Lectric XP Step-Thru Review, 2021
Lectric XP Step-Thru Review: Summary
Lectric has been on our radar for some time now, and we were super excited to see how their Lectric XP Step-Thru stood up to other, similar ebikes that we have tried. It didn’t take us long to figure out the Lectric XP Step-Thru is where fun and budget-friendly meet.
The XP Step-Thru is Lectric’s second bike and really only has one difference from the original XP – the step-thru frame. So for those who are familiar with the Lectric XP, you are going to feel right at home with the XP Step-Thru.
The Electric Bike Report team’s consensus is that this is easily one of the better ebikes you can buy for under a thousand dollars: it’s powerful, it has great battery life, and it’s foldable. The combination of those points plus 20”x4” tires is going to make the XP Step-Thru ready for pretty much anything you throw at it. We took this bike on dirt, gravel, and the steepest hills we could find and it handled all of them with ease.
If you are looking to get into the ebike space but don’t want to spend thousands of dollars, the Lectric XP is a great option. Everybody from college students who don’t want to buy a car, to campers who want something to adventure on, to those with limited space in their garage are really going to appreciate what the XP has to offer.
In our eyes Lectric has solved the issue of eBikes being too expensive for those who could benefit from them the most. With that being said the Lectric XP is going to be great for those who don’t have a lot of extra storage space or cash to spend, if you are trying to save money but still have places to be then we would definitely recommend considering the Lectric XP
Lectric XP VS Step-Thru
There are a few key differences between the Lectric XP Step-Thru, and the original Lectric XP. The Step-Thru XP is going to be a lot easier to get on and dismount, it’s also going to have a lower center of gravity than the standard XP model, which comes in handy on corners.
The Lectric XP Step-Thru is going to be better for shorter riders, as they don’t have to step up and over the frame to get on the bike. When it comes to folding up the two bikes the Step-Thru folds slightly smaller than the standard, and is just as easy to stow away.
- Great value. This is one of the best sub $1,000 folding ebikes on the market
- Powerful motor and quick acceleration. It handles steep hills with ease.
- This folding ebike collapses down quite nicely to fit in your car or other vehicle
- Large LCD display is easy to see with digital numbers and good ride metrics
- Comes with great standard features: steel rear rack, integrated lights, matching fenders, sturdy steel front fork, kickstand, and bell
- Versatile tires. Wide, 4” fatty tires will roll over lots of terrain so even though this is a low rise bike, you can still work in a bit of off roading such as dirt, gravel, light trails and other fun terrain
- Fits most riders easily thanks to the adjustable seat post and handlebar stem
- Low-step frame for easy riding
- At 62 pounds total weight it may be a little heavy for some to lift.
- The battery is integrated in the downtube, which looks nice, but it can be difficult to remove when needed
- Longer rides can become a bit uncomfortable. We recommend that you consider the suspension seatpost if you plan on frequent commuting of more than 10 miles
- Battery: Lithium Ion 48v 10.4ah by LG (4-6 hour charge time)
- Display: LCD Handlebar mounted display
- Motor: Brushless Geared Hub Motor 500W (800W+ peak)
- Lights: Integrated Front (30lu) and Integrated Rear (15lu)
- Peal Assist: 5 Pedal assist levels to 28mph
- Range: 25-50 mile range
- Throttle: Twist Grip Throttle – Right Side, up to 20mph
- Battery weight: 7 lbs
- Total bike weight: 63 lbs (includes battery)
- Rider Height: 4’11” to 6’5”
- Maximum rider weight: 330lbs
- Maximum Load on Rear Rack: 55 lbs
- Unfolded Dimensions: 66 x 18 x 47 in.
