About a year ago, the new Lemmo brand debuted with its first bike, the Lemmo One. In the meantime, the prototype has developed into a production model and, in addition to its minimalist design, also comes with many smart features: a tracking function, anti-theft lock, alarm system and an extensive app connectivity are included. There is also a manual mode that should allow you to ride the bike like a regular bicycle, even without the electric drive. Big ambitions, then! But does the Lemmo One also fulfill its basic requirements as an e-bike?
Let’s start with the first highlight of the Lemmo One, the design of the bike. The most striking feature is certainly the battery, because this is not integrated into the frame and Lemmo did not even try to hide this somehow. Quite the opposite! The battery has been placed pretty prominent in the front frame triangle, where it occupies a really dominant place. That this does not have a negative impact is due to its unique shape and surface, which is covered with high-quality fabric — the battery, which is called Smartpac, is more reminiscent of a stylish design speaker than a clunky energy storage device. An appealing solution that no other manufacturer has shown in this form and quality so far!
Another advantage of this system: if you use the Lemmo One without battery as a conventional bike, the bike also looks like a conventional bike. Where other e-bikes would have an empty opening in the frame instead, the Lemmo’s only reminder of the missing battery is a slim guide rail in a light green contrasting color. The elegant frame shape comes into its own even better, where especially the inwardly offset seat tube stands out, which forms a visual unit with the seat post. And just like the seatpost, the stem is also powder-coated in the frame color, and the lack of visible welds also ensures a clean look. The same applies to the routing of cables and wires, which are guided directly under the stem to the inside of the frame.
In line with the minimalist design concept, the integration of the electric drive system (apart from the battery, of course) is also very unobtrusive. The hub motor in the rear wheel is barely visible behind the chainring and a compact monochrome display is flush-mounted in the top tube. The system is controlled via two small thumb buttons on the handlebars.
Despite the minimalist look, the equipment of the Lemmo One is quite extensive and is aimed at commuters who use the bike in all weather conditions. The bike has sturdy mudguards with holders for panniers at the rear, a light system and a kickstand. This is installed in the center of the bottom bracket, which is sometimes a bit awkward (the pedals rotate when maneuvering and then get stuck on the kickstand). A rear kickstand would certainly have been more practical, but there was possibly not enough space for this design. Because there at the rear Lemmo has installed something special:
At exactly this point, an integrated servomotor ensures that the bike can be locked mechanically and the rear wheel can no longer turn. For additional theft protection, there is also an alarm system that triggers an acoustic alarm signal when the bike is moved. And thanks to the integrated GPS module, the bike can be tracked via the smartphone app.
But let’s stay with the rear wheel for a moment: a hub motor with a typical 40 Nm torque is installed here. However, its Dual Mode Hub label already points to another special feature: the freewheel can be mechanically separated from the electric drive in the motor via a cap on the axle — this should allow the rear wheel to rotate without additional resistance, just like on a conventional bike.
With 540 Wh, the battery offers quite a high capacity for this bike class; all the more practical that you can also use it off the bike: Thanks to two USB ports (USB-A and USB-C), you can also charge mobile devices such as laptops or smartphones — so the name Smartpac is no coincidence!
In addition to so much high-tech on the Lemmo One are also quite classic bike components installed: The derailleur used here is from Shimano’s Deore series, which has 10 gears and a 11-42 cassette that provides a wide range for any terrain. Also from the Deore series are the hydraulic disc brakes and the tires in 27.5 “format is with 44 mm quite well chosen for urban use.
As you can see, there is a lot of technology in this bike. It is therefore hardly surprising that the smartphone also plays a central role — because almost nothing works without it! This starts with the unlocking of the bike, which is done via app. A slider activates a servomotor in the frame to release the mechanical lock of the rear wheel. The same applies to the Smartpac: If you want to remove it, you have to unlock it via another servomotor in the app. Both functions should actually be controlled independently of each other, but this was not possible at least with the current software version. Likewise, GPS tracking was not very precise and alarms were not reported on the app (whereas the alarm system itself always worked reliably). Overall, the Lemmo One’s app connectivity still shows that it is a brand new system. Software updates in the future should certainly bring improvements here!
But the good thing is that once the bike is unlocked, it can be used without an app. The motor’s three assist levels are controlled via the compact thumb button on the right side of the handlebars. Pressing it once switches through the modes in a row, but you can also switch back to a different mode by pressing it twice. Unfortunately, the button’s pressure point is a bit fuzzy and switching takes a short delay. By the way, there is another such button on the left side. There it functions as an electronic bicycle bell — but was unfortunately hardly noticed as such by anyone on the road. Again, we can hope that Lemmo will offer more bell tones as an alternative with a software update.
