Crate Cargo Cruiser ebike carries passengers and loads up to 120 miles
Canadian ebike maker Dost Bikes first hit the scene in 2019 with the plan of launching a family of long-range electric bikes with plenty of onboard power and performance. Four years later, it's growing that family with an ultra-capable electric cargo mule equipped to handle up to 440 lb (200 kg) of people and goods. The new Crate cargo ebike combines a compact cargo-ready frame with a high-torquing 750-W mid-drive, available dual-battery system, continuously variable transmission (CVT) and modular cargo carry system.
Dost is determined to replace as many car trips as it can, and it has put together a convincing cargo-hauling machine to help it do so. Similar to the Blix Packa Genie, Tern GSD and a number of other cargo bikes, Crate's rear cargo cage design eliminates the need for longer, clunkier framework and keeps overall bike size close to that of a regular city bike. The design also puts the rider in a familiar upright, centered position for easier commuting. The bike still manages to carry nearly seven times its weight while offering the potential to travel between 60 and 120 miles (96.5 and 193 km), depending upon the battery selected, weight being carried and riding conditions.
More specifically, Dost estimates the respective 60- and 120-mile single- and dual-battery top ranges based on a light load of 150 lb (68 kg) and ideal conditions that include flat, smooth terrain, no headwinds and low speeds. When fully loaded with 440 lb (200 kg), the Crate offers estimated ranges of 30 miles (48 km) for the single battery and 60 miles with the dual-battery system. A 'tweener range of 45/90 miles (72/145 km) relates to 275 lb (125 kg) worth of loaded weight in the same ideal riding conditions.
The Crate centers around a 750-W Bafang M600 mid-drive that churns out up to 92 lb-ft (125 Nm) of torque. Riders can select from five different torque-sensor-controlled pedal-assist modes or dial up motor output immediately and directly via a twist throttle cozied up next to the grip. The standard lithium battery is stored in the down tube, and the available range-extender mounts atop the down tube to increase total capacity to 1,200 Wh and 25 Ah.
The cargo-specific Enviolo Automatiq CVT seamlessly changes gears based on motor output. Those who prefer a more traditional shifting experience need only switch over to manual mode for full gear shifter functionality. Either way, rider + motor output transfers to the rear wheel via a smooth, quiet Gates Carbon belt drive. Four-piston Tektro front and rear disc brakes bring the bike to a stop.
The Crate's beefy square-tube 6061 aluminum frame is joined by a rigid 6061 fork in providing a sturdy, stable platform without packing on the weight of steel. Attachment points make it easy to pick and plug accessories from Dost's ecosystem of passenger seats, panniers, rear baskets, front racks and more. Dost says the bike can carry a rider and two young children or rider and one adult.
The Crate rides on 24-in wheels shod in 3-in-wide tires, a unique combination designed to lower center of gravity versus traditional 26-in+ wheels, deliver stability and integrated shock absorption from the beefy tires, and keep the ride and handling closer to that of a regular city bike versus smaller 20-in wheels common on other cargo ebikes. The combination also maintains an approachable standover height, and Dost offers a step-through frame option that makes it even easier to hop on.
Other Crate features include a distinctive red brake light, a 100-lux headlight with high and low beam settings, a heavy-duty wishbone kickstand, and a 3.2-in multi-color LCD cockpit display.
The Crate joins a recent market surge of long-range cargo ebikes that's also seen the debut of the Lectric Xpedition and Cake Åik. It's available for preorder now for a US$500 deposit. Prices start at $4,999 and rise steadily when the buyer gets to packing on options like the $699 dual-battery system and myriad cargo accessories. Shipping is scheduled to begin in December 2023 – in time for the holidays but a bit late for prime cycling season.
The 5.5-minute intro video gives a full rundown of the Crate's design and main features.