- Folded dimensions: 37 x 18 x 27 in
- Brakes: Tektro 160mm mechanical disc brakes
- Fenders: Included standard
- Fork: Rigid front fork; no suspension
- Frame: 6061 Aluminum Alloy Step-Thru Folding
- Freewheel: Shimano Freewheel 14-28T
- Gearing: Seven speed Shimano Tourney
- Grips and Saddle: Ergo contoured grips, Lectric Cushion Saddle
- Handlebar: Low rise aluminum alloy (adjustable)
- Kickstand: Rear mounted; standard
- Pedals: Aluminum Alloy Wellgo pedals, Foldable
- Tires: CST or Chaoyang 4″ x 20″ Fat tires
Performance Review: Lectric XP Step-Thru
Acceleration / Speed
The power the Lectric XP possesses is something special, especially at a price point around $1,000. With one twist of the throttle you’ll be able to tell that this thing packs a punch. The Lectric XP’s phenomenal acceleration comes from the 500W rear hub motor, with an 800+W peak. Basically the XP always has some juice in the reserves for blasting up hills and helping you get up to speed quickly.
Shifting / Gear Range
The Lectric XP Step-Thru comes with 7 gears total, and a Shimano thumb shifter on the handlebar. The gear range on the XP is decently large and we felt we had a gear for every grade of terrain we were riding. Up front this bike comes with a 52t chainring, and with such a big tooth count up front, it’s easy to maintain higher speeds on this bike. The Shimano Tourney derailleur shifts quite well unless under a lot of stress, you’ll want to make sure that you ease up on your pedal stroke when shifting so you don’t damage the drivetrain.
Thanks to such a wide pedal assist range we didn’t shift too often, except on steep hills where we appreciated the range.
Handling (Cornering, slow speeds, etc…)
The Lectric XP feels like it’s in its element when riding on pavement, dirt roads, gravel, and less deep sand where it glided right over the top with ease. The XP’s setup is great for those who don’t want to be contained to one surface when riding, and want to explore far and wide.
The XP handles a little bit better than what we expected. The 4.0 wide tires are confidence inspiring on corners, and the 20in wheels have a tight turn radius, because of this we carried speed around corners where we would have been braking on a thinner tire: After just a couple miles on the XP all of our test riders became pretty comfortable and confident in the handling of the XP. This is pretty impressive considering the wide array of heights our test riders have.
When we went full throttle on the XP we felt just as confident as we did at lower speeds, the bikes low center of gravity, 63lb weight, and the burly 20×4.0 tires helped us stick to the ground and maintain traction regardless of the surface. Despite being a fast, heavy bike the XP also stopped quite quickly. The mentioned low center of gravity, 63lb weight, and 20×4.0 tires help the XP handle well at low speeds too.
With all of that taken into consideration, does fun count as the way this bike handles? We felt extremely confident on corners, and at high speeds on the XP Step-Thru regardless of the surface. The low center of gravity will keep you from catching unwanted airtime, and the rigid fork provided snappy, quick handling. The beefy tires helped out a ton in smoothing out bumps and maintaining traction on looser, less dense surfaces such as gravel and sand.
With that being said no eBike is perfect, and we felt the 570mm handlebar width may feel a little narrow for taller riders.
We found the Lectric XP to be a lot more comfortable than we were expecting. With the $900 price point, we expected there to be some parts and components that didn’t feel the best when riding, but we were pleasantly surprised.
The low step frame on the XP Step-Thru made this bike very easy for all of our test riders to get on and off of, and when it came to riding the bike the saddle proved to be pretty soft: From our experience soft saddles can lose their shape on longer rides, but the Lectric saddle maintained shape throughout plenty of miles, and riders. -One area we’d like to see some improvement from a comfort standpoint would be the handle grips. For short distances we didn’t have any issues with the grips; however, on our test rides over 7-8 miles we thought the grips were a little on the hard side and not as comfortable as they could be. However, when we put on gloves we didn’t have any issues.
Lectric provides the rider with a wide range of adjustment in the handlebar height, and seatpost height so you should be able to get comfortable on this bike with no problems. Our test riders height ranged from 5’3” to 6’5” and all of them had enough adjustment in the handlebar and seatpost to fit the bike properly and comfortably
When it comes to off-road comfort the Lectric XP’s voluminous 20×4.0 tires can be aired down to smooth out some of the bumps you encounter so you’re not bouncing all over the place. The lower tire pressure relieved a lot of stress and fatigue from our hands and feet when riding off road, which made it a lot easier and fun to explore overall. A front suspension fork would have made the off-road ride smoother, but I’m not sure if it would be possible to add that and still keep this bike priced where it’s at.
