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Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus review: Practical, safe, low-maintenance e-biking

Richard Peace
17 May 2022
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
2,495
inc VAT

The Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus is a good quality town, leisure and commuting bike that’s easy to use and to look after

Pros 
Safe, comfortable and easy to ride in town traffic
Low maintenance hub gears
Step-through frame great for those who find it difficult to get on step-over type frame
Cons 
Heavy
Not for those who want a fast, sporty ride
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The Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus (hub gear option) is the kind of e-bike anyone can easily ride any time, any day of the week in any weather for most cycling purposes.

That’s thanks to a plethora of easy to use features and a fully loaded configuration that includes powerful lights, rack, chainguard and kickstand. With a high-quality Bosch motor system, a step through frame and a sensible price it’s a fine choice for anyone looking for an fuss-free e-bike for riding around town.

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Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus review: What do you get for the money?

The New Motus Tour Plus is a big, strong e-bike; at 27.4kg on my scales it’s certainly one of the heavier ones out there. So, if you want an e-bike you can easily lift up stairs this definitely isn’t for you.

However, if you’re just going to be getting on and riding it, this shouldn’t matter as it’s so easy to get on with. Additionally, the smooth and powerful Bosch mid-drive motor, coupled with plenty of gears, means it’s easy to get up hills despite the heft.

The New Motus Tour Plus comes in four frame sizes. I tested the next to smallest and I am 5ft 8in so there should be a size for most riders. Step-through frames are regarded by some as just for women; however, anyone who can’t swing a leg over a diamond frame, or who just finds it difficult or inconvenient, will love the ease of getting on and off the New Motus.

The ‘sit up and beg’ riding position is great for gliding along in safety and observing what’s happening around you, so riders who just want to get from A to B comfortably will surely appreciate it. There’s also an adjustable stem that lets the rider swing the handlebars towards or away from them to find just the right riding position. Large 29in wheels and Suntour Nex front suspension forks also mean this is an e-bike designed for comfort and stability.

The mid-drive (aka crank drive) motor system used on the bike is from market leader Bosch. These motors are high quality yet have a reputation for being simple and easy to use: you just pedal and the electric assist flows smoothly and in response to the pressure you put on the pedals (so-called torque sensing), up to the legal assisted max speed of around 16mph.

The Bosch Purion handlebar display is also simplicity itself, displaying essential info like speed, battery capacity and odometer, and has large, easy to use power-level buttons.

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There’s a 400Wh battery, nicely integrated into the frame that can be removed for charging (or charged on the bike) and it’s covered by Bosch’s battery guarantee promising a minimum of 60% of full-charge capacity for two years or 500 charge cycles (whichever comes first), although I would expect a well cared-for battery to last much longer.

While the New Motus Tour Plus is well-kitted out for the practicalities of daily commuting, it would also make a great leisure e-bike and the suspension and large wheels mean it should be enjoyable to ride on good quality railpaths, canal towpaths and similar. There’s a sturdy rack to take supplies with you, which would also easily accommodate lightweight camping gear, powerful LED lights that would be fine on unlit roads and full-length mudguards for all weather riding.

Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus review: What’s it like to ride?

In practice, the New Motus delivers what its design promises: comfortable, easy riding in town traffic, on quiet country roads and on good quality tracks. I felt it would be great for ‘born again cyclists’ who want a bike that helps them get back into cycling, due to its forgiving handling, smooth but powerful hydraulic disc braking and eight hub gears, which are available by simply twisting the inner part of the right grip.

While the Bosch Active Line Plus motor sits towards the bottom end of the Bosch family of motors, don’t think it lacks hill climbing ability. In practice, I found just as capable as the more potent Bosch motors can do, if a little slower.

On the flat it felt fast and smooth and, using the top Turbo mode in combination with an easy-to-pedal first gear, the Motus made it up my standard 25% test gradient without too much effort.

I live in the Pennine foothills, with plenty of relatively small but steep gradients. Using a mixture of power levels – selecting the one that gave me just enough assistance for the gradient – I found 30 miles was a fair range estimate over this kind of terrain for my 68kg frame.

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Raleigh New Motus Tour Plus review: Should you buy it?

I only had a couple of quibbles. The New Motus uses a relatively small 400Wh battery, when the frame housing looks like it could easily take a 500Wh battery (the latest range of Bosch batteries go up to 750Wh). And, on a more cosmetic note, some of the motor casing and the mudguards have a rather bendy, plasticky feel that may not stand up to too much punishment.

Overall, though, this is a great e-bike. There aren’t too many Bosch mid-drives available at this price and certainly not with a frame-integrated battery, hub gears and all the extras needed for daily riding.

Indeed, if you want to save a few hundred pounds and still have a new “Bosch bike”, Raleigh’s own e-bike range is a good place to look for other options, with the Bosch Active Line-powered Raleigh Felix currently available for £1,900. However, if you want a good quality, easy to ride mid-drive e-bike, the New Motus Tour Plus is a great option.

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