Velotric T1 e-bike review: Slick, barely-an-ebike look hides some real power

Velotric T1 e-bike against gray background

Enlarge (credit: Velotric)

I can’t get over how good the T1 looks. It’s a beautiful bike, especially in the two-tone frosted blue color of my test ride. It’s so smoothly contoured, devoid of wires and generally eye-catching that, for once, I’m more afraid of it getting stolen for its looks than for the powerful motor and battery that are well-hidden inside it. So it’s a good thing the Thunder 1 comes with a number of anti-theft features installed.

Over weeks of testing, the $1,800 T1 (initially the “Thunder 1” at launch, since renamed by Velotric) has been a fun ride. The bike has a responsive torque-sensing motor and a wide range of power options paired with actual gears. The app is about as reliable as any other Bluetooth-based single-device app (i.e., not wholly), but it provides useful data, configuration, and anti-theft options. Most of the cables, settings, and other obvious parts of an e-bike can’t be seen. You just ride and notch the assist up or down when you want.

You can’t entirely forget the T1 is an e-bike, as every time you look down while riding, you see a thumbprint sensor. But riding it around on a steady power level and shifting gears—with it looking for all the world like a standard flat-bar bike—you can get most of the benefits of electric assist with very few of its signifiers. It quietly flattens hills and shortens miles.

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