After many miles of testing the Surface 604 Boar it has proven to be a fun eAdventure bike that is ready to ride on almost any terrain.
With 26″ x 4.5″ fat tires and a 500 watt Bafang motor the Boar is built to ride through tough terrain like sand and snow in addition to carrying cargo with sturdy front and rear racks.
It also has a smooth and intuitive torque sensor pedal assist that blends the motor power with your pedal power.
The Boar can also go the distance as you will see in the full range test results.
At $2,499 with free shipping the Surface 604 Boar offers a lot of features and standard accessories for eAdventure riding.
In this second part of the full review you will get an idea of the ride characteristics, range test results, pros, cons, and overall thoughts on this electric bike.
Make sure you check out part 1 of this review with large pictures and specifications to get a detailed look at this e-bike.
What you can expect from the Surface 604 Boar:
To get acquainted with the Surface 604 Boar, checkout this video:
Riding the Surface 604 Boar:
Overall there are some characteristics of the Surface 604 Boar that really stand out when riding this eFat bike. To summarize they are:
- All terrain 4.5″ wide fat tires with comfortable ride
- Smooth torque sensor pedal assist & throttle
- Impressive range for an eFat bike
The Look & Feel of the Surface 604 Boar
The Boar is definitely an eye catching eFat bike with its Camo paint job, huge off-road tires, and large front and rear racks.
It definitely looks like it is ready for an adventure!
Surface 604 designed the Boar “with the avid outdoorsman in mind” and that definitely shows with its rugged look and ride feel.
Like most fat bikes, the Boar rides like the monster truck version of a bicycle with its huge 26″ x 4.5″ Kenda Juggernaut fat tires.
It has the feeling that it can ride over and through almost anything with large off-road tires. Fat bikes are designed to ride on sand and snow with the large tires floating over the terrain.
These large fat tires do create an interesting design challenge and the Boar frame and fork are built with hydroformed aluminum tubing that has been shaped to wrap around the large tires.
In addition the frame has been designed to provide good stand over height with the sloped top tube.
Another frame design highlight is the integration of the battery into the downtube.
This is an ideal location for the battery because it is low and centered which provides good balance and handling.
The Boar has stable and predictable handling that is attributed to the balanced weight distribution and the large fat tires.
The electrical components blend in well with the overall looks of the bike with the battery integrated into the downtube, the rear hub motor a similar size to the cogset, and some internal cable routing in the downtube.
Speaking of a clean look, the front and rear racks are well built into the frame and fork with each rack providing up to 50 pounds of cargo capacity.
They definitely feel sturdy with large aluminum tubing construction and solid attachment to the frame and fork.
With the front rack attachment to the fork blades the Boar comes with a rigid front fork compared to a suspension fork.
Some eFat bikes in this price range come with a suspension fork but it is more complicated to add a sturdy rack to a suspension fork.
The large air volume 26″ x 4.5″ Kenda Juggernaut fat tires do offer a significant amount of built in suspension effect when they are run at the lower pressure range. More on that in a bit.
The Boar comes in 2 different frame sizes to fit a wide range of riders and it is nice to have this option because not all eFat bikes have frame size options.
These are the frame size options:
17.5″ frame to fit riders in height from 5′-2″ to 5′-7″
19.5″ frame to fit riders in height from 5′-8″ to 6′-6″
The bike in this review is the 19.5″ frame size and at 5′-11″ the bike fit me well.
Now let’s take a look at the 26″ x 4.5″ wide fat tires.
The Kenda Juggernaut fat tires give the Boar a bold and unique look and they also provide a very stable all-terrain ride feel.
There are 2 characteristics of fat tires that give them the all-terrain capabilities: large air volume and the large tread patch that contacts the ground.
The large air volume creates a built in suspension effect when the tires are run in the lower air pressure range.
And compared to traditional bike tires, fat tire air pressure can be run very low, down to 5psi for these Kenda Juggernaut tires!
In the lower air pressure range these high air volume tires mold over rough terrain and absorb a lot of the smaller obstacles like roots, rocks, small potholes, etc.
The large tread patch of these tires provides a lot of stability and traction because there is more surface area of the tire on the ground compared to traditionally sized bike tires.
The large tread patch provides the ability to “float” on soft terrain like sand and snow instead of cutting through and sinking like narrow tires are prone to do.
Below are typical fat tire pressure recommendations for different terrain:
Sand and Snow: + or – 8 psi (5 psi for the Kenda Juggernaut on this bike)
Hard pack to muddy roads/trails: 12-15 psi
Urban riding: 20-30 psi
Its good to test different tire pressures for the terrain you are riding on while considering your weight and riding style. 1 or 2 psi can make a big difference in the way a fat bike feels.
In the lower tire pressure range the bike does feel a bit sluggish in the corners when compared to traditional mountain bike tires.
