Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 Review [Updated 22-01-2015]

Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 – by , January 01, 2015
88/ 100
Bundled with the new Bosch Active Line system, NuVinci Harmony Hub, and beautiful design, there was very little to fault with the 2014 Gepida Reptila.
Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 • <a style="font-size:0.8em;" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/ebikereviews/14425746874/" target="_blank">View on Flickr</a> Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000

NuVinci Harmony Update 3/12/2015

We have been advised by the Gepida importer EuroCycles who are also the NuVinci Service Rep in Australia, that some NuVinci Harmony systems may not be operating correctly and shifting incorrectly.

Some Harmony systems may need to be re-calibrated. If this does not resolve the issues, then a firmware update should resolve the problem.

The firmware can be accessed online via the Nuvinci service website, and is a 2-minute operation to upload to the bike, however as this may be a warranty issue, you should be able to have this done by your dealer. This does not relate to all Gepida Reptila bikes sold with the Harmony, and if you have had no issues, there is no need to update the software.

For more information please contact EuroCycles or your Gepida dealer.

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Specifications Highlights

  • Make – Bosch/Gepida
  • Model – Reptila 1000
  • Year of manufacture – 2014
  • Revision/Version – 1
  • Motor – Bosch Active Line
  • Battery – 36V 11.1Ah, 400wh Rack Type
  • Charger – Bosch 4 amp quiet charger
  • Maximum Speed – 27km/h
  • Range – 50km (96kg rider, Max assist, Track elevation Profile found here)
  • Bike weight – 26 kg, 57.30 lbs
  • Warranty – 2 years on frame and components. 2 years or 500 charge cycles (whichever reached first) for Bosch Battery
  • Base Price $3950 (with Shimano Nexus 8 gear shifting)
  • Price incl. upgrades:
    • $4865 (with Nuvinci Harmony electronic gear shifting)
    • Thudbuster LT suspension seat post option, add $ 210

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Video Review (Updated 22-01-2014)

Video Review :: Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000

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Introduction

Step through bikes have been around for awhile, not just overseas but in Australia as well. They are indeed very popular all over Europe, especially in places like Germany, Denmark, and Netherlands, where they’re not just considered for female riders but male riders as well.

A step through bike eliminates the need for a top tube, so getting on and off the bike is in its simplest form.

A step through bike eliminates the need for a top tube, so getting on and off the bike is in its simplest form. If you’re wearing a suit, a pair of jeans, or a dress, there simply isn’t another type of frame that will allow you to get on and off the bike as easy as a step-through.

But why do the majority of male commuters turn away from step-throughs when buying a bike? Is it the design? Is it the colours? Or is it just the overall lack of appeal? For me, it was a combination of those things which left an imprint in my mind that step through bikes are purely designed for females. That was, until I saw the 2014 Gepida Reptila equipped with the 2014 Bosch Active Line, which showed me that indeed, step-through bikes can be for anyone.

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Appearance

Unlike the 2013 Reptila, which came in a high bar version, all 2014 Reptila’s will now feature a step through frame. They also now come in three different colour combinations as well as three different sizes. There’s a black, silver, and a red frame which are all fitted with 700x38C tyres.

Gepida sell all their non-electric bikes in a pedelec option, meaning you get a motor, battery, and some very advanced electronics to give you assistance along the way. The most obvious feature of the Reptila is the new 2014 Bosch Gen2 system, which has been slightly refined from the 2013 Bosch Classic+ system. The Bosch systems are in no way discrete or hidden like some other integrated hub drive systems. It’s going to be obvious you’re on an electric bike which is common on all the Bosch bikes not just for Gepida, but for all manufacturers. The drive unit sits beneath the bottom bracket, and every frame is manufactured purposely to accommodate the system. However both the internals and outer casings have changed from the previous Bosch Classic+ system, with the drive unit sitting higher than previous models, giving you that extra bottom bracket clearance, as well as the casing being more oval shaped.

In the cockpit is the main Intuvia LCD unit mounted in the centre with it’s thumb control unit on the left. Both components are nicely designed and visually pleasing.

