Xtracycle EdgeRunner Cargo Bike with Falco eMotors Electric Bike Kit Review [VIDEO]

Are you looking for a way to ditch your car?  Well, the Xtracycle EdgeRunner cargo bike with Falco eMotors electric bike kit might be your car alternative or…….replacement?

The combination of this versatile cargo bike with electric assist truly provides a bike that can do a lot of the commuting and errand running that is traditionally done by car……..all while having more fun!

Commuting or running errands in a car is so easy; you just jump in and go.

Well this e-cargo bike has some of those same attributes and it can make the decision to ride your bike vs. drive the car a lot easier.

The Xtracycle EdgeRunner is a complete cargo bike with many cargo accessory options to fit your commuting/errand running needs.

Falco eMotors provides a powerful, smooth and quiet electric bike system with unique features like a wireless display and software that can fine tune the performance of the kit.

The EdgeRunner in this review is the 27D Lux Freight model with a base price of $3,299 ($3,549 as tested) and the Falco eMotors 500 watt direct drive rear hub motor with 36V 11.6ah lithium battery has a base price of $1,595 ($1,915 as tested).

Please note that there are more economical options for the EdgeRunner (starting at $1,599) and Falco eMotors kits (starting at $1,290).

Make sure you check out part 1 of this review with a video, large detailed pictures and specifications of the EdgeRunner & Falco e-Motors kit to get familiar with this e-cargo bike.

In this second part of the full review of the EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit, you will get an idea of the ride characteristics, range test, pros, cons, and overall thoughts on this cargo electric bike.

What you can expect from the EdgeRunner w/ Falco Kit:

First of all let’s talk about the EdgeRunner cargo bike.  Xtracycle has been in the cargo bike business for a long time; 15+ years.  They started with their FreeRadical cargo kits that can be added to any conventional bike frame.

In addition they have a bunch of accessories that can make carrying cargo and people very easy and convenient.

Here is a video to give you some background on the company:

Thanks to the success of their FreeRadical kit, they have jumped into providing a complete bike that is designed with cargo and comfort in mind.

To get acquainted with the EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit, checkout this video:

The EdgeRunner is a “LongTail” bike that literally has a long wheelbase to allow for their large rear rack, bags, and other cargo accessories.

One of the unique features of the EdgeRunner is that is has a 26″ front wheel with a 20″ rear wheel.

The 20″ rear wheel allows the rack and cargo to ride around 6″ lower (compared to a 26″ rear wheel) and that provides for a more stable ride when carrying heavy cargo.

In addition, the 20″ rear wheel, when combined with a rear hub motor provides a bit more torque, which is also good when carrying cargo.

Xtracycle has done a nice job with the 100% chromoly frame by designing it to be strong, versatile, and easy to get on and ride. The welds and tubing size seem appropriate for a bike that is designed to haul some serious loads.

All of the Xtracycle accessories are right at home on the EdgeRunner because it is fully LT (LongTail) compatible.

Those accessories include the racks, top deck, bags, kid carrying options, wide load options, sidecar, kickstands, and more.

Basically, if you want a car alternative or replacement, the Xtracycle products can help you do that!

Xtracycle also focused on making the EdgeRunner easy to get on and ride.  The top tube is sloped down significantly to make it easy to get on and off the bike while it is loaded.

In addition, the bike comes stock with a very upright position that can be adjusted by cutting down the fork steer tube.

Mustache handlebars and Ergon grips provide a comfortable and relaxed ride feel.

The EdgeRunner is available in 5 models and 2 accessory packages.  See the Family models here and see the Freight models here.

The EdgeRunner in this review is the 27D Lux with the Freight accessory package (includes the X2 bags and KickBack stand) plus the U-Tubes and SideCar.

The drivetrain on the 27D Lux is the Shimano Deore 27 speed system that includes Deore Hollowtech II cranks, Deore front and rear derailleurs, Deore shifters, and a Deore 9 speed cassette.  It is nice to see a consistent drivetrain spec on the EdgeRunner.