It is most noticeable when carving into a turn because you can feel the larger mass of these big wheels as you are cornering. At the higher pressure ranges (20 -30 psi) it is less noticeable.
Here is a video that compares the attributes of a Fat bike vs. Plus (2.6″ to 3″ wide) bike tires.
Another beneficial ride characteristic is that the outer tire diameter is relatively close to a traditional 29er tire diameter so they roll over obstacles well.
Also, pinch flatting the tube is less likely than conventional tires because the large air volume can absorb more impacts without pinching the tube on the rim.
If you want to eliminate the inner tube completely a tubeless tire sealant system can be added.
A tubeless system (Orange Seal for example) uses tape to seal the rim and a sealant to seal many voids in the tires, including cuts from small objects like thorns, glass, and other small objects.
Now let’s take a closer look at the ride position of the Surface 604 Boar.
In general the ride position is upright with a stable feeling from the wide handlebars.
The stem has an upright angle and the handlebars have a bit of rise to them for a comfortable ride feel.
The handlebar grips have a small file pattern and they have a stable ride feel for on and off-road riding.
The Velo seat has a narrow profile for a focus on performance riding.
If you want a smoother ride you could add an optional suspension seatpost that Surface 604 offers.
And here is a guide to suspension seatposts.
Now let’s take a closer look at the drive system.
The core of the assist system is the Bafang 500 watt (750 watt peak power) geared rear hub motor that provides up to 80 Nm of torque.
The motor does provide a lot of power and it is a good fit for a fat bike like the Boar because it really helps it get through tough terrain like sand.
It also does a good job of accelerating quickly up to speed on pavement in the higher assist levels and/or throttle.
The Boar is a Class 2 electric bike with pedal assist and/or throttle up to 20 mph.
All Surface 604 eBikes use a torque sensor based pedal assist system that does a nice job of blending the motor power with your pedal power to create an intuitive ride feel.
The system follows your pedal power and provides a similar amount of assist which is amplified by the pedal assist level.
Cadence sensor systems by comparison generally add the full assist amount (based on the pedal assist level) when the cranks are turning without the sophistication of matching your pedal power proportionally like the torque sensor.
There are 5 pedal assist levels to choose from to fine tune the ride performance from easy going to fast and powerful.
Pedal assist levels 4 & 5 are fast and powerful for quicker acceleration and strong hill climbing. These levels are also good for riding in energy sapping terrain like sand and snow.
Level 3 has a fun and sporty feel but it’s not as powerful as levels 4 & 5 which helps to extend the range.
Levels 1 & 2 have an easy going ride feel for casually cruising the neighborhood or for when riding on technical terrain where you may not want a bunch of power.
The pedal assist transitions are smooth and intuitive with the assist starting as soon as you start pedaling and stopping as soon as you stop pedaling.
In addition to pedal assist there is the thumb throttle that can add a boost of power to the lower pedal assist levels or it can be used as pure throttle without pedaling if you want.
There is a wide range of power with the throttle that can be easily varied by how far you push the thumb throttle forward.
Another assist feature is the walk mode that helps with walking the bike up stairs or up a steep hill at 2mph. It is activated by holding the “-” button on the control pad for a few seconds.
Like most geared hub motors there is some noise from this motor and it’s in the medium range when compared to other electric bikes.
The SRAM X5 drivetrain has a solid and concise shifting feel that is typical of SRAM drivetrains.
The gear range consists of a 36 tooth chainring and a 12 tooth to 34 tooth cogset that covers the range of speeds up to and beyond 20 mph well.
It also has low enough gearing to climb steeper hills well.
The Samox 170mm cranks feature a hollow axle design for lower weight and they are another highlight of the Boar.
Now we will take a closer look at the lithium battery that is built into the downtube of the frame.
This location is ideal for the balance and handling of the bike because it keeps the weight low and centered.
The Boar in this test was equipped with the optional extended range 48V 14ah (672 watt hours of capacity) lithium battery that adds $200 to the base price of $2,499. The stock battery is a 48V 10.4ah (499 Wh capacity).
Popular Samsung 18650 cells are used in the Surface 604 batteries.
The main purpose of the battery is to power the motor but it also powers the front light and USB charge ports for a phone or other USB chargeable device.
There are 2 USB charge ports: one on the upper right side of the battery and a port under the display on the handlebar.
Removing the battery is quickly and easily accomplished by unlocking it with one of the supplied keys (2 supplied) and rotating it to the left side of the bike.
Charging times are 5-6 hours to fully charge an empty stock battery (48V 10.4ah) and 7 to 8 hours for the optional 48V 14ah battery. The battery can be charged on or off the bike.
Now let’s take a closer look at the color display that adds a bit of style to the Boar.
The center mounted display provides information on:
- Battery level
- Speed, average speed, max speed
- Odometer, trip distance
- Pedal assist mode
- Power the motor is providing
Slowing the Boar down it handled by Tektro Auriga hydraulic disc brakes with 180mm rotors front and rear.
