Q: Do I need to actually pedal on my e-bike?
A: Yes, all Niner ebikes are pedal assist. That means that there is no throttle. The motor only aids your pedaling effort, it doesn’t completely replace it. This assistance goes generally from +50% of additional power to +300% depending on the mode.
Q: How fast will my ebike go?
A: Ebikes are like regular bikes in that they will go as fast as you can pedal or coast downhill.
However, the pedal assist motor cuts out at certain speeds.
- Bosch Performance Line CX (USA): 20mph
- Bosch Performance Line CX (EU): 20kph
You can certainly pedal these bikes faster than the speeds listed above, but the motor won’t be engaged to help you.
Q: How far can my ebike go?
A: Again, as with a regular bike, technically you can pedal your ebike as far as physically possible for you.
However the pedal assist does have limited range. The more watt-hours your battery can store, the greater range you can cover. In reality lots of factors have to be taken into consideration:
- The weight of the bike and rider: the heavier the bike+rider system, the more energy required for propulsion.
- The quality of the motor: a smooth and smart motor will save energy and increase range. Niner bikes are equipped with Bosch motors, which are the benchmark on the market. Motors are also adjusted with regards to the intended use of the bike.
- The environment: road quality, wind, temperature, grade of the road, all of these play an important role.
- The amount of pedal assist input: Niner bikes are equipped with Bosch motors that have 3 assist modes. In the highest “Turbo” mode, you’ll drain the battery faster than in “Economy.”
Q: OK so how far can I go, with pedal assist, on a single battery charge?
A: Bosch suggests that a typical rider, using all four modes in average conditions can expect the following battery ranges:
Q: Where can I ride my ebike?
A: In the USA, regulations regarding ebikes vary quite a lot. Generally most Niner e9 bikes can go the same places as non-motorized bikes. However, check with your local municipality regarding access to bike paths and trails. People for Bikes offers a lot of resources here https://peopleforbikes.org/our-work/e-bikes/rides-and-routes/ regarding local ebike regulations.
In Europe, a low speed pedelec (<25km/h) can go the same places as a non-motorized bicycle.
Q: Do I need a special helmet?
A: A normal cycling helmet is sufficient for ebike riding.
Q: Do I need a special license?
A: In Europe a license is required for high-speed pedelec bikes (>45kph); otherwise no.
Q: Do I need special insurance?
A: Generally no, however it’s best to check with your insurer.
Q:: Can I fly with my ebike?
A: Getting on a plane with an E-Bike requires special authorization, please contact your airline company before booking your ticket.
Q: What is a “watt?”
A: A unit of power in the SI system. Used to measure and rate the capacity of an e-bike motor to do work. A motor that is consuming more watts generally feels more powerful and usually reaches higher speeds.
Q: What is a “watt hour?”
A: A Watt Hour (Wh) is a unit for measuring the capacity of the battery. It’s a measurement of electric charge. Watt hours rate a battery’s energy content. A watt hour is the amount of work required to produce one watt of power for one hour.
When used to rate the capacity of e-bike batteries, watt hours are generally derived from the battery’s nominal voltage multiplied by its capacity in amp hours. This measurement is useful because it allows easy comparison of the energy content of several batteries, irrespective of voltage: a 36-volt, 10Ah battery would be labeled 360Wh; a 48-volt, 7.5Ah battery would also be labeled 360Wh.
Generally, the higher the watt-hours, the longer the battery will last. Drive unit quality, settings, terrain and system weight have to be taken into consideration, however.
Q: Can I remove the battery from my Niner e9 bike?
A: Batteries are removable on all our bikes without tools; all you need is the key for opening the retaining system.
Q: How long does it take for my battery to charge?
A: The Bosch Powertube batteries used in Niner e9 bikes need fewer than 3 hours for an 80% charge and around 4.5-5 hours to be charged completely, using the standard charger supplied with the bike.
Q: Can I leave the battery on the charger unattended?
A: It’s safe to do so but we suggest not leaving your battery plugged into the charger longer than necessary for full charge.
Q: What lifespan can I expect from the battery?
A: Under normal conditions, Bosch Powertube batteries last for more than 3-5 years.
Q: How should I store the battery if not in use?
A: For longer storage we recommend you to stock the battery at ambient temperature, ideally between 50-70° F / 18-20° C. Avoid leaving your battery on your bike during cold nights or directly exposing it to the sun.
