Prices for full-suspension electric moped-style e-bikes have been dropping over the last few years, but the Fucare Libra is now pushing them to all-time lows. At just $1,199, does this full-suspension e-bike have what it takes?
That’s exactly what I wanted to find out, so I tested one myself.
The Fucare Libra falls somewhere between a typical step-through electric bike and a moped-style electric bike. We often consider moped-style e-bikes to have small diameter yet wide tires, long bench seats, higher top speeds and less-than-optimal pedaling geometries.
The Fucare Libra checks the boxes for moped-style wheels, rear bench seat, coilover rear suspension and high speed. But it still has a traditional bike seat and actually feels decent for pedaling.
That puts it somewhere in the gray area between e-mopes and e-bicycles. But whatever you call it, the Libra offers some serious bang for your buck with higher performance and a modest $1,199 sticker price.
Check it out in full living color in my video review below. Then keep reading for the complete details.
Fucare Libra video review
Fucare Libra tech specs
- Motor: 750W rear geared hub motor (1,000W peak power, 80 Nm torque)
- Top speed: 31 mph (50 km/h)
- Range: 35-60 miles (60-95 km) on pedal assist
- Batteries: 48V 15Ah 720 Wh
- Weight: 80.5 lb (36.5 kg)
- Max capacity: 400 lb (181 kg)
- Wheels: 20-inch x 4.0-inch urban tires
- Brakes: Mechanical disc brakes
- Extras: Large color LCD, headlight and taillight, included padded rear rack and fenders, 7-speed gearing, front suspension and rear suspension, kickstand
- Price: $1,199
Power meets (low) price
This is one seriously fast e-bike, though it’s not quite as fast as it claims. Sure, you can get it up to 31 mph (50 km/h) based on the display (though that requires unlocking the top speed in the settings). But the speedometer on the Fucare Libra seems to run a tad bit fast, on the order or 2-3 mph high at the top end.
That means that you’re probably doing closer to 28 mph instead of an honest 31 mph. While that’s a bit of a bummer, it means the bike might slide in under questionably legal Class 3 operation (if we pretend like the throttle doesn’t get it up to full speed by itself, which it does). So perhaps there’s a silver lining in there somewhere.
Even if you lose a couple of mph compared to the displayed speed, it’s still darn fast for an e-bike. Zipping along at 28 mph (45 km/h) is thrilling for just about anyone. And as we’ve often discussed, many people actually feel safer at higher speeds since they can keep up with traffic instead of getting passed by it.
The powerful rear hub motor puts out 1,000 watts of peak power, meaning you’ll have good hill climbing in addition to just a high top speed. And with 80 Nm of torque coming out of that motor, no one can accuse this bike of looking more powerful than it is.
The 720 Wh battery isn’t particularly large but rather somewhere around average for these types of e-bikes. A couple of years ago, I might have said that was a pretty big battery, but these days, it’s par for the course on fast moped-style e-bikes.
You’ll get an honest 25 miles (40 km) or so from the Fucare Libra’s battery on throttle-only operation, and you can eke out even more range if you feel like pedaling. Don’t expect to see their advertised 60 miles (95 km) of range unless you’re planning to do most of the pedaling yourself, though. At least it’s comfortable to pedal, in case you wanted to try for that 60 miles!
The Fucare Libra’s surprisingly comfortable pedal operation was great to see, and of course, it will be important if you plan on being part of the power generation. But since most people will probably make ample use of the throttle, I’m not sure that will be a huge concern for many riders.
The bigger comfort priority is likely the suspension. The rear suspension is nice to have, but I found the front suspension fork to feel kind of cheap. It had a bit of flex to it when applying hard front braking, which is a telltale sign of a lower-budget fork. The last Fucare e-bike tested had a higher quality suspension fork, though it was also a more expensive hardtail model.
When you’ve got a nearly 30 mph e-bike priced at $1,199, I guess you’ve got to save money somewhere.
Another area for savings appears to be the brakes. They work fine, but they aren’t hydraulics. Instead, we’re looking at typical mechanical disc brakes. For a fast and heavy e-bike like the Fucare Libra (a whopping 80 pounds or 36 kg), I generally like to see hydraulic brakes that offer stronger repeated stopping power.
The only other complaint I had was that the frame area surrounding the battery is a bit wide and I would occasionally rub my ankles on it depending on how I had my feet positioned on the pedals. It’s the kind of thing where I’d certainly get used to it if the bike were my daily driver, but hopping from one bike to another makes it noticeable. You can see what I mean in my video review at the top of the article.
Aside from the heavy weight, slightly wide frame, and lack of hydraulic brakes, I find it hard to nitpick at much else. I mean, this is a rocket of an e-bike with full-suspension for just $1,199, for crying out loud!
I’d have loved to see some passenger pegs included so I could actually comfortably carry a kid on that padded rear rack. But I’ll just go ahead and say “thank you” for giving me that padded rear rack at all, especially at this price!
Being able to throttle up to fast speeds in a cool-looking bike with multiple color options just isn’t something we see very often in this price range. And there’s even the added cool factor of Fucare offering a limited-edition “Chameleon” color, which is basically a sparkly light blue. (It’s the bike in these pictures.) It sounds odd, but it looks really good. It’s only an extra $100, but it is limited to 50 units. Each one comes with an individually-numbered plate on the side to designate which of the 50 units it is.
I’m not saying these are going to become collectors units worthy of Leno’s garage one day. But it’s still pretty neat having an individually numbered vehicle as part of a limited edition run. And even when those are out, the yellow and gray colorways aren’t bad either.
So in closing, while I could have used some slightly higher quality components on the bike, it’s really hard to complain about much of anything at this price. The Fucare Libra offers seriously good performance for a budget-level price. It doesn’t have the amazing community of a SUPER73 or the monster power of an Ariel Rider, but it’s got something the others don’t: affordability.
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