Cowboy Cruiser test ride: a more comfortable e-bike for daily use

Cowboy makes some subtle changes to create an e-bike that will likely have even broader mainstream appeal. | Image: Cowboy

Boutique Belgian electric bicycle maker Cowboy just added a new more upright and comfortable commuter e-bike to its portfolio. The so-called Cruiser takes the grips, wide saddle, and more relaxed riding position of the company’s C4ST (step-through) model and adds a top bar and a wider swept-back handlebar. It’s the Dutch-style e-bike you buy if you already liked the C4 but disliked its aggressive forward riding position, skinny saddle, and narrow handlebars.

I had a chance to test ride the new 19.3kg Cruiser against the original C4 (now renamed Classic) and step-through C4ST (now known as the Cruiser ST) in Amsterdam at one of Cowboy’s new retail partners — an initiative that launched in May with independent bike shops across Europe.

GIF: Cowboy
The higher swept-back handlebar takes a significant load off the hands while putting them in a more natural position.

Riding the Cruiser feels very similar to the Cruiser ST, and much more relaxed than the Classic which puts the rider into a hunched-over position with lots of hand pressure on the grips. Compared to the Classic, the Cruiser should make for easier long-distance commutes especially if you’re in the habit of wearing a loaded backpack to work. It’s not quite as relaxed and upright as a traditional Dutch “omafiets” but the riding posture is a good balance between sporty and utilitarian, not unlike riding a €3,299 Veloretti Ace Two, €2,348 VanMoof S4 or €3,498 S5, or €2,590 Ampler Axel.

Cowboy says the Cruiser also features a higher gear ratio. Honestly, I didn’t feel much of a difference between the three bikes, each briefly tested head-to-head in adaptive power mode. But I rode each for less than five minutes and only on flat roads.

Otherwise, the Cowboy Cruiser — like the Cruiser ST and Classic — features a 250W rear-hub motor with single-speed belt-drive, a built-in mount that wirelessly charges your phone, Google Maps baked right into the Cowboy app, removable battery, and wide 47mm tires.

The new Cruiser is available in black or “sand” (off-white) colors for an “introductory price” of €2,990 later today.

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