You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more affordable, good looking, and easy to use eBike than the VIVI 26 inch electric mountain bicycle. This black, white and red aluminum eBike (made in China) has everything you need for daily riding around your neighborhood… and is even equipped to handle a little dirt, gravel, or off-road riding as well. Plus, this amazingly stylish eBike is outfitted with a number of different options you’d only find on a bicycle with a much higher price-point, including front and rear disc brakes, 21 total speeds, a front headlamp, a rear kickstand, front and rear fenders, and even a bell.
With an online sales price of only $639 USD, the VIVI 26 inch eBike is one of the most affordable electric bicycles on the marketplace today. It’s easy to put together, looks great, and works like an eBike should – with electric pedal assist modes (low, medium and high), full throttle mode, and can also be used as a regular bicycle (with no assistance from the motor whatsoever)!
The VIVI eBike
The electric bicycle arrives packed inside a standard, brown, cardboard bike box. The bicycle comes almost entirely assembled, but there are a few things you’ll need to do to finish putting the bike together completely.
You’ll need to install the saddle and seat post, insert and tighten the handlebars, screw in the left and right pedals, adjust the position of the front headlamp, and pump some air into the tires. The tools you need to perform this basic bicycle setup are included with the bike (another big bonus!)… along with instructions on how to finish the bicycle assembly process.
That being said, there is no air pump included with the VIVI eBike, so make sure you have a bicycle pump of some kind before your bicycle arrives. It’s a good idea to always carry a small hand pump on your bike rides anyway, in the event that you get a flat tire. So, if you don’t already have a pump, go out and get one right away!
Once you’ve set up the bicycle and inserted the charged battery into its holder positioned on the inside of the downtube of the bicycle’s aluminum frame, you’re ready to ride!
I suggest you start by riding the bicycle with its motor turned off at first – just to check and make sure that your handlebars, seat post and saddle are in the best positions for your body type. While the motor is off, also check that the brakes are functioning as they should and that you can easily shift through the 21 gears using the bicycle’s front and rear derailleurs. The VIVI eBike comes almost completely assembled, so you should, in theory, be able to jump right on the bike and start pedaling as soon as you have it properly put together, but you may need to adjust the brakes and/or front and rear derailleurs as these parts can shift slightly during the shipping process.
Once you’ve done a few laps around the block with the bicycle’s motor turned off, only then should you turn on the battery/motor and test out what the VIVE eBike can really do. This is where the fun begins!
To turn the eBike on, start by pressing the small, red, circular power button on the bottom of the battery. Then, press and hold the center power button on the power meter on the left-side of the bicycle’s handlebars. Once you do this, you should see the red lights on the power meter turn on. The lights at the top indicate the mode you are in (low, mid or high) and the lights at the bottom indicate approximately how much battery power you have left.
Now, just like you did a moment ago when the power to the eBike was turned off, step onto the VIVI eBike and start pedaling with the bike in the Low power setting. As soon as you make about one revolution of the pedals, you will feel the motor kick in and push you forward down the road. Keep pedaling in this manner and you’ll soon become comfortable with how the bike rides in the pedal-assist mode.
Once you become comfortable riding in Low, switch the bike into Mid by pressing the + button on the right side of the power meter. Then, after you’ve become comfortable riding in Mid, switch the bike to High and see what the VIVI eBike is truly capable of.
Remember: The VIVI eBike is not a motorcycle and is not meant to transport you down the road at supersonic speeds. The maximum speed you’ll be capable of hitting on flat ground with the motor engaged is around 20 miles per hour (or approximately 25 kilometers per hour).
The final way to ride the VIVI eBike is in full eBike mode using the throttle located on the right side of the handlebars. This throttle allows you to ride the VIVI eBike and do no pedaling whatsoever. Simply twist the throttle, like you would on a motorcycle, and sit back as the bicycle’s electric motor transports you down the road.
