A Utility Ebike for Everyone
The RadRunner 2, by Rad Power Bikes, is an amazing value for this class of ebike: a compact, adaptable, and enjoyable utility ebike designed to transport both people and cargo.
In 2019, Rad Power Bikes unveiled the first version of their utility-focused platform, RadRunner, and in late 2021, they released RadRunner 2. Today RadRunner 2 remains the most affordable option in the Rad Power family of ebikes at only $1499. Aside from the RadWagon 4, it may be the most distinctive of all the ebikes in its fleet.
When you compare RadRunner 1 vs Radrunner 2, the differences are minor. They both come with 750W motors, 14 Ah batteries, single-speed drivetrains, and have a max payload of 300 lbs. The key difference between the RadRunner 1 and RadRunner 2 is an upgraded saddle and a redesigned head tube to increase rider handling and comfort.
Although it looks undersized due to its 20-inch wheels and moped-like chassis, this vehicle is up to the challenge of delivering groceries and packages or ferrying you and your backpack to work.
- MSRP: $1,499
- Frame: 6061 aluminum
- Motor: 750W brushless geared hub motor
- Battery: 48V 14 Ah (672 Wh) Lithium-Ion battery
- Charge time: 6 hours
- Range: 25-45+ miles per charge (depending on riding conditions and terrain)
- Top Speed: 20 mph (Class 2 electric bike)
- Brakes: Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes with 180 mm rotors
- Throttle: Half twist grip throttle
- Tires: 20” x 3.3” Rad Power Bikes by Kenda K-Rad tires
- Pedal Assist: Intelligent 4-level pedal assist with low-profile cadence sensor
- Lights: Front and rear (with brake light and flash mode) LED lights
- Display: custom LED display
- Weight: 72.7 lbs (33 kg)
- Load capacity: 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Cargo capacity: Rear cargo deck with 120 lb (54.4 kg) weight limit and optional front rack and passenger package
- Colors: Black, Forest green
What’s the difference between RadRunner 1 and 2?
The first improvement is the upgraded saddle, which adds 15 mm of cushioning in response to the most common user complaint about the previous model.
The second upgrade is that the angle of the head tube has been adjusted, bringing the handlebars closer to the rider, increasing stability and comfort. The modification to the head tube angle is small, but it has a significant impact on the bike’s handling and speed.
What We Like About RadRunner 2
Design Look and Feel
The second-generation RadRunner is a fully-customizable utility bicycle. The step-through design of the frame makes getting on and off quick and simple, and with a variety of optional accessories available for purchase, you can really make this bike your own.
Moreover, the padded seat and upright posture provided by the bike’s handlebars make riding a breeze for long distances.
The RadRunner 2 stands out among electric bikes because the bike’s style is more stripped down and practical than flashy. The design’s emphasis is on functionality, rather than form. It’s built with a moped-like frame and is intended for the height of average-sized riders.
The strong frame of this flexible and affordable electric utility bike allows it to carry as much as 300 pounds. The extra long 390mm seat and adjustable handlebar make it suited for a broad range of riders of varying heights, and it comes in two colors—black and forest green.
Compared to its predecessor, the RadRunner 1, RadRunner 2’s seat is much more plush, with an extra 15mm of padding. The upright BMX style handlebars keep your arms in a comfortable riding position and, because of the improvement in their positioning relative to the headtube, you have more control over the handling of this ebike.
The displays on Rad Power Bikes are simple in design and operation, featuring a convenient LED screen and four adjustable levels of pedal-assist. Additionally, you have a power button to turn on the battery and a separate button to switch on your front and rear lights.
The LED screen only shows the most essential information, basically just the level of pedal assist and the amount of charge left in the battery but there are no USB charging capabilities. Because of its high brightness, the LED display can be seen and used with ease even in the dark.
Core Bike Specs: Motor, Battery, and Brakes
The RadRunner 2 has a strong 750-watt geared hub motor and a 48-volt, 14-amp-hour lithium-ion battery. This brushless geared hub motor is designed specifically for low end torque and is particularly well suited for climbing moderate hills without a running start. Based on many criteria like rider weight, terrain, and the level of pedal assistance, this setup may deliver a maximum range of up to 45 miles on a single charge.
RadRunner 2 Ride Performance
The RadRunner 2 is built for a variety of riding conditions, both paved roads and dirt trails, demonstrating its adaptability as a riding machine. You can load up the cargo deck with groceries or other stuff, and the front and rear lights ensure your safety even in low-light conditions.
