While spending a few weeks with the ONYX RCR shorty (w/ dirt kit approximately $6500, including delivery), it is evident that motorbike architect Ryan Montana paid special attention to the needs of this generation of riders.
Traditionally, 360 MAGAZINE defies all things automotive in the Los Angeles playground; however, this handsome one is best suited in a market with flawed transit, inadequate streets and challenging weather. After all, the RCR claws into heavily damaged and soiled asphalt. In fact, a few of its newly introduced appointments have addressed poor battery life and ride noise.
We tested the café racer in The Bronx – one of New York’s bustling boroughs. With approximately 1.7 million residents, many of its inhabitants rely on bicycles, e-bikes, and mopeds as a mode of transportation. However, the main deterrent for operating electric bikes in this area is its hillish terrain. With a massive 72V 41Ah powerplant, the RCR easily tackles steep territory. After a text session with the Onyx Motorbike customer service unit, we were reminded that the company’s forefathers began their journey in San Francisco. And, for those who aren’t familiar with SF’s landscape, The Bronx doesn’t hold a candle to the slopes encountered within that locale.
There are no images that can truly relay how attractive this e-bike is. At first glance, many double take at how skeletal the chassis and body appear. With chrome accents and wood paneling, many comment on how stunning the RCR is. It’s part vintage moped from the 1960s in London and part futuristic dirt bike fueled by lithium. Moreover, the American made muscle e-bike is easily modifiable and can be handled by most electric bike technicians.
The RCR is one of the most agile e-bikes in the industry. With hydraulic brakes (with strong stopping power) and a fork suspension system, the model can easily handle rocky roads. If like us, you purchase the dirt kit, the knobby tires are perfect for digging into sand, dry, and unpaved surfaces. We’re especially proud of making this choice since we’re constantly confronted by sinkholes in the city. Alternative tires are Shinko. The pro: 5.4 kilowatts motor, 142 ft-lbs torque, 60 mph top speed. The con: the ride at higher speeds can become uncomfortable with bouncy feedback and shaking handlebars.
The 41Ah delivers power and quickly puts to sleep rider anxiety. We found our unit to achieve 40 miles while in sport mode. One could easily make a round-trip from Yankee Stadium to West 4th. However, when we witnessed the battery level reach 40%, our model displayed flickered lights and shut down. Having a balanced battery with triggers to safeguard cells, kept us safe from hazards like fires and overcharging. The superfast charger refuels in about 2 to 3 hours and will automatically end the session once it reaches it full capacity.
The handlebars house a car-like display console that exhibits battery life, odometer, and current speed. The handlebars also have access to USB port, which surprisingly isn’t strong enough to power modern smartphones like Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, equipped with fast 45-watt charging block and capabilities. In our travels, It didn’t seem to charge our Samsung Galaxy earbuds or provide enough juice to power our neon rope light w/ USB from Amazon. The built-in alarm system is robust loud, and if it’s armed while the RCR power button is ‘on’, the position will not allow the tires to roll. Further, having the unit in ‘on’ position makes it easy to hop on and off the unit at a quick store run while providing you with peace of mind.
So far, this black RCR shorty has proven to be a solid competitor in the fields of high-powered ebikes and entry-level electric motorcycles: outstanding performance, superb maneuverability and intuitive design. Kudos to the team at Onyx Motorbikes for engineering, a magnificently enchanting e-bike with unparalleled athleticism and battery life.
Seat reupholster video HERE.
Articles in the Media
Inside new BN.com QR-coded print issue.
Freshly Charged unboxing.
Mr. Affalterbach RCR review.
Watch how to properly remove your wood battery cover HERE.
Watch how to properly charge your RCR HERE.
 knobby tires, fork gaiters, front + rear fenders, and cargo rack.
Additional battery options HERE.
50aH THEIA battery HERE.
Alternative tires Shinko HERE.
ILM motorcycle helmet HERE.
KASK stylish cycling helmet HERE.