The Intuvia unit provides plenty of feedback to the rider with the thumb control unit allowing you to toggle between several readouts, as well as change assistance levels. The Intuvia LCD also features a blue tinged backlight which is quite bright. It’s turned on and off by keeping your finger on the light switch located on the right of the LCD. The front and rear lights however both run off the Shimano QR Hub Dynamo and are not controlled via the light switch. This is because up until this year, German regulation, (where Germany is the main market for Gepida bikes) required head and tail lights to be powered independently of the pedelec battery.

The frame itself is painted in a beautiful matt black, and while it’s obvious you’re on an electric bike, everything has been perfectly designed, with cables hidden into the downtube where possible.

The battery on all the 2014 Reptila’s sits within the rear pannier rack mounting system and although the rear of the bike looks quite busy, there’s a few components fitted as standard that really gives the daily rider most things they’ll need at their disposal. The first is an air pump fitted as standard on the side of the pannier mounting bracket. Then you have the integrated AXA wheel lock, which uses the same key for removing and locking the battery. You also have the rear pannier rack which has a load carrying capacity of 25kg, though doesn’t come with strap downs.

Then our favourite feature, the fact there’s no signs of a derailleur, thanks to the Internal Geared Hub options. We had two Reptila’s in for review, one featuring the Nexus 8, and the other fitted with the NuVinci Harmony.

The NuVinci Harmony is the first automatic shifting internal geared hub to be featured on an electric bike in Australia, and one of the first in the world.

The NuVinci Harmony is the first automatic shifting internal geared hub to be featured on an electric bike in Australia, and one of the first in the world. On the right side of the handlebars is the control unit for both gearing options. The Harmony offers an attractive Advanced controller LED display highlighting manual mode and automatic mode in orange and blue respectively. Connected to the LED display is the half twist grip which allows you to either select your gear in manual mode or select your cadence in automatic mode.

Gepida Reptila 1000 • <a style="font-size:0.8em;" href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/ebikereviews/14403896266/" target="_blank">View on Flickr</a> Manual Mode
Gepida Reptila 1000 • <a style="font-size:0.8em;" href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/ebikereviews/14427007525/" target="_blank">View on Flickr</a> Automatic Mode

There’s no ‘click’ when using the twist grip on the NuVinci Harmony, as the system uses ‘ride By wire’ technology, meaning shifting is electronic. Therefore, unlike the standard Nuvinci N360, you won’t feel any resistance when trying to change gears on a hill climb. We also loved how we knew what ‘gear’ we were in, or what we had the cadence set to during our night rides thanks to the backlit display.

The Nexus 8 Reptila also features a half twist gear selector, which is quite easy to operate, albeit not automatic. There’s a simple small square window which indicates which one of the 8 gears you’re in.

Both bikes feature chainguards which at first glance looks like single integrated piece with the Bosch drive unit. This is in fact a discrete chain guard by the German manufacturer Hebie.

Although we wish the drive unit and battery were both colour matched to the Reptila’s matt black finish, it’s the little details that Gepida included with the Reptila that makes us realise how attractive and functional this bike really is.

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Battery

All 2014 Reptila’s come with a 36V 11AH battery giving 400 watt hours. The battery connection has been redesigned from the 2013 systems, so rear rack batteries from both generations are not interchangeable. The battery is secured within the rear rack, which also acts as the pannier rack. Inserting and removing the battery involves sliding it in and out on it’s designated rails. There’s also very little you need to align for the battery to lock into place. Once it’s secured there should be zero lateral play, and going over footpath divider gaps or other small bumps did not cause any jolting of the pack or mounting brackets. There are two keys provided with a serial tag in case you lose them. Eurocycles also store this serial tag number in case you lose your keys and didn’t write it down.

The battery comes with a 5 bar charge LED indicator on its side, as well as a one touch power button. You can switch the system on from the battery itself when it’s fitted to the bike by pressing the power button. The battery weighs 2.6kg and can be charged either off the bike, or via a discrete port on the side of the casing on the pannier rack. This is an improvement on the 2013 Bosch systems, where the battery needed to be removed to be charged.