Slowing the EdgeRunner down is accomplished with the Shimano M505 hydraulic disc brakes with 160mm rotors.  The reach of the brake levers can be adjusted to fit almost any size of hand.

Xtracycle didn’t cut any corners with the tires.  The wide Schwalbe Big Ben tires are spec’ed front and rear.  These tires can be run with fairly low tire pressure for a cushy ride.  They also have a nice reflective strip on the sides for improved side visibility at night.

On the 27D Lux you also get the B&M Luxos front light and B&M Standard rear light that are powered by the BioLogic Joule 3 front hub dynamo generator.

The Luxos front light provides a very wide and bright beam and the lights do stay on for a bit even if the bike is not moving.  And it is amazing how small the BioLogic Joule 3 hub is and how little resistance it creates to power the lights.

Speaking of accessories, the 27D Lux also comes with wide aluminum fenders that have mud guards with stylish Xtracycle branding.  It’s a nice touch!

And now let’s talk about the Xtracycle brand cargo accessories.  Xtracycle makes a bunch of accessories to fit your individual riding needs.

The EdgeRunner in this review is decked out with the EdgeRunner racks (with RackLocks), X2 Bags, FlightDeck, U-Tubes, KickBack kickstand, and SideCar.  All in all, this set up allows you to haul just about anything!

So that is a run down of the Xtracycle 27D Lux EdgeRunner, now let’t talk about the Falco eMotors kit.

Rakesh Dhawan is the President and CEO of Falco eMotors and he has been involved in the electric bike industry since 2000.  You can read more about his history in the industry and Falco eMotors background here.

Falco offers a number of electric bike kits from 250 watts to 1,500 watts!  They also sell individual motors, batteries, and displays.

The Falco eMotors electric bike kit in this review is the 500 watt kit with a 36V 11.6ah water bottle style battery.

Falco uses 5 phase direct drive motors that have a built in torque sensor and controller.   According to Falco eMotors, the 5 phase motors provide superior power, torque and efficiency when compared to the conventional three-phase motors.

Panasonic cells are used in the 36V 11.6ah lithium ion battery pack.  The battery holder has a key lock that makes for easy installation and removal.  This allows for battery charging and storage on or off the bike.

The charger is about the size of a laptop computer charger. The battery has an on/off switch on the right side, a battery level indicator button and lights on the top, and the charging port on the lower left side.

I mounted the battery holder at the water bottle attachments on the downtube of the EdgeRunner frame to balance the weight of the rear hub motor on the back of the bike.

The EdgeRunner also has a battery attachment area along the frame near the rear rack area.

One of the more notable features of the Falco kits is that they have a wireless display.  It uses the ANT+ wireless protocol and you can also connect an ANT+ wireless heart rate monitor to monitor your workout.

The display does have a wired connection to the pedal assist adjuster on the handlebars, but beyond that it communicates wirelessly to the wireless unit attached to the motor.  The wireless display does need to be charged every couple of weeks.

The Falco wireless (ANT+) LCD display provides the following info: speed, odometer, level of assist or regeneration (5 levels each), battery voltage, display recharge battery indicator, energy consumption indicator, heart rate indicator (compatible with ANT+ heart rate monitors).

You can also vary the modes: “Eco” is the traditional up to 20 mph mode with 5 different levels of pedal assist.  ”Cruise” removes the 20 mph speed limit with the ability to use the 5 different levels of assist.  And “Turbo” provides the maximum assist up to 30+ mph.

Falco kits have 3 assist options: a torque sensor pedal assist, a cadence sensor pedal assist, and a twist grip throttle.  For this review I only used the torque sensor pedal assist.

Installation of the Falco kit was a bit more involved than other kits that I have tested.  Falco sent the battery mount without the motor connector installed, in case you want to trim the length of the battery wires to fit your bike properly.  Installation of the battery to motor connector takes a little work and soldering.  Falco says that all new kits will have this connector already installed so you won’t have to make this connection.

