Hello, I’m Forest from Electric Bike Report, and today we’re taking a closer look at the GoTrax F5 folding electric bike. This bike comes with a unique folding frame design, making it convenient for storage and transportation.
With the added feature of fat tires, it promises a more stable ride. As of now, it’s priced at around $1,000, making it an affordable option for those in search of an electric folding bike. Stick around as we delve into the details to discover what the F5 e-bike has to offer.
|Bicycle Frame Type
|500 Watt motor
|20" x 4.0" air-filled pneumatic tires
|48V 13.6aH battery
|up to 45 miles per charge
|23.6 Inches (L), 51.5 Inches (H) x 67.7 Inches (W)
|Holds up to
Design and Build Quality
The GoTrax F5 presents an intriguing combination of affordability, portability, and functionality within the realm of folding electric bikes. Priced under $1,000, it positions itself as an accessible option for those seeking the convenience of a folding e-bike without breaking the bank.
One notable feature that contributes to the F5’s appeal is its 20-inch by 4-inch fat tires. While these tires add some weight to the bike, they provide a sense of stability that might be lacking with thinner tires.
This stability factor is particularly advantageous for riders who prioritize a more secure and grounded feel, especially on varied terrains. The fat tires, with their ample tread, prove to be reliable on roads and gravel, though caution is advised in adverse conditions like ice, snow, and mud.
Examining the components, the inclusion of a Shimano Turny 7-speed drivetrain stands out as a commendable choice, given the price range. The 14 to 28-tooth cassette and 48-tooth chainring offer a versatile range for different riding scenarios. The Shimano derailleur contributes to smooth gear transitions, enhancing the overall riding experience.
The front suspension is handled by a GoTrax coil spring hydraulic fork, providing 60mm of travel. While described as basic, it plays a crucial role in smoothing out the ride and absorbing bumps along the way. The braking system, comprising Nut BR hydraulic disc brakes with 180mm rotors and dual-piston calipers, adds a layer of safety and control to the bike. The use of mineral oil aligns with the standard seen in many other bikes, ensuring familiarity and ease of maintenance.
The F5 comes equipped with an LED monocolor display interface that provides essential ride details and settings. The inclusion of a headlight and tail light enhances safety during night rides, showcasing GoTrax’s attention to rider visibility.
The bike’s frame is a 6061 aluminum alloy folding frame, contributing to both durability and portability. With a 15.5-inch standover height, it offers easy maneuverability, and the folding mechanism adds to its convenience for storage or transportation.
With a maximum rider weight limit of 265 lbs, the GoTrax F5 caters to a wide range of users. The bike, including the battery, weighs 67.4 lbs. GoTrax backs its product with a limited one-year warranty, providing assurance to riders.
So, the GoTrax F5 stands out for its budget-friendly price, stable ride, and thoughtful component selection. Whether commuting or exploring, this folding fat tire e-bike offers a compelling option for riders looking to embrace the benefits of electric biking without a hefty investment.
GoTrax F5: Driving Test
The speed test of the GoTrax F5 provides valuable insights into the bike’s performance across its five pedal assist (PAS) levels and its capabilities when using the throttle. The bike’s speed was also tested under pure pedaling without any motor assistance.
Starting with pedaling without motor assist, the F5 achieved a speed in the low 9s, averaging around 9.4 to 9.6 mph. However, it’s emphasized that the primary purpose of an electric bike is to utilize the motor, making extended periods of pure pedaling unnecessary.
Moving on to the pedal assist levels:
- PAS Level 1: At this level, the motor engagement seemed minimal, and the speed hovered around 10 mph, indicating a gentle boost to the rider’s efforts.
- PAS Level 2: Again, the motor response appeared subtle, with the speed still around 10 mph while pedaling.
- PAS Level 3: The motor became more noticeable at this level, providing a boost to reach speeds around 12.8 to 12.9 mph, although slightly below the typical speed for bikes in this category.
- PAS Level 4: The motor’s impact increased, allowing the bike to reach speeds close to 16 mph. This level demonstrated a more significant acceleration.
- PAS Level 5: The highest PAS level brought the bike to life, resembling a Class 2 e-bike capable of reaching speeds close to 20 mph. However, during the test, the speed peaked at 19.9 mph, just shy of the expected 20 mph.
The throttle test showcased the F5’s acceleration capabilities. From a standstill, the bike accelerated quickly, reaching speeds of 19.6 mph within a short duration. However, it fell just short of the expected 20 mph during this test.
The GoTrax F5 undergoes a thorough evaluation on a hill test course, providing insights into its climbing abilities and overall ride quality. Let’s delve into the performance, starting with the hill climb test.
During the throttle test in Max PAS (pedal assist) mode, the F5 demonstrated commendable hill-climbing capabilities. The motor maintained a consistent speed of around 12 mph in the initial section, dropping slightly to 10 mph in steeper parts. The motor emitted a medium-level frequency sound, which was deemed better than expected given the bike’s price range. The throttle test showcased the F5’s ability to ascend hills smoothly, making it a suitable option for riders tackling varying terrains.