Q: What should I do if my battery goes bad?
A: Return to your Niner dealer or any Bosch authorized dealer for diagnostics, service, and safe replacement of your battery, if needed.
Never, under any circumstances, dismantle or discard your battery. Return it to an authorized dealer for recycling.
Q: Can I take the battery apart?
A: NO. NEVER. The battery contains toxic chemicals and it stores incredible amounts of energy. Just like any other energy source (such as a liquid fuel), if handled improperly outside of its safe container, it can ignite unexpectedly.
Q: How does the battery work?
A: Niner e9 bikes are equipped with Bosch Powertube batteries. These are made of lithium ion cells connected in series. Lithium Ion batteries are the most commonly used e-bike battery type. Common lithium-ion chemistries used in e-bikes include lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) and lithium manganese oxide (LMO). Lithium-ion batteries are prized for their high-energy density, low self-discharge, and lack of “memory.”
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT DRIVE UNITS AND BATTERIES PLEASE CHECK
Q: Can I ride my ebike in the rain or mud?
A: Both the motor and the battery are water resistant, so there is no problem for riding in wet conditions. Just be sensitive to trail erosion and don’t cause damage to muddy trails.
Q: Do I need a special license to ride an ebike?
A: In general, no. However it’s wise to check with your local regulations about any restrictions in place.
Q: How should I wash my ebike?
A: Ebikes are just like regular bikes. They are water resistant so you can wash as you would any normal bike. Remove most of the dirt with a hose (never use a high-pressure car washer). With a soft brush and with the aid of a bike cleaner (bike specific, do not use car or motorbike products), clean the remaining dirt. Once it’s done, rinse the bike with water to remove the washing fluid (never use a high-pressure car washer). To finish, lubricate the chain with bike specific chain lube.
Q: Is there any specific ebike maintenance required?
A: The maintenance is pretty limited and simple. Wash from time to time, apply oil on the chain, wipe it down and check brake pad wear. A visit every 3 months to your local dealer is recommended to avoid any mechanical issues.
Niner e9 Series specifics
Q: Why is Niner getting in to ebikes?
A: Our mission is to make riding on dirt, better, period. Whether it’s better bikes, better service, or advocating for better trails, we’re always pushing in this direction.
As ebike technology has improved and the bikes achieved wider adoption among riders around the globe, we realized that these bikes offer another way to make riding on dirt better.
- They offer riders better access to a broader array of trails, when challenging climbing can be prohibitive.
- They allow longer rides in shorter periods of time, opening up outdoor opportunities for busy riders.
- They let a rider carry more gear with less effort, for bigger adventures in more places.
- They’re fun, damn it!
Finally, Niner is a global brand with fans around the world. Interest in ebikes is surging globally and we want to keep our fans having fun on our bikes, both e-powered and pedal powered
Q: What sets these apart from other e-bikes?
A: The Niner team poured enormous effort into the new e9 series. Each bike has its own feature set, but collectively, they represent the best available technology merged with Niner’s in-house engineering and ride characteristics.
- The e9 series bikes rely on Bosch Performance Line CX Gen 4 motors for best in class reliability, smooth power delivery, quiet operation, and unparalleled after sales service. See below for resources related to the Bosch systems.
- The RIP e9 and WFO e9 rely on Niner-tuned suspension to deliver our signature ride quality. The suspension was honed to give supple small bump compliance and plenty of mid-stroke support. With the rider’s power being amplified by the Bosch drive system, we put particular emphasis on an active ride to ensure adequate traction for climbing.
- Details: from pivot bearings to water bottle placement, we worried about the little things so you won’t have to.
“All of the frame hardware and bearings are super beefy and durable. I think that on a bike like this having big oversized hardware and bearings is important and I am so happy to see how durable everything looks. And there’s a water Bottle mount! I know this is tough to execute on an ebike so I was really stoked to see that you guys were able to do it.” - Niner Athlete Kyle Warner
Q: We keep hearing about the Bosch 4th generation Performance Line CX motors and a mid-year update that was released. Where can we learn more about this system?
A: Note that Bosch released a software update in late June 2020 that is available for our Bosch motors. It increases the available torque to 85 Nm and adds an “Uphill Flow” feature to help push the bike and rider up and over larger trail obstacles.
