It's a big disappointment in a small package.

Bikes and Beards has had their share of electric bikes. Some were great, while others were not. Buying cheap electric bikes on the internet is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get. This turned out to be the case with their latest ride, the cheapest electric pit bike they could find for sale online. The fact that they don't clearly say what it is or where they got it should give you a hint of how this goes.

A pit bike, by Bikes and Beards' definition, is "A small framed dirtbike with larger suspension, that dads can buy for their kids but end up riding themselves, because dirtbikes are awesome, and you can't tell me what to do." You can't ride them on the street. They're not up to any serious trail riding. You can ride them around your yard, but the neighbors might complain about the noise. A quiet electric motor would fix that and seems the perfect solution.

Unfortunately, this "Mototec 199" doesn't seem to be the winning ticket. As is not uncommon with cheap bikes from the internet, there's a loose bolt and a missing nut for the rear shock. The frame's weld quality resembles something I might weld, and I've never welded before. It's also a bit small, which becomes obvious when Shawn parks the assembled bike next to his gas-powered one. Shawn's not a big guy, but he's still 50 pounds over this bike's weight limit. The motor is tiny, and the chain is smaller than my bicycle's. It was advertised as "adult size," but someone in the advertising department was clearly misinformed.

The important question, though, is how does it ride? Not too well. Even after cranking the adjustable speed and throttle sensitivity knobs to maximum, Shawn can do a few donuts around the shop, but the bike still doesn't go very fast. The most excitement he can get out of it is when he goes over the handlebars trying to descend a steep snowbank. Perhaps the number 199 on the front made Shawn believe he was Travis Pastrana for a minute. At any rate, it turns out this is not really a pit bike, but a slightly larger version of a kids' toy. While it is possible to get a good deal on a bike from China, let the buyer beware.