They have the solid engagement feel and powerful braking that is typical of hydraulic disc brakes.
That solid braking feel adds to the stable and confident ride feel of the Boar.
There is a wide range of braking power that these brakes provide from just a little power all the way up to full stop.
The brake lever reach can be adjusted so that the brake levers can fit smaller hand sizes.
Each brake lever has a sensor that will stop the assist if either brake lever is engaged.
Rounding out the Surface 604 Boar is the accessory package that is highlighted by the front and rear cargo racks.
These have a sturdy design and connection with each rack supporting up to 50 pounds of cargo.
The rear rack has many attachment points for baskets, bags, and panniers. It also has a good top platform for strapping items directly to it.
The front rack has a large platform for strapping items in or adding a bag to.
The front LED light mounted to the front rack is powered by the eBike battery so you don’t have to worry about charging separate batteries for the light.
The front light provides a good beam of light for seeing the road and being seen at night.
It would be a good idea to add an additional flashing rear light for extra visibility.
The kickstand is bolted to the back left side of the frame and has an adjustable length so you can vary the pitch of the bike when its parked.
Surface 604 also offers optional accessories like a suspension seatpost, full coverage fenders, adjustable stem, and more at their parts store for the Boar.
Okay, let’s see how the Surface 604 Boar did out on the open road!
Surface 604 Boar Range Test Results:
Here is the real world information on how the Surface 604 Boar 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. I tested the Surface 604 Boar in the highest pedal assist level (Level 5) with average pedaling on paved roads.
Range: As you can see from the GPS info that I recorded, the Surface 604 Boar traveled 32.6 miles and did a total elevation gain of around 2,600 ft. Considering that I weigh 190 lbs and I pedaled at an average pace this is good range for a 48 Volt 14 ah 672 Wh battery pack (optional high capacity battery +$200) with a 500 watt motor assisting up to 20 mph and considering this is a fat electric bike. Interpolating to the 10.4ah battery would be around 24.2 miles on this tough range test.
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: The Surface 604 Boar will assist up to 20 mph with pedal assist only and/or throttle. This is a Class 2 electric bike.
Weight: The Surface 604 Boar tips the scales at 68.8 lbs which is on the heavier side for an electric bike. Removing the 7.6 pound battery brings it down to around 61.2 pounds.
The weight distribution of the Surface 604 Boar is slightly back heavy because of the rear hub motor while the battery is low and centered on the bike.
Powerful & Smooth Assist: The 500 watt Bafang motor with 750 watt peak power and 80 Nm of torque is a good fit for the Boar because it powers through tough terrain like sand and it gives the bike a fun performance feel on the road. The torque sensor pedal assist gives a smooth and intuitive ride feel with a good blend of motor power with your pedal power.
Impressive Range: The Boar really went the distance at 32.6 miles and around 2,600 ft of elevation gain in the tough range test with the upgraded 48V 14ah lithium battery. This is impressive for an eFat bike because the large tires are generally not the most efficient!
Versatile: The front and rear racks are nice to have as a standard feature for adventure rides in addition to commuting and errand running. They feel very sturdy and are rated to carry up to 50 pounds each.
Heavier: At 68.8 lbs the Boar is on the heavier side for an electric bike. Removing the 7.6 pound battery brings it down to around 61.2 pounds.
Motor Noise: The Bafang geared rear hub motor does make a bit of noise that is in the medium range when compared to other ebikes on the market.
No Suspension Fork: It would be nice to have a suspension fork but it is difficult to have that in addition to a sturdy front cargo rack.
Overall the Surface 604 Boar is a fun and versatile eAdventure fat bike that is ready to ride on almost any terrain and carry cargo with its dual racks.
It has that stable and confident ride feel from the fat tires that is good for tough terrain like sand and snow in addition to being fun for zipping around town.
The 500 watt Bafang motor with the smooth and intuitive torque sensor pedal assist gives the Boar a powerful and refined ride feel.
With the upgraded 48V 14ah battery the Boar can really get out for some long rides too.
At a base price of $2,499 with free shipping the Boar offers quality features, components, and accessories.
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.
Where to buy a Surface 604 Boar? Check with the Surface 604 website.
Do you have any questions about the Surface 604 Boar? Do you own a Surface 604 Boar? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.
Review Note: Each company pays a fee for a review on Electric Bike Report because of the considerable amount of time that it takes to provide an in-depth review of each eBike. A lot of time is spent on the full range test with distance & elevation profile, the wide variety of detailed pictures, in-depth video, and the write up with the specifications, ride characteristics, pros, cons, and overall thoughts. The reviews on Electric Bike Report are focused on providing you with a detailed “virtual” look at each eBike to help you determine if it is the eBike for you.
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