When the battery is charging, the LED indicator on its side displays what the current battery level is which in turn shows how many bars are left to charge. Each of the 5 bars corresponds to 20% of the battery capacity. When charging, a flashing LED indicates charging of the next 20%, with all LED’s turning off when the battery is fully charged.

The charger makes no noise when charging, and the only indication it’s working is the flashing LED’s on the battery. The charger will switch itself off automatically when the battery is fully charged, and the LED’s will also turn off. If the battery remains connected to the charger, trickle charging is activated automatically in regular intervals. With some other electric bike batteries, if you happen to leave the charger plugged in, you will still experience voltage drop after a few hours, as the charger automatically switches off when the battery reaches 100% capacity. This means there is no more trickle charge to keep topping the battery up from voltage drops after it’s reached 100%. With the Bosch batteries, you can be assured that every time you remove the fully charged battery from the charger it’ll be at 100%, irrespective if you’ve left it on there for 5 hours or 24 hours.

A feature we loved and used frequently during our tests was the ability to know what level the battery was charged to without having to plug it in the Reptila. Sometimes we didn’t have enough time to fully charge the battery, so knowing when the bike had 3 bars of battery without having to connect it to the bike was great especially since the bike wasn’t stored close to the location of the battery. Another positive for this feature was from experience we knew that 3 bars of battery would get us at least 25km, which may have been all we needed for our ride.

The Intuvia LCD displays a 5 bar battery indicator. When the last bar of battery begins flashing, the battery is depleted, with assistance completely unavailable. However there’s a battery within the Intuvia that keeps Intuvia on, providing all the feedback you would normally get, such as speed, time, distance and so on.

The battery took 3 hours and 5 minutes to charge from full depletion using the standard Bosch charger, which has an output of 36v@4A. This is really impressive to see with such minimal efficiency loses, since it’s actually better than Bosch’s claim of 3 hours and 30 minutes for a full charge. It also took 2 hours and 19 minutes to charge to 80%. These charge times are quick, and it’s good to now see manufacturers adopting 4A chargers. Spare chargers are available from your local Gepida dealer if you need to keep one at work.

The Bosch batteries do not have a memory effect and so can be partially charged as required.

The Bosch batteries do not have a memory effect and so can be partially charged as required. There’s no issue from interrupting the charging process and you won’t damage the battery. Bosch claim a guaranteed service life of 500 full charge cycles. For example, if the battery is depleted to 50% twice, and then charged to 100% each time, this would be classified as one charge cycle.

The charger itself is silent, compact, and black, with a simple Bosch logo embossed on it. Eurocycles have gone to the effort to have the new 2014 Bosch charger certified for use in Australia, which is a very expensive exercise. Bosch would usually do something like this, but since they do not have an office in Australia for their drive systems, Eurocycles have taken it upon themselves to have the 2013 and 2014 chargers properly tested and certified.

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Range

we achieved 50km on our paved test loop, with an elevation gain of 330m.

From our range test using turbo assist (highest assist setting), a 96kg rider, the weight of the bike of 26kg, an average speed of 22km/hr with a maximum speed phase cut out beginning at 25km/hr, we achieved 50km on our paved test loop, with an elevation gain of 330m. We’re often asked what controls, testing equipment, elevation etc. we have in place during our range tests, and this information is found in our FAQ. You have to remember that our testing methods possibly give the worst outcome to keep things honest. In other words if you’re lighter than 96kg, and don’t always use the highest assist setting you can expect more range than what we achieved.

The 400wh battery size may seem small in its capacity compared to most of the electric bikes we’ve tested so far, and it is. However the Bosch system works differently to electric hub drive setups in terms of battery efficiency. The range result is impressive and that’s a big thanks to the way a mid-drive drive system works with a torque sensor, and requiring you to be in the right gear to get the most assistance out of the motor.

If efficiency is what you want, the Bosch drive systems are the most efficient systems we’ve tested so far, really making the most out of the battery.

