E-Biking With KBO: My Hands-On Experience with All KBO Models

KBO e-bikes overview featured image

KBO has swiftly emerged as a noteworthy name in the electric bike industry, distinguishing itself through a combination of quality and affordability. Despite being a newer entrant, their growth trajectory and expanding selection of e-bikes have captured the attention of cycling enthusiasts.

In this updated overview of KBO electric bikes, we delve deep into the brand’s offerings. My extensive experience with these bikes, including rigorous testing of most models, has given me a profound understanding of their capabilities, nuances, and the value they bring to riders.

Additionally, having closely followed KBO’s evolution over time, I am well-positioned to provide insights that go beyond surface-level observations.

This overview is designed to equip you with all the necessary information to make a well-informed decision about KBO’s diverse range of electric bikes.

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Table of Contents

KBO E-Bikes Overview

2 KBO electric bikes
Photo: KBO

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KBO, established in 2018, has quickly risen to prominence in the electric bike market, especially in the United States. With a central warehouse in California, they efficiently cater to a wide customer base across the country.

At the core of KBO’s approach is its commitment to manufacturing high-quality e-bikes while maintaining prices that appeal to a broad range of consumers. This is achieved by adopting a direct-to-consumer model, effectively eliminating the cost markups typically associated with middlemen.

Despite being a relatively young brand, KBO’s range of e-bikes is impressively diverse, covering nearly every possible need a rider might have. Their lineup includes:

  • all-terrain e-bikes for the adventurous
  • cruiser electric bikes for those who seek comfort
  • commuters for the everyday rider
  • city bikes for urban explorers
  • folding e-bikes for space-conscious individuals
  • and even a cargo e-bike for those needing extra carrying capacity.

In the following sections, I will introduce you to each of KBO’s e-bike models in detail. Having extensively tested and kept a close eye on these bikes, I’m excited to share my insights and help guide you toward the KBO bike that best fits your lifestyle and riding preferences.

KBO Electric Bikes Reviews

Get a $20 discount on all KBO e-bikes with our unique coupon code: EW20

KBO K-Series – Stylish Folding E-Bike

Photo: Electric Wheelers

The KBO K-Series emerges as a standout in the foldable e-bike market, offering an exceptional blend of performance, convenience, and value.

This series is highlighted by its lightweight design, easy folding mechanism, and robust 500W motor, capable of speeds up to 20MPH. Equipped with a 48V 10.4 Ah LG lithium battery, it promises a range of up to 45 miles, catering to both daily commutes and adventurous explorations.

Features like the Shimano Tourney 7-speed gear system, mechanical disc brakes, and front suspension ensure a smooth, safe ride across various terrains. Its affordability and practicality make the KBO K-Series a top choice for urban cyclists.

My Experience with a KBO K1

KBO K1 ebike
Photo: Electric Wheelers

Riding the KBO K-Series has been nothing short of transformative. From the moment I unfolded it for the first time, the bike’s intuitive design and ease of use were apparent.

Its compact size belies a powerful ride, with the 500W motor providing ample speed and torque for urban adventures. The battery life exceeded my expectations, effortlessly supporting longer rides without frequent recharges.

Shifting gears was smooth, enhancing my control over the bike’s performance. The comfort of the ride, even on uneven city streets, was significantly improved by the front suspension.

In essence, the KBO K1 has redefined my daily commute, blending efficiency with the joy of cycling.

KBO Tornado – All-Terrain Electric Bike

Step-over and step-thru versions of the KBO Tornado
Photo: KBO

KBO Tornado is an all-terrain electric bike that is suitable for all kinds of activities. You can just commute with it to work or school or ride it in the forest trails as training.

The Tornado comes with a 750W rear hub motor, which provides a top speed of up to 25 mph. If you are tired and don’t want to pedal at all, you can use a half-twist throttle. Then the top speed is 20 mph.

The e-bike has a quality battery with Samsung or LG cells. It contains 672 Wh of energy capacity, which will provide up to 45 miles of range.

Additionally, the bike has all the necessary accessories like full fenders, a rear rack, and a front light. Also, the bike has both step-over and step-thru frames in selection.

My Experience

Riding the Tornado, I was immediately struck by the power of its motor. Achieving a top speed of 25 mph with pedal assistance and 20 mph using the half-twist throttle, offered a satisfying blend of speed and control.

my kbo tornado
Photo: Electric Wheelers

As I navigated various terrains, the Tornado’s 4-inch fat tires adapted seamlessly, providing the necessary grip and stability. Its mechanical disc brakes, paired with 160mm rotors, although effective, made me wish for hydraulic brakes for a smoother and more consistent braking experience, especially on rough terrains.

