Review 1000 mile review 2018 CUBE KATHMANDU HYBRID PRO 500

Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
Hi all,
I have just completed 1000 miles on the above ebike, bought last August and thought I would put up a post on my experience for the benefit of others who may be considering a purchase.

The bike has performed flawlessly, never missing a beat. The Bosch CX motor climbs like a goat (especially in Turbo), and gives a very discernible level of assistance even in Eco. I am 65, nearly 16st., have heart issues, and an ICD fitted so I use the various assistance levels pretty freely to avoid over stressing the heart, and still manage a range of of 50-60 miles quite comfortably. The motor has a definite “whirring” sound particularly in higher assistance levels, however this is not sufficient to bother me and is a small price to pay for the tremendous boost that the CX gives. I certainly would not call it noisy. The motor cut off is wonderfully gradual, between 15 and 17 mph.

Routine maintenance has comprised periodic polishing and I have twice thoroughly cleaned the drivetrain (done on the bike) using a Park chain cleaner, and lubed afterwards. I cannot comment on performance off road as trashing a lovely bit of sophisticated engineering through mud and tree roots does not appeal, and consequently I have never done it. All my miles have been done on varying road surfaces, cycleways and paths. The Schwalbe Range Cruiser tyres have no discernible wear yet, and no punctures. Brake pads are still good, and all components have performed without a hitch. I’ve not even needed to index the gears or adjust the brakes! The lights are good, although I tend to light the bike up like a Christmas tree with supplementary lights anyway. A rattly front mudguard was easily cured with 2 small pieces of inner tube wedged between the guard and a slightly loose stay.

Many seem to give the Bosch Intuvia display a poor press, however I have found it to be great, with nice big characters and very easy to use - more so than the Purion display which my wife has on her bike.

The only modifications I have done are to replace the saddle with my personal favourite, and replace the pedals with DMR V8’s, which give much better support and grip. Both these are purely personal choice. Oh, yes! I also replaced the horrible bell (a ‘pingy’ thingy, with a “Tring, tring”proper bell).

Overall then, I have been highly impressed with all aspects of the bike. It is invariable true that ‘you get what you pay for’, and around the £2000 mark seems to be a significant quality price point to aim for if at all possible. A big tick for the Bosch/Cube combo, then!
 
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Andy McNish

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 28, 2018
303
203
Great to hear. I Have a Cube Touring One Iridium with 400 mostly off road miles on it since Xmas and it also seems bomb proof (motor is the Activeline Plus on that one). Not even a squeak.

I also use the assist mainly to keep my HR under control in conjunction with an HRM.

I swapped the Road Cruiser tyres out for Marathon Plus Tourings during its free service today (I have had one puncture to date and wanted the better puncture protection and better grip on muddier riverbank paths etc. that the latter would give).

Like you I think I will change the bell out at some point too. I have moved it across to the right hand handlebar, as on the left I found I was accidentally pressing the Intuvia controller when I went to ring the bell!

Of course, I have also fitted a water-botttle holder and added some pannier and handlebar bags.
 
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Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
The bell? Ha! Ha! Halfords £6, black to match the bike, and works a treat. Still incredibly difficult to rouse someone from their earphones, though. Its on the right, for exactly the same reason as Andy. My next tyres will be Marathon Plus - had them before and I loved them, but natural meanness stops me from discarding the originals till necessary. Sorry, forgot to mention a Cube bottle holder I fitted - annoyed that when it arrived the flashes were a different shade of green - brighter, deeper green than the iridium flashes. :mad:
 

vfr400

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 12, 2011
9,822
3,931
Basildon
That's good. I have the same bell. It seems pretty good. i was just checking in case there were any better ones. I've tried hundreds of different bells. I've got a large box full of them. Some didn't even last a week. Some were loud, but people didn't hear them. Most are pathetic. This Halfords one is metal and feels pretty good quality. People not only seem to hear it, but they react much more pleasantly too, so I think it's a keeper.

Thanks for the bike review. It's always good to get some longer term info. Do you know how much it weighs. For some reason, they never tell you when it's a crank drive bike.
 

Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
Cube advertising literature states 24kg; I have just weighed mine and for some reason it comes out at 23kg including the bell ;) lol.
 

Andy McNish

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 28, 2018
303
203
With panniers (including gold u-lock and a secondary link lock) mine comes in at 30kg give or take.

Heavy enough that when I took the old Marin MTB out for a spin down the river this week I felt like I was riding a Mitsubishi Zero by comparison!
 
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vfr400

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 12, 2011
9,822
3,931
Basildon
Cube advertising literature states 24kg; I have just weighed mine and for some reason it comes out at 23kg including the bell ;) lol.
Maybe you don't have enough air in your tyres, your water bottle is empty and your brake pads are worn down.

