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The Swagtron EB7 Elite is the big brother of the great-value Swagtron EB5, and you get a ton of upgraded features for the modest hike in cost.
The manufacturer says this bike is for flat terrain, and to some extent that’s true, but it’s more versatile than that.
Below, we’ll delve into the finer points of this bike and highlight alternative products.
- Frame material: Aluminum
- Gears: 1-speed
- Range: 15.5 miles max. (full throttle).
- Motor: 350W
- Battery: 36V 5.2 Ah Li-ion
- Weight: 43 lbs.
- Max. load: 264.5 lbs.
The Swagtron EB7 Elite Is For…
So, who would or should buy this bike? It’s ideal for commutes, shopping trips, and short journeys to visit family or friends.
Given the battery’s short 3- to 4-hour recharging time, you can take on slightly longer rides as long as you can charge the battery at your destination (e.g., at work). You can also carry a charged battery to extend the range.
Is this bike any good for exercise? Not the best, it has to be said, because the motor overpowers your pedaling with the low gear it provides. It can be if you switch to manual mode, but that defeats the purpose of an e-bike.
A benefit of all e-bikes for commuters is that you can take it easy on the ride to work, so you don’t arrive exhausted and sweaty.
This bike has an impressive 264.5 lbs. maximum load capacity. If you’re pushing that boundary, it’s worth noting a bike with a bigger motor might be better for you. Fat-tired electric bikes are often good for riders of up to 300 lbs. or over.
At 43 lbs., this bike is a bit heavy for dragging onto public transport. It’s at least 15 lbs. heavier than many non-electric folding bikes. If you’re planning an intermodal commute, you might want to look at something lighter.
Top Features Of The Swagtron EB7 Elite Folding E-Bike
Various features make the Swagtron EB7 Elite Folding E-Bike a compelling buy.
The aluminum frame of this bike is easy on the eye with its red and black or blue and white gloss finish. The material keeps the weight down. However, like most e-bikes, the Swagtron EB7 still ends up being a hefty machine for some riders to carry around.
16” Wheels & Suspension
To help it fold into a compact 39.4” x 17.7” x 27.6” folded size, the bike has small 16” wheels. It has this wheel size in common with all Brompton bikes.
Also like a Brompton, the Swagtron EB7 includes rear suspension, which counters the bumpier ride that smaller wheels bring.
Motor, Modes, Battery, & Range
The EB7 has a 350W motor with enough vigor to get most people comfortably up hills using power assist. You can also ride up a hill in manual mode (0), though steep hills aren’t recommended on a 43 lbs. bike.
The electric mode (full throttle) has three speeds (1-3), with a top speed of 18.6 mph. Pedaling is vaguely possible in speed #1, but the high cadence required makes it unpractical. Many users only pedal the bike up hills or in manual mode.
In electric mode, cruise control kicks in after a few seconds of riding at a constant speed, allowing you to release the throttle on the handlebar.
Swagtron claims a 15.5-mile battery range on the EB7, and that’s in electric speed #1. You’ll need to stick to flat roads to achieve this and may even exceed it slightly. Rider weight also affects the range, especially on undulating terrain.
A standout feature of the bike is the lockable, swappable 36V li-ion battery, which means you can effectively extend the range. You can recharge batteries while they’re attached or detached from the bike.
The battery and lock keyhole are only accessible when the bike is folded.
Video: Tips To Help You Maximize E-Bike Range
Dual disc brakes give the Swagtron EB7 Elite reliable stopping power in all weathers. This is one of many benefits the bike has over the EB5, which has rim brakes.
The EB7 uses “Autoguard” technology to ensure the motor stops in sync when the brakes are applied.
The included LCD handlebar unit gives you all the stats you need, including speed, distance, speed modes, headlamp status, and battery level. The battery level goes up and down according to the terrain you’re on at the time.
Other features included on the Swagtron EB7 Elite include folding pedals, a kickstand, a horn, and an LED headlight.
The headlight is switched on and off via the LCD on the handlebar. A slight downside is the weak audibility of the horn. This has a dedicated button on the right of the handlebar.
Swagtron EB7 Elite Alternatives
There are various alternatives to the Swagtron EB7 Elite, three of which we examine below.
1. Brompton C Line Electric Explore Folding Bike
If your budget is unlimited, you might consider the Brompton C Line Electric Explore Folding Bike. This is also a bike with 16” wheels and a form of suspension, but the similarities with the Swagtron end there.
The highly efficient Brompton 250W brushless geared motor is made by Williams Engineering of motorsport fame. It’s good for hills and flat roads alike. This and the 36V battery deliver a range of up to 45 miles in pedal assist mode.
There is no throttle mode on this British-made bike and the top assisted speed is 15.5 mph. It’s lighter than the Swagtron bike, despite its steel frame, and folds to a much smaller 25.3” x 23” x 10.6” size.
