If you want to be more active and not always tied to your car, you’re likely shopping for an e-bike. E-bikes are everywhere and more popular then ever it seems. If you’re looking for one, how do you choose? I recently got the chance to test out the new Himiway Zebra step-through fat tire e-bike. In this himiway zebra review I’ll tell you what it’s like to use, how comfortable the ride is, about the battery power and range plus a few other things I think you should know before you buy.
Overall, this is only my second e-bike experience and I can already see the improvements and the stellar features of the Himiway Zebra that put it above the competition.
- Heavy duty frame; strong build quality
- Strong acceleration
- Solid-feeling ride
- Nice design
- Easy to assemble (great how-to video!)
- Fat tires handle both rugged and city terrain well
- Easy to adjust pedal assist, speed
- Lots of thoughtful accessories included; lights, kickstand, rack
- Many adjustable settings
- Comfortable handgrips and seat
- 79 lb weight may be too much for some to handle
- Bigger bike takes some getting used to
I’d like to say thanks to Himiway for sponsoring this post. While they have sponsored this blog, they have not told me what I have to say or what I can’t say, and I got to test the bike on my own terms, so you can consider these thoughts my own.
Himiway D5 Zebra e-bike: what you get
Himiway Zebra (recently re-named Himiway D5) is a long-range e-bike powered by a long lasting battery, which provides power for long distance riding or challenging uphills. It’s meant for both city and off-road use, providing a comfy, safe ride in all kinds of weather and all sorts of road and trails.
With its 26-inch x 4-inch Kendo fat tires, you get not just stability, but traction too, meaning if you live in a place with sand, mud, snow or slush, it should be a formidable travel companion.
Since I spend time in both Calgary Canada and Palm Desert California, this Himiway zebra e-bike is going to get a lot of use on everything from snow and slush, to sand and desert, plus all the roads and streets in between.
I’m in Calgary at the moment so the Zebra will first be tested here in my city neighbourhood, as well as out in the mountains and on the trails of the Rocky Mountain foothills.
Shipping and delivery
The box the bicycle arrives in is extremely large and very heavy. The Himiway bike zebra weighs almost 100 pounds and is all but impossible for one person to lift. Make sure you have some help.
When I unboxed the bicycle I was surprised and impressed by just how well packaged the Zebra is. Everything is carefully padded and zip-tied into place so nothing will move, break, or become scratched.
- Rear rack
- Front and rear LED lights
- Tool kit
The bicycle comes mostly fully assembled. You will just need to slide it out of the box and unwrap the packaging and protective wraps. Himiway includes a card which will direct you to an unboxing and assembly video.
Battery removal is smooth & easy
One of the first steps is to use the included keys to unlock the battery from its cradle underneath the cross brace. I can see that immediately the way the battery goes into the bicycle makes it extremely easy to install and remove, and unlike another e-bike I reviewed, this one slides easily in and out of its cradle and it doesn’t feel like I need to break, pry, or slam it to get it into or out of its place.
I decided to plug the battery in to charge while I completed the rest of the assembly. The battery charger itself looks nice and seems thoughtfully designed, rather than the afterthought most chargers are.
Inside the large shipping box is a small accessories box which contains the items I need to complete my assembly. Alongside instructions are the pedals, front light (awesome that it’s included!), and a few other components. Also included is a Allen key tool kit and a small box with nuts, bolts, and other connectors. Himiway has also included a hat which is again a nice thoughtful and special extra gift.
The handlebars go on first and this was easy with just a few hex screws.
After assembling the handlebars it’s time to put on the front wheel. The front fork is bolted into a small plastic cage that helps hold the bike upright. You need to loosen the bolts holding the fork in before you can install the front tire. There are also flat plastic discs on either side of the wheel that will also need to be removed. If you’ve never assembled a bicycle before, this might not be obvious.
With the wheel attached you’ll lock the rear rack (which is already installed, but not bolted down) into place and attach a derailer guard.
My honest thoughts on assembly
In all, the steps are extremely easy to follow and I had the bike ready to ride in about an hour. This is only the second e-bike or bicycle of any kind I’ve had to assemble and overall I found it super easy even for a novice such as myself.
