For those who may not know but I enjoy cycling (My favourite method of transport) and motorbikes and it is something I do dearly miss but it is something I promised I would do again and with this, in mind, I decided to buy an electric bike with the idea that I could drop my car while also buying an electric motorbike for longer journeys.
I was torn between two products the first one being the WAU Bike and the second being the Sheng Milo MX025 and ultimately I decided upon the Sheng Milo MX025 after having a test ride with the WAU Bike. The Sheng Milo MX025 is an e-bike from China that claims to have quite good stats and I have listed them below for the price of close to £1,500, it is a steal if it is true.
Table of Contents
- The Ordering
- The Arrival & Building
- The Physical Test
- The Electric Test
- The Second Electric Test
- The Final Electric Test
- The Range Overall
- UK “road legal”
As with AliExpress and Wish.com, you have to be insanely careful as there are a lot of scam products on there (well I would say AliExpress is much more legit nowadays) and after contacting a few sellers I decided to go with the seller called “Shengmilo Official Store” which had mostly good reviews.
Speaking with the seller, and what I say next is to be expected, had okay communication skills and spoke English well enough to be able to answer my questions but there was a problem before I ordered Brexit happened and the seller stopped selling to the United Kingdom. When this happened I decided to go with the WAU Bike but waited a while as I had other things going on at that time.
A month or so ago the seller was able to sell to the United Kingdom again but had to charge a shipping fee which I gladly decided was worth it. Placing the order was easy as you expect on Aliexpress but after that, I had no tracking codes or anything the seller always did respond saying it will be there soon.
I will add quickly before I move on to the next section that it cleared customs without any issues which I am assuming the seller cleared with the shipping fee but they did keep calling it a car although a friend has told me that in mandarin every vehicle is a car – even a bicycle is called a leg-step car.
The Arrival & Building
It took around two to three weeks for the electric bike to arrive and the poor DHL driver who carried it I feel sorry for as I could not lift it myself and yet the person just walked over with it!
The bike came nicely packed as you can see in the images below and from what I can see nothing is broken. Putting it together wasn’t much of an issue but I would recommend two people to do it. You have to put the front wheel on and if you don’t watch the video guide first you may have some problems like I did but after that, it is just the handlebars and done.
The Physical Test
With the e-bike now built it is time to test it. The pictures above are of the e-bike built but I have yet to add lights and bring the saddle up. I was only interested at this time to see how well the e-bike handled as a normal bike and it did so very well … after I tightened up the handlebar as today I have learnt what happens when the handlebar turns but not the wheel!
After fixing the steering issue I gave it a test ride and it rode pretty well like a normal bike although as expected a heavy bike but let’s be honest we ain’t interested here in using it as a normal bike, right?
The Electric Test
So far the review for this bike has been amazing but we have a problem … and that is more to do with the shipping compared to the overall product. When I tried to set up the pedal assist I noticed there was a problem and that was the plastic part to switch between the levels was broken during shipping and without it, I don’t think I can use it for pedalling. I will find out and report back later but there is a reason I care a lot about this while I am going to be using the throttle on private land to check the “true mileage” as I know many that are planning to get this bike will be getting it for that purpose – it is illegal in the United Kingdom so I am going to be taking the throttle off and if I can’t use pedal-assist it automatically fails its purpose.
With the batteries now ready and charged mostly to full, I decided it was time to get it out onto the road and see how well it works. The first bit I can say is the pedal assist is not affected by that but rather you can change the support level by pressing a button after testing it on the first day I found this switch is for the other gears and not pedal assist which sucks but isn’t a game-breaker and something I can fix myself.
So day 1 of the first test and it is very disappointing as nothing worked. I cycled down to a nearby field where no one would be and I turned on the pedal assist and there was no change at all. I was expecting the engine to kick in or something but nothing happened. Next, I tried the throttle thinking that maybe that would work but nothing again and as you can imagine cycling back with a very heavy bike is not fun.
I wonder if there is something I did not do with this bike, but the manual doesn’t suggest anything, but I will try again another day after looking once again at everything and going from there.