What We Like
- Motor – efficient geared motor with top-quality engineering.
- Range – longer range than the Swagtron, albeit in pedal-assist mode.
- Gears – includes Brompton’s 300% wide-ranging 6-speed gears.
- Folded size – much more compact than most rivals in its folded size.
What We Don’t Like
- Price – mega-expensive.
- No throttle mode – pedal-assist only.
2. Ecotric Power Sport 500W Folding Electric Bike
For a bit more money than the Swagtron, you can have the Ecotric Power Sport 500W Folding Electric Bike. This is a significantly heavier bike with a bigger motor and fat tires, so it’s less suitable for intermodal commuting but better for off-road stuff.
The Ecotric bike has a geared 500W motor and 7-speed Shimano gears. In pedal-assist mode, it yields a range of up to 36 miles or 21 miles in pure electric mode. The 36V battery on this bike has a higher 12.5 Ah capacity than the 5.2 Ah Swagtron battery.
Owing to its 20 x 4” tires, you can ride this bike over difficult surfaces like sand, mud, or snow, but that does make the folded size much bigger than the Swagtron at 38.58” x 24.4” x 33.46”. It’s around 12,250 in3 larger.
What We Like
- Range – more battery capacity and longer range than Swagtron.
- Gears – geared motor and 7-speed Shimano gears help with climbing.
- Terrain – rideable on snow, sand, and mud as well as pavement.
- Lock – battery lock & power locks functions.
What We Don’t Like
- Capacity – the stated 200 lbs. load capacity is poor for a bike of this nature (to the extent that it may be a mistake).
- Heavy – 13 lbs. heavier than the EB7.
3. Swagtron EB7 Elite Plus Folding Electric Bike
If the Swagtron EB7 Elite isn’t enough for you, consider the EB7 Elite Plus. This offers a longer 19 mile-range than its 15.5-mile sibling owing to a battery that is 23% more efficient. The other upgrade is a 7-speed Shimano drivetrain.
A problem arises with the 7 gears if you try to ride the bike in its 1-3 electric modes. These modes propel you at certain speeds (11.3, 13.7, 18.6 mph), but they don’t read torque, so you’ll find yourself “spinning out” where your pedaling becomes futile.
The gears on this bike only truly help if you’re climbing hills or riding at modest speeds of up to around 12 mph. Much beyond that, and you’ll struggle to pedal fast enough to contribute anything, so the motor effectively takes over.
What We Like
- Range – gives you a few more miles per charge than the EB7 Elite.
- Gears – includes 7-speed Shimano gears, and that’s a benefit, but only if you need to climb hills or intend some manual riding.
- Battery – like the EB7 Elite, the “Plus” includes a swappable, lockable battery with 3-4 hours of recharge time.
- Brakes – front and rear disc brakes with Autoguard technology.
What We Don’t Like
- Cadence – the “power assist” is unaware of your effort, so the three electric modes default to a maximum speed and go faster than you can easily pedal (especially 2 & 3). This renders the gear range redundant.
EB7 Elite: FAQs
Below are some commonly asked questions about the Swagtron EB7 Elite.
What Is The Range/Distance Of The Swagtron EB7 Elite?
The range is 15.5 miles, though you may manage a little more based on factors like terrain and rider weight. This is in electric mode #1.
Can The EB7 Be Used Off Paved Roads?
It’s designed primarily for paved roads, but you can ride it on flat trails or gravel roads. The range is based on smooth riding surfaces.
How Long Does The Battery Last?
A fully charged battery lasts for up to an hour and twenty minutes based on its maximum range and level-1 speed. In longevity terms, a lithium-ion battery for e-bikes usually lasts for 3-5 years or up to 1000 charge cycles.
How Easy Is The EB7 To Carry?
It’s easy to carry over short distances if you’re a strong or healthy adult. But many people will find the 42.3 lbs. burdensome to lift onto a train or carry over obstacles, for instance.
Is The Swagtron EB7 Elite Waterproof?
The Swagtron EB7 Elite has an IPX4 rating, which means it’s rainproof. You wouldn’t want to submerge it or subject it to high-pressure jets of water.
Swagtron EB7 Elite Folding Electric Bike Any Good?
What We Like
- Frame – strong, good-looking bike frame in a choice of finishes.
- Battery options – not a big capacity, but recharges quickly and is swappable.
- Hills – this bike climbs well.
- Suspension – helps smooth the ride and counteract the effect of small wheels.
What We Don’t Like
- Spinning – the single gear of the bike is too low to keep up with the electric speed levels on flat roads, so your pedaling is more hijacked than assisted.
- Weight – not the heaviest, but the weight is significant.
The Swagtron EB7 Elite Folding Electric Bike is a step up from Swagtron EB5 models with many new or upgraded features.
This bike is better as a convenient mode of transport than it is for exercise. It’s fun, it’s affordable, but don’t expect to pedal much. Go here to check the bike out!
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