The UBCO bike is sort of a cross between a mountain bike and the likes of a Honda CT 110. Operation is very simple – simply turn the key to on, flick one of the dual side stands up, twist the accelerator on the right handle bar and off you go.
For those less experienced, the UBCO has an eco function that limits the power and speed of the bike. At 45km/hr top speed, the ride is a little rough with the 17-inch wheels. To keep the overall cost of the bike down as much as possible, higher spec levels in terms of bigger suspension were not included, as they would also increase the weight, and decrease the distance/run time of the battery.
One of the key components of the bike is the battery, which makes up quite a bit of the overall weight. The UBCO bikes are currently fitted with Panasonic 40Ah Lithium-Ion battery, which gives between 40 to 150km usage on a full charge. Like all things, this depends on its load; for example, a 50kg rider following cows on a flat cow laneway would get 100km plus, wheras a hunter with a 30kg boar on the back in the bush would be nearer 50km.
The battery doesn’t need to be removed for charging. Charging is through a socket below the key, with two USB ports (1Ah/2.1Ah) and a 10Ah cigarette-type socket. You can fit a bigger 50Ah battery in the UBCO, but that also increases the cost.
One of the good factors of the UBCO is being able to ride through some areas like the mountain bike park at Tauranga, well off limits to your petrol engine rocket.
Read the full review in issue #230 of Farm Trader magazine – on sale 18 April 2016.