Okay, so it ain’t exactly day 2 but it is my second try at the bike and this time I am much more impressed. I contacted the seller and found that every single setting for this bike was wrong and a quick test by lifting the back wheel shows everything is turning correctly and it can reach a speed limit of about 15.5mph! As I said earlier in this review within the United Kingdom it is illegal to have a throttle on any public road (beyond a walk mode thing) but I will test this on private land before I remove the throttle although I think many people reading this is likely going to keep it – just don’t go insane, okay and naturally this isn’t legal advice.
For those interested in the correct settings for this bike, I have included them below. You can change P02 to 0001 for MPH.
So the results of the second test are in and I like this bike. I am not sure why but the pedal assist only goes up to three but I did not need anything beyond that. Going up the hills nearby felt like riding on a flat and felt easy that for the first time in many years, and being over 150 kg, I have been able to ride a bike without feeling tired. The throttle itself worked well but went nowhere near the 15mph it claims but I am assuming that is more to do with my weight.
So the next part is just how far can this bike go and before I post the results just remember that it is a mixture of pedalling and throttling as honestly it is so easy to pedal with I kept defaulting to it! It is also worth saying that I weigh over 150Kg which affects the amount of power the bike can do. Lastly where I live has quite a few hills.
Sadly, the monitor thing doesn’t tell you because it came up with an error 10 on the way back, but the battery meter worked and the only thing that didn’t was the speed. I will look into this but let me recap just how good this bike was. It went eight miles with no real pedalling, barely used two bars up and I weigh over 150Kg as of writing this review. I would say it is possible it could go maybe 12-14 miles with my weight.
Just like everything just a single test isn’t that useful so …
The Second Electric Test
Before I go into the results of the second test I am going to quickly speak about this error 10. The seller has told me it is due to a problem with the controller and is sending me a replacement I have to say that the service from this seller has been nothing short of amazing. With this in mind, I am doing another test but with the current controller which means it is quite possible the error 10 messages will come back up right now it still works although it tells me quite often I am doing 55mph.
So the results as that are ultimately what we care about but once again I sorted out the seat for this bike as I don’t think I am tightening the screw very well.
Ignoring the fact I started at 8 miles from last time, here are the battery results from doing four miles and how long it took.
As you can see it took just under half an hour to be able to do about four miles and I can say I did not have it on full speed for the whole way as people driving around here are insanely crazy and just like a motorbike you want to make sure to drive defensively.
During the actual cycle and I couldn’t show a photo as I can not do it while moving it did go down a bar or two but after stopping it went back up and I imagine this is mostly due to voltage starting to drop. There is a mode that allows you to check the voltage in real-time so I might do that next time.
Getting back was another four miles and here are the battery results. I did not include the time this time.
On the way back it was going down to about six bars so I am assuming this bike may be able to go for another four / six miles before the battery dies but if you weigh a lot less than me this bike likely will go about 15-20 miles on a single charge and further if you pedal. I can also confirm that on this second test, there were no controller issues and no error messages so not sure why it didn’t do it this time but that’s a plus regardless!
With this in mind, it is time for the final test and that is to fully drain the battery! The idea behind this test is I am going to go as far as I can until the battery dies and then swap it out for the other battery. I know it can damage the battery but it is something that is needed for review. For the sake of this review, I am defining “battery dies” as the battery’s voltage is shooting down and the bike is getting slower or has no bars on the display.
The Final Electric Test
Nothing to say about this one as it only needs three images to show the result! I will note that near the mid-way point of the test (22 miles image), it came up with error 10 and flashed with error 7 but it hasn’t repeated yet and I have not replaced the controller although I do have the replacement one here.
Based on the images above and going the same route I have been taking so far, the battery got me around 11 miles and while it riding it kept flashing and felt like it could give a little more I stopped the experiment there as it started to slow down and I did not fancy it cutting out during traffic.
So 11 miles per battery, give or take, with someone that weighs over 150kg as of writing this review. This didn’t include that much pedalling and was mostly on pure electric. The question now becomes based on the claims of the seller – could it go 30km (18.6 miles) on pure electric?
