Xiaomi QiCycle EF-1 Full Review

 

Introduction

The Xiaomi QiCycle EF-1 although using a minimalistic design is actually a highly advanced electric bike which uses torque sensing pedal assist and uses an on-board computer to monitor and display a varied amount of data. The bike also has Bluetooth connectivity and will work with the QiCycle app through which you can monitor various information such as range, power, user calories, mileage and also upgrade the firmware to further improve the riding experience.

The QiCycle is available (tax-free for Europe) from

 

The Xiaomi QiCycle comes in a very large cardboard box and it’s very well protected with additional internal foam and clear plastic tape so that all parts are not to be scratched in transport. The sender also took extra care and added another layer of paper and tape over the original box to preserve it better.

You will also find a smaller box inside which contain the minimum set of parts and tools to get you started and those are: pedals, tools, manual and charger. In the manual (which is in Chinese) you will also find a QR code to scan and download the correct Bluetooth app. The initial setup is very easy to do, even with the Chinese manual, the steps are represented by drawings that show the order of setup and assembly so you won’t have any troubles with that.

The QiCycle comes very well equipped from all points of view, on the rear wheel you have Shimano Nexus in hub 3 gear set which doesn’t need a derailleur and a hub brake system that is mostly found on petrol scooters. In my case both the brake system and the hub gearbox were properly set up and didn’t need any kind of additional adjustment. On the sprocket site you also have the torque sensor module which measures your effort and sends data to the computer.

The front wheel contains the 250W in-hub motor which is capable of outputting 7.3 Nm of torque. The brake system is an upgraded spring-loaded side pull caliper that features a retract system to always depart both braking surfaces equally and to prevent energy loss through extra friction.

On the handlebar you will get a nice color bike computer display which sadly it only works in Chinese. The good part is that it’s so easy and intuitive to use that you’ll figure it out easy. It’s main role is to show distance, battery level, calorie expense and also by the provided switches it allows to change the working modes and turn on or of the headlight and the stop light. On the right hand of the handlebar you have the Shimano gear switch which uses a rotating ring like the Revo-shift models. Last but not least you also get a small spring-loaded bicycle bell so you can warn pedestrians.

The power of the QiCycle comes from a detachable cartridge which holds 20 18650 Li-Ion cells. The “power core” of the bike also has a quick level check and integrates the stop lamp. The best part of this design is that you can charge it directly so you don’t need to plug the whole bike to an outlet like you do for instance with the M365 eScooter, you can simple take the battery out and charge it, or get a second one and replace it. The estimated range is 45km when assisted mode is set to 100%.

And now it’s time to explain the “assist” modes and how the QiCycle is actually a “not fully” electric bike. The bike as I’ve told earlier uses a torque sensor which monitors your pedaling effort, using that input the onboard computer modulates the electric motor powers such that it aids you in pedaling easier but it will not pedal for nor it will work fully electrical. Beside this help you get an option to choose the assistance levels which are: ECO, Balanced, Turbo and Fitness. The fitness mode completely shoots down the motor assist and you are the only source of motion, the bike will be like a regular one that weight 14.5kg and has 3 speeds. The eco mode will give 50% power assist so you get an extra half of the torque you are using. The balanced mode will give you 100% of your output so it’s basically doubling the total power, while the turbo mode works at 150% rate amplifying your effort with a factor of an additional 1.5 time. With the turbo mode you will have an impressive acceleration rate that can outclass the M365 scooter that has a two times more powerful motor. Because of the global legislation the bicycle is limited to 25 km/h top speed after which the assist will shut down and you are left to keep up the rate by yourself. Form my test you can easily sustain a sporty 27-28km/h rate and when you are getting tired you get to 22-25km/h rate and the motor will help you rest and regain strength. Another not that I should add here is that when I have got the bike, initially it was limited to just 20 km/h but there was also a firmware update which increased the speed to the 25 km/h rate.

 

Full official specifications

 

Main Features:
– This bike is powered by 18650 lithium-ion battery pack with the total capacity of 208.8Wh, which means the cycling distance can be up to 45km at the condition of 100pct electric power.
– The smart folding bike comes with a trip computer, so you can directly view the mileage, speed, power and other data without a mobile phone, and the built-in space can store 30 days of riding data, moreover, these data can be exported at any time.
– The bicycle is equipped with three-mode derailleur, which makes it effortless to ride even without power.
– Equipped with TMM torque sensor and professional electric boosting system, the smart bike can automatically sense your tread power, and output the appropriate electrical power to assist cycling.
– Longitudinal folding design, easy to operate and no harm to the bike frame.
– Aluminum alloy frame, lightweight and exquisite.
– The max loading: 75kg

Specification:
– Unfolded size: 1247mm x 556mm x 928mm
– Folded size: 1000mm x 450mm x 650mm
– Frame: aluminum alloy
– Front fork: aluminum alloy
– Crankset: aluminum, 52T x 170mm
– Seat tube: aluminum, 33.9 x 580mm
– Hub: three-mode derailleur
– Weight: 14.5kg
– Wheel size: 16 inches
– Wheel rim: 1250mm

Motor:
– Rated power: 250W
– Rated torque: 7.3N.m
– Maximum speed: 20km/h

Battery:
– Type: 18650 lithium-ion battery
– Working distance: about 45km
– Capacity: 5800mAh / 208.8Wh
– Charging time: about 3 hours
– Limited charging voltage: 42V

Brake:
– Braking methods: caliper brake for front wheel, IM31 roller brake for rear wheel
– Braking distance: not more than 4m in dry state, not more than 15m ( speed of 20km/h ) in wet state

Control Dial:
– Screen: 1.8 inch, 160 x 128 TFT
– Wireless connection: Bluetooth 4.0 BLE, effective range of 15 – 30 meters

 

And now a full video review that contains some other parts not presented in the written review and of course lots of riding sequences, testing modes, folding, checking settings, instant usage and mobile app capture.