The rest of the installation is relatively simple with specific plug and play type connectors.

Another unique feature of the Falco kits is that you can fine tune the kit’s performance with the Falco software.  And this can be done wirelessly thanks to the wireless USB key that Falco includes.  At this time the software only works on PC computers (the Mac software is in the works).

Setting up the software and adjusting the kit’s performance specs took a bit of getting used to.  Once you get the hang of it, the process goes pretty quick.  The fine tuning itself is a nice feature to have so you can dial in exactly how you want the bike to perform.

Depending on your mechanical and/or computer skills, you may want to have your local dealer/shop install and fine tune the kit for you.

Overall Falco eMotors provides a highly customizable electric bike kit to fit your riding preferences.

Riding the EdgeRunner w/ Falco Kit:

The EdgeRunner is pretty long!  Because of this it provides a stable and comfortable ride as you sit well between the 2 wheels.

The long frame combined with the high volume Schwalbe Big Ben tires adds a suspension effect to the ride by absorbing cracks and bumps in the road that you would feel on a traditional bike.

An upright position helps you see all that is going on around you and it further adds to the laid back style of the EdgeRunner.  You can lower the handlebars for a more performance position and that requires cutting down the fork steer tube.

I really like the “Mustache” bars because they have a swept back profile to make steering easy and comfortable.  The Ergon grips that come stock on the 27D Lux provide a lot of wrist support and are a great addition to make this bike feel solid and stable.

The WTB Speed V saddle is comfortable to me, but I prefer a fairly narrow saddle.  It is very easy to change out a saddle if you prefer something different.

I really like how versatile the EdgeRunner and Xtracycle LongTail platform is.  You can set the bike up to carry almost anything and you can be prepared to do that no matter what your day throws at you.

This is in comparison to say pulling a trailer.  For instance, if you don’t think you will need the trailer and leave it at home and then you end up needing it part way through the day, it is kind of a hassle.

With the EdgeRunner, you will always have the carrying options with you.

The X2 bags with the inner CargoBay portion work great for carrying groceries, backpacks, messenger bags, locks, etc.  The outer FreeLoader section work well for carrying larger items like boxes, folding chairs, umbrellas, etc.

The FlightDeck (seating area) and the U-Tubes (foot rests) provide a place to carry your kids or friends.

Carrying larger cargo items is also supported by the U-Tubes as a platform area.

Now you probably are wondering how the EdgeRunner rides with the SideCar.  It handles remarkably well.

The SideCar articulates as you lean the bike, so it corners well.  It is nice to be able to fold the SideCar up and out of the way when not in use.  When you are using it you just need to be aware that you have a “wide load”!

Overall the EdgeRunner handles the cargo loads very well.  When carrying a lot of load and braking hard with the front brake I did notice some flex in the fork.  It would be nice to see the EdgeRunner come with a more heavy duty fork.  You could always add a suspension fork to make the EdgeRunner an even more comfortable ride if you want.

Speaking of that, a suspension seatpost would provide an even cushier ride!

The Falco motor is very quiet and pretty smooth.  When the motor stops assisting, you can feel an abrupt change from assist to no assist.

For the installation of the motor on the EdgeRunner I used the supplied washers that “lock” into the dropout of the frame.  There is a torque arm option that comes with the Falco kits, but installation of it on the Edgerunner was difficult.  Falco is working on a torque arm for the EdgeRunner. According to Falco eMotors, the use of the torque arm will eliminate the abrupt change from assist to no assist.

At 500 watts and 40 Nm of max torque this Falco kit is sized appropriately for carrying cargo loads on the EdgeRunner.  On the climbs it still needs some help from the rider but the climbs are much easier!

Eco mode is the setting that stops assist at 20 mph.  In Cruise or Turbo, I was able to get the EdgeRunner up to 30+ mph with my pedaling included.

