Ongoing reliability of Kalkhoff/Focus Impulse 2 motors

Peter Thornton

Pedelecer
Apr 15, 2017
104
67
70
Kendal
If you're looking at Bosch powered bikes at around the £1,500 - £2,000 mark you'll find that they all use similar running gear, brakes, gears etc. It comes down to style of frame, things like mudguards/racks or making sure there are lugs to fit them (if that's what you want) then there's the bits you can't see such as wheel and head bearings etc. My Bosch powered Kalkhoff seems to be of decent quality and it's reputation is such that I assume the hidden bits are also built to a high standard.
If I were buying again now I'd be looking at Kalkhoff or Cube with a Bosch motor.
 
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Ocsid

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 2, 2017
317
210
78
Hampshire
Not sure the "will help" is right as the point of concern with this thread's discussion is the reliability of the motors, not something addressed in the link. Even with alternative motor builders we are now hearing elsewhere on this forum that some others are proving "disappointing".

Can I ask please that given the units in the thread are specifically crank drives, which makes in that technology are the more reliable?
 
D

Deleted member 4366

Guest
All those bikes have massive marketing campaigns behind them, which I reckon is why they've chosen those particular ones. Every time you see a magazine, newspaper article or TV programme, it's the same bikes featured. It's not because they're good bikes.

The recent Gadget show one had the Volt, the Brompton and the Gtech. The guy that they were trying to help, who asked them to help him get to work unsweaty, hated them all so much that he said he was going to continue with his normal bike.
 

Trevormonty

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jul 18, 2016
1,135
564
14
NZ
Not sure the "will help" is right as the point of concern with this thread's discussion is the reliability of the motors, not something addressed in the link. Even with alternative motor builders we are now hearing elsewhere on this forum that some others are proving "disappointing".

Can I ask please that given the units in the thread are specifically crank drives, which makes in that technology are the more reliable?
My wifes Shimano E6000 Steps motor has been reliable (4500kms and counting), better than the 1800km from my 1st bosch cx motor. Haven't read any recent reliability issues with E6000.
Better display and controls than Bosch.
 
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RobF

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 22, 2012
4,732
2,310
Pro rata, I reckon the Bosch is the most reliable, given that literally millions have been sold.

Which doesn't help if you get one of the occasional duffers.

I've not heard of many problems with Yamaha or the Steps E6000, but the newer Steps E8000 emtb motor hasn't got off to the best of starts.

The Impulse is the one that sticks out for all the wrong reasons, so that's the only one I absolutely would not buy.
 

E-Wheels

Pedelecer
Aug 16, 2016
227
103
but the newer Steps E8000 emtb motor hasn't got off to the best of starts.
What is the issue/s with the E8000?
 

E-Wheels

Pedelecer
Aug 16, 2016
227
103
They stop with overheat alarm if pushed to hard on high assist level but OK after it cools down. Not fatal like CX bearing issues.
Probably not a good choice of drive for the Australian summer then
 
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Trevormonty

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jul 18, 2016
1,135
564
14
NZ
Probably not a good choice of drive for the Australian summer then
Only if you regularly do extended big climbs in max assist. I spend most of my time in eco or tour so it wouldn't bother me. All reviews rate it best motor and extra batteries are about 30% cheaper than bosch.
 
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hannesd

Pedelecer
Nov 12, 2017
31
3
45
belgium
Hmmm, sadly my impulse motor has failed,

HI, if your motor has failed and out of warranty, i'd take the chance in taking it apart and trying to fix it ,instead of dumping it for no money.
it might be an easy fix as the pawls, and then you could be on the road again for peanuts.
 

Hege

Finding my (electric) wheels
Dec 8, 2017
8
1
52
Norway
You are simply a troll.

Hi

Sorry for the late reply and thank you for your patience up until this point.

In answer to your questions

Artsu: The main reason for the motor failure was one of a few issues combined. The first one being a software timing issue which cause the internal pawls to catch, which in turn caused lateral movement in the bottom bracket resulting in the infamous clacking sound. However with these issues coupled with the final major issue which was one of human error during the motor assembly process which resulted in the wrong lubricant being used causing the motor to overheat resulting in complete motor failure. This resulted in 2015 some batches being effected and some not.

