Claud Butler Glide 1 electric bike review
The Glide rides the way you’d expect it to – a sit-up-and-beg step-through with electric assistance. Its marketing claim to ‘flatten hills’ might be a little over-egged – undulations sure, but the upright geometry alone defeats any really ambitious climbing, even before the weight and low gearing does.
But if spinning round town or assisted leisurely commuting is what you hanker for, the Glide could be all you need – and thanks to the full rack, it will happily do a week’s shop too, with enough power from the 250W rear hub motor for fully loaded duties. While the six-speed Shimano derailleur gearing on ours was annoyingly sticky, the same system is fitted to other bikes we’ve tested that work well, and the gearing range is fine for town.
Given its relatively modest price, the kit on the Glide is as you’d expect. Highlights include the chaincover, rack and full mudguards but the suspension seatpost and suspension fork are pointless and heavy. The brakes – especially the side-pull V-brake on the front – are soggy, and the saddle is horrible.
But the biggest gripe we had with the Glide is the delay in pedal assistance. This means that despite the provision of a motorbike-style twist grip accelerator, you don’t get any help getting away from the lights. Once you’re moving, the bike quickly joins in and surges up to 15.5mph but you have to give it a twist every five seconds or so to wring out every last drop of assistance. It’s almost as if it stops trying unless you keep twisting it.