Intro, Price, Options and Verdict
- Crazily low running costs for an EV at 1p per mile
- Gorgeous design
- Solid build quality
- British made in the heart of the Midlands
- On the expensive side to buy
- RM1 doesn't have enough power for large A roads/li>
Range: 40/80 miles Top Speed: 45 mph Cost/Mile (@9.5p/kWh overnight): 1p
Across the UK, serious pressure is being put on car drivers to move across to electric vehicles. On top of that, there is increased emphasis on two wheels being better than four. For really short/local trips, anyone with a provisional license can get a slow electric moped that will max-out before 15mph, but if you take a one day course and get a CBT certificate then that will really open up your choices. While there will be Chinese options available under the £2,000 mark, pushing that budget up to £5,000 opens up a lot of choice.
You can ride it with a CBT – a certification that most bicycle-riding/car-driving folks should be able to get after a single day course for less than £200.
There are four Maeving authorised locations where you can test ride the bike: London, Coventry, Bridgend and Staverton in Gloucester. As long as you have a valid license with CBT or full bike license and you're able to generate a DVLA code, then it's a simple process to book a bike and give it a try. Details on this page.
The retro styling and solid build quality are balanced with the sensible engineering decision to fit a pair of removable batteries that, between them, give you a range of 80 miles and the ability to recharge with a standard wall socket. With a good balance of features, ride comfort, decent (rather than outstanding) performance and crazy good looks, it could all come down to a battle between brain and heart, as you try and answer the question: How much do I want to spend in order to really make a statement about my personal style? Enter the Maeving RM1.
Price and Options
As we road tested the RM1, Maeving was in the process of bringing a more powerful version to market under the name RM1S – which has a much more powerful motor and a top speed of 65mph with pricing north of £7,000. The RM1 tops out at 45mph, which is perfect about town, and is available at £4,995 with a single battery and £5,990 with a pair of batteries. At the time of writing, the RMS1 could be reserved with a £500 deposit – with a likely delivery date after March 2024.
Anyone who's ever gone to buy a car or bike will know that ‘creativity knows no bounds' when it comes to the design team describing paint colour options. We'll drop the swatch of available colours for the bike here and you can decide which one's best for yourself. Unlike most transportation products, changing colour doesn't change the price with Maeving.
Update/upgrade/add-ons for the RM1 are as follows:-
- 14L Roll Top Pannier (£250)
- Oxford HD Chain & Lock 1.5m (£45)
- Oxford Disc Lock & Alarm (£45)
- Oxford Aquatex Cover (£25)
- Fitted L-Plate (£25)
- Spare Driving Key (£49.99)
- Spare Charger and Dock (£195)
The RM1 is propelled by just one thing – the next-gen Bosch motor that forms the hub of the rear wheel. According to Maeving, it requires minimal maintenance, no oil, no chains, no petrol and produces no mess , smells or noise. Couldn't be simpler.
So the Maeving RM1 is an electric bike with a top speed of 45mph, range of 40 miles per battery – and the ability to have two Samsung-technology batteries inserted at the same time – switching seamlessly from one to the next. It weighs 110kg (124kg with two batteries), so unlikely to be difficult to handle for regular riders and it's been fitted with a tracker for safety/recovery.
Design, Ride Comfort and Storage
There's something about the design of the Maeving RM1 that really grabs you. On the one hand, it's a thoroughly modern electric motorbike, but at the same time, it's somehow reminiscent of the kind of bike that Harley Davidson was making back in 1918 or the Broad Tracker a couple of years later – and you can easily imagine it flying through enemy lines, carrying important messages about troop movements to the top brass.
By channelling wiring through something that looks like an exhaust system, it perfectly captures the look of a regular motorbike – albeit it from a slightly alternate universe. The brakes work well and, as mentioned, the Bosch motor is in the rear wheel hub, so maintenance should be a breeze.
Pneumatic forks and spring loaded suspension at the back, allow it to absorb bumps smoothly and the seat is really comfortable/plush. The leather look saddle has been diamond stitched with vegan leather – so you get all of the comfort with none of the cruelty. Given how long leather seats last in all weathers, you'd imagine that a synthetic created specifically for this purpose will last even longer.
It's just over 30″ from the ground, so will be easy to access for most people, although is you're much over 6′ tall you might feel a little cramped – so ‘try before you buy'.
Steering is easy and positive, so you should have no issues threading your way through the traffic of a large city and despite the relatively narrow nature of the 19″ wheels, grip seemed good.
You will have to decide how much range you need, while you are considering storage. There is a space for a second battery – or you can use that space for ‘securely' storing your personal items.
If you want both batteries (or just need additional space), then you can buy a special Maeving panier for £250 that will give you 14 litres of storage on the side of your RM1. The panier can be detached to form a neat shoulder bag.
The RM1's information display is a single, analogue-style dial that tells you everything you need to know while riding. At a glance you will know:-
- Your current speed
- Whether your lights are on
- If you are in neutral or drive
- Distance travelled
- The amount of battery charge you have left
There is also a ‘countdown' from the time you switch the bike off – to the time you are able to access the battery compartments (which are normally ‘locked'). Once the batteries have become accessible, you have a limited amount of time to open the compartments and access them. In other words, if you stop, dismount and begin walking away a few seconds later – then your battery compartments will lock down and remain secure.
There is also a speed limiter, which can be very handy in cities like London, where the local government seems hell-bent on extracting as much money as possible from motorists. You can choose to limit your speed at 20 or 30 mph – ensuring that you will not fall foul of the dreaded speed cameras everywhere these days.
Performance, Running Costs, Range, and Safety
Performance and Riding
This is a genuine motorbike that needs a CBT in order for you to ride it. Acceleration is good and the top speed of 45mph means that you can easily use minor A-roads in the UK. If you need to get near the National Speed Limit during your travels, then you'll need to look at the RM1 S.
It rides exactly how a regular motorbike rides, except the Maeving is missing the smell of partially-burnt petrol and the constant chugging sound.
Range and Charging
The batteries need to be charged in a special charger – so you can't plug them into the main on their own. The batteries are 4kWh each and can take just over 3 hours to fully charge from empty. The charger use a standard wall socket. When we asked Maeving's experts about a second charger, they looked at us slightly askew – with a definite hint of ‘you are not likely to need a second charger'. Still, if your journey is over 40 miles each way, each day, then you can buy a second charger unit for £195.
It's so hard to calculate running costs these days, especially for products that can plug into a standard wall socket.
If you charged both batteries on an overnight tariff from someone like E-On, then you'll be paying 9.5p per kW, so a full battery will cost you something like 38p. Your cost per mile for riding the next day would be around 1 penny per mile. We'll say that again. One penny per mile. If you ride 10 miles to work and 10 miles back, then you're paying £1 a week.
Given the price of of the four-wheeled options from Transport for London, if your commute is less than 20 miles and you have somewhere to park when you get to work, the running costs on this Rm1 will be an absolute bargain.
Disk brakes front and rear work well and you're not moving that fast to begin with. Despite its cool looks, the Maeving RM1 is a real motorbike that can achieve 45mph quickly – so apart from practice and keen road sense, the most important safety feature will be to make sure that you have a full set of high quality gear. Kevlar clothing, titanium heeled boots and full face helmets from companies like AGV and HJC are your friends.
|Range (WLTP):||40 miles|
|Charge time (13 amp home socket):||3-4 hours|
|Cost per mile*:||1p|
|Wheel driven:||Rear hub|
|Weight:||110Kg single battery (124kg with both batteries)|
|Max Rider Weight:||120Kg|
*based on overnight charging at 9.5p per kWh with E-On