From my experience, the KBO Tornado is well-suited for those who seek an all-purpose e-bike. It’s perfect for off-roading enthusiasts, daily commuters, and recreational riders who appreciate versatility and robust performance.

However, riders who prioritize hill-climbing prowess or require repeated, intense braking, might find the Tornado’s specifications a bit limiting.

KBO Oasis – Cruiser Electric Bike

step-over and step-thru versions of KBO Oasis cruiser electric bikes
Photo: KBO

KBO is always looking for ways to bring new and interesting models to the market. One of the recent launches is the KBO Oasis cruiser electric bike.

One of the most spectacular features of this bike is its look. The frame of the Oasis is inspired by an old-school beach cruiser bicycle. However, while cruiser bikes usually come with single-speed drivetrains, the Oasis is equipped with Shimano 7-speed derailleur.

And of course, the bike also has a 500W motor, which lies in the rear hub. The battery is hidden in the frame but it’s still removable. So you can take the battery with you and charge it in your room.

The bike is meant to ride in urban environments and therefore, it doesn’t have a suspension system. However, the tires are quite wide, so some occasional bumps on the road won’t be an issue.

My Experience

Riding the KBO Oasis was an experience that beautifully combined style and functionality. As a cruiser electric bike, it captures the essence of a relaxed, enjoyable ride, which is immediately apparent from its stylish frame, reminiscent of an old-school beach cruiser.

KBO Oasis I managed to test ride with
Cruising on the beach with KBO Oasis. Photo: Electric Wheelers

Navigating through the city on the Oasis was effortless. Shimano derailleur gearing offers a range of gears that are not typical in traditional cruiser bikes. This feature significantly enhances the bike’s versatility.

The absence of a suspension system was noticeable but compensated for by the bike’s wide tires, which handled bumps and minor road imperfections with ease.

The Oasis confidently promises up to 55 miles on a single charge, which I found to be quite accurate during my testing. This range is more than sufficient for daily commutes and leisurely city explorations.

The bike’s mechanical disc brake system left room for improvement. The average stopping distance was adequate for a cruiser, but the upgrade to a more responsive braking system could enhance the overall safety and handling of the bike.

From my rides, it’s clear that the KBO Oasis is ideal for those who value both aesthetics and comfort in an e-bike. It’s perfect for casual city riders and those who enjoy leisurely cruises around town.

The bike’s accessible price point, combined with its range and style, makes it an appealing option for a wide range of riders.

KBO Breeze – Commuter e-Bike

step-over and step-thru versions of KBO Breeze electric bikes
Photo: KBO

Riding the KBO Breeze Step Through was an illuminating experience, combining the practical aspects of a commuter bike with the comfort and ease of a step-through design. Priced at $1,499, it sits in the lower to mid-range category for commuter e-bikes, which sets a certain expectation for its performance and components.

The KBO Breeze strikes a fine balance between function and form. Its upright riding position and comfort-focused design make it ideal for urban commuting rather than racing or high-speed adventures.

The bike pleasantly exceeds the typical Class 2 speed limit, topping out at around 22 miles per hour, achievable via both throttle and pedal assist. This slightly higher speed range is a welcome feature, offering a bit more versatility in various riding scenarios.

both kbo breeze variants - step over and step-through
KBO Breeze comes in both frame styles: step-over and step-through. Photo: Electric Wheelers

One of the most notable aspects of the Breeze is its battery capacity. The 48-volt, 16-amp-hour (768-watt-hour) battery is larger than average for bikes in this price range, translating into impressive range capabilities.

On throttle mode, it delivers around 35 miles, while in pedal-assist mode, the range extends to approximately 55 miles. This extensive range, combined with a comfortable saddle, makes the Breeze a joy to ride over longer distances.

Micah Toll, in his review, echoes these sentiments. He appreciates the Breeze’s comfortably responsive pedal assist and notes the slight lag in the cadence sensor, which is manageable and in line with the bike’s price range.

Toll also highlights the large battery capacity and the sleek integration of the battery into the frame, which enhances the bike’s overall aesthetic.

The step-through nature of the frame is another point of praise. It makes the Breeze accessible to a broader range of riders, including shorter or heavier individuals who might find a traditional frame challenging to mount. The bike’s load capacity of 300 pounds also adds to its appeal for heavier riders.

For commuters, the Breeze checks all the boxes with its full metal fenders, rear rack, and integrated lights. These commuter essentials ensure practicality for everyday transportation needs, not just recreational riding.

Get a $20 discount on all KBO e-bikes with our unique coupon code: EW20

KBO Hurricane 2.0 – City e-Bike

KBO Hurricane urban e-bike
Photo: KBO

The Hurricane is a lightweight city commuter. It’s one of those electric bikes that doesn’t even look like one. The battery is hidden in the frame and the motor is quiet.