Visual feedback about the electric drive is provided by the display on the top tube, which is easy to read and was always sufficiently bright in the test, even in sunshine. In addition to the speed, the current riding mode and the remaining battery capacity are also displayed here – and for two batteries! In addition to the Smartpac, the Lemmo One also has another battery integrated into the frame. This provides the power supply when the bike is used as a classic bicycle without its main battery. So the integrated lighting works as well as the display on the top tube. Again a detail that you have been looking for in vain on other e-bikes! For this manual use, you can then also set the motor in the rear wheel as mentioned in the so-called M-mode: for this, the cap on the axle is pulled out a bit and turned slightly, which is easy by hand.
The Smartpac itself must be disconnected from the bike via app — but can then be effortlessly and precisely removed from the bike and docked again. The sturdy metal guide rail helps immensely, and the battery snaps back into place with a loud click. Very good!
There’s also no reason to criticize the traditional bike components themselves: the brakes grip tightly and the Deore shifting is precise and fast to use — no wonder, it’s not just a cheap entry-level model, but the solid mid-range at Shimano.
Besides the technical refinements, the Lemmo One also surprises with its comparatively low weight. The test bike in size L had a weight of 19.2 kg ready to ride, with the large battery alone contributing 3.1 kg. It is therefore not surprising that the bike can be ridden quite agilely — although the seating position is comfortable and not too stretched. This is achieved by the slightly raised riser handlebar and the comfortable saddle as well as the ergonomically shaped handlebar grips contribute to this.
By the way, there is no need to worry about the ride stability due to the battery being placed high up. It is certainly true that such a heavy component would be better installed far down and in the center. However, since you do not chase times with such an urban bike like with a road bike and do not perform any wobbly mountain bike maneuvers in the terrain, this aspect plays a rather minor part here.
Let’s talk about the electric drive system — and here, unfortunately, a few points of criticism become apparent. The hub motor in the rear wheel works wonderfully quietly and is also quite comparable with other models in terms of performance. However, the power delivery of the electric drive is not particularly harmonious. The motor always starts slightly late and needs at least half a pedal rotation until it responds. This happens quite jerkily, which makes it difficult to pedal smoothly. Conversely, this behavior is also evident at the limit of 25 km/h, where the motor has to switch off according to the legal requirements.
The reason for this is certainly the fact that the Lemmo One does not have a torque sensor — which is a great pity, since this technology usually guarantees a very natural riding feel and has also been used more and more recently even in inexpensive e-bikes. However, a firmware update was released by Lemmo last week (as of June 2023) that is supposed to improve the motor control — unfortunately, this came too late for the test.
Also by this circumstance, the derailleur on the Lemmo One offers an important advantage. It can compensate quite well for the fact that relatively much power is needed due to the delayed use of the motor when starting uphill. Apart from that, the gears naturally offer a lot of flexibility for different terrains, which is especially useful when using the bike in manual mode.
The manual decoupling of the motor in M mode is not particularly noticeable while driving, since current hub motors generally have a relatively low resistance. It is most apparent in the longer roll-out of the wheel. However, the three-kilogram lighter weight of the bike without Smartpac is felt much more blatantly. Thus, even riding without power is fun, especially since you don’t have to do without the function of the display and the light system.
This lighting system, by the way, is mainly used to be seen in road traffic. The small 20-lux headlight at the front offers only limited possibilities to illuminate the road. Thanks to good build quality and solid parts, you can ride almost silently at all times, because nothing rattled on the Lemmo during the ride.
First of all, Lemmo is to be highly complimented on its ambitious debut: such an innovative and well thought-out bike is unquestionably remarkable! The minimalist design is successful, as well as standalone solution with the stylish Smartpac battery. Plus, the manual mode is a real added value — even if the majority is probably mostly purely electric on the road. However, the somewhat inharmonious and rough support of the motor is a minor flaw. Although upcoming firmware updates should bring an improvement, they will not be able to replace a torque sensor.
Nevertheless, the Lemmo One is one of the most exciting new products this year, especially since the price is really attractive: the bike currently costs only 1,090 euros, but without the Smartpac battery. For this, an additional 900 euros will be due, bringing the total amount to under 2,000 euros! Users in Berlin can also optionally rent the battery for a monthly fee. In addition to two frame sizes, the Lemmo One is also available as an ST variant with a descending top tube, both in the colors gray (as seen here in the review) and sand. All further information about the bike can be found directly on Lemmo’s website.
Update: We had the opportunity to ride the Lemmo with a new update and improved motor control. The article can be found here, there you can also learn more about the new singlespeed variant with belt drive.