A few months ago, we got excited over the rumours of Salman Khan’s brand ‘Being Human’ entering into the world of smartphones. But it was rather cycles. E-cycles, just to be sure.
So, we got even more excited because now it's easier to ride along footpaths without casualties. Generously enough, we got to test out the Being Human BH 27 e-cycle and here’s the lowdown.
The e-cycle works on a rechargeable battery and sports an accelerator so you can dash home faster. Of course, you can pedal your way back, but heck, this thing can zip across traffic pretty quick thanks to that 250W DC motor in the rear hub.
Being Human BH 27: Design and battery
The cycle comes in four colours black, red, white and yellow. We got the sunny-side-up one and it's a looker alright. The cycle itself is quite an attention grabber. Personally that bright yellow along the cycle frame stands out, but those black and yellow tires with white rims are the real crowd pullers.
My evening cycle runs were delightful, most of which were cut off by many Salman Khan’s fans asking for the price, a ride or any information on the cycle. Most of them just took pictures and asked where they could buy one. Apparently ₹57,577 is not a hard gulp for most Sallu fans. Surprising.
The cycle feels sturdy and strong and the LCD screen on the handlebar is made from solid plastic too. It’s not completely waterproof, a few drizzles and splashes are fine, but anything like the recent Mumbai floods and you’ll have to carry this ₹57,577 cycle on your head.
Though, that’s not possible because at 23kgs, it’s heavy. Quite big too. If you live in a building, it's important to check if it’ll fit in your elevator to take upstairs for charging. Luckily I live on the first floor so picking it up a few steps wasn’t that difficult.
It comes with a charger (with a very short cord) for the 36V 7.8AH Lithium ion battery. So, you need to keep the cycle quite close to a plug point for it to charge. The Samsung battery inside the mid frame is not easily removable. You can use an L-Key to remove it, but that would mean turning the cycle upside down and then pulling out the wiring and battery together. An effort that should be avoided.
This might be a tough swallow for many, but the charger with this expensive e-cycle is made from cheap plastic. It clearly looks and feels like something that sells on the side of a questionable website. Hell, it’s even louder than my washing machine. No really, the charger makes more whirling sounds than anything in my room or house and that’s because it has a fan in it to keep it cool. It’s not all that bad though, it charges the cycle in a good 4-5 hours and the charger itself doesn’t heat up at all, so you can store it immediately after a long juice up.
Being Human BH 27: Tech and specifics
The LCD display on the left side of the handlebar is generously informative. It gives you the speed count and lets you switch between throttle mode and pedal assist. It also shows battery life and the amount of distance covered.
The LCD hub is made from quality plastic and has three buttons. Which can take a few drizzles and splashes, but nothing overwhelming. The top button has a plus sign while the lowest one has a minus sign. It’s to adjust the level of pedal assist on the cycle. The middle M button is to switch the display on/off by holding it down for 2 seconds. If you press and hold all three buttons together you can switch the voltage of the cycle between 36V and 48V. The Samsung battery inside the cycle runs on 36V, so you have to make sure it's on 36V.
The horn is loud enough to alert any unsuspecting roadside snoozers. While you can shine that white LED light on their face as well. Surprisingly enough it provides decent illumination in pitch- dark places, although you’ll need to tighten it a bit for the lamp to stay fixed in one position.
Being Human BH 27: Performance and ride
Loaded with 7-speed Shimano gears, a battery and two riding modes the cycle offers different takes on how you use it. We started with the basic, simple ole pedaling. The Shimano gears shift swiftly during rides. Workout sessions get easier and shifting to higher gears is just a push of a button away. Not once did the cycle falter in any gear shifts with me.
Cycling and comfort has a new name - Pedal Assist. The effort made is significantly less but you still feel like you’re a cycling. Changing to higher numbers will make it even easier but don’t overlook this feature because of a full throttle function. You can make serious workout rounds using it and go longer distances.
Our favourite feature about the cycle is the throttle on the right side of the handlebar. One twist and you can reach speeds of 30 km/hr on straight roads and full charge. The best way and the right way to use the throttle is when you’re moving between traffic and need that quick boost to get away. Though if you hit that lazy sweet spot, your next few days will be picking up groceries on a convenient e-cycle. That’s not to say it's useful in many ways. Uphills are easier and it could reach speeds of about 15 km/hr with 65kgs of weight sitting on it.
We would strictly recommend bolting the reflectors that the cycle comes with and wear proper protective cycling gear. Feeling the wind at 30km/hr might seem fun at first, but the cycle can get dangerous if you don’t have control. The disc brakes on the front and rear tyres bring it to a standstill in a matter of seconds. Even the front lockable suspension is sturdy and trumps tiny holes and speed breakers.
We tested the e-cycle on the harshest roads on this planet - Mumbai roads. People living here will know the atrocities caused by the potholes littered all over the city. The cycle was no exclusive here though. At first, the cycle could manage the small ignorable potholes, but we step up the test. The nasty ones will ruin the alignment and might pop the wheel off! Scary right? Well, it's no mountain bike obviously. Speeding through potholes and speed breakers should be avoided. No matter how easy it is to stand and avoid the aftershocks. The wheel is not bolted, rather it's a Quick Release system. Basically it makes it very easy to remove and replace the front tyre. Even a dummy reading an instructional manual upside down will be able to do it. That comfort can be dangerous if you ride your cycle through rough terrains and pop wheelies. Avoid it.
Cycling long distance is fun, it gives you a sense of accomplishment because the battery helps in many ways. Zip through traffic, reach places quickly, uphill assistance and my favourite - buy groceries. The seat, however, is not the most comfortable, but at least it's durable. Sensitive bums can replace it with something more comfortable or add one of those gel seat covers.
Being Human BH 27: Verdict
The Being Human BH 27 e-cycle is priced at ₹57,577 and is available on Amazon India and any Being Human store. But is that enough to venture into the comforts of e-cycle? Cycling enthusiast looking for some convenience will love the cycle.
If you’re new to the world of cycle, you might want to start off with a cheaper option or a non-electric one. Oddly enough, it's a matter of lifestyle. We recommend the cycle to anyone who can afford it and doesn’t have a thought of buying a scooter at that amount. Cycling being the main agenda here, if you’re a serious cyclist looking for some fun and comfort, this is your best buddy. For anyone else, it will either feel like a waste or a pedal-less love to laziness.
However, you might want to check your charging options before you make the purchase. Either have a big enough elevator or stay on the first floor or have a charging port in your parking area. If Bhai fans over exploding with muscles can carry a 23kg cycle up the stairs, we wouldn’t be surprised.