The bike positions itself uniquely in the e-bike market, prioritizing the essence of traditional cycling while subtly integrating electric assistance. This approach resonates with riders who seek the familiar feel of a conventional bike with the added benefit of electric power.

As the “2.0” in the name suggests, it’s already a second generation of this e-bike. While the first-gen model was a belt-drive e-bike, the 2.0 is a chain drive. Also, the 2.0 has a bigger battery and a more powerful motor.

Talking about the motor, it’s located in the rear hub and has 350W of power. However, the peak power is 500W. Unlike other KBO ebikes, the Hurricane doesn’t have a throttle.

It means you’re more engaged with pedaling, making the ride feel more organic and less dominated by electric assistance. This feature particularly appealed to me, as it preserved the core cycling experience while providing enough boost for challenging terrains and longer rides.

kbo hurricane by the sea
KBO Hurricane 1.0 with a belt drive. Photo: Electric Wheelers

The battery of the Hurricane is built by Panasonic and is impressively integrated into its sleek frame. This battery size is sufficient for moderate distances, offering a range that balances the bike’s physical and electric components harmoniously.

The micro display, minimalistic yet informative, allows riders to focus more on the journey and less on metrics. This design philosophy extends to the overall frame, which Pierce from Electric Bike Report aptly describes as giving off “stealth fighter jet vibes.”

In terms of tires, the 32c on 700c rims offer a good balance between speed and comfort, capable of handling urban terrains effectively. The Cell Royale Royal Gel saddle adds to the comfort, making longer rides more enjoyable.

However, the Hurricane’s performance on hills is where its limitations are noticeable. The 350-watt motor, while adequate for flat terrains and moderate inclines, struggles with steeper hills, especially without a throttle. This requires a significant physical effort from the rider, which might not appeal to everyone.

The KBO Hurricane is best suited for riders who appreciate the essence of traditional cycling but desire the subtle assistance of electric power. The bike’s design, blending efficiency with a sleek, almost stealth-like appearance, makes it a great choice for those who value aesthetics as much as performance.

One of the best features of this bike is its price. You rarely find such quality at a price this low. If you combine the affordable price with our exclusive coupon code “WHEELERS“, it’s a total bargain.

KBO Flip – Affordable Folding e-Bike

white KBO Flip folding electric bike
Photo: KBO

KBO Flip was the company’s first folding electric bike. It was built with practicality in mind.

One of the best features of the bike is you can fold the frame in half, collapse the handlebar stem, and easily fit it in places where no other bike will fit.

For example, you can put the bike in the trunk of the car and take it on your next trip. Or if you live in a small apartment, you can store the e-bike in the closet when not riding.

Besides practicality, the bike has solid performance too. It comes with a 500W motor and a comfortable throttle, so you can ride the e-bike without pedaling.

The 15.6Ah battery provides up to 30 miles of range in pure electric mode. On pedal-assistance mode, you can ride as far as up to 55 miles on a single charge.

My Experience

The KBO Flip presents itself as an ideal choice for those seeking a practical, user-friendly, and affordable e-bike experience. As someone who appreciates both the technical aspects of e-bikes and the simple joy of riding, my experience with the KBO Flip was refreshingly straightforward.

white KBO Flip folding ebike
Photo: Electric Wheelers

This bike isn’t about high-speed thrills or top-tier components; it’s about accessibility, ease of use, and comfort, making it perfect for leisurely rides, vacationers, or those who prefer a more relaxed approach to biking.

Riding the KBO Flip was a comfortable experience. The “Mini fat” tires (20 by 3 inches), combined with a modest front fork suspension and a well-cushioned saddle, handle light off-road conditions and urban terrains with ease. This makes the bike suitable for a variety of environments, from city streets to mild nature trails.

However, it’s important to note the bike’s limitations, particularly on steeper inclines. The motor requires some pedaling effort on tougher hills. This isn’t a drawback for leisurely riding but is something to consider if you’re planning to navigate more challenging terrains.

KBO Compact – Foldable Electric Bike

red KBO Compact folding e-bike
Photo: KBO

Although the company already had a folding e-bike, they decided to manufacture another one – KBO Compact. Actually, it’s an improved version of the KBO Flip.

First of all, the Compact has a 48V battery instead of the 36V on the Flip. Also, the Compact has a 750W motor instead of a 500W motor on the KBO Flip.

It means, the KBO Compact has better acceleration and is capable of climbing steeper hills. Also, more power comes in handy, when you need to carry more cargo.

Another difference you probably noticed is the frame design. The KBO Compact has a low-step-through frame, which makes it much easier for the riders to get on and off the bike.