Many e-bike users have concerns about security. After all, when you invest this much in your transportation you want to make sure it’s not going to go anywhere. There are a couple of security features on this bike that should help keep it safe, including the ability to set a PIN code to ride the bike. The battery also requires a key to access or remove.
Removable rechargeable battery: long range + distance
Himiway Zebra uses a 5000mAh Samsung/LG removable battery. Himiway tells me compared with 3500mAh cells made of nickel, cobalt and manganese, their 960Wh battery can give you up to 100 kilometres or range on pure electric power and over 128+ kilometres if you help pedal (60 up to 80 miles for my USA friends). The battery is supposed to maintain 80% capacity even after 1000 charges. If you ever need a replacement battery, you can purchase one for about $699-899 CAD.
I’ve had the chance to take this bike out a handful of times so far, so I am still working my way through the first battery charge. What I can tell you is that even after taking the bike out for about two hours on the very first day, the battery level didn’t even drop from fully charged. I have no doubt that this battery is going to give me an extremely long life with minimal recharging time.
The battery on the Himiway Zebra recharges using the included AC power cable and will take about 7 hours to fully return to 100% charged.
This bike is a tank
The Himiway bike Zebra boasts an aluminum frame that is two times thicker than conventional bike frames, and it tips the scales at 79 pounds and I can confirm it is extremely heavy to move. This frame, which Himiway refers to as “robust” can support weights of up to 400lbs, while maintaining the stability of the motor and battery.
This has its advantages and disadvantages; if you often need to lift or carry your bike for commuting, getting onto a vehicle or to put it up onto storage, this might not be ideal, but if you tend to tackle rough terrain and inclement conditions, it’s a good thing.
Himiway says riding the Zebra feels like being on a tank when going off-road, providing a solid, safe, and reliable riding experience.
I wasn’t sure “tank” was the feeling I was going for in an e-bike but I was game to see what it’s like. I can definitely say the weight of the bike is noticeable when you don’t have any kind of power assistance but once the power of this e-bike kicks in, any weight issues disappear.
I took the bike out on some bumpy prairie terrain to test it out and I found that between the fat tires and the excellent (and adjustable!) shocks the rise was smooth and stable. I found I could take hills, bumps, tree roots and uneven sidewalks with ease.
Himiway zebra fat Fat tire bikes tend to be more off-road than city commuting, but give the lacklustre state of cycling infrastructure in my area of Calgary, I actually found the Himiway Zebra was ideally suited to the city too and made getting around potholes, cracks, broken curbs and hazards a lot easier and I definitely felt safer riding the Zebra than I would a typical 10-speed or even a basic regular-tire mountain bike.
Both myself and my husband took the Himiway Zebra out for some trips around the city. We tackled both typical city roads and pathways, as well as more rugged prairie terrain around the Glenmore Reservoir in Calgary.
It was easy to glance down at the control panel and check the status of everything on the bike while flying along at top speed.
Despite its weight this bike has no trouble speeding you along almost any type of terrain. While it does take a bit of getting used to handling the additional weight and the fat tire styling of this bike, it’s easy enough to adapt to. I also know that with more riding, I’ll be able to manage it better (my turning radius is comically large at this moment).
Riding on gravel
We have gravel lane ways around our home so I took it for a rip up and down them. Where are my other mountain bike tends to skid and skate across the gravel, the Zebra bit into the gravel extremely well and made me feel a lot safer and more stable on this surface.
What’s it like riding a fat tire e-bike?
Riding a himiway zebra fat tire bike is a very different experience from riding a typical smaller, lighter bicycle. The additional weight means the Zebra may handle more like a motorscooter for you, than a bicycle. It also means things like your stopping distance will be a bit longer. As noted above my turning radius is also a bit off kilter.
I am however extremely impressed by how well this bicycle can handle different types of hazards and obstacles. It goes without saying that on a smooth flat surface the bike glides along effortlessly, so it’s often when faced with unusual terrain that you can really see the benefit of a fat tire bike. Where my basic city mountain bike may get caught in cracked curbs or hit hard into a bigger pothole, the Zebra tackles obstacles like these with stability, cushioning and aplomb.
