QuietKat Apex Sport 1000W First Impressions

QuietKat Apex Sport 1000W First Impressions

Prior to this past spring bear season, QuietKat sent over their new Apex Sport e-bike for some testing in the context of hunting in Oregon.

QuietKat is one of the relatively few larger brands of e-bikes that is focused around the hunting use case and I was really interested to try out one of their models.

TLDR? Watch the video below :-) This is just a first impressions piece... we'll do a more in-depth review after we've had some additional time on the bike. 


Unboxing the Apex Sport, I was impressed with how well the bike was packaged for shipping. Lots of padding and support in all the right places and smaller/movable pieces zip-tied in place to prevent movement. Any issues during shipping would likely be caused by the carrier and not shoddy packaging, which is reassuring when you're investing this much money in a product.

I, like most people, are a bit sticker shocked at the price of just about all e-bikes. That being said, the more you investigate the market, as well as the market for normal (non-electric) bikes, you'll see that prices aren't actually all that crazy. No, this is not a Walmart special and the price does reflect that. It remains to be seen, though, if I feel the value is there for me personally. We'll revisit price in more detail in the full review.

A huge pet peeve of mine these days is products coming with no paper manual and manufacturers forcing you to download a manual from the internet... and QuietKat has fallen into this "cost-saving" trap. This is fine for most people, I suppose, but in my rural environment this means I had no assembly instructions available to me while I was attempting to put together the bike.

Luckily, I've been blessed with a decent amount of common sense and problem solving logic so it wasn't too hard to figure out the assembly process. If you're in a similar situation to me, I definitely recommend ensuring you download the manual and assembly instruction video in advance to ensure you have it if needed. I also recommend that you have a buddy or bike stand available to assist during the process as the weight of the bike can make it a difficult solo job.

With the bike assembled, I took it for a quick spin sans battery simply riding under my own power. I found it pretty interesting that, once moving, you don't notice the weight all that much until you're trying to go up hill or pop wheelies.

With the battery installed and the assist mode engaged, the weight becomes a complete non-factor (again, until going up steep hills).

It does take a minute or two to get used to the powered assist. There is a slight delay between when you start pedaling and when the motor kicks in and this was a little bit jarring at first. After a few minutes, you get used to it and are able to anticipate the change without thinking about it.

The biggest drawback I noticed pretty quickly was that shifting gears was not a particularly smooth process. The gears shifted much harder than normal mountain bikes I've ridden. In addition to the hard shifting, power to the motor cuts out during the shifting process, so there is a sudden change in momentum that feels pretty awkward every single time it happens.

This can be an issue if you're going up a steep hill and need to change gears mid-hill. In fact, the recommended process from QuietKat is to shift into the "correct" gear BEFORE you're on the hill. In my experience, this isn't always that practical, especially if you're moving fast down one hill and then need to get up a steep hill immediately. I suppose with more time on the bike, managing this process will become more second nature, but it's definitely a completely different process for managing speed/gears/hills than a normal bike.

Overall, my first impressions can be summed up in one word. FUN

I wasn't quite sure what to expect but in the first few miles around the farm I was having a blast. You're still pedaling and riding a bike, but the hills (usually) are a bit easier, you can get moving a bit faster, and if you're feeling lazy you can hit the throttle and let the motor really work its magic.

I really look forward to continuing to put the Apex Sport through the paces and use it in some real scenarios in the field to get a sense for its practicality on a hunt.

For all the details, features, and specs on the bike you can visit QuietKat's website.

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Here are some products we used or would recommend for this type of adventure!