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The cargo e-bike you’ll want for your kids | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey

One of the coolest things about electric cargo bikes is their ability to carry a passenger. Or two passengers. Or in the case of my testing with the Velotric Packer 1, three passengers in addition to myself. The bike is brimming with cool features, but its heavy hauling ability and reasonable price are what really make this thing shine!

This is one of those e-bikes that you’re going to want to watch in action. Check it out below in my video review. Then keep scrolling for my detailed thoughts on this cargo e-bike.

Velotric Packer 1 Video Review

Velotric Packer 1 tech specs

  • Motor: 750W (1,200W peak) rear-geared hub motor
  • Top speed: 20 mph (32 km/h) or 25 mph (40 km/h) when unlcoked
  • Range: Up to 52 miles (84 km)
  • Battery: 48V 15Ah (692 Wh)
  • Weight: 75 lb (34 kg)
  • Payload capacity: 440 lb (200 kg)
  • Tires: 26 x 2.4″ (front) and 20 x 3.0″ (rear)
  • Brakes: 4-piston hydraulic disc brakes with 180 mm rotors
  • Extras: Suspension fork, LED display, smartphone app integration, LED headlight, tail/brake light, Y-kickstand, Shimano 8-speed drivetrain, included fenders and long rear rack platform, Apple FindMy integration for location tracking, mounting points for front and rear rack accessories, UL-certified for battery, and entire e-bike system

Built to be used

The Velotric Packer 1 isn’t some cheap, showy cargo e-bike. This bike is built to be used. From a rear rack rated for 176 lb (80 kg) to a wide range of accessories, the Packer is meant to carry some serious gear, passengers, or both.

I added the running boards for foot rests and put my two nephews, ages 9 and 11, on back for some carpool duty. It rides differently with the extra weight and takes a couple minutes to get used to, but it’s a great way to shuttle kids around.

I added the “Child Safety Balustrade” on back – what I called the kid cage – to add a third passenger. The two boys could be trusted to hang on (and they both made use of the spare handlebars in back for a secure ride), but my five year old niece is a handful, and so I wanted to be sure she was held in some sort of… cage. With the addition of a third kid, the bike is slightly slower to respond, but you get used to the new weight dynamic just the same. The biggest issue is simply keeping it straight up while stopped and not letting the bike start to lean too far until you’re riding. Once you’re rolling again though, feel free to drag four knees in the turns.

You’ll want to see just how well it rides with four people on it in my video review above.

If you don’t want to carry kids, you can swap out the passenger accessories for cargo accessories.

Velotric has really nice baskets and racks that are designed to make it easy to haul all sorts of odd bits and pieces back there. The basket liners are a tough fabric and look really nice. They remind me of the ones from Radio Flyer, which until now were the nicest baskets I’d seen on an e-bike.

I’m guessing Velotric uses the same suppliers, since these are just as nice. The small zippered pocket is a nice touch in case you want to toss some smaller things in back but don’t want them bouncing around with the rest of your gear.

There’s also a cool center storage box that comes with a lock, though I wouldn’t trust the lock to protect your wallet. It’s not really the lock that’s the problem, but rather the fact that a dollar store pocket knife could cut right through the sidewall of the box. So think of it more as enclosed storage, not super secure locking storage. I’d use it to carry things, but I wouldn’t leave my wallet locked in there for a week.

But there’s more to this e-bike than just its ability to carry lots of people or things back there. The bike is just really nicely designed.

That Y-kickstand keeps it super stable. The low step-through makes it easy to mount when it is loaded up in the rear. The hydraulic brakes are punchy and powerful, largely thanks to the quad-piston design that provides more stopping power than the dual-piston hydraulic brakes on many other e-bikes. In my opinion brakes are more important on a cargo e-bike than any other type of e-bike, and you can rest easy knowing that extra poundage you’ll be carrying will barely stress these powerful stoppers.

The mis-matched tires are a great design too. The front wheel uses a 24″ tire which is a standard size yet cuts a nice balance between large 26″ tires and smaller 20″ tires. The rear opts for that 20″ size, which lets you keep your cargo lower and get a more stable ride. With a big tire up front to roll over obstacles and a small tire in back for a lower center of gravity, you get the best of both worlds. The rear is also a wider 3″ tire, giving you more cushion in the back.

And don’t get me started on the Apple FindMy integration! I love this feature more than I probably should, but I just think it’s too cool. I can add my bike to my iPhone as one of my devices, then it’s always being tracked. If it goes missing due to some lowlife that can’t keep his hands off someone else’s stuff, I can track down its location. The cops likely won’t do much, but I can invite a few of my larger friends to flank me on a search and rescue mission for my bike.

Plenty of power

For a bike designed to haul big loads, you don’t want an underpowered drivetrain. The Velotric Packer 1 has a 750W continuous rated motor that puts out around 1,200W of peak power. That’s more than most people need on a daily basis, but will be a welcome relief when you occasionally carry heavy loads or tackle a big hill.

As a Class 2 e-bike, the Packer comes out of the box with a 20 mph (32 km/h) speed limit. You can actually unlock the bike to 25 mph (40 km/h), which will be nice for those that do long straightaway riding, such as a lengthy commute on the side of a road. But for daily bike lane use, I find 20 mph to be plenty.

With a 692 Wh battery, the Velotric Packer has what I would call average battery capacity. If they had matched some other cargo e-bikes with a larger 840 Wh battery, I’d be singing their praises. As it stands, 692 Wh of battery capacity is still quite nice. That’s plenty for most people, but it’s fast riders and heavy haulers that will likely wish they had a bit more battery on occasion. For the average rider though, you’ll probably never go far enough to use the entire battery in one trip. While the company claims over 50 miles (80 km) of range, that’s on low power pedal assist. High power throttle riding can easily cut that figure in half. But then again, most of us don’t ride 25 miles a day, so you’ll probably be fine.

Speaking of the battery, it’s UL-listed for safety. In fact, the entire e-bike drive system is UL-listed as well. As fire concerns are becoming a more pressing issue among cheap e-bikes with poor quality batteries, having a UL sticker on your battery offers peace of mind that the pack is built to higher quality standards.

velotric packer 1

A few nice additions

If I could make two additions, they’d be to the steering and the drivetrain. There’s no spring on the steering column, which is nice to have for parking and maneuvering your bike while standing around it. In the cases where you’re pushing the bike around your garage or in a parking area, the spring found on many cargo bikes’ steering columns helps keep the bars straight. Since the bike is so long, you can’t push from the back and still reach the bars with your hand to straighten it out like a normal bike.

Secondly, a torque sensor would have been an amazing addition to make the pedal assist feel even more comfortable. I can put up with lag, especially for the modest sale price of $1,899, but a torque sensor would have elevated the Velotric Packer 1 to elite status, in my opinion. Even so though, I still hold this e-bike near the top of my budget cargo bike list.

I would definitely recommend this e-bike to family and friends searching for a long tail cargo bike with great features like location tracking. As an added bonus, it even comes in a fun sky blue color (in addition to the slightly less fun gray color). What’s not to like?! All told, this is a great option for pretty much any family or any rider that simply needs to haul something on a nice looking, slickly designed e-bike.

velotric packer 1

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