We have already reported on the Lemmo One here several times — including in our detailed test review of the smart e-bike. There, the bike was available to us with the derailleur, but now there is also a wide variant: the Lemmo ONE Beld drive is equipped with a belt drive and designed as a singlespeed bike. In other words: there is no gear shift here!
The advantages of the belt drive are obvious: the absence of chain oil or grease makes this drivetrain very clean, also longer lasting and low maintenance compared to the bicycle chain. And thanks to its quiet operation, the belt drive is the ideal complement for bikes with an equally quiet hub motor, as is the case with the Lemmo One.
The Lemmo One Belt drive as a singlespeed in our first impression
We already had the opportunity to briefly ride the Lemmo One in its new belt variant (here, by the way, with the comfort frame model ST, with sloping top tube and somewhat more compact dimensions) and can thus draw a comparison to the regular Lemmo One Chain with derailleur.
The essential characteristics of a singlespeed bike also apply to the Lemmo One Belt: getting started on the bike requires a slightly higher effort in comparison, but this is successfully compensated for by the bike’s motor. In this respect, starting on the flat is absolutely no problem, but on the uphill you would benefit from the better gear ratio of the derailleur. The same then also applies at high speeds, where you have to pedal less quickly thanks to the derailleur to be brisk on the road. However, the transmission of the belt model is also selected so that you can be quite comfortable in the range up to 30 km / h on the road — which should certainly be enough for most rides!
The great advantage of the singlespeed concept, on the other hand, is the simple and carefree operation of the bike. Without a gearshift, you do not have to worry about the right gear! The drive is quieter and even largely maintenance-free, the look of the bike again cleaner and more purist.
However, you should pay particular attention with the Lemmo One to the question of whether you want to ride the bike regularly without electric assistance. Because Lemmo offers ideal conditions for this thanks to the removable battery and the manual mode of the hub motor. If that should be the case, the variant with derailleur gears is certainly recommended. It makes it much easier to get the bike uphill, which otherwise quickly becomes an ordeal without gears and without the help of a motor.
New updates for better motor support
In our review of the Lemmo One, we had already pointed out that the control of the motor definitely has room for improvement – and indeed, a new update has been released in the meantime, which was also installed on the test bike of the Lemmo Belt. On the short test lap, the motor’s support made a more harmonious impression and worked less roughly and jerkily. We still wish we had a torque sensor in this bike, but the improvements with the software are already a step forward. Especially since the motor now responds a bit earlier and the whole software system seems to have become a bit more responsive. The change of support levels is now more immediate than before, for example.
With the current update, the sound of the electronic bicycle bell has also been changed — we already noticed that the old ringtone was hardly perceived as such by pedestrians. But: the new one sounds different, but does not necessarily work better. So let’s wait for the next update 😉
The aforementioned innovations via software are of course available for all variants of the Lemmo One bike — no matter whether you ride the model with derailleur or the one with belt drive. And also on the hardware there are minor updates for all models: the tires are now equipped with a reflective strip, which makes the installation of spoke reflectors (fortunately) superfluous!
Conclusion: Which is better? The Lemmo with or without belt drive?
In addition to the mentioned aspects, there is one topic that we have not yet discussed — and that is the price of the two variants. At 1,990 Euros, the regular Lemmo One with the high-quality Shimano Deore derailleur is a really good deal. For the belt model, however, a surcharge of 200 euros is due, which brings us to 2,190 euros, which is still an attractive price.
Ultimately, it remains a question of personal preference for which type of drive you choose. The simplicity of the singlespeed model has its appeal and is quite suitable for trips in rather flat areas. But more versatile, more flexible and also a little cheaper is however the Lemmo One Chain!
It’s also nice to see that Lemmo is continuously working to improve the bike — as the latest update with noticeably refined motor control proves. More info about the bikes can be found on the Lemmo website, our detailed review can be found here.