There are 5 levels of pedal assist, a “0” level which is no assist, and then 5 levels of regeneration mode.  The regeneration modes turn the motor into a generator to put charge back into the battery.  You could use the regen modes on a long descent to scrub off speed and recharge the battery.

The way the display gives you information on the battery level is a little different when compared to other displays.  It provides you with the battery voltage and it will indicate that the battery needs to be charged when the voltage drops below 30V (for a 36V battery).

This takes a little getting used to and it would be nice to have a more traditional battery level indicator.  There is a battery level indicator on the top of the battery but it requires pushing a button and it is not as easy to see when compared to the display.

The EdgeRunner w/ Falco Kit Ride Test Results:

Here is the real world information on how the Xtracycle EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit electric bike performed on a riding circuit that includes hills, flats, traffic, wind (when available) etc.

While testing these bikes I like to put them through the toughest conditions to see where their bottom line is in regards to range and speed.

Range: As you can see from the GPS info that I recorded, the EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit traveled 31.2 miles and did a total elevation gain/loss of around 2,800 ft. Considering that I weigh 190 lbs and I pedaled very lightly this is pretty good range for a 36 Volt 11.6 ah battery pack (418 Watt Hours) with a 500 watt motor.

Watt hours are the total energy in a battery pack and it is based on the volts x amp hours of a pack. This is a way to compare the size of the “gas tank” of electric bikes.

Please keep in mind that if you pedal more, weigh less than me, ride slower and/or you use the bike in terrain that is not as hilly you will get more range. These results are from tough testing.

Speed: In Eco mode the Falco eMotors kit can get up to around 20 mph on flat ground.  In Cruise and Turbo mode the kit can get up to 30+ mph with pedal assist.

The 500 watt Falco eMotors kit does a good job of climbing hills.  On the really steep climbs you will have to help it some, but it still is doing quite a bit of work.

Weight: This bike tips the scales at 84 lbs. and that includes all of the Xtracycle accessories, including the SideCar.

The weight distribution of the Xtracycle EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit is pretty back heavy because of the Xtracycle accessories and the direct drive rear hub motor.  Placing the battery in the front area of the frame helps to balance the weight a bit.

Pros

Versatile Cargo Bike:  It is really impressive how the EdgeRunner can be accessorized to fit your cargo needs.

Whether it is carrying the kids, friends, groceries, boxes, other bikes, chairs, camping gear, etc; Xtracycle has accessories that can make that easy.  The EdgeRunner is a bike that is a good car alternative/replacement.

Wireless Customizable Kit:  Adding the Falco eMotors kit to the EdgeRunner provides assist to make running errands around town more fun and convenient.  It is nice to have a wireless display, especially for this “LongTail” bike.  The ability to customize the kit’s performance with the Falco software is a nice feature as well.

Cons

Fork:  Since the Edgeunner is a cargo hauler it would be nice to see a “beefier” fork or the option for a suspension fork.  You can always add a suspension fork later if you want.

Kit Setup:  The set up of the Falco eMotors kit is a bit more involved in comparison to other kits that I have tested.  The customization software takes some getting used to.  You may want to have your local dealer/shop do the installation.

Conclusion

Overall the Xtracycle EdgeRunner with Falco eMotors electric bike kit is a very capable e-cargo bike.

It is a great car alternative/replacement with its many cargo accessory options and the quiet, yet powerful electric assist.

And not only is it a utilitarian vehicle, but it is also a lot of fun to ride!  The long wheelbase, upright position and electric assist add to the joy of riding a bike while taking care of errands.

Please keep in mind that this is a relatively short term test. This testing can’t really give you the long term review of durability and reliability. My thoughts on the quality of this bike are from previous experiences with similar bikes. If you own this bike and have some input on the long term durability, please share your comments with the Electric Bike Report community below.