Seriously though, you can often save a kg by fitting lighter tyres, and as I said in another thread, each kg saved means approx 1% less pedal effort to climb your hills at the same speed, or you can go up them with the same pedal effort 1% faster, or you can pedal the same and go the same speed and use 1% less battery - and probably get more punctures.
 

Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
Aaarrgh! Don't get me involved in that maths battle with Woosh on the 'Throttles Allowed' thread!!!!! I had to take Paracetamol and have a lie down after reading that epic!
 

Jon Matthews

Pedelecer
Aug 22, 2018
83
23
Hi Phil,

I have a similar bike and done a little bit less mileage in the same time. My initial problems were punctures which I've sorted with puncture resitant tires and slime. I've also lost two stones in weight and gone down 2 trouser sizes around my waist. I have noticed I use far less assistance than I used to do, but still love Turbo mode if Im doing a 45 degree incline off road. I absolutely love my ebike.
 

Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
Jon,

Cube Certainly know how to turn out a well engineered bike. I've no complaints about the quality of the frame or components. The Bosch CX is a dream. Like yourself I love riding the bike. Wish I'd also lost 2 stones though! Well done.
 

Stumac62

Pedelecer
Mar 16, 2019
30
11
Hi Phil. I'm considering getting this bike (hybrid 500 pro) after reading so many good reviews and now your review here a few minutes ago.

This will be my first electric bike.

Could you tell me how easy it is to cycle without the assistance of the motor? Does it feel like a lot heavier than a non electric?

You changed the saddle - which one did you switch too?

Cheers,
Stu.
 

Eagle

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 31, 2012
381
134
Stumac62,
The Cube Reaction Hybrid Pro 500 {and Kathmandu version} uses the Bosch Performance CX motor (75NM) which has internal gearing (2.5:1):
https://www.evanscycles.com/cube-reaction-hybrid-pro-500-2019-electric-mountain-bike-EV351064

The Cube Touring Hybrid Pro 500 uses the Bosch Active Line Plus (ALP) motor (50Nm) which has direct drive (1:1):
https://www.evanscycles.com/cube-touring-hybrid-pro-500-2019-electric-hybrid-bike-EV351083

Whilst the ALP is lower on torque than the CX, do bear in mind that above the 15.5 mph cutoff point they behave totally differently.
There is no drag with the ALP motor and it behaves like a standard, non-electric bike, unlike the CX which has considerable drag.
See post #5:
https://www.pedelecs.co.uk/forum/threads/woosh-xf08c-kit.34115/#post-490878

See post #1:
https://www.pedelecs.co.uk/forum/threads/cube-cross-hybrid-one-500-2019.33109/#post-467721

See post #29:
https://www.pedelecs.co.uk/forum/threads/cube-with-cx-or-active-plus.33471/page-2#post-486903

Don't forget to have a look at the Haibike Sduro HardSeven which has a Yamaha 70NM motor which has no drag above the cutoff point:
https://www.e-bikeshop.co.uk/Haibike-sDuro-HardSeven-5.0-2019

All ebikes look good on paper.
You need to try those on your shortlist and find out which one suits your requirements best over mixed terrain.
Good luck with your search.
 
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Phil Dryden

Pedelecer
Jun 20, 2018
225
123
67
Leicester
Hi,
As you can see from the review, I have been more than happy with the Kathmandu/CX combination. There is some drag above the cut off, but it has not bothered me. On the flat, or with a tailwind I don't find it an issue, however uphill or into a headwind could be different. Mind you, I would not be going above 15.5 in those circumstances. I can only recommend that you try out a bikes with different motors and find one which really suits your style/speed of riding. I changed the saddle for a Selle Royale - personal preference. Happy hunting, and enjoy your new bike, whatever it is! :D
 

soundwave

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 23, 2015
11,765
4,832
dongle will remove the speed limit :p
 

Jon Matthews

Pedelecer
Aug 22, 2018
83
23
Stu,

I rarely reach the speed limit uphill, when I'm on the flat our downhill I can easily exceed the limit and don't really notice it. There is definitely more drag than my analog bike but I've passed loads of fit bikers going up hills. It's really not an issue.
 

Stumac62

Pedelecer
Mar 16, 2019
30
11
Stu,

I rarely reach the speed limit uphill, when I'm on the flat our downhill I can easily exceed the limit and don't really notice it. There is definitely more drag than my analog bike but I've passed loads of fit bikers going up hills. It's really not an issue.
 

Stumac62

Pedelecer
Mar 16, 2019
30
11
Thanks for your comments John.

I'm not as fit as I used to be so definitely need the assistance of an e-bike for hills now. I would categorise my riding style as 'leisurely' but don't want to be be fighting the bike when assistance is off. I need to stop reading reviews and try some bikes out. What bike do you have?