Simply easy! With the Easy R900i for € 4,199, Centurion wants to make biking really, really easy. A Bosch Performance Line CS motor in combination with an extremely low step-through and a comfortable seating position is the recipe to help Centurion combine the Easy concept with comfort and style. We tested the super-low step-through bike for you. Now it’s time to let you know with which features it scores and and what could be even easier.
The particular shape of the frame of a step-through bike is designed to make getting on and off the bike easier. After all, you don’t need to lift your leg over the crossbar. Neither the geometry nor the seating position of step-through bikes are suitable for athletic use but rather for a comfortable cruise. However, with its new Easy line, Centurion wants to prove that step-through bikes don’t need to look stuffy and boring. The modern shape, flashy colours, and many chic details draw attention. So, what else is behind this trendy exterior?
Centurion Easy R900i
Motor BOSCH Performance Line CX 85 Nm
Battery Bosch PowerTube 625 Wh
Display BOSCH Intuvia 100
Brakes Shimano BR-MT200
Drivetrain Shimano Cues
Tires Schwalbe Fat Frank 26x2,35
Size S/M L/XL
Weight 30.46 kg
Perm. total weight 150 kg
very low entrance
many transport possibilities
Tuning tip: dropper post with dampener
Low, lower, lowest step-through – What makes the Centurion Easy R900i special?
With its Easy, Centurion targets people who are impaired in their movement or value comfort more than the average next person. With a mean step-through height of just 30 cm, stepping on and off the bike is less difficult than lifting the leg to climb onto many a train. The spacious step-through isn’t the only special feature of the Easy R900i, though. The beautifully integrated front rack and the rear luggage rack offer lots of options to carry baggage. And if that’s not sufficient, there are additional screw-on points for luggage carriers to be attached to the fork. Also, there are screw-on points for a bottle holder and a range extender at the back of the front rack.
Thanks to the Bosch Performance Line CX motor and a derailleur gear with a generous transmission ratio, the Easy R900i develops sufficient support to cruise up even steep ascents without a hitch. The 625 Wh battery should be able to cope with most day trips and can be enhanced by 250 Wh with the Bosch PowerMore range extender. The 2.5” wide Bosch Intuvia 100 display offers large letters and high contrast and is therefore easily legible.
Visually, Centurion has done a good job not making the super-low step-through look boring. The harmonious frame design and many nifty details, such as the partially suspended rear rack with integrated light and the futuristic-ish looking chain guard, turn the Easy R900i into a modern cruiser.
Also, the Easy is packed with handy features that actually make your everyday life easier: an integrated frame lock goes wherever you go and can be supplemented with an optional chain. The sealing cap of the charging port can be fixed in place with a flick of the wrist, which stops it from getting in the way when you plug in the cable. The positioning of the charging port at the level of the front rack is kind to your back as you don’t have to stoop to use it. If you want to charge the battery externally, you can conveniently remove it from the top. With a fairly high total weight of 30.46 kg, the bike is not particularly easy to maneuver. Especially with the crossbar lacking due to the shape of the design, it is difficult to lift the Bike in the middle over its centre of mass. Whether this might be a problem in daily use and what else the Easy has in store in the surprise department – we have checked it out at length on plenty of rides.
How does the Centurion Easy R900i perform in everyday use?
Be it a shopping spree, commuting to work, or a weekend trip into the great green outdoors: We used the Centurion Easy extensively for quite a while and looked into what the super-low step-through can actually do. The first thing that strikes you when getting on the bike is of course the super-low and wide step-though point that completely eliminates any hurdle to start riding. Only, the chain guard is so bulky that you will probably brush your foot against it, which may leave marks.
The seating position during the ride is comfortable and fairly upright, as is typical for step-through bikes. Real cruise feeling sets in due to the handlebars that are curved backwards. This is further amplified by the 85 Nm strong Bosch Performance Line CX motor. It works so well with the Shimano CUES groupset and the 26” tyres that quite a lot of turning moment is produced and even steep slopes can be tackled with ease. The battery capacity of 625 Wh is sufficient for long day trips and can be enhanced by 250 Wh via the PowerMore range extender.
The damping on the other hand is not so great. Without any suspension elements, the bike relies exclusively on the dampening effect of the tyres. At 2.35”, these are rather wide and offer sufficient damping in everyday use on asphalt and gravel, even if cracks in the tarmac and small potholes already make themselves felt. A ride over the kerbstone without lifting the butt is painful. In our opinion, a hydraulically lowerable seatpost with integrated damping would have been a fantastic idea for the top model. That way, the saddle could be lowered when mounting and dismounting the bike, which would significantly enhance the comfort as well as the feeling of safety and suitability for daily use – especially for riders with impaired movement. An opportunity missed in terms of comfort and usability!
As regards drivability, the Easy is as well-behaved as you’d want a step-through to be. The bike can be maneuvered easily and precisely. The small wheels make the rather longish bike nice and nimble. The bike convinces with smooth directional stability: even at higher speeds the steering doesn’t get nervous and makes for a lot of fun. Due to the upright seating position, the rider has a good view all around, which contributes significantly to a high sense of safety. Weighing 30.46 kg, the bike is quite heavy. However, this doesn’t “carry weight”, so to speak, while driving. The missing “handle” for carrying the bike, on the other hand, does pose quite a few challenges: lifting the bike up or down a few stairs or placing it on a bike rack requires a lot of strength and care.
The workmanship on the Centurion Easy R900i is remarkably good. Nothing rattles or comes loose. And despite the missing crossbar, the frame is rigid and does not warp. The brakes are a bit on the weak side for such a heavy, powerful bike with a maximum permissible weight of 150 kg. However, if you like to take it easy on the Easy, the rather smallish MT-200 brakes will do nicely stopping you in time.
Who is the Centurion Easy R900i for?
The Centurion Easy R900i is a solid ebike for whom it is quite important to get on and off the bike easily.The ride itself focuses on relaxed cruising and a bike experience without athletic aspirations. The missing dampeners limit the use of the Easy to asphalt and fine gravel. If an extra-comfortable and road-detached ride is what you’re looking for, the Easy will probably disappoint you. On the other hand, maintenance cost and the overall complexity are not all that high, either. If a relaxed ebike with adequate support, fresh optics, and high-quality workmanship is what you’re after, the Centurion Easy R900i is for you. The Easy will handle weekend tours, daily errands in the city, or a smooth commute admirably – and with that extra-portion of coolness.
Conclusion about the Centurion Easy R900i
With the Easy R900i, the Centurion offers a robust ebike that makes cycling – well, easy: without any athletic aspirations or high-maintenance features, but with modern optics, much fun, and various options to take baggage along.
- chic optics
- high-quality workmanship
- powerful support
- sparse dampening
- stiff seatpost, makes getting on and off the bike more difficult
Words & Photos: Jan Richter