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Comfort

The Reptila comes in three sizing options which is a small 46cm, medium 49cm and large 53cm frame. It’s best to pop into store to have yourself fitted, as the small frame we had in for review was a good fit for someone less than 180cm, while the large frame would be good for a rider pushing 190cm.

Fitted up front are the SR Suntour CR8 forks in black, which allow only 50mm of travel. With a step through bike it’s hard to imagine requiring more travel than this, and considering most step throughs come with rigid forks, any travel is a plus. The rebound rate can be adjusted on right hand fork using an allen key, however there is no ability to lock them out, so they’re quite simple forks. During our tests on paved surfaces the forks did a good job absorbing minor bumps, while taking vibrations off the hands.

The single bolt seatpost is a simple suspension post, and while it’s no Thudbuster, coupled with the Selle Royal Sfera saddle, it’s quite the plush ride. Selle Royal produce high quality saddles, and the Sfera gel saddle is sold only as an OEM item on Gepida bikes. It’s quite a wide and plush saddle, and over a 100km ride, split over two continuous 50km segments, there was little if any discomfort from the saddle, and the simplistic suspension seatpost did its job.

The handlebars featured on both the review bikes differ. The black Reptila features a slightly raised handlebar while the red Reptila was equipped with an upright comfort style handlebar. Both setups were tested over long distances, and as expected we found it more comfortable using the upright handlebars which kept our backs almost perfectly straight.

All Reptila’s sold in Australia will feature the upright style handlebars, but there’s no reason these can’t be upgraded or changed upon purchase from your dealer if the style does not suit your riding.

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Build quality

Although Gepida sell the Reptila in Europe as a standard non-electric bike, the Reptila pedelec version is a brand new frame design from the ground up. Gepida and Bosch, amongst other manufacturers, work together very closely to both accommodate the drive system and make sure the required design and construction standards are met in all their frames as well as through the correct selection of componentry. Because of the extra torque produced, weight of the drive system, and faster average speeds, components need to be correctly chosen to provide the necessary durability and meet safety standards.

The Reptila step through hydroformed frame features a single downtube which is quite thick around the head tube, but then slightly more narrow as it stems down towards the bottom bracket. The downtube also features a secondary hydroformed reinforcing bar above the bottom bracket, and this is common in step through bikes which do not feature a lowered top tube. The welding, paint finish and branding is excellent, with Gepida moving to their own in house water based paint system for their 2014 line up.

The drive system itself is integrated into the frame with several mounting points specifically designed for the Bosch System. None of these mounting points are visible from the exterior of the unit and its obvious Bosch don’t want their riders fiddling with the motor for any reason. The drive system is bolted from the top of the casing into the frame, and while at first glance, this may give the impression the unit is suspended from the frame, you can be assured it won’t drop suddenly from any big jolts as we have tested.

The outside casing is made of plastic, but still built to handle the tough stuff, and is actually the same casing featured on their performance line with their mountain bikes. The outside casing is in itself a stone chip guard which also carries a splash water protection rating of IP54. It’s important to note that this does not mean its watertight, so full submergence should be avoided.

the centre of gravity sits low and in the rear, with the back of the bike feeling quite heavy when trying to lift it fully loaded

Because of the low centre mounted motor, and weight of the rear of the bike, which includes the battery, internal geared hub, and battery mount, the centre of gravity sits low and in the rear, with the back of the bike feeling quite heavy when trying to lift it fully loaded. However this weight isn’t felt at all when the bike is being pedalled up most grades, thanks to the torque provided by Bosch.

Changing the front tyre takes minimal effort once the dynamo hub wire is disconnected. The front wheel and Magura HS11 brakes feature a quick release allowing the rim to come off easily. The rear tyre however is a different story, as it features the internal geared hub. This is especially the case for the black Reptila featuring the NuVinci Harmony, as there’s a single cable in the rear of the bike making the rear tyre removal a careful exercise. Although you lose the quick release levers featured on most wheels of mid drives, having puncture resistant tyres means it’s less likely to be required. The Reptila gearing will also come in a third option with a 10 speed derailleur setup featuring a quick release in the rear tyre if this is a major concern.

