22 Feb Gear Review: Raleigh Misceo Sport iE
There are those of us who exclaim, “Cheater!” when you see an ebike pass you up on the road, but then, there are those who say, “One less car.”
By way of deduction, you probably figured out that I am in the latter camp. Putting more people on bicycles, whether it be electric assisted or not, is just going to improve conditions for bicycling infrastructure. Plus, it removes one more car off the road.
How can you hate that?
But of course, there are those out there that just flat out despise ebike usage outside of the elderly population.
Like it or not, electric bicycles or ebikes are here to stay.
What’s there not to love about having the ability to travel long distances without being a sweaty mess or being able to haul cargo without overstraining yourself? I’ve done both and it’s fabulous!
A bike for every purpose
Of course, an ebike may not be a suitable vehicle for bike touring. I just don’t think the added benefits of an ebike is worth the hassle of constantly searching for a power outlet to charge your battery or the added weight from an ebike system.
To me, bikes are like tools made for specific jobs. There are road bikes for your training and century rides. There are touring bikes that are designed to haul you and your stuff around the world. There are beater bikes that you can ride around the city and not worry about it being stolen.
An ebike is just another one of these tools that serves those who need its help.
This week’s video is about the ebike I picked up from eBay, a 2016 Raleigh Misceo Sport iE. It was offered at a really good price, under $1000 for a bike that seemed to be rarely ridden. Considering the price was about $2500 when it was new, it’s a great deal!
I was seriously considering a Rad Power Bikes but opted for a used Raleigh because in the event of a break-down, there are actual dealerships who I can bring it to. I know Rad Power Bikes have partnerships, but it probably doesn’t cover as much as Raleigh does.
My Misceo is a mid-engine bike powered by the Shimano E-6000 STePS system. One of the well known and trusted electric bike systems out there. The 36V lithium-ion battery is mounted on the down tube and looks like a huge water bottle.
The bike does not have a throttle, so in order to engage the electric assist, you will need to do some work so that the sensors in the mid-engine and the wheels can pick up on that and determine how much power to give to you.
I’ve ridden this bike for about 50 miles on one charge without much issues. The condition was optimal with primarily flat roads and no wind. Your results may differ depending on which assist mode you’re using (I was primarily on Eco) and the road conditions.
It comes with a rear rack in which I permanently attached a set of Novara side grocery bag holders so I can bring more stuff with me on trips.
You can toggle between Off, Eco, Normal, and High for each ride setting. So you get no assist to maximum power assist.
There’s a common misconception that ebikes are faster than non-ebikes. For the most part, bikes from major manufacturers cap their e-assist at speeds of 20 mph. There are independent companies who make bikes that goes well over 30+ mph.
I believe that’s probably where a lot of the negative perceptions come from. The bikes that powers you up to 30+ mph.
The ride of the Misceo is a bit harsh because of the aluminium frame. To add comfort, I decided to change out the stem, so I’m not leaning forward too much on the rides. I also swapped the pedals to MKS Lambdas and the seat post to a Crane Creek Thudbuster to absorb more of the bounce.
The hydraulic brakes on the Misceo is flawless thanks to the Shimano M445 system. Smooth breaking to emergency braking, these will definitely stop you on time without much squeeze effort.
You also have a 1 x 10 Shimano STX drivetrain. Shifting is done through a rapid fire shifter on the right hand side of the handlebar.
The battery takes about 4 hours to charge from 1 bar to full. The great part of this charging system is that it turns off completely once the battery is charged to capacity. You can leave it charging overnight without any issues.
How about bike touring?
As previously mentioned, I wouldn’t tour with this bike. I feel you wouldn’t get the range you would need for a long distance self-supported tour. You’ll need to buy and haul an extra 6 lb battery as well as bring the charging brick. This means more space and weight in your touring setup.
Of course, I know there are people who have toured with an ebike (like my pal, Lars Wikstrom) and they made very good use of it. I want to maximize my time riding, sightseeing, or hanging out at campsites. I don’t want to spend my down time constantly looking for outlets to charge my batteries on a daily basis.
This is an absolutely great buy for those who just need a little help getting around or getting back into biking condition. Just make sure you transition off of it if you’re training for a long bike tour.
In an urban setting, you can’t beat having an ebike. I definitely have saved lots of car trips by taking my Misceo out. I am more inclined to ride over to the train station and extend my trips even further.
The only negative thing is not to default to this bike whenever I want to ride. I do still enjoy riding a push bike for exercise to maintain my fitness.
What do you think about an ebike? Would you ever get one? Do you already have one? If so, what do you think about it? Have you taken it on a tour? Do you recommend it? Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts and experience.