You won’t go super fast using the bicycle’s throttle (especially when going uphill), but the throttle is extremely useful for new riders, or simply in the event that you want to go out on a bike ride, but don’t want to put in the work normally required with riding a bicycle.
As you can see, there are three ways to ride the VIVI electric bicycle: you can ride it as a standard bicycle with no motor assistance whatsoever; you can ride it in pedal assist mode, where you pedal normally, but the motor helps to make your bike ride a whole lot easier; or you can ride the bike with the assistance of the throttle, allowing you to simply sit back and do no pedaling at all.
Pictured above is the right side of the handlebar on the VIVI eBike. In the photo you can see the shifter, which allows you to change through the 7 total gears on the rear derailleur of the bicycle. The eBike’s throttle is located just to the right of the shifter. And in the foreground is the small, thumb-operated bell that comes as an added bonus with the VIVI 26 inch eBike.
Below is a snapshot of the bicycle’s battery specifications. For most people, these numbers won’t mean much, so what you need to know is that on a full charge, the VIVI eBike will transport you approximately 30 miles (or 45 km). Of course, this distance will vary depending on the mode you have the bike set to (Low, Mid or High), the terrain you are cycling over (steep vs. flat terrain), the wind, weather and other such factors.
During my time with the VIVI 26 inch eBike, I went on several long bike rides and found that cycling more than 20 miles on a single charge was no problem at all, as long as I left the bike in the Low setting for most of the ride. The battery indicator would sometimes show that there was only one or two bars left in the battery, but would then later jump to three or more bars later in the ride, depending on the mode I had the power meter set to and the steepness of the terrain on which I was riding at the time. Therefore, more testing needs to be done to see what the true limits are of the VIVI eBike’s included battery.
Whatever the case may be, the good thing about the VIVI eBike, when compared with other electric bicycle models, is that once the battery dies and the bike is no longer able to be powered by the electric motor, the bicycle functions normally as a regular bicycle. So, if you find yourself returning home from an especially long bike ride and the battery cuts out a few miles short of your return home, you can always pedal the bike home using the power of your legs for the final few miles.
The Wheels & Tires
26 inch wheels and tires are what you’ll find on this VIVI electric bicycle. And while 26 inch wheels and tires are what you find on many mountain bikes, I suspect that most people who purchase the VIVI 26 inch eBike will not buy the bike for its off-road capabilities, but will instead intend to use the bike largely as a local commuter – allowing them to ride around their neighborhood, run errands and go on casual bike rides with friends.
While the Chaoyang 26 x 1.95 tires that come equipped on the bicycle have held up during my recent test rides, the long-term durability of these tires has yet to be determined, and I may have to update this article/review once I determine how long-lasting these tires truly are.
These standard, treaded, 26 inch tires are great for casual riding on paved roads, however, and also make the bike capable of riding on dirt and gravel roads with a fair amount of ease. My guess is that few people will purchase this bike to do serious mountain biking, but the bike can certainly be used in off-road environments of some kind, due to both the tire size, tread and front suspension (which allows the bike to absorb some of the bumps you are sure to find in an off-road environment).
The front suspension on this bike helps with small bumps and gravel on the roads you’ll be traveling, but the suspension is not good in super rocky terrain – nothing like the suspension you find on higher-quality mountain bikes.
The Mechanical Disc Brakes
One of the great things about the VIVI eBike is that it comes equipped with certain parts you would only expect to find on bicycles with a much higher price tag. For example, the VIVI 26 inch eBike comes equipped with front and rear mechanical disc brakes.
Disc brakes have quickly become standard on most bicycle models, but cheaper rim brakes are still often found on many low-priced bicycle models. So getting a pair of front and rear disc brakes with the purchase of the VIVI electric bicycle is a huge added plus.
The disc brakes come ready to use straight out of the box when your VIVI eBike first arrives, but I found that a small amount of adjustment was needed to position the brakes so they weren’t rubbing and squeaking during my initial test rides. This is a very easy adjustment to make, however, and almost anyone capable of watching a how-to YouTube video will be able to adjust the disc brakes on the bicycle, if need be.