Thanks to the internal geared hub on both models, the rear of the bike where a derailleur would usually go is clean and simplistic. On the handlebars, the Harmony backlit advanced controller is elegant in design, really matching what the Reptila is all about.

The battery mounting frame which also serves as a pannier rack is mounted through four points on the seat stays and rear dropout. It’s not going to move or shift around the faster you go or if you happen to give it a sudden jolt. The battery itself is quite a snug fit when locked into the connection port, and we found it difficult to get it to move even as small as a few millimetres.

The Bosch system is quite advanced when it comes to servicing. When you first purchase the bike, Eurocycles will supply you with a service report, which details things such as the serial numbers of the hardware, battery pack status, error codes, manufacturing information, and much more. It should be common practice that when you have the dealer service your Gepida, you get this report printed. The report serves as a log book, similar to your car, which can assist in monitoring your bikes performance, and if any issues were to arise, you would have the reports to back you up in a warranty claim. Service reporting in Europe for electric bikes is quite common however not vastly utilized by dealers in Australia. Gepida dealers will be offering this service to all its buyers (Eurocycles ship all their Gepida bikes with the bikes first service report).

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Electronics and Performance

Up front we have the Intuvia LCD, which not only looks great but supplies useful and accurate information. The Reptila can be powered on from the Intuvia or the power button located on the side of the battery. The Intuvia also has a built in battery, meaning it can be powered on without being installed on the bike. It doesn’t have wireless transmission so you’ll only be able to see your last recorded range, max speed, average speed, distance covered and so on. If you have the Intuvia turned on without having it installed on the Reptila, and then you install it, the Bosch system will automatically turn on. You cannot see the speed or control your assistance level with the Intuvia removed. The system itself shuts down once the Intuvia is removed, even if it was powered on.

On the Intuvia LCD is a reset button, and keeping your finger on this for 3 seconds or more will reset your trip settings. There’s also the info button which toggles between readings such as trip time, clock, range etc.

You get 4 levels of assistance, from Eco (lowest level), Tour, Sport, and Turbo (highest level), with their corresponding assistance levels below

  • Turbo Mode: At 100 % personal pedal power, the motor contributes an additional 225 % and 48N.m of torque
  • Sport Mode: At 100 % personal pedal power, the motor contributes an additional 150 % and 45N.m of torque
  • Tour Mode: At 100 % personal pedal power, the motor contributes an additional 100 % and 40N.m of torque
  • Eco Mode: At 100 % personal pedal power, the motor contributes an additional 40 % and 35N.m of torque
  • Off: No power assist

The step up in assistance levels is spot on, and even using Eco, you can definitely feel just enough assistance making the bike feel lighter than it is.

The Reptila’s speed is limited through a phase out, so once you hit the legal limit of 25km/hr, the assistance will slowly taper off till you hit 27km/hr. The computer is programmed like this so you don’t feel a sudden jolt of power loss once you hit 25km/hr. After 27km/hr you’re pretty much on your own without the system giving you any assistance, and we have to admit, the bike did feel quite heavy at this point. There’s also a no-assist setting which essentially turns all electric assistance off making the bike feel quite sluggish. This isn’t a bike you would want to pedal several km’s without any assistance.

The thumb accessory lets you change assistance levels as well as allowing you to scroll through feedback available on the Intuvia such as clock, trip distance, average speed, max speed, trip time and range. The range readout we absolutely loved. The computer calculates how much range is remaining as an estimation based on the assistance level you’re on, how hard the motor is working, and how much you’re pedalling. If the terrain, cadence, and gears are constantly changing, you would expect your range to also fluctuate. We found the range readout most accurate when we rode repeated terrain with cadence and assist levels not drastically changing.

