Yee-haw Cowboy3 🇧🇪🤠

Biggest Competitor — VanMoof

In my search for a good looking e-bike I considered 2 options.
The Belgian Cowboy and the Dutch VanMoof.

  • The Cowboy starts at €2.290.
  • The VanMoof starts at €1.998
  • Absolute Black
  • Anthracite Grey
  • Mineral Grey
  • Sky Blue
  • Deep Gray Black
VanMoof automatic gear switcher

Test ride

Before fully deciding I wanted to test for myself.
Luckily Cowboy provides test drives.
You can schedule a test ride online.
A local Cowboy 🤠 will drive a test Cowboy to your house.

A late night test drive with the Cowboy. This was a Cowboy2
  • Smooth drive powering the correct wheel
  • Exchangeable battery
  • Shorter delivery time
  • Closer to home if something were to go wrong. 🇧🇪

Delivery — Initial installation

The bike comes in a huge box
  • You have to straighten the wheel and handlebars
  • Set the stem height of the saddle
  • Screw in the paddles
  • Charge the battery (it had about 30% battery when received)
  • Download the app and scan the QR code
  • An extra front light (rechargeable battery)
  • An extra red light to attach to a rug sack for example (rechargeable battery)
  • A bell
  • Wheel Reflectors (orange)
  • Back Reflector (red)
  • A USB (type A) for charging the extra lights.
Standard handlebar position on the left, right Cowboy has a upright stem attached

Ride

Whilst my initial impressions during the test drive where wonderful, driving the bike for longer journeys showed the true nature of the Cowboy.
It lacks any springs or dampening which results in a very hard drive.
Every pothole in the road is magnified and jolts though your whole body.

Motor

Something that did live up to the expectations was the motor!
I provides ample power from the get go and is at its best on flat surfaces.

Single Gear

The bike is limited by its single gear, if you want to go any faster you will have to peddle like a lunatic and the motor shuts off above 25km/h.
It is therefor hard/tiring to go any faster than 30km/h and you simply stop peddling if the peddles are going faster than your legs can follow.

Battery

A nice attention to detail; when taking out the battery like on the GIF ☝️ the frame is protected by some rubber preventing you from damaging the paint on the aluminium.

Charging

Hefty 252W battery

Red Light

The back red light is integrated in the battery.
Whilst clever it’s also a weak point.

Range

The acclaimed 70km of range seems to be spot on.

Accessories

Modifications done to my Cowboy

Handlebar stem adjuster/extender

Saddle

Left original — Right Ergon Saddle

Stand

Lock

Be aware that due to the thick(er) tires it is oftentimes difficult to find a spot to leave your bike.

Finding creative ways to leave your bike safe.

Honourable mentions

Some other accessories equipped on the other Cowboy3 include:

Cowboy App

The app is literally key to the bike and is often very underexposed in other reviews.

Bluetooth

The app connects with the bike over Bluetooth.

locking and unlocking the bike
You can find the option in the menu under My Bike > Auto Unlock

Day and Night Theme

The app comes in both a light and dark theme and will automatically switch depending on the time of day.
A nice and welcoming addition.

Battery Life

The biggest downside from the app is the battery consumption when driving.
I don’t have a phone mount attached to my bike so I leave my phone in my pocket while biking.
Nonetheless the app consumes way too much power.
Following screenshots were taken after a 23km drive.

OnePlus 6 32% — OnePlus 8 Pro 14%

Trip History

Every trip you take automatically gets recorded in the app.
Sometimes the trip will only show up once the bike has been locked.

Trip History and the navigation

Easy Rider

Basic — Standard — Plus Plan

Safety

When the bike detects you are involved in an accident it will notify a preconfigured contact.
That person will see your current location and respond appropriately.
I have not tested this, but you can see it working in this Youtube video (Dutch)

Theft Warning

In the Standard Plan you’ll be notified as soon as the bike gets stolen.
I tested the theft warning by stealing my own bike.

Updates

Sometimes a firmware update is available for your bike.
The update procedure requires you to connect to the bike over Bluetooth and wait until the updates completes.

Verdict

Before deciding if you want a Cowboy I highly recommend testing one first.
The initial push in the back will give you a kick, but keep your eyes out for comfort too.

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