In addition to the bicycle’s electric motor, front suspension, and disc brakes, the VIVI eBike is outfitted with a number of other extras worth noting.
The first and most obvious of these extras is, perhaps, the saddle, which is an inexpensive bike seat decorated with a red and white “flame” pattern on its top. The saddle decoration is probably the only part of the VIVI eBike that I would change if I were in charge of the production of these bikes myself. I personally would prefer a standard, plain black saddle. But the saddle that has been chosen here isn’t really that bad. It looks a little childish when compared to the rest of the bicycle, but it’s comfortable and will work well for 90% of the bike’s users.
Another wonderful extra included with the VIVI eBike is the front headlamp, which comes pre-wired to the bicycle’s electric battery/motor. To turn the front headlamp on, simply press and hold the “+” button on the right-hand side of the bicycle’s power meter. Then, to turn the light off, press and hold the “+” button again. Lighting up the road in front of you has never been so easy!
While it’s common for more expensive bicycles to come equipped with no pedals whatsoever, because high-end bike manufacturers know that many serious cyclists will want to use a very specific type of pedal, a lower-cost bicycle such as the VIVI eBike comes equipped with a pair of standard, plastic flat pedals – like you would find on so many other low-end bicycles found in your local bike shop. The goal here is to give you a basic pedal that you can use straight away, right out of the box, so that you can start pedaling your bicycle the first day you get it. These plastic pedals are inexpensive, but they work well and will make most casual cyclists very happy. If, however, you wish to upgrade to a more advanced pedal, you can easily do so! Simply unscrew these basic, plastic pedals and screw in the pedals of your choice. Bingo!
Another big bonus found on the VIVI 26 inch eBiks is the included rear kickstand, which helps you keep the bike in an upright position whenever you go to park it. Not only does this rear kickstand make it easier to park the bicycle when you need to do so, but the kickstand likely extends the lifespan of the battery, motor and the bike as a whole, as you’re less likely to damage the bicycle or any of its parts if you simply use the included kickstand each and every time you go to park the bike.
The photos above show the kickstand in both its extended and retracted positions. This is a good quality kickstand that the bicycle manufacturers could very easily have left off in order to save money and produce larger returns on sales, but have included as an added bonus… and it’s a bonus that I think will be very much appreciated by those who chose to purchase the VIVI 26 inch electric bicycle.
The VIVI eBike – My Final Review
If there is any major downside to the VIVI eBike, it’s the fact that it is only available in one frame size. And unfortunately for me (at 6 feet, 2 inches tall), the size of the bike’s frame is simply too small for me. In order to properly fit this bicycle, you should probably be between 5 foot 2 inches and 5 foot 7 inches tall. If you are taller or shorter than this, the bike will still be rideable, but it isn’t going to fit you well. If the bike came in different sizes (small, medium and large), the VIVI eBike would be a total low-cost winner!
Overall, I’m very impressed with the VIVI 26 inch eBike. It’s a good looking bike that will make many first-time electric bicycle owners very happy. The bike is perfectly equipped for around-town riding, local commuting, running errands and could even be used on some kinds of mountain bike trails and terrain.
While the battery life and tires have yet to be tested long term, my experiences with the bike thus far have me very impressed. And even though the bike doesn’t fit me (I’m simply too tall for the one-size-only frame), I plan to keep the VIVI eBike for any of my shorter friends and family members who chose to come and visit me and want the assistance of an electric motor to help them keep up with me on the roads and trails in my area.
Overall, I’d give the VIVI 26 inch eBike a very high rating, considering it is such a low-cost electric bicycle. It really is incredible that they’ve been able to produce such a good looking, well-working, electric bicycle that costs so little and comes with so many extras!
So, even though this may not be the best bike in the whole world, I suspect that this is the perfect bike for someone who wants a basic, around-town electric bicycle, but doesn’t want to spend thousands of dollars on a more expensive brand or model.