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Super73-R Adventure Series Review: Nearly Decorative Pedals

It'll get you from place to place, but whether you'll enjoy the experience depends a lot on whether you actually wanted to own a bike.

Russell Holly mirror selfie
Russell Holly mirror selfie
Russell Holly
Russell Holly is a Managing Editor on the Commerce team at CNET. He works with all of CNET to assemble top recommendations as well as helping everyone find the best way to buy anything at the best price. When not writing for CNET you can find him riding a bike, running around in Jedi robes, or contributing to WOSU public radio's Tech Tuesday segment.
Expertise 7 years experience as a smartphone reviewer and analyst, 5 years experience as a competitive cyclist Credentials
  • Author of Taking your Android Tablets to the Max
Russell Holly
5 min read
Super73-R Adventure Series
Russell Holly/CNET

The explosive popularity of e-bikes in the last couple of years means there's no such thing as one kind of e-bike owner. Whether you're trying to get to work without looking like you've sweat yourself half to death, or you're looking for a little help when getting up hills in your area, there's something for you. And with that variety comes a lot of design differences, ranging from bikes that hide the electronic parts to the fascinating spectacle being reviewed today. 

Super73's entire design aesthetic is hard to miss, blurring the lines between e-bike and electric dirtbike. After spending nearly a month with the aggressive-looking Adventure Series, it's safe to say this bike isn't for everyone. 

Super73-R Adventure Series

Super73-R Adventure Series


  • Impressive impact absorption
  • Handling and braking are great

Don't like

  • Nearly impossible to ride comfortably as a bike
  • Power output uphill is not great
  • Onboard computer and app could be better

Super73's unique design language can be seen across its entire line, which includes the street-focused Brooklyn Series with optional bag holder and Moto-inspired RSD X Super73-RX Malibu. There's even a fully electric motorcycle coming soon, one of the only designs which breaks the mold, dubbed C1X. While each model in the collection has a handful of unique tricks, the Adventure series moves the battery to make room for a larger seat to allow for a variety of riding positions. 

For this review, the Super73-R Adventure Series was ridden in a combination of on and off-road conditions. An equal amount of time was spent on gravel or dirt paths to full street and paved path riding, though no designated mountain bike trails were attempted. 

Super73-R Adventure Series: Technically, yes, this is an e-bike

Choosing any bike has just as much to do with your personal comfort level when riding as the actual performance of the hardware you're sitting on. And at first glance, Super73 bikes look extremely comfortable. The first time I sat on this Adventure Series, I knew this was one of the longest, plushiest seats I've ever had the pleasure of sitting on. It's easily big enough for a second person to sit behind you, or you can buy the rear rack accessory and know whatever you need to hold for a longer ride won't be pressed against you. 

Actually riding this bike isn't nearly as comfortable. The comfy seat is fairly wide, so when you do more than a few minutes of pedaling you feel the seat and your thighs rub. The seat is also in a fixed position, which means the pedals are far too close for my 5-foot-11 form. In order to comfortably pedal I need to sit much farther back on the seat and essentially push my legs forward instead of down. That's uncomfortable for a few different reasons, not the least of which is how silly you look doing it. 

Read More: Best Electric Bike
Pedaling without power clearly isn't meant to be the primary form of locomotion for this vehicle, and not just because this bike weighs in at an impressive 88 pounds. The pedal assist motor is clearly supposed to be on nearly all of the time. Your legs should move a little, but the motor is clearly supposed to be doing most if not all of the work. This tracks with what I have seen among Super73 owners in my area, who almost always use the throttle on the handlebar to get around instead. 

Everything about this bike is designed to look like it could be ridden like a bike, but on a road with cars. The aggressive design, reliance on the throttle, even the included horn button is not something you should use to signal an intent to pass or a warning of danger to a pedestrian or fellow cyclist. It's extremely loud, something you'd use to get the attention of someone in a car. 

Super73-R Adventure Series
Russell Holly/CNET

Super73-R Adventure Series: Fully unlocked and ready for fun

Super73 doesn't rely on a big rectangular screen on the handlebars to tell you things about speed and battery and range; it's got a little round display attached to the power controls instead. This display is super simple, which is nice for glancing while riding, but details are a little sparse. Each display has an outer ring to give you an idea of battery life, as well as either the speed or range in big friendly numbers. If you want anything more detailed, Super73 invites you to install the app on your phone. There are no phone mounts included in the box though, you'll need to provide your own. 
The Super73 app repackages the data you can see on the little handlebar display to take advantage of the larger screen, as well as a map to show your ride progress. It's a solid app -- the performance information you see on the little display is reflected on the larger display very quickly, including which power output level you are using for speed. But the real reason to use the app is for the little slider for adjusting what performance class your Super73 bike is. With very little effort, this bike can be tweaked from its Class 2 default with a 20mph limiter in place to a Class 3 with a 28mph limiter in place and again to a fully unlocked "offroad mode" with no limitations at all. 

Regardless of the class level you have your bike set to, Super73 does a great job delivering power immediately. It's not a slow build, you push the throttle and you go fast. On average, I found it took around 20 seconds to reach the top speed on a straightaway, which made me extremely thankful the brakes on this bike and the fat tires make it very easy to control. Unfortunately, a lot of that power goes away when hills are involved. Consistently, regardless of the Class I had assigned the bike, my overall speed was cut in half when trying to go up most of the hills in my area. Compared with many other e-bikes in this category and price range, that's a significant drop in performance. 
It's also worth noting Super73 does very little to educate the user about the safety concerns associated with changing the bike to Class 3 or higher. Given the dramatic increase in potentially life-altering harm when your body hits asphalt at 35mph versus 20mph, and all you're wearing for safety is a helmet, I would have preferred Super73 to add a substantive warning about wearing something on your arms and avoiding trails where pedestrians are common. 

Super73-R Adventure Series
Russell Holly

Super73-R Adventure Series: Not for cyclists 

Call me old fashioned, but to me an e-bike should be rideable without the power. Super73 didn't make an e-bike in the traditional sense, and that's where it lost me. The Adventure Series is great if you want to look cool while rarely touching the pedals, but it failed to distinguish itself otherwise, especially given its lofty price. For folks who like the more aggressive design and ease of control over your speed, the Adventure Series -- or one of the many other Super73 sibling models, some costing hundreds less -- may well fit the bill, but you should definitely test-drive before you buy. And if you're seeking more of a full-on electric motorcycle, that C1X is on horizon. 

But if you're looking for a fat tire bike with great range and performance, Velotric's $1500 Nomad 1 is dramatically less expensive and does a better job uphill. If you want that more aggressive offroad feel, the Biktrix Juggernaut Classic Duo is right around half the price, and you can add a second battery for way better range. The only thing you really lose with either of these choices is a great seat, which I promise you won't cost $2,000.