As mid-drive, pedal-assist-only e-bikes go, the CTY e2.1 is an extremely competitive city and commuter model. It has a 250W Shimano Steps E5000 motor that can give as much as 40 Newton meters of torque when you pull away or need to climb a pesky hill. This is powered by a 418 Wh frame-mounted battery that’ll give a realistic 40 miles of riding range.
A high-quality 9-speed pedal drivetrain has a great range of ratios from 11-34t that’ll enable you to handle quite big hills. If you live in a very hilly city, you may want a bigger rear cog and a more powerful motor, but in most locales, this should be ample. Stopping power is all you need with the Shimano Alvio hydraulic disc brakes.
Riding comforts come from the memory foam saddle and a Suntour front fork that has 75mm of travel. The mid-sized, 27.5” wheels have 1.95” Schwalbe road tires that’ll absorb many of the bumps in the road, too.
Reasons to Buy
The Co-op Cycles CTY e2.1 is packed with tried and tested components such as the motor, gearing, and brake systems, all in a very affordable package. You’ll be able to zoom around the city up to 20 mph — fast enough that you won’t feel like cars are flying by next to you.
Another feature we like is the integrated rear rack that makes carrying groceries or your laptop bag a cinch. The pannier can handle up to 59 lbs, so you might even be able to take along your small child.
The low stand-over height is another high point of the design. It makes it easy to get on and off, as well as stabilize yourself when you’re stopped in traffic.
We also can’t forget to mention REI’s Coast to Coast Support, which offers one year of free adjustments, in-store bike assembly, and free flat tire repairs.
Things to Consider
The CTY e2.2 lacks a throttle, so you’ll only be able to ride on pedal assist. This could be off-putting to some e-bike buyers that want to cruise along.
One other issue is the lack of fenders on the bike. These would be ideal for riders in the Pacific Northwest and New England where there is a lot of precipitation and you don’t want a line of road dirt on your back after a ride. However, they’re simple to outfit after your purchase if you think you’ll need them.