Over 1000 readings per second are recorded and then analysed by the controller

Now mid drive systems supply assistance directly through the bottom bracket axle/chainring. This means you’re getting power directly through each one of your pedal strokes when riding. Bosch uses an advance torque sensor built into the drive unit, which utilises 3 sensors to measure torque (your pedalling force), your pedalling frequency (how often you’re pedalling), and speed (cadence) to know when to give you assistance. Over 1000 readings per second are recorded and then analysed by the controller. This gave us the most accurate and natural feeling assistance system we’ve ever ridden, more so than the 2013 system.

the audible noise from the motor was much quieter than the previous generation

In Turbo mode, which is the highest level of assist, the Active line outputs 48Nm of torque, which rivals the best legal hub drive electric bikes on the market. Hills simply became flattened, and the power is excellent. While torque of the Active line felt identical to the 2013 Classic+ series, the audible noise from the motor was much quieter than the previous generation. We could still however hear a soft whine which increased as the motor gave more assistance.

Mid drives are at their most efficient and produce the most torque when you’re in the right gear. If you’re in the wrong gear you will feel like you’re on a very underpowered electric bike, with the motor giving little if any assistance (to gauge how much the motor is helping there’s an assistance indicator bar on the Intuvia). Being in the right gear is one of the most important factors when riding the Bosch system. When changing gears on the Bosch Classic+ mid drives using a regular derailleur, you would normally have to unload the motor (stop pedalling), then make the shift and start pedalling again. This helps take force off the motor/chain/crank and avoids the crunching and wearing out of gears.

But what makes the Reptila different from other electric bikes we will see later in 2014, which will also be equipped with the Bosch Active drive units? For someone who isn’t quick on gear changes with changing terrain, you’re likely to stall and think you’re on an underpowered electric bike. This isn’t true at all, and you just really need to be in the right gear. So Gepida’s top of the line solution to simplify all this? The NuVinci Harmony.

The NuVinci Harmony intelligent drivetrain is the first continuously variable automatic shifting system for bicycles. The Harmony gives a whopping gear ratio of 360% and to put it into perspective a MTB 11T/36T cassette gives a 327% ratio. When you’re in automatic mode on the Harmony you simply set your preferred cadence between 30rpm to 80rpm, which is simply indicated by the blue “RPM” display, and the gears will change automatically to match your cadence as you accelerate or slow down. By pressing the mode button located on the advanced controller, you switch to manual mode which is indicated by the orange “Hill” display. Using manual mode you’re able to shift ‘gears’ using the half twist grip which uses “ride by wire” technology. This means the entire gearing shifting mechanism is electronic with no cable shifting.

the NuVinci Harmony in Automatic mode was really all about set and forget

During our tests the NuVinci Harmony in Automatic mode was really all about set and forget. We set the cadence to a few notches above midpoint on the advanced controller, which equates to about 60rpm. The Harmony would almost instantly detect if we were accelerating from a standstill, and would therefore shift down ‘gears’ to make take off easy. Once our speed increased and our set cadence was reached, it would continue to shift up, till the set cadence was maintained. It takes one or two short rides to get used to being at the same cadence while being able to travel at different speeds without having to physically change gears. We found in manual mode going up steep climbs above 20% that the NuVinci gear ratios favoured a higher end of gears, requiring us to put in a good amount of effort during the climb, even in the lowest gear. We know from our previous tests of the Bosch equipped Ruga mountain bike, it was more than capable of climbing a grade of 30% with a good bit of effort, and a 20% grade with ease. This tells us the limiting factor here is the weight the Harmony adds, as well as it’s lowest capable gear, ie it’s more suited for city riding where one may not expect a grade of 20% or more. However, the benefit of this was that travelling downhill in the highest gear, it was quite easy to pedal up to 45km/hr, while not feeling the pedals freewheeling. In automatic mode on the same 20% graded hill, the Harmony continually tries to match your cadence which you’ve set. Because we had it set to about 60RPM, the Harmony does not know you’re in a steep climb, so it won’t shift all the way down to the lowest gear, it simply tries to match your cadence. This meant in steep climbs we were changing our set cadence to the lowest RPM in automatic mode so to climb the steep grade.

The NuVinci Harmony is simply the most perfect match for a system like Bosch

The NuVinci Harmony is simply the most perfect match for a system like Bosch. It takes electric bicycles to a new level where you don’t really have to think about what gear you should be in or how fast you’re pedalling. You’re almost always in the right gear in automatic mode once you find your preferred cadence, which means less likely chance of stalling, and always having assistance when you need it.

