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Folding Fat Tire Electric Bike Review - The Groove by GEN3

Folding Fat Tire Electric Bike Review - The Groove by GEN3

Posted by Emma Cunningham on Feb 28th 2022

The GEN3 Groove is a super-fun foldable fat tire electric bike that comes with a powerful Bafang motor. It’s a perfect choice for anyone needing a comfortable daily commuter - but doesn’t have a lot of room for storage.


KEY SPECS
Weight 275 Pounds
Frame 6061 Double-Butted Aluminum
Tire Size 20 X 40 Inches
Motor Bafang 500W Rated / 1000W Peak Rear Hub Motor
Battery 660 Wh
Range 45 Miles
Max Speed 20MPH
Brakes GEN3 Db-330 Mechanical Disc Brakes

Groove In-Depth Review

Although they were founded less than a year ago, GEN3 has some of the most exciting e-bikes on the market.

“But new e-bike companies are popping out each month. What makes GEN3 different?” I hear you ask.

Well, the people at GEN3 are anything but new in the industry. The company’s team consists of passionate product developers with decades of experience under their belt. And after years of servicing some of the world’s largest retailers, they have decided to open up their own shop in Bellvue, Washington.

So far, they have produced four different models of e-bikes and two models of scooters. In this article, we’ll talk about The Groove e-bike.

GEN3’s The Groove manages to blur that line between a commuter e-bike you can drive around town and a mountain bike you could take on weekend adventures. With The Groove, you’ll have no trouble conquering challenging country trails as well as zooming through town.

Let’s take a look at this exciting little machine:

Frame

The GEN3 Groove features a frame built out of 6061 Double-Butted Aluminum. That means that this electric bike is not only light but also durable. The entire e-bike is well constructed and feels pretty solid. The welding seams are near-perfect and are almost invisible.

At first glance, you might think that the Groove is your standard fat tire e-bike. But what makes it stand out from the competition is its ability to fold: 

On the middle of the tube and the headtube, you will find latches that, when unlocked, allow you to fold the bike to almost half its size.

Since this is a folding bike, this means there is no hidden cable routing. The rear brake and transmission cables run under the middle tube, which might be a turn-off for some. Then again, compromises had to be made to make this e-bike foldable.

The battery sits right behind the rear tube with power cables running along the chainstay, which is pretty standard for most electric bikes with this configuration. The battery pops off quite easily for charging and is fully waterproof.

The handlebars are not adjustable and will make you drive this bike in an upright position. While this is excellent when going on smooth concrete, you will feel the shocks in your lower back.

At least the front fork features adjustable suspension, which will take some of the ground shocks away.

Motor

The GEN3 Ride Groove comes equipped with a powerful 500W Bafang motor.

The coolest thing about this motor has to be its peak power of 1000W which means you won’t have much trouble getting from 0 to 20 MPH in a matter of seconds. And on top of that, thanks to the power, you’ll be able to conquer just about any mountain or country trail without breaking a sweat.

As is the case with all Bafang motors, the one on the Groove runs pretty silently. In fact, the tires create more noise than the motor.

At the left-hand side of the handlebars, you’ll find the motor controller. To turn it on, all you have to do is hold down the M button for a couple of seconds; the backlit display will turn on promptly.

There you’ll be able to choose the motor speed (from 1 to 5) or enable the so-called Walk mode. The Walk function is pretty handy when pushing the Groove uphill because it weighs 62 pounds.

At the highest speed setting, the motor will provide you with all 80 Nm of torque, allowing you to accelerate to full speed with one turn of the pedals.

And if you’re not in the mood to pedal, there’s also a thumb throttle too. Be careful about using it too much, though; it will drain the battery quickly.

Battery

GEN3’s The Groove comes with a UL-certified 660W battery. On a full charge, you can expect anything between 35 and 45 miles of range. The range heavily depends on what type of terrain you’re driving.

I’ve tested this bike both on country trails and in the city, and I’ve noticed there was a 10-mile drop in range when driving on dirt roads.

And if you drive the Groove using only the throttle, you can expect around 30 miles of range. Of course, this also varies on the speed setting and the difficulty of the terrain.

