Ride1UP Rift Review: A Versatile Fat-Tire E-Bike for Adventure & Commuting
The market for fat-tire off-road e-bikes is one of the most popular and fast-growing. For this reason, most major direct-to-consumer manufacturers have their own version.
The Ride1UP Rift is the latest to the party, becoming the brand’s first attempt at this style. In typical fashion, it’s competitively priced and has Ride1UP’s characteristic look.
The Rift is highly versatile and could be the right choice for you if you need a comfortable urban companion, a backcountry adventure machine, or anything in between.
With our Ride1UP Rift review, we will analyze the bike’s specs and compare it to similarly-priced competition, giving you the information needed to decide whether or not it’s the right bike for your needs.
Ride1UP Rift Main Specs:
- MSRP: $1,895 (XR, ST)
- Class: Class 2 or 3, 20 or 28 mph
- Motor: 750 W hub, 95 Nm
- Battery: 960 Wh, 48 V
- Range: 45-60 miles
- Tires: Kenda Krusade 26″ x 4.0″
- Suspension: 120 mm travel fork, hydraulic lockout
- Drivetrain: 8-speed Shimano Altus
- Brakes: Hydraulic disc brakes, 180 mm rotors
- Weight: 84.5 lb
Ride1UP Rift Pros and Cons
Ride1UP Rift Review: High-Travel Electric Fat-Bike with a Competitive Price Tag
It’s clear from first looks that the Ride1UP Rift will be another popular option among fat-tire e-bike enthusiasts. It’s cheaper than the competition with similar specs like the Aventon Aventure.2, Rad Power Bikes RadRover 6 Plus, and QuietKat Villager, but has similar specs and performance.
The Rift is designed to satisfy a wide range of uses and riding styles as it comes with a 120 mm fork and 4″ fat tires to handle most off-road terrain. This fork has 20 to 60 mm more than similar models.
A fully-equipped commuter setup means it’s also ready for commuting as sold, unlike the RadRover 6 Plus, which lacks a rear rack.
The Rift’s simple aesthetics, clean integration, and robust design should result in greater durability.
Despite being bulky and running massive tires, it’s surprisingly maneuverable, thanks to its short stem and narrow handlebars. This makes it suitable for navigating busy city roads and bike paths.
The Ride1UP Rift is available in an XR (step-over) and ST (step-through) frame. It also has three color options: Arctic White, Graphite Grey, and Forest Green.
A Heavy Yet Sturdy Frame with Straightforward Urban Geometry
This bike has an unmistakable heft, both in size and weight. The Ride1UP Rift weighs 84.5 lb, making it one of the heaviest fat-tire e-bikes in this price range, 11 lb heavier than the RadRover 6 Plus.
The choice to go with full integration of a large 960 Wh battery leads to enormous tubing that adds to the weight. Likewise, the integrated rear rack adds weight but also greatly increases the carrying capacity.
The total payload capacity is 350 lb, but the rear rack can support 150 lb and is compatible with a passenger package for riding with a friend or family member. This is a unique feature among fat-tire off-roaders.
The Rift has an upright, natural riding position suitable for urban environments and light off-roading. However, it’s not designed for proper mountain biking trails, so you should steer clear of steep off-road descents and rough singletrack. Consider one of the best electric mountain bikes for these applications.
The Rift’s sizing is similar to the other direct-to-consumer brands offering one-size-fits-all frames. The ST frame fits heights 5’1″ and 6’2″, and the XR version fits 5’6″ to 6’4″.
High-Performance Electronics Let Down by a Cadence Sensor
The Rift’s electronics are solid for this price, but there’s one questionable decision, the choice to go with a cadence sensor over torque, which some direct-to-consumer brands like Aventon and Juiced Bikes are choosing on new models.Firstly, you have a powerful 750 W, 95 Nm hub motor to help haul the bike’s high weight around. As mentioned, the cadence sensor is decent but doesn’t match the performance of torque sensing. The motor also has a slight delay between pedaling and activation.
The Ride1UP Rift’s range is the longest of any bike in the fleet, returning 45 to 60 miles with pedal assistance. That’s 15 miles more than the RadRover 6 Plus but the same as the Aventure.2. Ride1UP chose a giant 960 Wh battery with Samsung cells for the job. The removable battery means you can conveniently recharge without lugging the bike around.
The Ride1UP Rift’s top speed as shipped is 20 mph on throttle or pedal assist mode, making it a Class 2 e-bike. However, you can change the PAS top speed to 28 mph through the settings, making it Class 3 if the law permits it in your area.
Versatile Components That Match the Rift’s Adventurous Personality
The rest of the Rift’s build kit is typical at this price point. A 120 mm fork with hydraulic lockout provides plenty of travel for light off-road terrain.
We’d recommend using the fork lockout when riding on pavement, as the fat tires provide plenty of comfort. Ergonomic grips and a padded saddle also add to the comfy ride quality of the Rift.
The 4″ Kenda Krusade tires are suitable for riding off-road on snow, sand, and mud and have puncture resistance to minimize the chance of flats. These tires combine with powerful four-piston hydraulic disc brakes with 180 mm rotors to give you confidence-inspiring stopping power which is vital for a heavy off-road e-bike.
The Rift is also equipped for urban riding and commuting with a rear rack, fenders, LED lights, and kickstand. Unfortunately, the lights are only suitable for urban environments as they aren’t very bright. However, there is taillight activation when you brake, which will improve your safety when riding in traffic.
Ride1UP also chose a basic 8-speed Altus drivetrain with an 11-32t cassette and 44t chainring and trigger shifters. There’s nothing flashy about it, but it has been proven to work well and last for a long time.
Finally, it’s worth mentioning that the LCD display is small and hard to read, especially in direct sunlight. We prefer Rad Power Bikes’ and Aventon’s displays for readability and quality. Though, it’s nice to see a color display on an electric bike under $2,000.
Unique Passenger Kit Accessory Compatibility
Ride1UP isn’t known for its extensive accessory selection, but the new Rift, like the Cafe Cruiser, gets the passenger kit treatment thanks to its high-capacity rear rack. This kit includes wheel covers, foot pegs, and a padded seat rated up to 130 lb.
The Rift is also compatible with a front rack, baskets, and bags, all available through the company’s online store.
Other Ride1UP Models We’ve Reviewed:
- Ride1UP Roadster v2 Review
- Ride1UP Cafe Cruiser Review
- Ride1UP Core 5 Electric Bicycle Review
- Ride1UP 700 Series Review
- Ride1UP LMT’D Review
- Ride1UP Revv 1 Review
- Ride1UP Turris Review
- Ride1UP Prodigy Review
Our Verdict: Ride or Pass?
It’s too early to tell how the Ride1UP Rift will hold up over time, but it will be a worthy investment if it has the same quality and durability as the rest of the brand’s models, which get positive reviews time and again.
The early signs for this new fat-tire e-bike are almost all positive. Yes, it’s heavy and doesn’t have the best display, but it’s cheaper and more powerful than the main competition and has one of the best ranges at this price. Likewise, it allows you to carry up to 150 lb on the integrated rear rack.
We think the Rift could be right for you if you’re an adventure rider who needs the functionality of an urban e-bike or a commuter who likes to mix it up on the weekend.
Whichever group you fall into, the Ride1UP Rift is a worthy consideration if you’re looking for a new fat-tire electric bike below $2,000.