Battery: 720 Wh
Max estimated range: 45 miles
Max assisted speed: 28 mph
Motor: 1130W (Peak) 750W (Sustained), 48V Brushless Rear
Gearing: Shimano Acera 8-speed rear derailleur
Wheel diameter: 26 inches
Weight: 73 lbs.
These days, many ebikes make no secret of their electric support. The Aventon Aventure is one such model, designed for rough roads, country trails, plus a little mountain biking (or alternately, antiquing) on the side. It's a heavy-duty ebike that includes some very considerate design touches.
Yet the Aventon Aventure is aggressively priced at $1,899. That's only a couple of hundred above the bargain messenger bikes currently flooding the market, and it's nearly $1,000 less than some of its direct competitors, such as the Biktrix Stunner. Moreover, Aventon includes a controller with a clear color display and connected smartphone app for tracking your sojourns. Throw in a powerful battery and some wardrobe saving wide fenders to cover its 4-inch fat tires, and the Aventon Aventure presents an attractive package that makes it worthy of our best electric bikes list.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Price and availability
Pricing for ebikes depends a lot on components, design, and whether it has been cobbled together from off-the-shelf parts or designed from the ground up. The Aventon Aventure is a little of both. Its frame has been specially designed to smooth over the rough edges of many competing ebike designs, with the removable battery seamlessly integrated into the frame, for example. Yet it is priced to be competitive against not only more sophisticated designs but also against knock-off fat-tire ebikes favored by urban messengers.
The $1,899 Aventon Aventure is the company's top model. It's available directly online or via retail bike dealers. If you're comfortable aligning handlebars and bolting on fenders, the Aventure is easy enough to finish assembling by following instruction videos, although trying before buying argues in favor of visiting your closest bike shop to take a test ride. Aventon's other models include a straight commuter bike called the Level for $1,699, as well as a lesser-powered but lighter Pace cruiser for $1,499.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Design
The Aventure puts the rider in an upright sitting position, much like other cruiser and trail-riding designs. We tested an "electric red" step-through model, but the Aventure also comes in a more conventional frame with a low-rise top tube. Both models offer pedal assist as well as full-throttle modes. So if you're really out of breath, you can always use your thumb to get you over the next hill.
Where most fat-tire ebikes simply bolt the battery onto the down tube and tie off the power cables around the frame, Aventon has tidied everything up, integrating the cables and battery into the aluminum frame, which makes its wider body look a little like a motorcycle gas tank. It gives the ebike an impression of power and authority. The battery is locked into the frame, but it can be removed for security or charging.
The Aventure also comes standard with full-fenders to keep the dirt off, and wide handlebars for an easy riding stance. A color LCD controller and front and rear lights are also standard, as are hydraulic brakes and a shock-absorbing front fork with 80mm of travel.
All this protection and brute force comes with a price: weight. At 73 pounds, it's not exactly light on its wheels.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Performance
The Aventure fat tire bike has both automatic pedal assistance and a throttle button for full-on electric power. In either mode, it's limited to 20 mph, but the settings can be changed to deliver a maximum speed of 28 mph (making it a so-called class 3 ebike). During scores of miles of testing, we liked having the option of using a throttle assist, especially when we discovered that our appetite for hills had exceeded our abilities.
On dirt and gravel roads, the Aventure's 4-inch wide tires, front shocks, and power assist performs very well, adding a whirring noise from the bike when full electric boost is enabled. It's not so loud as to be distracting, but if you're thinking of sneaking up on someone riding a carbon fiber bike on a quiet country road, forget it. At full speed, potholes can still give you a rude, uncomfortable surprise, but you won't feel that you're about to lose control. Moreover, the standard Bengal hydraulic brakes will bring the bike to a halt in a jiffy.
Of course, when it comes to off-roading you shouldn't expect an ebike that's designed to plow through heavy gravel and up rutted trails to handle like a 20-pound mountain bike. And the Aventure does not. We did take it up some tortuous trails and it managed to climb over rocky paths without too much trouble, but heading downhill was another story. The added weight and responsibility of ferrying a 70-pound-plus bike down a steep path delivered more thrills than we originally anticipated.
We did find the Aventure had one notable performance characteristic. It uses a rear hub motor versus some more expensive ebikes that use a mid drive motor. That difference can often affect how smoothly — or rather roughly — an ebike applies electric assistance. Indeed, we found the Aventure had a distinct turbo lag, with a definite delay in the power boost when you apply extra pedal input. This characteristic is by no means unique to the Aventure and may be a minor programming and sensor coordination issue, but we found it noticeable particularly when we wanted immediate help. On the other hand, we also became accustomed to the delay, just as one becomes accustomed to single-pedal driving in an EV or to stop-start systems on cars that shut off the engine at red lights.
For electric power, the Aventon Aventure offers 5 levels of pedal assistance. That's what most ebikes offer, but because the Aventure offers more total power than many other models, an additional boost level (or two) would be helpful. For example, to get up country hills we often found that level 2 made us work a little too hard, while 3 was too easy; something in between level 2 and 3 would be the Goldilocks electric assist point.
Aside from the minor criticisms, we found the Aventon Aventure was a capable country ride. And there were some safety features we really liked. The included head and tail lights, especially on backcountry roads where cars don't often expect to encounter bikes, were very helpful. The Aventon Aventure's rear light will stay on and when you apply the brakes it automatically flashes.
Another advantage we found the Aventure had over other ebikes was its large, color LCD controller. It is much easier to follow and use to change settings, especially compared to monochrome Bafang controllers, which can be about as easy to understand as Kantian metaphysics. Aventon even includes a dedicated button next to the throttle for turning the headlights on and off. No more wasting time trying to figure out an infuriating button combination just to turn on the darn lights.
You can also connect the Aventon Aventure to a smartphone app, something more models should offer as a matter of course. The Aventon app will record your rides, if you like, and inform you of total calories burned, CO2 reduced (by riding instead of driving), the number of trees you've saved, and the length of your ride.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Battery life and range
Aventon rates the Aventure's battery for 45 miles, which is about typical for an ebike. However, as they say, your mileage may vary, depending on the weight of the rider, how often you push the full-throttle button, and how many hills you try to tackle.
We found after about 20 miles of unrestricted hill and dale riding in Vermont, the Aventon Aventure usually had about 28 percent power left according to its display. Aventon offers some additional range examples that seemed to agree with our results; with a 180-pound rider on level terrain and using a level 3 power assist, it rates the ebike range at about 33 miles, for example.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Competition
Fat tire ebikes are a very popular category these days. You'll see such ebikes on downtown streets, suburban avenues, and country roads. They tend to be less expensive than svelte road bikes and offer more stability and a comfortable riding position that appeals to a wider audience. So the Aventon Aventure has a lot of competition from models from Biktrix, Rad Power, and many others.
While it may not offer as smooth a ride as the Biktrix Stunner, the Aventon Aventure is almost $1,000 less. It's also comparable to the Rad Power RadRover 6 Plus Step-Thru, which doesn't offer as many design niceties and is still $100 more than the Aventure.
Aventon Aventure Ebike review: Verdict
By including some thoughtful design touches and extra tech, like the more advanced controller and associated smartphone app, the Aventon Aventure manages to distinguish itself in what has become a very crowded category of fat-tire ebikes. Better still, it's priced well below models that use more high-end components and below even some that try to compete on price alone. So if you're looking for an ebike that can handle country dirt roads and city potholes, don't overlook the Aventure.