Yes, it likely can. While with my weight it is not able to go what it claims to be able to do so but I am assuming if I was half of my weight it would be able to go quite close to 18 miles. With pedalling I have no doubt it would go much further just like it claims.
I would recommend this bike if you are looking for something to get you into town and back. The only thing that might not work for people is just how big the bike itself is and they either want to put new tires on it or get used to it.
Oh, and before I forget and wrap this up – how much does it cost to charge this bike? The charger itself is a 96w output (2a at 48v) so 0.7680 Kwh and it takes about six-eight hours to charge. Going by the extreme that is eight hours needed to charge the battery and that my electric supplier charges me 18.974 per kWh, it cost me 15p to charge the bike.
Update – 50 miles later.
I have now written the bike for around 50 miles and I figured it is time for an update. The broken gear shifter is annoying me more than I would have assumed it would and am looking to replace it but I have noticed a few places on the bike I felt are questionable and have included photos below so do let me know!
The second bit, however, is far more worrying and that is a grinding noise I am hearing and I can not tell if it is coming from the engine or the front wheel. I will have a look at it and post an update once I find out what it is.
So far I am liking the bike but I am having some doubts now.
Update – 100 miles later
The problems above still exist but I do think I have found the issue and that it is due to the front wheel quick-release skewer springs being damaged which likely happened during installation and while it is my understanding the springs don’t do anything outside of positioning the wheel, I think the overall skewer may be damaged and I will replace that and find out if that helps.
In terms of how far the bike can go, I can give a better answer. I took the bike on a trip to Stamford from where I live and it was a twelve miles trip there it did it on a single battery and while I did switch it back for the return trip, it did claim to have half a battery left.
I am liking the bike so far but the issue above is still ongoing and worrying. For now, I have included a few more pictures of how dirty the bike is but sorry about the quality of the pictures my mobile phone sucks for them.
Update – 150 miles later
Not going to show the cost per mile yet as this is a little update but I am changing my mind again about this bike – I am liking it. I have bought a second charger and two batteries (at roughly 150kg), I can make this trip pretty easily now!
Update – 400 miles later
Today’s update is both a good and bad one. I have used the electric bike for around four weeks now to get to work and it has been doing it fine without any issues but I have learnt that this electric bike is meant to have pedal assist four and five which it does not have.
The seller is saying it is out of warranty and says the only way to fix it is to buy a new display but honestly I am not sure if I want to do so as I do not trust the seller that it would fix the issue.
Overall the electric bike is working and it does get me where I need to go but I am not getting the actual power that the bike provides.
Edit: It is worth saying after playing around with the controller I do have PAS 5 and 9. Sadly, it didn’t help as I expected. The power modes only limit what speed it will go to and will still always provide 9amps to get to that speed.
Update – 600 miles later
It has now been over a year and there have been some failures which you may expect after using a bike with what is an overweight person. I need to fix the back wheel which has the rim tape long gone and causing pinch punctures and some spokes that starting to slowly break. I have also replaced the disk brakes but you should be doing that often anyhow!
For the rim tape, I am hoping to be able to get some rim bands and going to buy some Tannus Armoured inserts or convert it to use 26″ x 2.0 wheels so I can use solid tyres. Overall the bike is pretty good and while I am having bad experiences with commuting if you are a lightweight you likely will find the bike enjoyable.
Update – 1000+ miles later
So this will be the final update and I am in two minds about it. On the first hand, I do like the bike and it has worked for me everywhere I want to go but on the other hand, I don’t think this is anywhere close to a 1000w motor and feels much more around 750w and that is myself being kind with it. The reason I say this is because I ride a 3000w motorbike which goes up hills easily and doesn’t dip with its speed. I would expect 1000w to at least go up slowly but this could be due to the controller so might replace it.
I reckon I will sell the bike and get a different one as the thing I do need from it the most is being able to pull me up those hills!
