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RadRunner 3 Plus e-Bike Brings Massive Upgrades, Is a Do-It-All Car Replacement

There is an ongoing war on cars, and it’s being fought with increasing urgency as climate change worsens. Trying or hoping to make passenger vehicles obsolete is pointless, but not the same goes for substituting them for less polluting alternatives, wherever possible.
The RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacity 32 photos
Photo: Rad Power Bikes (Composite)
The RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacityThe RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do-it-all utility e-bike with car-like capacity
One such alternative is a bicycle – with motor assistance, if you’re keen on a sweat-free, more comfortable commute. e-Bikes have been riding the proverbial wave for the past 2+ years, starting with the first months of the 2020 international health crisis, when social distancing become the norm and public transport was no longer an option. e-Bikes are poised to continue the winning streak well beyond 2023 and, seeing how many improvements they’re getting, this should hardly come as a surprise.

A good example in this sense is the most recent addition to the Rad Power Bikes lineup. In true Rad Power Bikes fashion, the RadRunner 3 Plus is an upgrade to an existing model: the latest spin on the flagship model the Seattle-based company got started with many years ago. The 3 Plus makes the RadRunner more versatile and more customizable, effectively the ideal candidate for the do-it-all car replacement.

As a driver, you’re probably scoffing at the idea that an electric bicycle could ever be as good as your daily for your daily needs. You know what they say, though: don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. Plus, switching to an e-bike makes sense, if only for shorter trips, in crowded urban areas where congestion and pollution are serious problems.

The RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do\-it\-all utility e\-bike with car\-like capacity
Photo: Rad Power Bikes
Granted, a bicycle will never offer the same comfort and weather protection as a car, but it can still help you haul stuff or carry your weekly groceries, do the kids’ school drop-off, or take your best furry friend out to the park. It’s these activities that the RadRunner 3 Plus targets, while adding extra mobility around the city and on the trail, enhanced range, more comfort (as compared to previous-gen RadRunners, not your daily driver), and more ease of use.

The RadRunner 3 Plus is better than a cargo bike, which Rad Power Bikes also offers, the RadWagon, because it can be that and other things. It “raises the bar for what you can expect from an electric utility bike,” walking that fine line between a quality product with maximum versatility and a mid-entry price. Ultimately, that’s the biggest achievement of this bike company, after its ability to constantly adapt its offering based on customer feedback and their own experience.

The RadRunner 3 Plus comes with a redesigned step-through aluminum frame that supports a higher cargo capacity, of 350 lbs (159 kg). The rear rack is slightly extended, to make room for more cargo or a more comfortable, plush passenger seat, and you also get more mounting points for extra accessories, and a pannier-mounting rail.

The RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do\-it\-all utility e\-bike with car\-like capacity
Photo: Rad Power Bikes
As previous versions, the 3 Plus is also compatible with a range of Rad Power Bikes accessories, such as the lockable center console box. But this one is the first bike in the entire lineup to get an extra battery as a range extender, which goes under the rear rack – at an extra charge, of course. Better said, it will go there once the range extender is officially launched; of the time of press, this accessory is listed as in development.

Power comes from a 750 W rear hub motor that’s also been tweaked to handle hills with 10% more efficiency, and a 250 W motor for the EU model. Either version of the bike has 5 levels of pedal-assist, and a torque button that offers a good, quick start from zero. The semi-integrated battery is a 672-Wh lithium one, removable so you can charge it inside without having to bring the entire bike in.

The range is estimated at 25 to 45 miles (40 to 72 km) per charge, and double that with the second battery, but you should take these estimates with a grain of salt. The actual range is highly dependent on a variety of factors, from the rider’s weight or the amount of cargo, to weather conditions, riding modes, and terrain.

The RadRunner 3 Plus is here as the do\-it\-all utility e\-bike with car\-like capacity
Photo: Rad Power Bikes
The 3 Plus comes with an RST suspension fork with 60 mm of travel, Tektro hydraulic disc brakes, Kenda K905 20 x 3.3-inch tires, front and rear lights offered as standard, full fenders, and a new dual display that aims to offer a more intuitive user experience and integrate new functionality. The saddle has also been upgraded to provide a more comfy ride on the trails, because no one likes ending the day with a sore butt.

With the RadRunner 3 Plus, the company is introducing a new set of accessories, starting with the Rad trailer, which is exactly what its name implies. Compatible with all current models, this trailer adds an extra, 100-lb (45.3-kg) cargo capacity to any e-bike, and can also double as a pet carrier, if you combine it with the pet insert. Both are priced separately, of course, so budget wisely and according to your needs: the bike itself starts at US$2,499 / €2,499.

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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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