My Experience

Assembling the bike was remarkably easy, almost entirely pre-assembled, making the setup process smooth and user-friendly.

red KBO Compact on the beach
Photo: Electric Wheelers

The bike’s design, especially the step-through frame, made mounting and dismounting effortless, a feature I found particularly appealing for riders of varying heights and ages. The comfort of the ride was notable, with effective suspension and a plush seat that handled diverse terrains well, from park pathways to beachside trails.

Performance-wise, the KBO Compact excelled in its versatility. The pedal-assist system, with its different levels, provided adequate support for various riding conditions. Whether cruising along the beach or navigating through rocky paths, the bike felt stable and responsive.

The mechanical disc brakes ensured a safe and controlled ride, which was reassuring. Overall, the KBO Compact stood out as a reliable, comfortable, and enjoyable e-bike, suitable for leisurely rides and outdoor adventures.

KBO Ranger – Electric Cargo Bike

electric cargo bike KBO Ranger
Photo: KBO

Although recently mentioned folding bikes provide some cargo capacity, they are not quite cargo e-bikes. But no worries, KBO has a true cargo e-bike in its lineup too. It’s called KBO Ranger.

It’s a perfect ebike to haul kids or pick up groceries. The bike has a payload capacity of 400 pounds. The base model has a long rear rack. However, if you need more cargo space, there are lots of baskets and bags you can attach to this bike.

Since the bike is meant for carrying heavy loads, it must have a strong motor and battery. It has a 750W rear hub motor, which is capable of handling all the weight. Also, the LG battery has 840Wh of energy capacity, which is enough for a 60-mile range.

Ride Experience

While I have only ridden the Range just a couple of times, I will share the experiences of Jeremy Benson and Ross Robinson from OutdoorGearLab. Here are the top 5 aspects from their testing period with KBO Ranger:

  1. Exceptional Range and Battery Performance: One of the standout experiences with the KBO Ranger was its impressive range, thanks to a substantial 840-watt-hour battery. This allowed them to travel farther on a single charge compared to other bikes, enhancing the confidence to embark on longer journeys.
  2. Powerful and Quick Acceleration: They were impressed by the bike’s power, facilitated by a 750-watt motor. This power contributed to the bike’s quick acceleration and high top speed, which consistently reached and sometimes even exceeded 24 mph. The bike’s ability to maintain speed, even on uphill sections, was particularly noteworthy.
  3. Comfortable and Maneuverable Ride Quality: Despite being smaller than other cargo e-bikes, the Ranger offered a solid ride quality. Its smaller size and 20″ wheels made it less stable at top speeds but more easily maneuverable. This aspect of the bike made it nimble and enjoyable for cruising around town.
  4. Cargo Carrying Capability: The KBO Ranger’s ability to carry significant cargo, despite its smaller size, was a highlight. The maximum load capacity of 400 pounds and a sturdy rear rack made it practical for transporting various items, proving its utility as a cargo bike.
  5. User-Friendly Interface and Assembly: The bike’s interface, including the ergonomic controls and functional display, was easy to use and intuitive. Additionally, the assembly process of the Ranger was straightforward and simpler than many other models, adding to the overall positive experience.

Overall, their testing revealed the KBO Ranger as a high-performing, versatile cargo bike with a great balance of power, range, and usability, making it a strong contender in its price range.

KBO E-Bikes FAQs

What does KBO stand for?

KBO means Killer Bike Option.

Where is KBO Bikes based?

The headquarters of the KBO Bikes is in London, England. However, they don’t sell bikes anywhere but in the United States. KBO serves all its customers from the warehouse located in El Monte, California.

Where are KBO Bikes made?

KBO electric bikes are made in Asia. They use top-quality batteries from Samsung and LG, which are both South Korean companies. Most other components of KBO ebikes are also manufactured in Asia.

How much is a KBO Electric Bike?

KBO electric bikes are relatively affordable. Their goal is to provide the best value ebikes for all lifestyles. KBO’s most affordable models start from $900 and the most expensive models are less than $2,000.

How long is the warranty of KBO ebikes?

All KBO electric bikes are covered with a 2-year all-inclusive warranty.

Conclusion: Is KBO a Good Bike?

KBO’s lineup of electric bikes showcases the company’s commitment to offering a diverse range of e-bikes that cater to various cycling needs and preferences.

The strength of KBO as a company lies in its ability to blend key elements like style, functionality, and affordability across its models.

Their bikes are designed with particular attention to the needs of modern riders, whether for urban commuting, leisurely cruising, or versatile cargo carrying.

The combination of powerful motors, efficient battery systems, and thoughtful design details in their bikes underscores KBO’s dedication to quality and customer satisfaction.

This focus on delivering well-rounded, accessible e-biking experiences makes KBO a noteworthy and competitive player in the electric bike market.

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