Update – 2000 miles later
While I did say I would not post another update with a large amount of traffic to this review I thought I would post another update. The bike still survives and I haven’t had any major issues with it beyond general wear and tear. I am currently using it around three times a week for the purpose of exercise and while I do still believe it doesn’t truly have a 1000w motor I am finding I am going up hills easily with correct gear usage and with my weight slowly going down so I reckon for those that a healthy weight will find this thing flies up hills.
When it comes to wear and tear I have had to replace the brake pads (as expected) but after two years I will need to replace the chain. Again, this is quite typical and with the usage I have had with this bike (and my weight), I would say it has lasted pretty well and I reckon I will still get a few more years out of it.
With that said I will only be providing one last update. This bike will be used by my twin brother to get to work and I will ask him to provide feedback to me based on a much lighter person using it.
The Range Overall
I find in my search stats that one thing people are looking for is the range of this electric bike and while I can reasonably far with my weight, I am going to explain how far it can go in a worst-case usage but you should get quite a bit better than below as this assumes full power is always used which is something that wouldn’t be happening all the time when riding yourself. Before I do that, I can do about 20+ miles with pedal assist with it being limited to 15.5mph assistance.
The motor of the electric bike is 48v and assuming it is delimited will provide 1000w. This means the bike usage at 100% will be 20.8333. I am going to round down to the nearest whole number so we will go with the that the bike uses 20 amps.
While the bike comes with two batteries, a single battery is 17ah and as we know this we can work a range in time – not miles. 17ah at 20amps will last about 51 minutes. This means the electric bike itself going at full power at about 20mph means you will get about 17 miles from it (You can do this by distance = speed x time). Surprisingly this means the creator of this bike got the range quite correct when it comes to what they mean by “pure electric”.
On two batteries you will get double that so you can, in theory, go at least 32 miles using the electric bike at full power. You will likely get more from it as it is very rare you will be using the full power but if you plan around that you should be safe if you are worried about range anxiety.
UK “road legal”
I thought I would add a section seeing most of my traffic for this review comes from the United Kingdom and that this bike is illegal on UK roads. With that said I am going to go over the rules and while you can’t make this road legal easily, you can make it close enough but as normal just don’t be a dick to other people on the road.
First, we need to understand the law of what an electric bike is and it is as follows.
An EAPC must have pedals that can be used to propel it.
It must show either:
- the power output
- the manufacturer of the motor
It must also show either:
- the battery’s voltage
- the maximum speed of the bike
Its electric motor:
- must have a maximum power output of 250 watts
- should not be able to propel the bike when it’s travelling more than 15.5mph
An EAPC can have more than 2 wheels (for example, a tricycle).Government Digital Service (2012). Electric bikes: licensing, tax and insurance. [online] GOV.UK. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/electric-bike-rules.
The first one is simple. Just get a sticker that says 250w. I know it sounds horrible but most ebike motors are higher than 250w as they just limit it for the UK market. It is worth saying that no motor stays at one level – even a 250w motor will burst higher than that.
The next point is the twist and go. I would recommend replacing the throttle and removing it but if you don’t want to do that go to settings and change P10 to 1. This will disable the throttle and only allow PAS to work.
The final part is about the motor wattage. As I said earlier most motors are above 250w and just limited as it is hard to make different motors for different markets. With this in mind, you can try limiting the motor to emulate this effect. As we know the motor is 1000w and the battery is 48v if we limit the controller to only provide 5.2amps we will get 250w. As we need to limit it to a whole number if we do 5amps it will limit the motor to 240w. We can do this by changing P14 to 5. We can also change P08 to 25 to limit the bike to about 15.5mph.
The above will not make your bike road legal but until e-bike laws catch up (a rant for another day!), it will at least help you try to stay legal. If you don’t limit the motor speed (and I don’t blame you, I’m a fat bastard and this helps me go up hills) at least limit the speed and disable the throttle. It isn’t meant to be a motorbike, it is a bike to get around.
Need to reference?
Ellis, M. (2021). Sheng Milo MX02S: My Review. [online] Snat's Narratives & Tales. Available at: https://snat.co.uk/reviews/hardware-and-electronics/sheng-milo-mx02s-my-review.html [Accessed 07 Dec 2023].
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