Overall the XP is a quite comfortable bike, and if we had to change anything it would be the hardness of the grips.
Starting up the Lectric XP is pretty straightforward, simply insert the key, twist it to on, and then push the “M” button on your handlebar. If the display is on, that’s an indication of the bike being ready to ride. The bike starts up on level 0, so you’ll need to go up at least one assistance level to get assistance or use the throttle.
One thing we would change is how you have to leave the key inserted into the keyhole to ride, it’s on the underside of the bike and it’s rather difficult to access. Lectrics design requires the key to be inserted to ride, and because of the location, the keys dangle from the bike while riding. We found ourselves checking to make sure they were still inserted periodically when riding, and would like the option to remove the key once the bike is switched to “ON”.
The XP comes stock with mechanical disk brakes from Tektro, and 160mm rotors. We found that once we adjusted the brake cable tension and rode around a little bit we felt the brakes worked quite well. The brake levers provided good modulation and stopping power, which was great to see on a bike of this price point.
As mentioned, these brakes provide decent stopping power, but you may need to adjust the tension of your brake cable out of the box to get a proper “bite” on your rotor. If you don’t feel comfortable making the adjustment yourself your local bike shop should be able to help. I personally would recommend practicing braking in an open area on the Lectric XP before taking it to the trail or around town to get used to the feeling of the brakes, while they perform great the mechanical disk brake set up may take some getting used to.
Parking and Locking
Parking this bike is really easy, it comes with an adjustable kickstand for propping it up, and you can remove the key so the bike cannot turn on while you are away. Even though you can’t turn on the XP without the key, we would still recommend buying a cable lock, or any locking device that can fit through the frame and rear wheel.
Because this bike is foldable you can definitely get creative with how you park it, and how you lock it.The XP Step -Thru comes with a stand on the bottom side of the bike that is useful to keep the bike upright when the bike is folded up. The bike is heavy enough that it may be a little hard to move when folded, however this is to your benefit in the way of security.
Our test riders were surprised how small the bike became when folded up, we were able to fit the XP into trunks that appeared too small at first glance, this is an awesome feature from Lectric because users don’t need a bike rack to transport the XP. Because of the compact folding design, the XP can also be put in closets and storage rooms without taking up all of the space.
Range Test: Lectric XP Step-Thru
We didn’t expect to get as far as we did on the XP Step Thru, or climb as well as we did. We were curious how far we could get on the highest assistance level while pedaling the whole time and were pleasantly surprised at the end results. It took us nearly 30 miles to drain the XP fully, which is phenomenal for a 60+ pound fat tire ebike. The XP proved to hold its speed quite well, and we believe this is one of the reasons the range test results were so good, it gets up to top speed and doesn’t need to constantly assist you to stay there.
Spec Review: Electrical Features
Our team absolutely loved the motor on the Lectric XP, to us it really seemed to tie together the experience of riding the XP. The acceleration and power that’s produced by the motor put a smile on every single one of our faces, and we always wanted to take out the XP for another ride.
The motors power and acceleration come from the 500W Brushless Geared Hub Motor with an 800W+ peak. We really liked that Lectric’s team gave the XP 300w of backup power for when things get steep, or tough to ride. The motor is one of the key reasons the XP is just as capable off road as it is on.
The 500W battery on the Lectric will provide you with a 20-45 mile range, which is a phenomenal range for how powerful and heavy the bike is. The battery is inside the frame, and it keeps the weight below you so the bike feels natural and stuck to the ground.
The battery is also removable, which is great for those who live in extreme hot or cold conditions. Being able to take the battery inside with you so it’s not exposed to these conditions will extend the overall lifespan of the battery.
Given the price of this ebike, we were really impressed with the display. The display shows you everything you’ll need to know, and is easy to see while riding. We liked how specific the intervals were on the “energy bar”. Most ebike displays will only have 4-5 intervals for the charge life, which isn’t very specific. The XP’s display shows you ten levels of battery life, so you have a better, more specific idea of what your charge percentage truly is.
- Kilometers, and miles per hour
- Battery charge level
- Total miles
- Trip Miles
- Pedal assist level
The lights on the XP are decently bright and will provide you with an okay field of view at night, and they will make you visible to traffic and pedestrians. We would definitely recommend purchasing another light if you plan on doing a lot of night riding.
