This Dutch-style cruiser from Lindsey-West is built in the EU and offers a comfortable and assured ride with a good dose of extra assistance from the front hub motor. It’s not the most powerful away from a standstill but it’s great for the sort of leisurely commuting and leisure riding that you’d expect to be doing on a bike that looks like this.
The bike has a classic step-through frame design with a double down tube, cross-braced in two positions to add a bit of stiffness to the structure. If it was a classic Dutch omafiets (granny bike) then it would be made out of steel, but the L-W 001 is aluminium throughout, with the frames produced in Lithuania. It’s nicely put together with tidy (if chunky) welds and a good quality paint finish. The slim 360Wh battery and hub motor don’t impact much on the overall look of the bike; it looks very much the classic city bike.
The hub motor is controlled by a bar-mounted display. It’s simple and easy to use: there’s a row of LEDs to show you your battery level, and another set to show you which of the five power levels you’re in. A cadence sensor on the cranks senses pedal movement to apply the power. There’s a button to control the lights too. The battery slots into the rear rack; it’s a quality Samsung unit and Lindsey-West give a range estimate of 20-60km depending on usage, which is pretty realistic.
The Shimano Nexus Inter-7 hub is a very popular choice on electric bikes, giving a good range of gears. The L-W 001 uses the coaster brake version: you back-pedal to brake at the rear. That means everything’s enclosed and there’s no rim wear on the rear wheel, but it does mean you can’t kick your pedals back to get them in the right position for setting off. The front brake is a standard Tektro V-brake.
> Find a local electric bike dealer
The L-W 001 is fully city-ready, with a kickstand, frame lock, chain case, mudguards and even a pump included in the £1,250 asking price.
Dave says: The L-W 001 looks like a bike that’s designed for unflustered progress, and that’s how it rides, too. The hub motor isn’t the most eager I’ve tried by any means, but it had enough grunt to get me up my usual set of test hills without any issues in maximum assist mode; there's plenty of gear range from the 7-speed hub. On the flat, in middle-assistance modes, it’s an easy-to ride and pleasant cruiser. The ride position is upright and the saddle and grips decent in terms of comfort.
There’s no suspension but the bike is plenty comfortable thanks to the contact points, the 40mm tyres and a certain amount of flex in the step-through frame. That flex was a bit noticeable when putting a lot of leg power into the Lindsey-West, or changing direction sharply at speed, but realistically you’d not be doing either on this bike from day to day.
Five levels of assistance is probably one too many. Level 1 didn’t really do much above what my legs were capable of on their own, so I didn’t use it at all. The other four are distinct enough to make a noticeable difference when changing between them. The cadence sensor has a bit of a lag when it kicks in and the bike is fairly leisurely in terms of acceleration. If you’re the type of rider who wants to kick away from the lights then it’s not for you, but then you’d know that anyway just by looking at it.
The brakes are good. A coaster brake takes a bit of getting used to, because you can’t ever back-pedal, but it’s a very easy way to regulate your speed on the downhills, especially if you don’t have a strong grip. It’s fairly easy to lock up the back wheel if you’re new to coaster brakes, so it’s worth trying it somewhere quiet first. Either of the two brakes was plenty for stopping, I never needed both together.
The rack battery means a higher centre of gravity for the bike as a whole. That wasn’t an issue for me but if you’re not blessed with much upper body strength then bikes that have a down-tube or seat-tube mounted battery can be easier to push about. Given the likely demographic for a bike like this, it may be more of an issue than normal. Once you’re on board there’s less of a difference. At 360Wh the battery isn’t huge but the bike’s range should be fine for a few hours of commuting or leisure riding and it’s unlikely you’ll be wanting to do more than that in one go. The battery indicator is a bit jumpy, showing less available battery when you switch to higher assistance modes. That’s not uncommon on less expensive bikes but it does mean you’re never quite sure how much you have left.
Overall the L-W 001 is a likeable bike if you’re after a relaxed, classically-styled cruiser for commuting or leisure use. It’s well-specced for the price, and offers a comfortable and balanced ride with a good level of assistance available from the motor.