Perseus: I can confirm after being involved with Electric Bikes for 14 years there has never been a better time to own an Electric bike now that the whole industry is behind this sector and big names such as Bosch, Yamaha, Kalkhoff and Shimano have all invested heavily in to making the product the most feasible electric transport system in the world and the most successful form of electric transport out there. 50cycles takes its customer service extremely seriously and apart from customer that have received refunds over the years the remainder which is now well over 20000 customers we have managed to keep on the road no matter what. This has not been an easy task over the years, as Electric Bikes are not the easiest product to sell and service as some people may imagine. The prices of ebikes are also more affordable and I would recommend visiting our show rooms to try the best model suited for your needs. We do not apply heavy sales tactics but believe it is better for you to be able to make your own choice with advice from our expert product staff. Once you own a bike and take good care of it as you would any machine with moving working parts it will get you from AtoB for many many years. Battery life is well over 5 years now at which point it would have degraded by only 40% giving on a 17amp battery a distance that most people would need to do per day.

4bound: There is really no need to worry as the motor failures described as above would tend to happen in the first month of ownership. Any bike that comes in for a service is given the latest software up date. It is always a good idea to service your bike regularly and ask your local 50cycles dealer to update this for you at anytime free of charge.

Nemesis: We have not experienced motor failures related to the above issues outlined to Artsu above since 2015 models some of which were sold in 2016 unaware of the above problem until mid 2016. We believe all motors with this problem have now been fixed for the customer at no cost and we hope minimal inconvenience.

To confirm since this malfunction bought on by a chain of issues I can confirm the following improvements have been made.

1) Firstly and most importantly the application of Lubricants is now performed by robots so there is no chance of human error ever again.

2) A better membrane is used to prevent water induction and overheating.

3) The ratchet that the pawls sit in are now polished to prevent any damage being caused even in the unlikely event of a software timing issue.

4) The bearing in the bottom bracket is now larger to prevent any lateral movement caused by the above issues which resulted in the clacking sound.

As with all product developments and Kalkhoff amazing testing facilities each and every components is constantly review to make each new seasons bikes just that little bit better.

We are 100% confident and satisfied in the Impulse motor systems. Luckily our UK backorder in 2015 did not have many motor failures only resulting in around 50 bike motor changes plus a few of the warranty replacement were also faulty because they were issue before the cause was known.

With our own branded Beat Bike model we have still opted for the Impulse 2.2 to have on our own models, even through we have the option to use any on the market place. The reason being is that there is still not a better motor and battery combination on the market that provides such consistently high torque, battery range, long life and reliability as the Impulse system. Which is now the most widely used motor system across Europe.

However I do sincerely apologies to any customers that may have been caught up in this problem and hope you are now enjoying your electric bike to its full potential.

Kind regards

Scott
So how to get new motors to my Kalkoff bike that is not giving enough power/assist?
 

Hege

Finding my (electric) wheels
Dec 8, 2017
8
1
52
Norway

larroya

Finding my (electric) wheels
May 9, 2018
11
1
42
belfast, northern ireland
hi, my impulse 2.2 start changing behaviour after wee click, is more noise, vibrations and little bit less power... when i pedal backwards little bit its sorted and its working ok, but looks like i have do it more often. I asked my kalkhoff dealer in belfast two months ago what might be wrong, but they said they didnt get any answer from kalkhoff/in 2 months/, so anyone know if might be warranty case or might be my fault. motor is 8 months old 3700km
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
49,299
27,014
hi, my impulse 2.2 start changing behaviour after wee click, is more noise, vibrations and little bit less power... when i pedal backwards little bit its sorted and its working ok, but looks like i have do it more often. I asked my kalkhoff dealer in belfast two months ago what might be wrong, but they said they didnt get any answer from kalkhoff/in 2 months/, so anyone know if might be warranty case or might be my fault. motor is 8 months old 3700km
It sounds like a failure of the crank freewheel pawls, but do get them to fit a new motor under the two year warranty ASAP. The problem is well known and it is definitely a warranty matter.
.
 
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redalexx

Pedelecer
The current failures in the Pedelecmonitor:

- most failures are clacking noise with not properly working pawls
- one is noise with heavy vibrations at 1.600km (motor production date was end of 2016)

I have the same opinion like @flecc --> warranty issue. It's a well ... very well known problem.