The front light is adjustable, however the tail light is fixed in place below the rear rack. You can turn on and off the lights by pushing and holding the up arrow on your display control. We liked that they gave us the option to keep the lights off to conserve battery.
You are equipped with 5 total settings of pedal assist, all noticeably different in power and acceleration. The pedal assist is engaged via a cadence sensor and usually kicks in after about a half of pedal revolution. The pedal assist will continue to boost you forward for a split second after you are done pedaling, which is something to be aware of when going into a corner or an abrupt stop. We spent a lot of our riding time in levels 4 and 5 to get a good feel for the power of this bike, and we couldn’t find a hill to phase it! Lectric allows you to program your settings, because of that you are able to make this bike top out at 28mph with pedal assist – your range won’t be nearly as high with the 28mph setting but you’re going to have a lot of fun at those speeds.
The throttle placement on the XP is on the right side of the handlebar and is part of the grip. When it comes to the throttle placement it is pretty standard. Lectric’s engineers definitely took time developing the throttle, and we were able to tell because of the slight gap between the grip and the throttle itself. While this may not seem like much, that small gap can be the difference between accidentally engaging the throttle, and staying in place. It’s the little things that add up and we definitely appreciated seeing that from the team at Lectric Bikes.
Components and Accessories
The XP comes with Tektro 160mm Disk Brakes. We had to adjust the brakes out of the box on the XP, but once we had them set up properly they worked just fine. The brakes are designed to temporarily turn off the motor when engaged which is great peace of mind for stopping quickly. We would have liked to see 180mm rotors on this bike, just for a little bit more stopping power, however the 160mm rotors work just fine.
We really liked having the front and rear fenders for when we were riding on gravel and dirt. The big tires on this bike grab some small rocks so it’s nice to have the fender to stop them from hitting you on the ride. The fenders are also super lightweight, and removable. Your front fender may vibrate against the fork a little, simply bending in the fender a little bit more solved this issue for us.
The rigid fork that comes on the Lectric XP is solid. The angle of the fork provides plenty of front wheel control, the fender and fork are quite close together and it provides a seamless look despite not being connected. When it comes to connecting your wheel to the fork you have vertical dropouts to make it easier. The XP’s axles do not come equipped with a quick release lever so roadside maintenance may be a bit more difficult.
We loved the XP Step-Thru’s frame, not only was it easy to get on and off of, it also felt extremely sturdy below our test riders. Typically foldable frames feel weaker but you wouldn’t be able to tell based on feel with the XP.
The 6061 alloy that it is constructed of keeps the weight manageable and compliant to bumps and chatter. The frame also comes with a small handle below the seat post that is great for picking up the bike. This same handle is a great place to attach and loop around your lock.
The Shimano Tourney drivetrain provides enough range to get up even the steepest of hills. The 52t chainring helps you maintain higher speeds without putting a lot of strain on the hub motor. We liked the 1×7, but noticed we had to be soft when shifting (stopping pedalling for a second), or the derailleur would have some issues shifting. This is a pretty common issue with less expensive Shimano drivetrains.
Grips and Saddle
The Lectric XP’s saddle is plenty soft and holds its form well. Lectric also sells a suspension seat post on their website for additional comfort. The grips are a great shape, but they do feel a bit hard and “plasticy”. On longer rides we began to notice how hard the grips were, but when we wore riding gloves it wasn’t an issue. Overall both components are good, and the saddle is more comfortable than the grips are.
The handlebar is 570mm wide, and made of alloy. For taller riders it may feel a little close. We liked how adjustable the handlebar height was, on longer rides where your lower back starts to get sore it was great to be able to raise the handlebars a bit to relieve some stress. The whole stem and bar unit feel quite sturdy despite being foldable.
The pedals are foldable and are pretty standard, they provide decent grip and are equipped with reflectors, all in all they are a solid pedal to have on this sort of bike where the rest is compact and foldable. The studs sticking out of the pedal are big enough to sink into your shoe, but not so big you’ll destroy your shin on impact.
