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Review: The Tenways ebike is a lightweight steal for under $1,500

We have a rule about crowdfunding campaigns here at TNW: with rare exceptions, we don’t cover crowdfunded products unless they’re from an already established company with a proven track record or we get to demo a fully functional prototype.

With the Tenways C-Go 600 ebike, it was the latter case. And I’m really glad I did get to try it because this ebike is fantastic — no gimmicks necessary.

At $1,000-1,500 (Tenways has not settled on a final price yet), the bike offers a Gates Carbon belt drive, a stealthy appearance that doesn’t betray its electric nature, a weight of 15 kg (33 lbs), and one of the smoothest pedaling experiences of any ebike I’ve ridden. I’ve tested a lot of ebikes here at TNW, and those are three qualities you normally find on far more expensive bikes.

To be clear, Hong Kong-based Tenways hasn’t actually launched its Indiegogo campaign yet. The company plans to start crowdfunding in July, but it wanted to get the bike out to reviewers early to prove it has a real product. And unlike the majority of crowdfunded ebikes, the bike will actually already be in mass production while the campaign is live.

Crowdfunded products are always a risk, but Tenways appears to be using Indiegogo more as a way to market the bike rather than relying solely on backer funds to bring it to fruition. Other than a non-final design and an upcoming app, what I tested was a fully realized product

The final units (available in 5 colors) should look more like what’s on Tenways’ website:

Here’s what you’re getting for your hard-earned money:

  • A Mivice 250W rear hub motor with 40 Nm of torque
  • A Gates Carbon Belt drive, known for being far more durable than the typical chain (although it appears Tenways will also offer a single-speed chain model too)
  • A torque sensor that measures how hard you’re pedaling; most ebikes use cadence sensors which only measure if you’re pedaling.
  • ‘X-spark’ Hydraulic disk brakes
  • An integrated 252 Wh (36V, 7Ah) battery
  • A claimed 70-130 km (43.5 to 80.8 miles) of range (more on this later)
  • 700C tires
  • An integrated headlight and included rechargeable tail light
  • 15kg (33 lb) weight
  • 32 km/h (20 mph) max speed
  • Two frame sizes covering riders from 165-200cm (5′ 5″ – 6′”)
  • Bluetooth app integration (which I’ve not tested yet)
  • A minimal display unit with 3 levels of pedal assistance

Let’s get this out of the way: this isn’t an ebike for people who are looking for ridiculous amounts of power or a moped-like experience. There’s no throttle onboard, so you will always have to pedal.

But if, like me, you value rideability over sheer power, the C-GO 600 could be a fantastic value. It mostly feels like riding a normal single-speed bike, except your legs just got super strength. The motor isn’t crazy powerful, but there’s enough power on top to get me up any hill I crossed, despite the lack of gears.

Every part of the electric drivetrain appears to have been chosen to prioritize smooth, quiet power delivery. The torque sensor and acceleration curve are among the most natural and responsive I’ve used. It is fully comparable to the $3000+ Specialized Turbo Vado SL and Priority Current — the two smoothest ebikes I’ve ridden — and is flat-out better than my own $4,000 Brompton Electric or any other hub-drive bike I’ve ridden.