E-Bike Review: GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire

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The electrification of bicycles has ushered in a completely new generation of e-bike that rethink the possibilities from the ground up. The GEN3 Groove is a natural extension of these new designs, from its compact and comfortable 20″ x 4″ fat tires on up to the oversized folding bike frame.

GEN3 sent me the Groove e-bike for me to run it around town to let you know how it performs in real life. After spending some time with the Stride and its powerful Bafang motor a few weeks ago (full Stride review here), I was excited to see how the Groove, with its higher peak power, performed.

E-Bike Review: GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire
Image by Kyle Field

Disclaimer: GEN3 sponsored this review and provided the Groove to the author free of charge for the purposes of this review.

As a folding e-bike, the GEN3 Groove ships in a box that’s wider but shorter and not as long as a typical electric bike box. Assembly was very straightforward and took me around 30 minutes. It required little more than attaching the front wheel, pedals, front fender, and connecting a few electrical connectors for the front light and display.

GEN3 has an assembly video for the Groove that walks through the entire process. It’s a good idea to watch the video prior to ordering to determine if you’re comfortable putting it together or if it’s better to enlist the support of a local bike shop to get the bike assembled.

E-Bike Review: GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire simple controls
Image by Kyle Field.

The Groove is a more affordable e-bike on the market with a price that’s in line with other folding fat tire bikes in the segment. As a value bike, it’s sporting a fairly typical set of entry level components like a 7-speed Shimano Tourney system, Bafang rear hub motor, and mechanical disc brakes.

Its folding frame is a nice option for those looking for easier storage and moving around, but it’s likely not something you’ll get a ton of use out of. Folding the handlebars down, lowering the seat, and folding the frame in half does make the bike more compact, but the resulting mass of bike parts is floppy and awkward to pick up. I found it much more functional to simply fold the handlebars and lower the seat for storage or transportation.

E-Bike Review: GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire
Easy mode selection; image by Kyle Field.

The Groove sports a nice set of 20″ x 4″ CST fat tires that pair extremely well with the relatively low step frame. The tires provide a nice bit of cushion that make for an extremely comfortable ride. For larger bumps, the adjustable front suspension fork gobbles up even more. It’s not a package you’ll want to hit mountain trails with, but the wide, knobby tires make it a great bike for casual riding around town and the occasional trip off the beaten path.

What really surprised me about the Groove was its powerful motor. The 500 watt average output of the rear hub motor provides a nice bit of support for everyday rides around town. I expected that and often a value e-bike offers a similar experience. What I didn’t expect was the impressive peak power output. In my testing of any e-bike, I absolutely abuse them on some of the steepest hills around.

My test route regularly makes the brakes squeal, but the real reason I love blasting down the hills at the start is so I can push the bikes to their limits on the way back up. After a solid 20-mile ride of abuse and heavy throttle use, the Groove was showing around 60% battery remaining. I hit the hills at the end of the ride and it simply sucked it up and powered right on up. That’s impressive and shows how a lower average output paired with a higher peak power tuning on a motor can be an extremely effective pairing.

E-Bike Review: GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire on the beach
Fat tires make off-roading easy; image by Kyle Field.

Overall, the GEN3 Groove is an exciting addition to the world of value e-bikes with features and power that set it apart from the competition. It’s a great fit for riders facing lots of hilly terrain or that simply want a higher peak power output. The folding form factor, while awkward at times, is great for riders who need a compact package that can fit in compact boat, RV, dorm, or home storage locations.

Follow the link for more information about the GEN3 Groove or to order one.

All images credit: Kyle Field, CleanTechnica

GEN3 Groove E-Bike Specs

  • Motor: 500 watts continuous / 1,000 watts peak power rear hub motor with 1:5 Planetary Gears
  • Torque: 80 N/m
  • Range: 45 miles of range per charge
  • Battery: 660 watt-hour lithium-ion battery pack
  • Frame: Folding aluminum alloy frame
  • Weight: 62 pounds
  • Battery: 660Wh Behind seat tube, 48V/13.75A (UL Certified)
  • Charger: Fast-Charging 54.6V/2A Wall Supply with LED Charging Status Indicator
  • Charging Time (0-100%): 8 hours
  • Frame: 6061 Double-Butted Aluminum
  • Lights:
    • Front: Spanninga Axendo 40
    • Rear: Battery-Powered Seat Post Mounted
  • Brakes: GEN3 DB-330 Mechanical Disc Brakes with 160mm rear and 180mm front rotors
  • Gearing: Shimano Tourney 7-Speed system
  • Fork: Suspension fork with 50mm travel, lock and adjust controls
  • Saddle: Trekking Comfort Saddle (260mm x 165mm)
  • Tires: 20″ x 4.0″ CST BFT All-Terrain
  • Price: $1,599

GEN3 Groove Folding Fat Tire e-Bike

This article is supported by GEN3.

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Kyle Field

I'm a tech geek passionately in search of actionable ways to reduce the negative impact my life has on the planet, save money and reduce stress. Live intentionally, make conscious decisions, love more, act responsibly, play. The more you know, the less you need. As an activist investor, Kyle owns long term holdings in Tesla, Lightning eMotors, Arcimoto, and SolarEdge.

Kyle Field has 1657 posts and counting. See all posts by Kyle Field