I have owned my Wisper for about 5 months now and covered roughly 1000 miles so thought it was a good time to post a review.
I mainly use the bike for commuting along cycle paths, roads and gravel tracks. The Kenda Kevlar tyres have never got a puncture in my time riding and seem really strong. The reflective sidewall strip also looks nice and is an added safety feature at night. The tyres have also not dropped pressure since I initially inflated them.
The riding position is upright, which suits me. I’m not too keen on the road style of bikes with drop bars. Makes me think I’m lying down! Being 6 foot I think I am at the upper end of the limit. I have the saddle on the highest setting.
The Shimano 7 speed derailleur has not needed any tensioning or adjustment since I have been riding. 1st gear is low enough to stay sat down on some of the bigger hills in Bristol. The 7th gear in my opinion could do with being a little higher, as any speed above the 15.5mph electric limit your legs are going a bit fast!
The 250w brushless rear motor is plenty powerful enough for big hills. It has never cut out on me or got significantly hot when I’ve been riding. My version has the torque sensor rather than cadence. I found that the cadence sensor felt unnatural, the torque sensor also seems to use less of your battery power. For people with medical conditions, if you turn the hand throttle whilst peddling it overrides the torque sensor and puts it into cadence mode. I also think it does this on Power Assist Level 5 but I’m not 100% sure.
I have the 375wh battery (Bigger capacity is available, 575wh and 700wh). The farthest I have been on a single charge is 25 miles using assist level 3. There were still 2 bars remaining on the display, I think it could have easily gone another 10 miles on this charge. The battery is removable using a key which is handy for charging at work! The frame which holds the battery in place (Part of the pannier rack) has two handy brackets protruding from the sides. I’ve found that these are just the right size to hold a standard size D-Lock. The included bungee strap then holds them in place securely so that they don’t pop out going over bumps. You can also still use the bungee to secure cargo on the rack (Max 25Kgs). I also secured a pump to the rack for emergencies, luckily haven't had to use it yet!
I did find that the bolts holding the pannier rack to the frame worked themselves loose and started to squeak after going over some unexpected off road terrain. I put some Loctite on them before doing them up and they have been fine since. I believe that current models come with the Loctite pre applied.
The display is well laid out and easy to read. You can switch between KMH and MPH if you need. The built-in lights are controlled by the display which is handy when going through tunnels etc. This also turns on the backlight on the screen. Your current assist level is shown and the amount of “effort” that the motor is providing is shown above. You can also switch between total "ODO" miles covered and resettable trip miles.
The built-in lights are bright enough for the dark, and its handy that they run off the main battery. (I do have rechargeable ones mounted just in case!) The front light is a 15w LED and easily lights up the road when in the dark or in a long tunnel. The rear light is a static red RED built into the reflector. Ideally, I would have preferred this to be in its own housing without reflector as it difficult to see when it is bright out but raining, especially as the battery has a built in reflector directly above. Also, the ability to make it flash would have made it better. I would suggest adding a separate flashing light to the rear.
The brakes are Hydraulic Tektro Discs and have more than enough stopping power for this bike. I did have a problem with grinding front brakes, but the aftersales guys at Wisper were brilliant and sent new pads and discs to me through the post. After I replaced them, they were faultless. 180mm disc on the front and 160mm disc on the rear, both using the same style of brake pad.
The Suntour front forks are hydraulic and soak up any minor bumps. I did think about getting a dampened seat post to give the rear (and my rear) some suspension but I personally don't think it is worth it. The saddle is already pretty comfy for a standard one.
I personally think that Wisper has done a great job at making this Step Through unisex. I was a bit sceptical that it was a “girls bike” at first, being a 30 year old bloke, but the matt black paint job seems to make it look a little aggressive, like a stealth fighter! The majority of the wiring is hidden inside the frame which is a nice touch.
The only negatives that I have with the bike is the rear light as I mentioned, and I cant seem to find a roof mounted bike rack that fits the step through design. The Thule 598 does "just" clamp to the lower part of the frame, but it doesn't feel secure enough for me, being so low down on the bike. You can get a "fake" crossbar for them, that may open up mounting possibilities on a tow bar mounted carrier maybe. Just wish I had a tow bar now!!
All in all I think that this is a great commuter bike for a very reasonable price. I wouldn't hesitate on recommending it to anyone riding on the same sort of terrain that I do.
If anybody is thinking of buying this bike and has any questions I'd be more than happy to try and answer them