The engine of the RadRunner 2 is both strong and responsive, making for a fun and effortless ride. The bike’s 750-watt geared hub motor gives more than enough power and torque to make it simple to overcome obstacles like hills and headwinds. The motor is whisper-quiet and silky smooth, allowing for a refined experience when switching between pedal assist and throttle.
The RadRunner 2’s engine is powerful and quick, and its advantages are readily apparent while accelerating from a standstill or going uphill. The bike’s versatility stems from the fact that it offers four different levels of pedal assistance, each of which may be adjusted to suit the rider’s specific needs. During longer rides or when the rider wants a rest, the throttle function allows the user to control the speed without pedaling.
All in all, the motor and pedal assistance system give the RadRunner 2 a sense of power and responsiveness that makes it fun to ride without feeling perilous for more cautious riders. Anyone in the market for an affordable and versatile electric bike will find the bike’s power and responsiveness to be more than adequate.
How long does the battery last?
The RadRunner 2’s battery life is affected by a number of variables, including the pedal assist level, the terrain, the rider’s weight, and the weather conditions. In any case, the 48V 14 Ah battery in the RadRunner 2 can take you up to 45 miles on a single charge. Range may be increased even further by lowering the level of pedal assist, not engaging the throttle, or riding over flatter terrain. The battery is also easily removable for convenient charging and replacement if needed.
What we don’t love about the Radrunner 2
One of the major drawbacks of the bike is the lack of a complete LED digital display. Because of this, you won’t have access to functions like an odometer, trip time, or power output data.
The basic display panel only shows LED indicator lamps indicating the current assist level and battery level, providing only the bare minimum of information. Additionally, the bike does not have Bluetooth connectivity or a USB charging port.
The RadRunner 2 comes with a single-speed drivetrain, so it’s limited when it comes to hill climbing.
The built-in features, such as the rear rack and dual leg kickstand, contribute to the RadRunner 2’s rather substantial weight of 65 pounds (not counting accessories). You’ll have to engage the highest levels of pedal assist when hauling cargo and attempting to scale hills, which will drain the battery quickly. It’s not necessarily a con but something to be aware of if you plan on long commutes.
Pros and Cons of RadRunner 2
While its restricted range and pricey add-ons may deter some, it will still be attractive to first-time electric bike customers searching for a cheap alternative that can carry baggage (or a second passenger). The RadRunner 2 is still a bike for everyone, despite some of its drawbacks.
Here’s a list of pros and cons you may want to consider:
- A true jack-of-all-trades utility ebike
- Large cargo rack with tons of accessory options
- A distinct look with multiple back seat color options that you can mix and match. The passenger package makes it easy to configure the Radrunner 2 for a second small passenger
- You can customize the RadRunner 2 with 330 different accessory pairings. The number of configurations possible when you combine different accessories is truly impressive
- Can be a little cramped for tall riders
- The single-speed drivetrain may prove limiting to some riders, depending on how hilly their home roads are
- Though we like the simplicity, the RadRunner 2 does not have an actual LCD display. Tracking speed, mileage, and other metrics would have to be done on a phone or other device
Is RadRunner2 Worth it?
The RadRunner 2 is a versatile electric bike that can be used for commuting, recreational riding, and errands. It’s easy to use, comfortable, and enjoyable to ride because of its powerful motor, long battery life, and other features.
The RadRunner 2’s affordability and excellent value for money make it an attractive option for those seeking an ebike that can handle a range of tasks while providing an enjoyable and comfortable ride.
The RadRunner 2 is a highly versatile and practical electric bike that offers excellent value for the price. It’s perfect for moving about town, hauling heavy loads, and going on extended trips because of its robust engine, long battery life, and ample cargo capacity.
The RadRunner 2 is a great first electric bike for anybody interested in joining the ebike revolution. There isn’t much to worry about in terms of electronics, power, or maintenance, and the twist throttle is a fun way to add some more kick to the bike’s four pedal assist levels and single-speed drivetrain.
Someone accustomed to riding a commuter or cruiser bike may be put off by the low-slung, moped-style design of a utility bike, but if you’re more interested in getting from point A to point B quickly while still having room for baggage or passengers, it’s a great choice.
Despite its girth and weight, it is a wonderful alternative for a variety of riders because of its customizable design and smooth ride. The RadRunner 2 is neither the quickest nor the lightest ebike on the market, but it strikes a good compromise between these two extremes, making it a good option for everyone.