First check out the Bosch product page: https://www.bosch-ebike.com/en/products/performance-line-cx/
For a review of this software update, check out the EMBN YouTube channel and their first ride on the new software: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwQr5-IrHQk
And for a comparison of the Bosch system to other available systems, the EMBN hosts created another video: https://youtu.be/HaFaav1Yojg
This software upgrade is not installed by default on any of our bikes shipped before August 2020. However any Bosch authorized shop can perform the upgrade in a matter of minutes.
Some of the best reviews and information about Bosch motors is available on mountain bike media websites. Here’s a selection:
Four of the best motors reviewed by Pinkbike
Bosch update reviewed by Pinkbike
Bosch update news by Rob Rides EMTB
Q: Why no CVA suspension like on the pedal bikes?
A: The RIP e9 and WFO e9 suspension behavior was carefully evaluated during development. The addition of pedal assist to these new bikes reduces the importance of Niner’s signature CVA system and the elaborately tuned, highly efficient pedaling platform it offers.
Simply put, maintaining hyper efficient pedaling input is less of a factor when smooth, predictable Bosch pedal assist power is supplementing the rider’s effort.
With the freedom to consider a range of proven, well-suited suspension designs, our engineers turned to (and significantly tuned up) a Horst-link 4-bar system. Turning over every rock in pursuit of performance, we adjusted the leverage ratio, shock length, stroke, orientation and mounting location to elicit Niner’s signature kinematics.
And by using a “right side up” trunnion shock mount, bearings in the rocker arm are friction-free to rotate smoothly through XX degrees. The net result is a remarkably supple, balanced suspension curve that’s equally at home going uphill or down, and ready to take on any trail
Q: Why aluminum MTBs and not carbon?
A: Multiple considerations guide Niner’s choice of materials and manufacturing. We’re always weighing material structural properties against external factors such as price, intended use, engineering complexity, and more.
In the case of the e9 series, it’s all about access. These bikes offer access to Niner’s signature designs and ride quality in a pedal-assisted system. The chance to ride a little farther, complete a dawn-patrol lap in less time, get to a sweet drop-in without needing a shuttle truck, or just get to the corner store without using a car.
Accordingly, the primary driver in choosing aluminum for the e9 mountain bikes was price. E-bikes are unavoidably more expensive than their battery-free brethren. But we want all riders to have a realistic chance to own one without busting their budgets. By building the RIP e9 and WFO e9 in aluminum, we can bring these sweet bikes to riders at more affordable prices.
“Honestly, I think that this is one of the most overlooked aspects of an ebike. The alloy frame offers such a nice and compliant ride quality and also acts as a great heatsink for the motor and also doubles as a great acoustic damper. An alloy ebike will always be a little quieter, more compliant, and run cooler in the summer than a carbon ebike. If I had to spend my own money I would prefer an alloy ebike any day of the week.” - Niner Athlete Kyle Warner.
Q: Can I use a dual crown fork on the WFO e9?
A: The WFO e9 was designed and tested with a 180mm travel fork length. An axle to crown fork length of 594mm was used. As long as a fork is no longer than this, we can approve it for use. Whether it’s a single crown or dual crown.
In general, dual crown forks with 190mm travel are OK. For example, a FOX 40 29 at 190mm travel measures 589 from axle to crown. It’s OK. And a RockShox Boxxer at 190mm travel is also OK.
Dual crown forks with more than 190mm of travel, such as the FOX 40 at 203mm and Boxxer at 200mm are NOT OK
Q: What is your stance on e-bikes and trail conflict in the USA?
A: Fundamentally, we feel that all trail users (riders, runners, horseback riders, and more) should have access to shared spaces for outdoor recreation. And we feel that different user groups, including pedal powered and e-powered riders, can all get along and be good stewards of public land. When we support each other as courteous and responsible trail users, we have a stronger voice when speaking in favor of new trails.
At Niner, we make it our mission to advocate at the local, regional, and global levels for more trails. More trails and more places to ride, run, hike, and horseback means that we all win.
Specifically regarding e-bikes vs. pedal bikes, we know that e-bike trail access is regulated differently depending on land management agencies. We support sensible regulation along with open communication between the bike industry, user groups, and land managers, to fairly accommodate and extend access to riders of all types of bikes