Riese & Müller has a stong vision of the electric bike as a new type of transportaton, with the potential to make our daily lives more fulfilling and shift us away from car dependance. They see it as a completely new type of machine that is as much a motorized vehicle as a bicycle. As such, it must be designed with safety, utility, and reliability at its core. There is no better choice than an R&M if you're looking for a high-speed thriller, a low-maintenance commuter, or a long-distance adventure e-bike.
All Riese & Müller e-bikes come standard with these safety features
a suspension fork to keep the front wheel in contact with the road and the rider's hands firmly in place on the handlebar
hydraulic disc brakes with good modulation to make quick and controlled stops
high-quality, integrated lights not only for being seen, but to see every obstacle in the road
fenders to keep the rider dry and comfortable in rainy conditions
Additionally, their high speed models are equipped with a horn, brake lights, and a high beam headlight. Their safest models are equipped with Control Technology, R&Ms term for a full suspension frame. With full suspension, both wheels stay securely on the ground and the rider remains in full control, even in the bumpiest of terrain.
Overview of Models
R&M makes many models, each one focused on a particular type of rider and terrain.
Delite and Superdelite The ultimate Riese & Müller. The embodiment of their Control Technology system. We feel that this is the best high-speed e-bike in production. The Delite has one battery and the Superdelite has two. Otherwise, these are the same bike. Applications: anything from high-speed commuting to dirt road and trail adventures.
Homage A Control Technology bike with a step-thru frame and a comfortable but sporty riding position. Applications: anything from high-speed commuting to dirt road and trail adventures.
Charger3 and Supercharger2 For the customer that finds the Delite to be too cushy and likes to "work it" on a bike. This bike is fast and responsive. It's the only non-cargo R&M that is specced to carry a Thule child seat. The Charger3 has one battery and is available as a diamond or mixte frame. The Supercharger2 has two batteries. Otherwise, it is the same as the diamond frame Charger3. Applications: commuting, long-distance touring, gravel roads and paths.
Nevo Similar to the Charger, but with a step-thru frame. It's the frame that makes this bike so special, a low step-thru design that is amazingly rigid. It does not have the unnerving flex that is present in most step-thru frames. Absolutely unique! Applications: commuting, long-distance touring, gravel roads and paths.
Tinker A compact bike with an adjustable cockpit that makes this a great option for shorter people or as a shared bike. This bike has a different ride quality due to its smaller wheel size and wheel base, but it still rides like an R&M. A stable, smooth, and fun riding bike. Applications: urban commuting and recreation.
Multicharger Take the Charger, stretch it a bit, make the wheels a little smaller, give it a high-capacity rear rack, and you've got the Multicharger. It's a cargo bike that's barely longer than a conventional bike. Classified as a mid-tail cargo bike, you can haul up to two kids or 140lbs on the rear rack. R&M makes several accessories for carrying passengers, as well as enormous bags if you're just looking to carry a bunch of stuff. Applications: loaded commuting or touring.
Packster A box-bike available in three sizes. This is the cargo workhorse of the R&M lineup. The Packster 40 is the smallest and our favorite of the three. It excels as an all-weather, one-kid hauler.
Load A Control Technology cargo bike available in two sizes. Yes, it is a full suspension box-bike and unlike anything else! Don't assume this bike is only for carrying children. If you have the room to park it, and you're looking for a bike as a car replacement, you should consider the Load. Carry groceries, dogs, kids, tools, or whatever else you want. Available with a locking hard-top box that makes for a waterproof and secure cargo-carrying solution.
Something very special about R&M is the amount of configuration they offer for each model. There are three major options available for most models: drive unit, drive train, and battery capacity.
Most models are available with the choice of Bosch Performance Line CX or Performance Line Speed drive units. In the 2020 lineup, the story is a little more complicated because some models are using the 2nd generation (Gen2) Bosch drive unit and others are using the 4th generation (Gen4). Here's a comparison of the power, torque, and speed limit for each drive unit.
