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FAQ: Will I be able to get up the hills on a cargo bike?

One of the first questions we have when parents come to see us about cargo bikes is whether or not they're going to be able to get up the hills. Now, obviously, it depends on how many kids you're carrying and how big they are. But for example, if you've got two or three kids, and you live up some of the steep Wellington hills, you will want to know that you can get up the hill without overexerting yourself. Otherwise, you might not use your cargo bike as much.

We started selling cargo bikes before there were good electric options. And we had our first cargo bike here 10 or 11 years ago, and it was a Christiania trike, and it didn't have a motor. I'm an enthusiast, I love cargo bikes and I'm a cyclist, so I enjoyed riding it. But I didn't ride it every day with the kids, because you had to really be in the mood for grinding up the hills. As much as i sometimes enjoyed grinding up the hills. some days, you just need to get stuff done without having to debate with yourself about whether you feel like it. This is where electric cargobikes make it the easiest way to get around.

The easiest way to test whether you'll be able to get up the hills around where you live is to take a bike for an extended test ride. Put your kids on the back and see how you go. I always refer to my wife who is not a cyclist, and who was a bit tentative about riding a cargo bike with kids at the start. She can ride up and over from Newtown to Houghton Bay, up Mount Albert. If you're not familiar with Wellington, it's quite a steep hill and quite an extended Hill. And she can ride up there with all three kids on the back when she needs to. She has to work pretty hard when she's got all three kids, but we've also got pretty big kids (they're six, nine and 11). With just the two younger kids it's a breeze.


The Bosch Cargo Line motor that you'll find on many of our bikes has an enormous amount of torque for hill climbing. The motors also use the bikes gears so if you drop it into the to the lowest gear and put the motor up on to turbo, you still have to put a bit of effort in, but you shouldn't need to exert yourself. To read an in-depth blog post about this motor system, click here.

We're all different and so are our home routes. The best thing that I suggest to parents is really just trying for themselves. Putting kids on the back taking a full load of shopping and trying riding up your hill. My bet is that you'll have a lot of fun. 

If you want to book a test ride for one of our bikes, then you can do so using the button below. If you're unsure of what you should test ride first, then either pop into store or give us a ring and we'll work from there.