We must admit, when we first reported on Decathlon’s R500 Electric Cargo Bike earlier this year, we did wonder whether it would actually make it to the UK. Well, it has – even if it is somewhere around £1,000 more expensive than we anticipated.
The R500 sells for €2,799 on the continent, which works out at about £2,400. However, it’s currently on sale for £3,499 in the UK.
This is not exactly unheard of from Decathlon. The Riverside 500E which sells for £1,299 in the UK (around €1,500), is priced at €1,299 in France, Italy and Spain. (Although at the time of writing it’s actually discounted to £999 and €999.)
The retailer has previously said that its significantly higher UK prices for e-bikes are largely down to Brexit as it has had to expand the size of its supply team to deal with the additional administration, costs and import duties.
Even so… a grand?
On this occasion Decathlon told ebiketips: "At Decathlon, we always offer the best possible price for our customers around the world. Any differing prices across markets will be due to differences in duties and taxes."
As for the R500 itself, it’s a longtail e-cargo bike that can carry a rider and two children or up to 170kg of cargo, including the rider.
The rear bench – which comes with side rails – is rated for up to 80kg and there’s a front basket that can hold another 10kg.
Somewhat unusually, it’s powered by a rear hub motor. While there are a number of more affordable hub motor e-cargo bikes, like the Rad Power RadWagon and Mycle Cargo, more expensive models almost always employ mid-motors as they work more efficiently at low speeds. This is a significant consideration when you’re looking to get heavy loads moving or carrying a bunch of stuff uphill. (You can find more information about this in our article on hub motors v mid motors.)
The motor’s teamed with a 672Wh battery that Decathlon say is good for up to 90km on Eco mode, 70km in Normal mode and 50km in Power mode – albeit that’s unloaded and on a “relatively flat” road.
You also get Microshift gearing with an 11-28 cassette, Tektro hydraulic disc brakes, integrated front and rear lights, a wheel lock and kick stand.
A couple of months back we reported how Decathlon also has a user-friendly, low-maintenance e-bike on the way. The B’Twin Long Distance 920 E Connected – which will be the brand’s first e-bike with automatic gearing – will be out next spring.