Upgrading my Ebike to ... ?


1 µW
May 3, 2019
Hello everyone,

I have a Giant bike with Yamaha 250W mid-drive, I love the bike but could really use more power and battery. I understand I cannot upgrade my bike and have to get a new one. I'm looking into Bafang mid-drives. BBSHD has the avantage of possible upgrades but everywhere I look the overall integration is ugly and doesn't look weatherproof. The newer Ultra drive means upgrade issues but I don't think I would ever need more power.

Needs : I ride 99% on roads, need fenders/lights/sturdy rear rack.
A suspended frame would be a nice bonus (or maybe not, what do you think?)

So far the best bang-for-bucks I found were from Frey with the AM1000 (fenders/lights/rack seem hard to add) and HT1000 (so far my best option)

Long story :

18 months ago I switched to ebike for commuting, and it immediatly became my main if not only mean of transportation.

My first and current ebike is a Giant E+1 GTS 2016 (DataSheet), with a 250W Yamaha mid-drive. I lasted 24h before bypassing the speed sensor, thus removing the 25kmh limit. I currently have no hard speed limit, the soft speed limit being cadence and gear ratios along.

I upgraded the default line to a 44T x 11-34 build and gained on top speed. Reaching 40kmh on flat is easy, going faster require long straight roads. But I gained a new problem as the 44T puts much more torque on the chain and it often fall from the front if I push hard on the pedals. I had to adapt a less agressive pedaling style with lots of gear shifting.

Main usage : commuting in a big city, many straight bike lines where most traffic lines can be ignored. Occasional (couple times a week) off city travels with faster roads.

I ride about 150km a week with an average speed of 25kmh door-to-door. As I write this I have put about 10'000 km on this bike.

I very much like the frame and driving position of my bike but I feel I could really use more power and battery life. My current range is about 30km (400Wh battery), where home>work>home is about 25km. I have to plan extra travels and charge up accordingly, sometimes it is not possible.

As far as I know, it is not possible to "upgrade" my bike since the yamaha drive is part of the frame (which is a shame, really)

So I started looking at so-called "speedbikes", with 500W mid-drives and 45kmh limits. (of cours I will not comply with all the limitations the law puts upon us. I am already riding outlaw as it is and I will keep going)
I liked the Haibike Sduro trekking 8.0 (yamaha drive for which you could most likely bypass the speed sensor) but it is 1) expensive and 2) only comes with a 500WH battery.

Then I looked into bafang kits and along the way stumbled upon the new Ultra mid-drive which looks promising.

1000W mid drive should be more than enough for my usage and a 48V / 20Ah battery would be a much-welcomed improvement.

So far I have pre-selected the Frey AM1000 or HT1000.

Why a suspended frame ? Where I live, there is constant road-work everywhere along with many damaged / paved roads, combined with a tendency of mine to jump over stuff. So I am contemplating the idea of a suspended frame, but I would still need a rear rack to fit my ortlieb bag (tools, spare of clothes, laptop, papers, etc.)

Thanks for reading, advices will be warmly welcomed !
I would recommend the Frey AM1000 out of your 2 choices.

The ultra motor is very powerful. A full suspension frame is a must. You said there is frequent construction where you ride, a FS E-MTB would be equivalent to a 4x4 SUV.

The ultra motor paired with a 20aH battery is why no other company fucc with bafang... But then again, its just my opinion....

The only issue with the ultra motor is that parts arent easy to come by (in comparison to the BBSHD / BBS02), but there's so much you can do with the motor if you are mechanically inclined.
TB82 said:
BBSHD has the avantage of possible upgrades but everywhere I look the overall integration is ugly and doesn't look weatherproof.

It sounds like you want something with hidden wires and connections that doesn't let you troubleshoot a problem without taking your bike apart. Good luck with that.

E-bikes are ugly. It's the cost of taking a design that has been refined to near perfection and then adding stuff to it. If you don't like that, you can always use your legs.
Thanks for the feedback, I am leaning toward FS even if I will have to figure hout how to get fenders on it. As for the rack there seems to be a few solutions out there.

I am waiting for Frey to come back to me.

In the mean time I found another brand, will talk with them as well.