3 Weeks of Ownership - early review for TC MAX
Some questions which people have asked me which might be of interest to others, maybe...
Q. What's it like to ride?
A. Very fun, very easy. I kinda like riding a silent bike, have to get used to not having a foot brake or gears though. For long rides the seat starts to feel quite hard on your arse.
Q. How does it go with a pillion passenger?
A. My gf and my combined weight is 130kg. The extra weight of a pillion passenger doesn't seem to affect range or speed much.
Q. What's the top speed?
A. Hard to find a road where I live where I can test this. I've got up to 90kph (56mph) a few times, but that was on a road which was slightly uphill. Edit: I reached 100kph going slightly downhill.
Q. What's the range?
A. Assuming you only use 80% of the battery and assuming you live in the city like I do, a range of 850 metres per % of battery has been the average range I've been getting. This means if you ride a series of shortish commutes and there's a lot of stop-starting and traffic then you should be able to get a range of about 68km (42mi) per charge. If you have less stopping and a longer, smoother run then maybe you'll get a bit better than that, as long as you don't thrash it.
Q. Are the headlights good?
A. Not really, they don't seem to light up very far ahead on the road therefore I have to use high beam a bit more than I normally would. I feel the headlights could be better.
Q. What's the acceleration like?
A. I dig the acceleration.
Q. What are the brakes like?
A. The brakes seem pretty good and they don't squeak which is good. I haven't had a situation yet where I've had to slam on the brakes though but they seem solid. I seem to use the brakes a bit more than when I had gears to help slow me down so I suspect I'll be going through break pads faster but not sure yet. The brake fluid was only half full when I got the bike new which I found strange, why was it not full?
Q. How much does it cost to charge the battery (if not charging at work)?
A. My electricity provider charges me 25c/kwh, so if I have used 80% of the battery then it costs me: 0.25 x 3.2 x 0.8 = 64 cents (Aussie) to charge the battery to full.
Q. Do you have to unplug the orange cable to charge the battery?
A. No, you should just be charging the bike through the external charging port on the side.
Q. How long to charge the battery?
A. I usually charge when the battery is down to 40-50%, and it can take about 5 - 5.5hrs to charge to full.
Q. Is it better to charge the battery to 100% or slightly less?
A. I have no idea, I wish there was a definitive answer to this question.
Q. Can I carry the charger around with the bike?
A. Yes, you can fit it into the compartment above the battery and get the lid closed but it's a bit awkward to fit it in.
Q. What are the annual fixed costs for the bike?
A. In Australia (as of May 2020) for me:
$130 - rego
$100 - insurance for injury
$240 - insurance for bike & damage to other vehicles
$130 - 1000km service - July 2020 (edit)
Q. What should the tyres be pumped up to?
A. I have been doing 29 psi for the front and 36 for the back, I hope that's correct.
Q. Does the bike come with an app?
A. It does but I don't know if the app is any good because as of May 2020 it doesn't seem to work in Australia yet, I wish it did.
Q. Any issues? (July edit)
A. Some minor issues:
- Not a big deal but would prefer a button to be able to turn my indicator off.
- One of the side reflectors at the back has fallen off and is MIA.
- The rubber plug which plugs into and protects the side charging port is no longer attached to the bike, I hope it doesn't fall out somewhere.
- As mentioned in another post, I turned on my bike when I was at the park and even though the battery was nearly full the bike was telling me there was 0% battery and wouldn't go. I unplugged the battery and plugged it in again to fix this.
- A car I was parked next to reversed into my left mirror and cracked it and my dealership wasn't able to source a replacement, which is pretty bizarre. This means I'll have to purchase one from overseas. Super Soco, do you really not have replacement mirrors available in Australia?
Q. Who is this bike suitable for?
A. Anyone who can't be bothered with a clutch, who doesn't mind charging the battery while they're at work or asleep or watching TV. Someone who only needs to do short range (3-50km) round trips, at speeds of up to 80kph (50mph).
Q. Am I glad I bought it?
A. Yes, so far so good. Time will tell though whether it's reliable long term, I'll let you know...
An answer to the question about charging to 100%
Paraphrasing the eminently knowledgeable Dr Euan McTurk, only charge to 100% if you intend to use your vehicle within a day or two. If you are not using your bike/car etc for a reasonable period of time keep the SoC between 50-80%
For more info watch his video on the subject. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfE3bTRe3v8
Technically at 100% SoC the battery cells are only charged to 4.15V per cell not 4.2V to extend the life of the battery so charging to slightly less than 100% won't really make a great deal of difference. It might increase the life of the battery by a few cycles but then again it might not.
I hope this helps.
Love the bike, heaps of fun riding. Doing a level 1 range test and haven't depleted battery yet. Enjoy guys