Reviews Mycle Cargo – Electric Bikes – Bikes
The Mycle Cargo e-bike offers great value for money to own a high-performance cargo e-bike with great load capacity and impressive range.
Cargo bikes are an attractive proposition, thanks to their ability to carry huge loads with the added bonus that they can accommodate multiple passengers. The main problem with unpowered cargo bikes is that you have to commit to using them day in and day out as an alternative to a motor vehicle.
But the motors for electric bikes have changed everything, the electric-assisted cargo bike becoming a real alternative to the car for your urban trips.
However, there is a big limiting factor: the price. Most electric cargo bike options start at around £4,000 and with some approaching five figures, they’re not a cheap option if you’re looking to be more eco-friendly.
However, with a standard price of £1,899, the Mycle Cargo changes all that. I opted for the £2,299 dual-battery version, but even that’s half the cost of many of its competitors.
Mycle Cargo Details and Specs
The headlines on the Cargo are impressive. The battery is a whopping 720Wh unit, whereas I had double that on my test bike with the added range extender, which Mycle says will see you in the 120km range. All this and it is designed to support a massive load of 215 kg.
The long tail design means that when seated it looks like a standard bike, but at 1.87m long it is considerably taller.
The steering is very light and the bike is remarkably nimble at slower speeds, which allowed me to easily navigate staggered gates entering bike paths and navigate between stationary vehicles in the city. The steering is damped, so it never feels jittery, and I came away impressed with how easy the Mycle is to ride.
For such an affordable bike, it is also very well equipped. Shimano’s seven-speed Altus drivetrain shifts smoothly, shifts smoothly, and the cassette’s oversized MegaRange sprocket means it’s easy to pedal up to speed while carrying a heavy load, even without power assist.
I found the plush saddle comfortable without padded cycling shorts, even after a long ride. The Tektro mechanical disc brakes worked well to bring the 36.5kg bike to a stop without protest, noise or jerkiness.
The rack is integrated into the frame, which helps give the bike such an impressive load capacity. In its standard form, the rack comes with a plywood top. This matches the Mycle’s built-in running boards, which make it easier to carry adult passengers.
There are built-in wheel guards so your passengers’ clothes won’t get caught in the wheel or stained by the extended chain.
The rack’s dimensions will work with most child seats, and the Mycle’s length means you can add two rear seats. At the front there is a four-point attachment, which also makes the Cargo compatible with front-mounted racks and child seats.
With its 215kg limit, the Cargo could carry three toddlers and the rider, making it a viable alternative to a car.
The bike comes with seat pads to make it more comfortable for passengers and Mycle will offer a seat post mounted bar to provide better grip for the passenger.
Lighting comes standard, with the front LED bright enough to provide visibility on unlit roads, and the wide rear light with an integrated brightening brake light.
Mycle also offers a few accessories for the Cargo, and I tried the large and medium rear racks with their dry bags. These are high quality, carefully made accessories and the only issue was the supplied bolt hardware, which was not long enough to bolt to the rear rack. I had to reuse the plywood decking bolts to make them work.
It’s a very small oversight on this new range of Mycle and I’m sure it will be corrected on the commercial version. Compared to Tern, Mycle’s range of accessories is a little thin, and I would have liked to see oversized saddlebags for example.
Driving impressions Mycle Cargo
The rider position is upright and very comfortable, and the adjustable seat height allowed me to accommodate 6-foot-2 and my 5-foot partner. You can further adjust the position thanks to the long adjustable rod.
The Mycle’s super-wide 20-inch rims are shod with CST’s Big Boat tires with puncture protection. With their three-inch width, they look like they belong on a motorcycle. For such bulky tires, however, they roll well and choke up rough roads and bike paths with ease. The Mycle really is a very fluid bike.
The Mycle’s rear hub motor hails from the world of big off-road bikes, and its 250W power rating with an impressive 65Nm of torque is enough to propel the bike for a good time.
The electronics are controlled by a simple LED controller with up and down buttons to cycle through its three power modes and a series of five LEDs to indicate your battery level.
That said, on the dual battery configuration, it only shows one battery level. Once this battery runs out, you need to turn off the empty battery, then the screen turns back on levels when it reads the second battery. On more expensive systems, such as those from Bosch and Turbo from Specialized, the extension batteries are used simultaneously.
The Mycle’s system wasn’t exactly a chore to use, though – you just lean over, flick a switch and that’s it.
Level one assist is good for flat terrain, but I found myself defaulting to level two for most of my riding. At level three, the Mycle packs a remarkable amount of punch, seeing me climb very steep local hills with ease, even when loaded up with a week’s shopping or garden center supplies.
Mycle claims a range of up to 120 km with the dual battery system, or 60 km with a single battery. My best was 103km / 63.75 miles with 1,722.5ft / 525m of elevation gain with a pair of batteries.
It’s a bit less than the 120km claim, but on different terrain I have no doubt that 120km is achievable. I would also say 100+ miles is more than enough for even the longest day of delivering or running the family.
The Mycle’s power delivery can be a bit odd, especially in the high level setting. The bike has a cadence sensor with a dozen magnetic sensing points, which sense when to input power. However, there is some lag from a standing start, it takes more than a full rotation of the crank before full power is achieved.
The system has a throttle by the right grip – and that suffers from the same lag. The throttle is really there to help with walking, but on similar bikes it usually helps with standing starts, especially when carrying a heavy load.
Result Mycle Cargo
I’d like to see Mycle fix some issues with the bike, which would make it a really great budget option.
As it stands, Mycle’s Cargo is a remarkably successful carrier. It doesn’t feel hugely compromised compared to Tern’s much more expensive Benno Boost or premium GSD bikes, and the Mycle’s price includes a one-year warranty, or two years for an extra £100.
More expensive cargo bikes are a bit smoother and offer more accessories, but you pay a big premium for essentially the same type of workhorse.
Mycle set out to create a bike that was a truly viable replacement for a car at a much more affordable price – and that’s exactly what Mycle did with their high-performance Cargo.