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After years of praying at the altar of gasoline, I’ve become somewhat of a convert to that of electricity. It started with Porsche’s Taycan, the first EV I actually truly enjoyed driving. And it’s continued with things like Zero’s FX and DSR/X motorcycles. The former of which caused my kids to cry when it left our care. I suspect Ubco’s 2x2 electric bike will cause a similar reaction when it goes home. And not just from my children, but me too.
I’ve now been playing with Ubco’s wild two-wheel drive electric bike—yes, you read that right—for a couple weeks, and boy, do I have thoughts. Mostly the sort of “Can I go outside and play again” type. Let’s dive into my initial impressions of this weird and wild machine.
So It’s Two-Wheel Drive?
Haha, yeah, it is. As the name suggests, Ubco’s 2x2 has a motor on both the front and rear axles, making it the first two-wheel drive—motorcycle? bicycle?—thing I’ve ever ridden. And that was incredibly disconcerting at first, as I’ve only ever ridden rear-drive two-wheeled machines.
There are known characteristics, but that’s thrown slightly out of the window when you slap another motor onto the front of a bike, which is what I felt the first time I hopped onto it. It was truly weird given the linearity of the electric motors—1kWh motors on each axle—as it sorta feels like it has front-wheel-drive torque steer ala a hot Honda from the mid-aughts. But what I quickly found out was that its front-drive pull is a design that lets you go anywhere you want.
A 3.1kWh battery powers the whole thing, allowing it to go up to 75 miles per charge, and propel it to a top speed of 30-ish miles per hour. Downhills can see slightly faster top speeds…
Seat height is a solid 31 inches, making it perfect for even someone of my stature, and this particular model, the Special Edition, comes with a front pouch, a Peak Design vibration-dampening phone mount, front storage straps, and a rear-mounted bag that’ll keep all your stuff secure and away from the elements.
What all that amounts to is hysterical fun.
Lunacy, Thy Name is Ubco
I haven’t had the chance to throw the Ubco into the back of the Ridgeline and take it on my elk hunting scouts just yet, but the season is upon us, so that’ll be part of my main review coming soon.
What I have done is take it too and from our house to the neighborhood’s package shed at the base of the mountain numerous times, and rip it around the backyard with my kids in tow. And that latter part has been the most fun I’ve had in years.
I know, I know, Ubco’s mantra is more in the adventuring and urban commuting vibe, but the company is missing out on marketing this to lunatics like myself who want to flat-track race it. The way the two-wheel drive pulls you out of corners is staggering. It’s like an old-school rally car, you just slide into the turn, point the nose as straight as you can, and bury the throttle. I haven’t smiled this much in years.
I mean, I did an Akira Slide in real life!
But there’s more I still want to know, there’s more I still want to do with the Ubco to give you a proper review of its capabilities and specs. And there are still opportunities to do more with it. So what do you want to see from the full review? What do you want to know more about? Let me know in the comments below.