Knaap Bike Review
We wanted to take the Knaap bike through its paces and see what we love about it and also highlight why it might not be for everyone. We will also go through some Q&A at the end and answer some frequently asked questions.
Who Are Knaap Bikes?
Knaap Bikes is a Dutch e-bike brand that was launched in 2019 with the goal of producing eye catching and practical electric bikes. The company's founders saw a gap in the market and decided to fill it. They used their extensive background in the electric bike and scooter market to create their own unique products.
A Striking And Functional Frame Design
The first thing you notice about the Knaap bike is its unique style. It almost has a retro BMX/Monkey bike style to it, but it is also rugged looking, thanks to its thick tubing and dark colour options.
This look goes hand in hand with the 'Knaap' name. Knaap, in Dutch, means young alpha male. So the fun factor and its muscular style are very fitting and on-brand.
Any young alpha male needs to carry a passenger. Therefore, the Knaap bike is a two-seater, which is very rare for an electric bike. It has a plush double saddle that is super comfortable, ideal for cruising around town and long journeys.
As the Knaap bike is a two-seater, it needs to be able to cope with the extra weight of a passenger. It does this with double-butted aluminium tubing. This creates a lightweight and responsive frame, perfect for transporting two people around town in style.
The bike sits relatively low, with the top tube being 112cm high. This makes getting on and off the bike easy. So if you wear long and flowing clothing, you don't have to struggle to swing your leg over a high top tube.
The Perfect Balance Between Power And Range
It is a good job that the Knaap bike is comfortable because you can spend a lot of time on it.
The rear hub-mounted 250W Bafang electric motor is powered by a 36V 21Ah Samsung battery. Fully charged, the battery can give you a 140km range. However, this will depend on the profile of your ride and how you use it. You won't get this range with a passenger, though.
The battery slides under the saddle for easy access, making charging effortess. It takes about 5 hours to fully charge the with the provided charger. The battery locks into the frame, so you don't have to worry about it when you leave your Knaap bike unattended.
The Knaap bike has 5 assistance levels, making it easy to manage your battery life. But, in the unlikely event of you running out of power prematurely, you can still pedal to your nearest charging point.
While using the motor's assistance, you can get up to 25 kph. This falls in line with electric bike regulations and is fast enough for most people. The motor has 80Nm of torque, which means the Knaap bike has plenty of grunt for most hills you encounter in town.
The motor runs through a 7-speed Shimano drivetrain. Therefore you get accurate and reliable gearshifting. But the advantage of using these gears with the assistance levels makes pedalling super easy, even if you are not the fittest rider in the world.
Comfortable And Safe City Riding
The Knaap bike has 20" wheels with 4" wide tyres, which has many benefits. As the company is based in Amsterdam, the bike's designers addressed a unique problem cyclists have.
Amsterdam has many tramlines that bike wheels drop into, causing many nasty accidents. The extra width of the Knaap bike wheels prevents this from happening, making it safer to ride.
Another way these wheels make riding safer is with their tyre's larger contact patch with the ground. This provides more grip, so you have more confidence that your bike will not skid, even in the wet.
Even though the Knaap bike doesn't have suspension, you will still have a reasonably comfortable ride. The ride quality isn't exactly like a Rolls Royce, but that squishy saddle and high volume tyres make it more comfortable. The tyres absorb much of the shock and vibrations that would usually be transferred into your hands and arms. If you want more comfort, you need to go for the more expensive RTD version with suspension.
But the small diameter of the wheels also gives the Knaap bike agile handling. They make weaving around traffic, pedestrians and obstacles easier while making it a fun electric bike to ride.
The Knaap bike has a few other features to make your rides safer and more comfortable. For example, it has large mudguards on both wheels. These keep the dirt from flicking up into your eyes and down the back of your jacket.
It also has a super bright LED headlight; in fact, it has 1200 lumens which is incredible for a bike light. The advantage of having a light this bright is that you can clearly see everything in front of you. Also, everyone can see you, keeping you safe in low light conditions.
The rear light is integrated into the battery, so traffic approaching you from behind can see you.
A Powerful Braking System
Knaap has equipped this electric bike with an excellent Tektro hydraulic disc brake system,
The advantage of hydraulic disc brakes is that they are responsive and easy to modulate. You get excellent feel through the brake levers, giving you lots of control.
But the discs themselves provide incredible stopping power, so you can stay safer on your rides.
Tektro is a renowned brand in the bike world. Therefore, you know that you are getting a quality product that will be reliable.
Who Is The Knaap Bike For?
You don't have to be a young alpha male to be a Knaap bike owner. One of the most significant selling points of this electric bike is that it is a two-seater.
If you want to regularly or occasionally carry a passenger, the Knaap bike is a great solution. It is ideal for running errands, commuting, visiting friends or doing the school run. This is an electric bike that can replace your car for at least some journeys, if not all of them.
Those fat tyres make the Knaap bike ideal for nervous riders or novices, as they give you lots of confidence and control. This is especially important when you have a passenger.
You will need to spend some time with any electric bike to learn how to get the most range from the battery. But the Knaap bike's extensive range is excellent, making it great for commuting or leisure rides.
With this in mind, this electric bike is pretty useful if you have a motor home. You can buy a bespoke rack for your Knaap bike, so you have a convenient mode of transport when you are on holiday.
However, you should be aware that the Knaap bike is pretty heavy. Even though it is reasonably compact, it weighs about 28kg. Therefore you may want to look at alternatives if you need to carry it up and down stairs or load it onto a bike rack often.
Does the Knaap bike come in different sizes?
The Knaap bike only comes in one size, but it has been ergonomically designed to suit most people. However, you can get the perfect riding position with two different sized seat risers.
You can choose between a 5cm and a 10cm seat riser. Most people can get away with the standard seat height. But if you are taller than 6ft 2, you may want to choose the 5cm riser. Personally I'm 6ft and I found it very comfortable.
The 10cm riser is for much taller people. The only problem with this seat height is that the rear passenger may struggle to reach the footpegs.
Can you ride a Knaap bike in the rain?
This is a valid question, as some electric bikes are not suitable for riding in wet weather. But as Knaap bikes originates in the Netherlands, they have ensured that their products have a sufficient IP rating to cope with riding in the rain.
How much weight can the Knaap bike carry?
The Knaap bike can carry a combined weight of 180kg. You can also buy optional front and rear cargo racks, making this electric bike even more versatile.
Does the Knapp bike come with a warranty?
You can have peace of mind when you buy a Knaap bike. The electrical components, such as the battery, control system, motor and display, are all covered for 2 years. You even get a 2-year warranty on the frame.
We hope you have enjoyed our Knaap bike review. As you can see, we rate this electric bike highly. We love the design, range and versatility it gives its rider. We especially like the fact that you can carry a passenger in safety.
One downside is its weight, which isn't much of an issue while riding. But, it could be problematic when you need to lift or carry it. If you're also over 6ft 2 you may want to purchase a seat raiser which would be an added extra cost to take into account.
Check out our online store if you fancy benefitting from Knaap bike ownership.