E-cargo bikes are popular with families. They can be used to transport children and shopping in an environmentally friendly way. But you also have to be able to afford them.

Electric cargo bikes are popular. Child and purchases can be transported in an environmentally friendly way, and thanks to electrical support, this is fairly effortless. Cargo bikes fall into two categories. In the wide models with three wheels and two tracks and in those that only have two wheels in one track. The tricycles are usually more unwieldy, but offer more loading volume and do not fall over when standing or at low speeds. The two-wheelers are more dynamic, slimmer – but just a bit smaller. Contrary to what one might think, they are also safer to drive. The tricycle always seems stable, but gets into big trouble as soon as the two wheels on one axle encounter differences in level. For example, when a front wheel slides down the curb (Cargo bikes – what can they do? Who do they help?)

After testing the thick ships last year, the ADAC has now examined the single-lane “Long Johns”. The result: Out of six test bikes, two scored “good”, three “satisfactory” and one failed with “poor”. Tests were carried out in the categories of driving behavior, drive system, handling, safety and pollutants. Bullit’s failure received a “poor” because the seat belts contain far too many plasticizers that are hazardous to health.

Prices above 5000 euros

The test winner e-Muli particularly impressed with its handling, which was reminiscent of that of a normal bicycle. The e-Muli also had the smallest turning circle. Clever: The basket is foldable and yet well suited for transporting children. That’s enough for a grade of 2.1 – the test winner costs 5180 euros. Urban Arrow’s Family came second (grade 2.4). Here 6990 euros are due.

The ADAC complains that the e-cargo bikes lose range due to their higher weight. From experience you can say that in practice the effect is limited because the cargo bikes are not ridden as fast and as sharply as a sporty mountain bike. The long charging time of the Babboe of more than seven hours is also criticized. When buying a bike, however, it is not a problem to upgrade to a more powerful charger. However, if you charge faster, you also draw more amps. That’s not a problem with a bike, but you shouldn’t plug several quick chargers into one junction box.

Important tip from ADAC: Pay attention to the drive support. There are big differences there. If you have to cope with steep climbs, you should definitely make sure when buying that the bike can climb them. The background: If the drive is tuned for trekking and not for mountain, the motor support “dies” mercilessly at slow speed and a certain incline – from about 10 percent. Even in a flat city like Hamburg, the e-bike stops on the Elbe slope (e-bike – this is how you turn a normal pedelec into a mountain bike).

More like a real bike

Summary of the ADAC: “Sporty riders, who often ride on uneven or sloping routes, have more fun with the single-track e-cargo bikes that have now been tested than with the two-track ones.” Even if you drive a little more comfortably with them and enjoy more stability when parking and loading. The Bullit has solved child safety well: Here the children sit in a protected passenger compartment.

But the test also shows that e-cargo bikes are usually very expensive. If you want to spend less, you can read our test of a mini cargo bike for less than 2000 euros (E-cargo bike Radwagon4 – modular, compact and damn cheap). The storage problem is added to the price. Regardless of the type, bikes priced over 4000 euros should not be parked on the street. Even a good lock cannot secure it.