Bicycles

Luna's Fixed is a killer deal on a super-stealth 400-W e-bike

Luna's Fixed is a killer deal ...
From the right-hand side you'd struggle to pick the Luna Fixed as an e-bike
From the right-hand side you'd struggle to pick the Luna Fixed as an e-bike
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From the right-hand side you'd struggle to pick the Luna Fixed as an e-bike
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From the right-hand side you'd struggle to pick the Luna Fixed as an e-bike
Small color control panel
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Small color control panel
From the left side, the 400-W mid-drive motor is more visible
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From the left side, the 400-W mid-drive motor is more visible
It's a great-looking e-bike
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It's a great-looking e-bike
Color display and 3-mode power buttons for the torque-sensing pedal assist drive
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Color display and 3-mode power buttons for the torque-sensing pedal assist drive
A Gates carbon belt drive back to a three-speed Shimano internal gear hub makes for a clean, silent and zero-maintenance drivetrain that should be a pleasure to own
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A Gates carbon belt drive back to a three-speed Shimano internal gear hub makes for a clean, silent and zero-maintenance drivetrain that should be a pleasure to own

The equations just keep looking better and better for e-bikes, and this three-speed carbon-belted mid-drive from Luna Cycles is one of the best we've seen so far. Save for its fairly short-range battery, this lightweight, super-tight machine looks like the ultimate commuter, and is as stealthy as anything we've seen.

E-bikes are a spectacular way to get cars off the road on the daily commute, an excuse to steal a bit of exercise time no matter what kind of shape you're in. Unfortunately, they tend to be expensive, heavy and a bit ... well, obvious for some people. But things are definitely improving, and Luna's new Fixed Stealth e-bike makes a heck of an argument for itself.

It's a 400-watt mid-drive bike, running a three-speed internally geared Shimano rear hub that lets it use a maintenance-, slip- and grease-free Gates carbon belt drive. The motor uses torque sensing as opposed to cadence sensing or running a throttle, and having tried all three it's my favorite way to ride – it just feels like your legs are super strong.

A Gates carbon belt drive back to a three-speed Shimano internal gear hub makes for a clean, silent and zero-maintenance drivetrain that should be a pleasure to own
A Gates carbon belt drive back to a three-speed Shimano internal gear hub makes for a clean, silent and zero-maintenance drivetrain that should be a pleasure to own

The batteries are stored in the alloy downtube, a cylinder that looks no thicker than if it had nothing in it, and all the wiring is run within the tubes, so the stealth effect is terrific. Only from the left side can you really see a motor at all, and if it weren't for the full-color display and power level controls, you probably wouldn't pick it.

At 39 lb (17.7 kg), it's light for an electric bike, too, and it runs reasonably thin commuter-grade 700x35C Kenda tires, so it won't be a pig to ride even when the power's off. Brakes are decent Tektro hydraulic discs, and contain switches to stop the motor when the brakes are on.

Small color control panel
Small color control panel

This bike costs US$1,750. Frankly, that's a very impressive price for a brand new electric bicycle, particularly from an established, quality brand. It's even more impressive given how tight and good looking this build is.

But there are two catches. The first is in that downtube battery pack. At 36 V and 7 Ah it offers only 250 watt-hours of energy storage (about half the juice you get in a standard Bosch battery pack these days), meaning that it'll probably get you around 20 mi (32 km) of pedal-assist riding before it's flat as a tack. That means it'll squeak in a 10-mi (16-km) each-way commute, but any further than that and you're on your own.

Should Luna increase the diameter of that downtube enough to fit another row of cells in and boost the range by another five miles? The penalty to stealth and weight wouldn't be huge, but it would add expense. It's hard to say, but with battery life cycles in mind I'm not a huge fan of running anything lithium-powered right down to zero.

It's a great-looking e-bike
It's a great-looking e-bike

The second catch is that at that base price, you don't get a warranty, or even the ability to send it back after a 30-day guarantee for manufacturing defects. You want a six-month warranty, it'll cost you $250, and 12 months is $500. Otherwise, it's fingers crossed and you can pick up your own tab for faults and failures.

Still, the Fixed Stealth e-bike is a terrific-looking and very capable bike running high-quality componentry – and at a compelling price point that has seen it sell out its first run almost immediately. Luna is preparing a second run that'll ship mid to late June.

Source: Luna Cycles via Electrek

5 comments
guzmanchinky
LOVE this bike. HATE that we even have to talk about stealthiness. Almost every single person on an e machine (skate, scoot or bike) is taking a car off the road. I agree we shouldn't allow monster fast machines, but seriously we need to get over our hangups and accept that this is far better than a car on the street, even an electric car, which uses much more power. This bike is really cool...
Daishi
Solid effort by Luna here.
chidrbmt
Luna creates great designs,makes and sells quality products at reasonable prices with great customer service. This one should sell like hotcakes. Well done,Luna Seems like the impossible dream is to make a comfortable bicycle seat. Has it ever been done?
Daishi
@chidrbmt There are a handful of seats that make an attempt at comfort at least but if they aren't doing the trick another option is to get a seatpost with built in suspension.
Trylon
@chidrbmt Try the Manta seat. NewAtlas article here: https://newatlas.com/manta-bicycle-saddle/15251/ Looks strange, but people who have tried it usually give it good reviews, including some long distance cyclists. That article is outdated. Current website is https://mantasaddle.co.uk, which reprints a couple of rave reviews. If the suggested retail of the current MS9 model is too high for you, Manta is selling some overstock units factory direct on eBay for more than 60% off, making it no more expensive than an average enthusiast-level saddle.