The battery is removable, but you can also charge it while still on the bike, which is a nice touch. Both the battery and the charger have LED status indicators. The LEDs on the battery show you how much juice you have left, while the LED on the charger only indicates whether it’s charging the battery (it will glow red) or if it’s done (it will glow green).

The charging time of around 8 hours could be better - but still pretty decent. If you ever end up draining it completely, you can always leave it to charge overnight.

Brake Type

Gen3 The Stride

The Groove features custom mechanical disc brakes. Both the 180 mm front and 160 mm back breaks are pretty reliable. Even if it’s pouring outside, you won’t have much trouble coming to a complete stop in just a couple of feet.

The guys at GEN3 really put a lot of thought behind the brakes because this fat-tire electric bike isn’t only intended for city commutes - but offered adventures, too.

Rims

This bike rides on single-wall aluminum wheels with 36 hole-pairs for 12-gauge spokes. These rims work perfectly well with the fat tires, providing you with a smooth riding experience.

Tires

The Groove features 20 x 40 inch CST BFT all-terrain tires. Since the tires are so chunky and big, you can ride this e-bike on all kinds of terrain with no issues. Even on a sandy beach, the ride is smooth, and there is very little resistance.

Gen3 the Groove Review – Electric Bike Review

Post Test Summary: GEN3 Ride Groove Pros And Cons

So, based on the stats above, what impressions does The Groove leave on you?

If you asked me, I absolutely love its capability to fold. If you ever get tired of riding this electric bike through the town, you can always fold it down, put it into the trunk of your car - and take it somewhere more fun.

The latches are incredibly secure, and there’s no wobble once they are locked. I only wish the pedals were foldable, too, since that would make storing it a lot easier.

The powerful 500w Bafang motor with 80 N/m of torque is extremely fun. With this much power, it’s hard to resist flooring the throttle and feeling the incredible acceleration take you from 0 to 20 MPH in a matter of seconds.

The only real complaint I have about this bike is how heavy it is. Without the Walk Assist mode, it would be pretty exhausting walking this bike uphill.

What Do I Like About GEN3 Ride Groove

The Groove is chock-full of cool features: 

  • Firstly, it is fully foldable. Just unlock the latch on the middle and handlebar tubes, and this bike will fold 66.9 x 53.9 inches to just 28 x 38 inches.
  • That makes storing it a breeze.
  • And the 500W Bafang motor is nothing to scoff at:
  • With 80 N/m of torque and 1000W peak power, I had no problems conquering steep inclines and rough country roads. With a 660 Wh battery, I had days of fun before I had to recharge it.
  • The frame is another high point for this e-bike. The entire thing is built out of high-quality 6061 aluminum with no plastic inserts or anything of that sort. That also makes this e-bike quite hefty - but incredibly sturdy.
  • The motor controller is also incredible.
  • It’s effortless to use, and you can even lock it with a password so you can be sure no one will be able to steal it.

What I Don’t Like About GEN3 Groove

When it comes to things I don’t like about the Groove, the list is relatively short:

  • My biggest complaint is the geometry of the frame. Because it makes you sit completely upright, you will feel quite a lot of shocks and bumps from the road, leading to some back pain. The front suspension and fat tires take some of that shock away - but not completely.
  • My other complaint is that the pedals are not foldable. That makes storing this bike in a car trunk a bit awkward because the electric bike will swivel around while you’re driving and could ruin the carpeting.

Advice To Buyers

The GEN3 Ride Groove is built for daily commuting and weekend joyrides. It has a powerful motor and an incredibly sturdy frame. On top of all this, it’s relatively affordable for a Class 2 electric bike - costing roughly $1500.

Conclusion

When it’s all said and done, The Groove is a pretty solid fat-tire e-bike. For a modest price, you get an incredibly sturdy machine with a powerful motor and a decent range.

The Groove is a perfect choice for anyone who doesn’t have a lot of storage space for a bike and needs comfortable daily commuter or bike they can fold up and take with them.

Read the full review  here.

THE GROOVE - $1199 - BUY NOW