The kickstand comes stock with the bike, and has a height adjustment. The springs in the kickstand are strong enough to keep it from rattling when riding. Because of the placement, it’s quite easy to “kick up” the stand when getting on the bike.
The meaty 20”x4” tires on the XP are an absolute hoot. Despite not having any suspension you’re still going to be able to ride this thing off road because of the tires. The tread pattern is fast rolling and great for corners. These tires hold a lot of air so a 1-2psi difference is noticeable when riding, and you can really dial in your tire pressure to the type of riding you plan on doing. We kept the tires around 20psi for on road riding, and around 13-15psi for off road.
Our test riders heights ranged from 5’4” all the way up to 6’5” and every single one of them had enough adjustment to ride the bike comfortably, for a 20incher that’s phenomenal.
Conventionally the smaller wheeled ebikes are specifically for those below 5’5” but this bike will fit just about anybody who isn’t an NBA player. With the option to fold up this bike, storage is a lot more convenient than it would be otherwise. Even if you are running low on space at your place you’ll likely have room for your XP Step-Thru.
Summary Review / Where to Buy
We really enjoyed zipping around on the Lectric XP Step-Thru. The frame felt phenomenally sturdy for being a foldable bike, and the motor provided enough power and speed to make anybody smile.
The battery life on the XP was surprisingly good for a bike under a thousand dollars and we always had enough charge for the routes we were riding, and plenty power for the steepest of hills. We feel this bike is good for those who feel they could benefit from an ebike, but don’t want to spend thousands of dollars.
We have ridden plenty of expensive ebikes and when it comes to bang for your buck it doesn’t get much better than the Lectric XP. It’s actually quite shocking what a stellar bike this is for the price point that they’ve listed it at.
The XP also doesn’t do half-bad offroad, we flew through gravel and dirt pathways and even managed to make it through some pretty deep sand. With so much power packed into a compact, foldable frame the Lectric XP Step-Thru is going to check a lot of boxes for most ebike riders. You can zoom around big cities and forest roads , the versatility mixed with the affordable price point is truly something special.
Right now Lectrics business model is strictly direct to consumer, so the bike will be directly shipped to your doorstep once purchased. You can see the current pricing at the button above. The bike arrives fully assembled and will only require a few additional easy steps before riding. Lectric keeps things budget friendly and easy for their customers, which is something we definitely appreciate in this day and age.
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!
The new LECTRIC XP 2.0 has Variable front oil suspension and wider handlebars so it is even better than this summary tells so check it out folks,
Hi Justin! Only e-bike I’ve tried is Sondors and I enjoyed it. Do you have any reviews on Sondors or is it a dupe of any of your featured reviews? Thanks so much!
Griffin Hales says
We haven’t reviewed a Sondors yet, but we’d love to. Always worth letting them know you’d like them to send us one to review 😉
Will you be reviewing the 2.0 XP soon?
Griffin Hales says
We’re working on getting that one in. Nothing on its way yet, but it sounds like it might happen in the not-too-distant future. They were out of stock for a bit and couldn’t get us one.
I just pulled the trigger on a step-thru yesterday in light of the BlackFriday sale. Can’t
wait to get it now after reading this wonderfully positive review. I spend most of the summer
camping around Colorado and can’t wait to cruise around on it. It ticked off most of the boxes
I was looking for in an ebike and was pleasantly surprised at the value/price factor but the
deciding factor for me is that it’s built in the US since most of the others that I researched
were made in China and I try not to buy Chinese goods if I can.
Hi, I also just ordered two of the step-through bikes a couple of days ago.
To my knowledge, most e-bikes come from China. I believe this one does, too. But one reason I bought this brand is because their corporate office is in Phoenix and staffed by young, eager folks, from what I could tell on my phone calls. I doubt very much that this bike is even assembled in the States–it would be so much cheaper to do such a labor-intensive process overseas. Nonetheless it will be nice to work with U.S. folks if there are issues. I’ve traveled on business to the Far East but even so it was a bit of a challenge to understand the English of a couple of personnel at another bike company’s HQ. And I feel a “vibe” that tells me this will be one of the companies that will survive a future shakeout of the dozens of current e-bike vendors.
I just bought two of the 2.0 step-thru black Friday sales for me and my wife. Can’t wait to get them!