If the NuVinci Harmony is a little above your budget, then the Reptila also comes with the Shimano Nexus 8 which offers a 307% gear ratio with 8 selectable gears. Like the Harmony, you’re able to change gears from a standstill and there’s no audible noise from the hub. The Nexus 8 model we had did not have a freewheel in reverse and was rather equipped with a coaster brake. This made things a little tricky from stop starting when where we would usually rotate the left pedal so it’s at the 12 o’clock position, allowing us to push off at traffic lights. The Nexus 8 version is however available without the coaster brake which is what we would prefer.

The Nexus 8 also uses a cable pull system, traditionally this means load should be taken off the pedals while you’re shifting. However, the new Bosch Active line already does this for you to a large extent. When changing gears we found the Bosch drive automatically removing power from the drivetrain for the split second we needed to change gears. You must still remember to change gears depending on the terrain you’re tackling to get the most out of the Bosch drive. Unlike the Harmony, we found the ratio of gears favouring the lower end of the equivalent tooth count on a rear cassette, so climbing ability on steep grades greater than 20% was easily doable.

Bundled with the Bosch Active line system, both internal hubs currently provide the most simplistic and highly advanced solution to gearing

Bundled with the Bosch Active line system, both internal hubs currently provide the most simplistic and highly advanced solution to gearing. The Bosch system on a rear derailleur setup can get quite tricky for novice riders, constantly having to be in the right gear to get the most out of the drive unit while making sure you avoid crunching gears. While the Nexus 8 simplifies the solution by providing 8 silent gears through a twist shifter, the Harmony in automatic mode takes it to a new level where the Reptila truly becomes a ride and forget solution to our transport worries.

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Safety

The Reptila features the Magura HS11 hydraulic rim brakes. They come with great looking all stealth black redesigned levers, which require 4 finger leverage. They feature quick release skewers for quick removal of the brake cylinder, which allows you to be able to remove the front wheel.

The HS11’s offered plenty of stopping power in day to day city riding and we had no trouble stopping the bike travelling downhill at 50km/hr with its 26kg weight. The HS11’s don’t have enough bite that you’re worrying about going over the handlebars, but enough to perform consistently and effectively. Being hydraulic rim brakes there’s little maintenance needed even when quickly stopping and starting on an electric bike capable of quick acceleration.

The front and rear light which both run off the Shimano Dynamo hub provide enough throw, and like the Grace Easy, we didn’t need to install any aftermarket lights during our night rides. You will find that the rear light stays on for a while once you have stopped, while the front light will turn off. European laws require the rear light to stay on so people that may be behind you at night are aware of your presence.

One important feature that’s commonly overlooked by several large electric bike manufacturers is bike security. If you’re riding a bike like this it’s common that you’ll be running for errands at the local shops and leaving your bike parked somewhere. In addition to the Intuvia LCD being removable, we loved the fact that the same key used to lock the battery was also used to lock the fitted AXA wheel lock and integrated AXA chain. It’s an excellent idea to use one key for the battery and security devices, but the fact it even comes with a removable LCD and a wheel lock as standard really shows Gepida haven’t overlooked security while keeping it simple.

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Accessories

The Reptila comes standard with integrated panniers, and while they don’t include strap downs, there’s securing points on either side of the mounting frame for your own. On the right side of the pannier mount is an air pump, and although we didn’t use it, it’s obvious there’s a requirement for it, especially if this bike was ridden daily.

You may also want to charge your phone while you use it to navigate, which the Bosch system allows for. On the side of the Intuvia is a USB port which supplies 5v@500mAh. The amps aren’t all that high, and while it will indeed charge your phone, most modern smart phones require at least 1A chargers to assure that while you’re using navigation or some other high draining application, that your phone doesn’t actually begin draining while it’s charging.

There is also the option of upgrading to a Thudbuster suspension seatpost and as several gearing options such as the Nexus 8, NuVinci N360, NuVinci Harmony, and a 10 speed derailleur setup to choose from.

