t think I could have done that if I was not able to use my commute time as part of my training

  • Ian

    My thoughts on the Stromer ST1 Platinum w/ the city kit after several months of ownership and more than 800 miles of riding – The bike is superb as this review reports, a real pleasure to ride. I purchased this bike as a solution to my a chronic back injury forcing me from biking for a couple years. This bike takes enough of the strain of riding so that riding doesn’t give me flare-ups. It has really changed my life for the better.

    I commute 20 miles from Berkeley to San Francisco, hopping on BART or the ferry to get over the bay. On Power mode the commute consumes about half of the charge so I can get back home without taking the charger with me. Strangely enough, the battery seems to drain at nearly the same rate on Eco mode in all my testing. I also use it as much as possible as a secondary car for getting around the city, grocery shopping, etc.

    Here are my critiques of this bike:
    – The computer seems poorly designed, both how it’s physically integrated into the bike and in its user interface. The buttons aren’t as accessible as they should be while riding the bike, in order to change settings while riding. Also you have to look down at the screen to see what you’re doing which is akin to texting while driving (dangerous).
    – The documentation for the computer and the bike as a whole is woefully inadequate. Stromer could do a lot more to prepare riders for what they should expect from this bike relative to a normal bike. It makes me wonder if they did much testing of the bike themselves before sending it to market. They should tell you that the bike will turn off at 10% charge (or they should fix the computer to show zero). They should give you all of the codes for changing the bike’s settings because they clearly don’t publish them all. I can’t even find how to change the units from KM to Miles.
    – There should be a setting (and perhaps there is one) where you can manually set the speed governor so it can comply with local laws. I rue the day I find myself in a situation where the police or my insurance company tells me that I’m in the wrong because my bike is illegally configured.
    – The kickstand is inadequate for the weight of the bike, especially when loaded with pannier bags. It would be great to have a kickstand that allows you to recharge the bike by pedaling while stationary in Recoup mode (which would be a huge workout BTW).
    – The bike doesn’t come with any way to attach a front rack, which would make a lot of sense since the center of gravity for the bike is behind the seat.
    – The bike is heavy, which makes carrying it up and down stairs impossible for me and my back problem. This makes commuting with it difficult when you have to load it into places designed for bikes that are light enough for people to carry and easily manipulate. For example – there would be no way to load this bike into a vertical bike rack on a bus. I don’t think the front fork could withstand the weight of the bike if hung from the front wheel.
    – The bike should have a smarter auto-shut off system beyond the rear brake lever. It should have way to know if there is someone mounted on the bike or not or some other auto-lock system. Currently the motor can be tricked into turning on when in an assistive mode if the pedals are kicked or hit by something which results in the bike taking off on its own.
    – When in Locked mode should either lock the rear wheel or jump to Regen 2 mode, which would make the bike much less of a getaway vehicle.

    All in all, and despite my long list of critiques, the bike is a wonder. It may sound strange but one thing I enjoy as much as the electric assist on this bike is the lights that come with the city kit. I use them whenever I ride the bike and it really makes a difference in how cars treat you on the road.

    The next steps for me are to get a suspension front fork (because streets around here can make riding this bike a tooth rattling experience) with the ability to attach a front rack.

    Ride safely everyone!

  • Phacetious Plebbe

    I am a little new to the discussion, so please forgive me if my question here blatantly displays my ignorance. Why would I need my bike to be electric? What purpose does the electricity presence serve?

    Please, I ask not to seem facetious (excuse the pun), but I really do want to learn.

  • Daniele Hesse

    I sold a Prodeco bike to a guy in Georgia and after trying the Genesis 500 he wanted to trade in his two Stommers. He ended up with an Outlaw and a Stride 500 for his wife.