Speed, Power & Range: 7-speed e-bike
Let’s get into some of the details about this bike. It has 7 different speeds, and you can turn pedal assist on or off; this will give you a boost of power when you start pedalling and while riding so you don’t have to work as hard.
There is also a throttle on the right side of the handlebar so that you can control your speed and power manually too. The throttle is smooth and easy to operate, and I like that I have both options for powering my bike.
The Zebra features a small LCD monochrome display screen which sits on the centre of the handlebars and displays all of your riding information at a glance. You can see:
- Battery level
- Pedal assist speed setting
- Speed (mph or kph)
- Headlight on/off
There’s also a secondary control pad on the left handlebar which adjusts:
- Bike power on/off
- Level of pedal assist up/down
- Headlight on/off
- Change info display (i)
I will also note that the simple headlight on off button on the handlebar is extremely welcome. On another e-bike I tried, this setting was buried in the settings and was tricky to use. On the Zebra it’s simple and convenient.
The brakes on this bike hydraulic and they do a good job at stopping the bike. My brakes did need a slight adjustment and tightening after my first use to calibrate them for me specifically but otherwise they’re strong and quick.
Adjusting miles to kilometers
My Himiway Zebra came to me set in miles. To change to kilometers:
Long press power button to switch on the bike. While the bike is stationary in the power-on state, press and hold the “+ ” and “- ” buttons simultaneously for more than 2 seconds to enter the general settings menu.
- TC refers to the trip counter
- BL is backlight
- P is for Auto-lamp
- U adjusts Units; 1 is imperial and 2 is metric
Convert the speed and mileage units by pressing “+ ” or “ -” buttons. Click on “ i” button to confirm the option and enter the system voltage selection. Press and hold “ i” to confirm the setting and exit the general settings.
Customizing pedal assist power
The Zebra came to me with what felt like a lot of power on takeoff when I have the pedal assist engaged. Fortunately this is adjustable so if you find the level of pedal assistance on the Zebra is either too much or too little for your personal liking, you can adjust it. There’s a setting available in the zebra set up menu that will allow you to adjust the power of each level, from a minimum of 20% up to 99%.
It’s easy enough to do, but you do need to follow some dedicated steps which you can learn about here.
Overall review: Himiway Zebra e-bike
Overall, this is only my second e-bike experience and I can already see the improvements and the features of the Himiway Zebra that put it above the competition.
First there’s the fact it comes with a lot of useful accessories included, and that the bike arrives mostly assembled, so the tasks I had to do were quick and easy.
The bike is easy to ride and intuitive to control and I had a really comfortable and enjoyable riding experience both on street surfaces and more outdoorsy terrain.
I wasn’t expecting to fall for a fat tire bike, but Himiway has made everything about this bike easy, from delivery, to assembly, to riding and adjusting your settings, it’s a dream to own. If you’re looking for a fat tire e-bike that can manage city streets and off road adventures, this bike is the powerhouse you’re searching for.
Currently if you use code TechGad23 you can get $50 off your Himiway e-bike purchase when you buy from Himiway’s website.
Himiway Zebra FAQ
Why is it called Zebra?
There’s no stripes, so why is Himiway’s bike called the Zebra? Himiway says “a zebra has great stamina and they can run at full speed for over a mile. Even the world’s fastest animal, the cheetah can’t run longer than the zebra. Our e-bike can go up to 80 miles, which other e-bikes can hardly reach.”
What class is a Himiway Zebra?
Himiway Zebra is a Class 3 e-bike.
Does the Himiway Zebra use a torque sensor?
How much does a Himiway Zebra (often misspelled Hemingway Zebra) weigh?
Is an e-bike actually worth it?
Has Himiway Zebra been renamed?
Does Himiway Zebra D5 have new colours?
Ocean Blue: A deep, rich shade that captures the essence of the sea.
Vibrant Yellow: Bold and energetic, Vibrant Yellow is a color that commands attention. If you’re someone who loves to make a splash, Vibrant Yellow is the color for you.
Skyline (This exclusive color is only available on the Himiway store): The Skyline color for your e-bike is a stunning light blue hue that takes inspiration from the sky and clouds.
What other e-bikes have you reviewed?
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