In the pedal test, the F5’s rear hub motor demonstrated its prowess as Justin pedaled in PAS5 for maximum speed. The bike ascended the hill in a minute and 15 seconds, maintaining an average speed of 14.5 mph. This performance exceeded expectations for a bike in this price range, emphasizing its capability to handle steep inclines with ease.
Moving on to the overall ride quality, the GoTrax F5, as a folding e-bike, offers an upright riding posture with extended arms reaching the handlebars. The vertical back position provides a comfortable and practical riding experience, especially for a folding bike. The fat, 20-inch by 4-inch wide tires contribute to good handling on various surfaces, offering traction and boosting rider confidence.
The front suspension fork, while not providing extensive wheel travel, helps absorb bumps and smooth out the ride. The F5 excels in comfort, and the wide tires enhance stability, particularly on trails. It’s important to note that while the bike handles well on trails, it may not be suitable for more challenging off-road terrains.
The motor engagement, however, exhibited some nuances, particularly in PAS levels 1 and 2, where speeds were slow, and motor engagement was not optimal. This aspect might benefit from improvement in future models. In higher PAS levels, the bike performed well, though the speeds were slightly below expectations.
So, the GoTrax proves to be a capable folding fat tire e-bike with commendable climbing abilities and overall ride quality. It strikes a balance between affordability and performance, making it an attractive option for riders seeking a versatile and compact electric bike. The folding mechanism adds an extra layer of convenience, making it a practical choice for urban commuting and recreational rides.
The braking performance of the GoTrax F5 underwent a comprehensive test to assess its stopping capabilities. Griffin, the brake test rider, pedaled the bike up to 20 mph on a designated course, performing quick stops three times. The results were then averaged to determine the bike’s overall stopping distance.
Equipped with hydraulic disc brakes from the Nut company, the F5 showcased effective braking with an average stopping distance of 23.5 feet. While this falls slightly on the longer side compared to the general average of 20 to 22 feet, it’s essential to consider that folding e-bikes typically face different design and weight challenges.
Comparing the F5 to other folding e-bikes, its braking performance proved to be in the middle range and even 1 inch better than the folding bike average. This indicates that the F5’s hydraulic disc brakes, utilizing 180 mm rotors and dual-piston calipers on both the front and rear wheels, deliver reliable stopping power.
One noteworthy aspect is the use of the same brake fluid as other bikes, contributing to familiarity and ease of maintenance. Additionally, the availability of spare brake pads is crucial for bike maintenance. The fact that one can order a set and receive them promptly, along with the affordability, adds a layer of convenience for the rider. The accessibility to spare parts enhances the overall ownership experience, providing peace of mind for potential buyers.
Battery and Range
The GoTrax F5 impresses with its power and range, making solid choices in its components, particularly the 48V 652Wh lithium-ion battery. At this price point, such a battery capacity is a notable inclusion, providing ample power to support the bike’s performance. The 652Wh battery allows for extended rides and is a key factor in the bike’s ability to cover more ground than expected.
Charging the battery is convenient with the included 3 amp charger, allowing a full charge in about 5 to 6 hours. This ensures quick turnaround times between rides, making it practical for daily use.
In a range test, GoTrax claimed that the F5 could achieve up to 60 miles on a single charge, which is a substantial distance for an electric bike. In the first range test, using the minimum PAS level for efficiency, the F5 exceeded expectations by covering 53.6 miles. The test was conducted with PAS3, showcasing the bike’s efficiency even at slower speeds. The average speed during this test was 11.87 mph, demonstrating the F5’s capability to go the distance.
In the second range test, conducted in PAS5 for maximum speed throughout the ride, the F5 covered 23.18 miles, surpassing the predicted minimum distance of 15.5 miles. The average speed during this test was 16.2 mph, slightly below the average speed of some other bikes in similar tests. This indicates that while the F5 can cover at least 20 miles in a hurry, the average speed may be closer to 16 mph rather than the higher end of 18 to 19 mph.
GoTrax F5: Conclusions
In summary, the GoTrax F5 has proven to be a commendable low-cost folding e-bike that meets the expectations of comfort and practicality within its price range. While it’s easy to identify minor points for improvement, it’s essential to consider the bike’s affordability at just $1,000.
The folding mechanism of the F5 is user-friendly, and the bike’s weight is manageable for most riders, although assistance may be needed depending on individual lifting abilities. It would be a welcome addition if GoTrax provided a strap or bungee cord to secure the folded bike, preventing any unintentional unfolding.
Despite being a budget-friendly option, the F5 incorporates a well-balanced mix of components, offering riders a sense of value for their investment. The folding feature proves to be a significant advantage, particularly for those situations where carrying a full-size bike is impractical.
It’s worth noting that, compared to other folding e-bikes, the F5 is slightly heavier but compensates with a more stable ride. This tradeoff is reasonable, considering the bike’s intended purpose.
An additional convenience is GoTrax’s direct shipping to buyers, ensuring a prompt delivery, with the possibility of having the bike on your doorstep within a few days.
So, the GoTrax F5 stands out as an affordable and practical folding e-bike, offering a decent mix of features for its price. As with any budget-friendly option, it’s about finding the right balance of features and compromises. For riders seeking an accessible and portable electric bike, the GoTrax F5 presents a compelling option. Thanks for watching our review, and stay safe on your rides. Until next time!