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Conclusion & Score Card

The Reptila has really shown me why step through frames appeal to so many males and females in Europe

The Reptila has really shown me why step through frames appeal to so many males and females in Europe. For the last few weeks of using the Reptila to go to meetings while being fully dressed in a suit and not arriving drenched in sweat, to bringing back a trolleys worth of groceries loaded in the panniers, to the simplicity of getting on and off and being able to secure and lock the bike in less than 10 seconds, has really changed my mind on how I view step through frames. Bundled with the new Bosch Active Line system and NuVinci Harmony, there was very little I had to think about doing on the Reptila apart from pedaling and being aware of my surroundings.

The use of the Harmony in Automatic Mode, bundled with the excellent power of the Bosch drive system meant I didn’t need to think about shifting gears along a 50km commute into the CBD. I didn’t need to think about what gear I’m in to get the right amount of motor assistance whether I was going downhill or uphill. It’s always a joy for me every time I hop on an electric bike we have in for review, but somehow, the Reptila made me the happiest I think I’ve ever been.

Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 Review Score Card
EBR Gold Award

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Detailed Specifications

  • Make – Bosch/Gepida
  • Model – Reptila 1000
  • Year of manufacture – 2014
  • Revision/Version – 1
  • Frame – Gepida Hydroforming – 6061 Alloy
  • Frame Size Options – small: 46cm, medium: 49cm, large: 53cm
  • Frame Colour – Matt Black, Matt silver, Bordeaux (red)
  • Rear Derailleur / Front Gear Shifter – Shimano Nexus 8 (8 speed) or Nuvinci Harmony electronic gearshift
  • Bosch motor – Bosch Active Line
  • Battery Type – 400 Wh (11.0Ah) rack type
  • Suspension Fork – Suntour CR8 50mm travel
  • Head Set – Gepida Integrated
  • Crankset – Miranda 18T / 170mm
  • Bottom Bracket – Bosch
  • Rim – Mach 1 ER10 28”, alloy, 36 hole
  • Spoke – Mach 1 (France) Stainless
  • Hub – Shimano hubdynamo QR
  • Brake (front and rear) – Magura HS-11 Hydraulic rim brakes
  • Handle Bar – Gepida City, Alloy 650mm
  • Stem – Gepida MQ-565 Adjustable
  • Saddle – Selle Royal Sfera
  • Seat Post – HL Harmony suspension post, 27.2 x 300mm
  • Tyre – Schwalbe Energiser 700c x 38c reflective
  • Lock – AXA Defender rear rim lock, key matched to Bosch battey lock, can accommodate optional AXA Defender plug-in chain
  • Charger – Bosch Gen 2 Battery Charger
  • Maximum Speed – 27km/h
  • Range – 50km (96kg rider, Max assist, Track elevation Profile found here)
  • Bike weight – 26 kgs, 57.3 lbs
  • Warranty – 2 years on Frame and components. 2 years or 500 charge cycles (whichever reached first) for Bosch Battery
  • Base Price $3950 (with Shimano Nexus 8 gear shifting)
  • Price incl. upgrades:
    • $4865 (with Nuvinci Harmony electronic gear shifting)

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Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 Flickr Photo Gallery

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4 thoughts on “Bosch Gepida Reptila 1000 Review [Updated 22-01-2015]

  1. Clayton

    As always a thorough well detailed review. You clearly spend a lot of time and effort getting to experience the bike in the way that a potential buyer may use the bike.

    August 14, 2014 at 5:35 pm
    1. Mark Sedhom

      Thanks Clayton! We do get pretty intimate with these electric bikes over several weeks before we even begin putting pen to paper!

      August 15, 2014 at 11:22 am
  2. Andrew

    Great review Mark, keep up the detailed work.
    I am hoping you are going to review the Gepida Albion 1000 soon! I would also be interested to hear your real world reviews on the differences between the active line and performance line motors.

    October 23, 2014 at 9:20 pm
  3. Paddy Lydon

    This review was so complete and comprehensive that it answered All the questions that I had.
    Well appreciated

    October 14, 2016 at 7:13 am

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