The EdgeRunner in this review is the 27D Lux Freight model with a base price of $3,299 ($3,549 as tested) and the Falco eMotors 500 watt direct drive rear hub motor with 36V 11.6ah lithium battery has a base price of $1,595 ($1,915 as tested).

Please note that there are more economical options for the EdgeRunner (starting at $1,599) and Falco eMotors kits (starting at $1,290).

Where to buy a Xtracycle EdgeRunner? Check with Xtracycle for a dealer near you.

Where to buy a Falco eMotors kit?  Check with Falco for a dealer near you or you can order them from the Falco eMotors online store.

Do you have any questions about the Xtracycle EdgeRunner w/ Falco kit?

Do you own the Xtracycle EdgeRunner and/or the Falco kit?

Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Thanks!

-Pete

P.S. Don’t forget to join the Electric Bike Report community for updates from the electric bike world, plus ebike riding and maintenance tips!

Comments

  1. Mark Allerton says

    Nice review. Quite impressed with the range given the weight of the bike and the amount of climbing.

    Curious about the torque arm/abruptness issue. Is the problem here that there is enough play in the mounting of the axle with just the lock washer that the torque sensor in the hub isn’t able to perform 100% as well as it should? If so, is the only sign of this when stopping pedalling or does it manifest itself in a general lack of smoothness with sensing pedalling force?

    I have an Edgerunner 27D (not lux), which I’ve had for about 4 months now and am quite impressed with even unassisted. I have two young kids and haul them about on it. Obviously a motor would help with this but the biggest part of the appeal would be that I wouldn’t be paying the price so much for the weight of the bike after I’ve dropped them off and use it for the rest of my day’s trips :)

    • Pete says

      Hi Mark,

      I am not 100% certain on the technical aspects of the torque arm/abruptness. Falco eMotors may be able to provide an answer for us here regarding that.

      The Falco system is very adjustable with the software. The way I have it set up, I don’t feel the abrupt change from assist to no assist until I truly stop pedaling. The system continues to provide smooth power even if my pedaling force is not very consistent.

      I hope that helps.

      Pete

      • says

        Hello Mark:

        Part of the abruptness is not having the bolts tightened to the correct torque spec. Motors have significant torque and if the bolts are not tight the axle is going to play.

        The bolts need to be tightened to approximately 35Nm of torque or so. Once they are tightened, there is no abruptness. Also we are providing a lock washer which maintains that tightness.

        Hope that helps!

        Best,
        Rakesh

  2. says

    Have been stoking the Electric Cargo Revolution for more than a decade not to brag or drop names only that it has provided me with a unique perspective. The edgerunner and the company behind the bike are top notch with the only customer regret is not doing it sooner. Don’t die wondering, make it happen!

    Sterling

  3. says

    So I bought the Falco 500W kit and installed it on my Edgerunner.

    I’d been getting ready to go ahead with a BionX setup but there seem to be quite a few things to like about the Falco kit over BionX – and so I changed my plans. I’ve only had it a couple of days so too early to “review” but so far I am liking it quite a bit.

    One thing that is very much worth noting about the compatibility of this kit with the Edgerunner is the battery cage installation on the down tube does not work so well with the “Small/Medium” Edgerunner. With the cage the “right” way around (i.e battery cable exits to rear) there is not enough room for the battery to slot in.

    It’s possible you could mount it backwards (did not try this though) but I opted instead to mount it on the “boom tube” at the rear (which required a little metalwork on my part.)

    With the rear mount you do have to be careful to arrange things so that the chain clears the battery on the right and your pedal clears the battery on the left. Worked out pretty nice – it’s a very “clean” look but I do worry about exposure to muck down there, even with fenders.

  4. Moss Q says

    Hello, thanks for the review. I am also putting a Falco motor on a small/medium edgerunner, I decided to turn the battery cage upside down and do it that way, should work fine. I am wondering what you guys did for an 8 speed freewheel. Thanks

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