Performance Line CX Gen2 300% max assist, 75Nm max output torque, 20mph limit
Performance Line CX Gen4 340% max assist, 75Nm max output torque, 20mph limit
Performance Line Speed Gen2 300% max assist, 65Nm max output torque, 28mph limit
Performance Line Speed Gen4 340% max assist, 75Nm max output torque, 28mph limit
The Gen4 units are more powerful, smaller, and lighter than the Gen2 units. That said, we still really like the Gen2 drive units! They should not be considered outdated. They're a tried-and-true system that remains in production. There are two additional drive units available exclusively on the R&M Load: the Cargo Line and the Cargo Line Speed.
Cargo Line Gen4 400% max assist, 75Nm max output torque, 20mph limit
Cargo Line Speed Gen4 400% max assist, 75Nm max output torque, 28mph limit
The Cargo Line drive units are the most powerful in the Bosch lineup. They have a much different response to rider input than the Performance Line drive units. They are optimized for a smooth response when starting from a stop with a heavily loaded cargo bike, which can be a particularly challenging situation. If the generation of drive unit is an important feature for you, here's a list of 2020 R&M models specified by drive unit.
Gen2 CX and Speed Homage, Culture, Tinker, Cruiser, Multicharger, Packster
Gen4 CX and Speed Superdelite, Delite, Supercharger2, Charger3
Gen4 Cargo and Cargo Speed Load
This is such an awesome part of this brand! R&M offers three drivetrains on most of their models: touring, vario, and rohloff.
touring This is a chain and derailleur drivetrain as seen on most sports bicycles. Pros: It is familiar, lightweight, efficient, and feels sporty. Cons: It requires regular maintenance and adjustment, collects dirt, and is relatively delicate compared to the other options. With a Bosch powered bike, we typically see chains needing replacement every 900-1250 miles, depending on riding conditions and care.
vario This is an Enviolo rear hub paired with a Gates Carbon belt. The Enviolo is a unique product. It is an internally geared hub that is a continuously variable transmission with a 380% gear range. Instead of distinct gears, there is a smooth spectrum of gearing between high and low gear. The Gates Carbon belt lasts upwards of 6000 miles and does not require lubrication, so it doesn't collect dirt. Pros: Incredibly low-maintenance and clean drivetrain. Smooth dependable shifting, even under heavy load. Cons: It's a heavy and lossy system, though we feel that this is not relevant on a transportation bike. It uses a twist shifter that some people find tedious or uncomfortable to use.
rohloff This is a Rohloff hub paired with a Gates Carbon belt. The Rohloff 14-speed internally geared hub is for that customer looking for the most robust and widest-range drivetrain. It has a 540% gear range, which makes it the best choice for a high-speed bike. It has a low enough gear for steep climbs, and a high enough gear to have a reasonable cadence when riding 28mph. The Rohloff E-14 system has an push-button electronic shifter that is easy to use and offers satisfying, precise shifts. The Gates Carbon belt lasts upwards of 6000 miles and does not require lubrication, so it doesn't collect dirt. Pros: Super-strong, low-maintenance, and clean drivetrain. Widest gear range available on an R&M. Cons: As with most internally geared hubs, the rider needs to briefly stop pedaling when they shift. Some riders get used to this, and others hate it from the start.
Many R&M models are capable of a DualBattery setup, Bosch's term for having two batteries installed on the bike. This takes the energy capacity from 500Wh to 1000Wh, doubling the bike's range. From the rider's perspective, the batteries are running in parallel, though the behind-the-scenes story is a little more complex. DualBattery can also increase the lifespan of each battery because you are less likely to fully discharge them between charging. Batteries that aren't fully discharged regularly live a longer life.
In some cases, the DualBattery setup means that the bike's model name changes. For example, the Delite has one battery and the Superdelite has two. Otherwise, they are the same bike. In other cases, DualBattery is an option for that particular model. The Homage, for example, has one Powertube battery internal to the frame, with the option of adding an external Powerpack battery. It's important to know that Riese & Muller requires DualBattery configuration to happen at the factory. It cannot be retrofitted by a dealer. Here's a breakdown of R&M bikes by battery configuration.
Because of the numerous options on R&Ms, these bikes are typically built to order. We keep a few of the most popular bikes in stock, but many customers end up waiting a few weeks for their bike. Depending on the season, this can be anywhere from three to ten weeks. It may be tempting to compromise on a configuration that's in stock, but we've never heard a customer say that their bike wasn't worth the wait. Instead, we've had customers that compromised on their configuration and later expressed regret.