STACYC Bike Review – Electric Balance Bike for Kids

Whether you’re an outdoor family looking for a fun way to get your kids outside, or a moto family ready to get your little one ripping, a STACYC electric balance bike is a must-have. Fast (but not too fast – speed is adjustable), lightweight, durable, and with a removable battery (for easy battery swap-outs on the go), the STACYC family of bikes will get your kids begging for more ride time and less screen time!

young boy riding a stacyc electric balance bike down a hill

Available in four different sizes (12″ to 20″), STACYC bikes are designed to fit kids ages 3 to 12. To help keep little ones safe and older kids challenged, the MPH speed settings as well as the overall power of the bikes increase with size. As a result, whether you have a timid toddler just getting started on a bike or a speed-loving tween ready to hit the jumps, a STACYC is sure to bring on huge grins.

In this review, we’ll cover everything from sizing to performance as well as how STACYC bikes stack up to other electric balance bikes. Being new to STACYC ourselves, this review is focused towards any outdoorsy family who wants to know what the STACYC life is all about. While we will talk briefly about the epic STACYC races as well as the benefits of the STACYC over small gas motos, that will not be the main focus of this review.

STACYC Bike Overview

RATING: Exceptional

MSRP: $799 – $2,599
12″ and 16″ BEST FOR: Toddlers and preschoolers who need a fun bike to independently ride around with the family, a lightweight and safer replacement for a gas powered dirt bike, or honestly, any fun-loving kid with access to open areas to get out and ride!
18″ and 20″ BEST FOR: Older kids who want a dirt bike with amazing low-end torque for racing and dirt jumps
SIZE OPTIONS: 12eDRIVE (3 to 5), 16eDRIVE (5 to 7), 18eDRIVE (8 to 10), 20eDRIVE (11 to 12)

ADDITIONAL SPECIFICATIONS
BRAKES: 12e and 16e – single hand (drum brake), 18e and 20e dual hand (hydraulic disc)
MOTOR: 18V on 12e and 16e, 36V on 18e and 20e
BATTERY: 2 – 6Ah depending on size

PROS:

  • All size bikes have three speed levels to help limit the speed of the bike while learning
  • Very low maintenance, especially compared to small gas-powered dirt bikes
  • Battery pack is removable and swappable, allowing you to swap out a spent battery mid-ride
  • Lightweight build allows kids to easily pick up the bike and get going on their own
  • Motor provides no resistance when used in non-power mode
  • Plenty of braking power
  • All models have passed numerous safety certifications, including UL for the batteries
  • Bikes are designed to easily allow for repairs when needed (replacement parts are easily available)

CONS:

  • Pricey! But not unreasonable considering overall quality and features.
  • Loud compared to other electric ride on toys, but MUCH quieter than gas powered motor bikes
  • Batteries don’t last as long as we would like, but their small size makes extra batteries easy to carry. (Other brands have larger batteries, but they aren’t swappable)

REVIEW TABLE OF CONTENTS

What is a STACYC?

A STACYC (pronounced “stay sick”) is an electric balance bike designed for young riders. The bike does not have any pedals and is only powered via a throttle. To ride a STACYC, kids simply hop on the bike, turn it on via a red button, twist the throttle down, put their legs up on the footrests, and they’re off!

boy riding an electric balance bike in a parking lot

Riding a STACYC is a blast! Kids thrive off the speed as well as the sense of independence a STACYC provides, while parents love the ability to limit the speed for young or timid riders (every size has three different speed settings).

The name STACYC comes from “stability cycle” as from their inception, the bikes were designed to have a low center of gravity to ensure stability for young riders. From brakes to weight distribution, they are designed to help kids build their confidence and skill level as they progress to the next level of riding.

boy doing a wheelie on a 20 inch stacyc electric balance bike

While STACYC bikes are common place in the dirt bike world, they are also a great option for outdoor families. From being able to extend your family walks or bike rides with your toddler, to cruising around the campsite or hitting up your local OHV park, a STACYC will get your kids eager to get outside and ride.

What we Love about STACYC Electric Balance Bikes

  • Removable batteries! Swapping out a spent battery with a charged one takes seconds. Batteries are also small enough to easily pack along in a small backpack or hip bag.
  • The adjustable speeds are essential for riders just beginning to learn, as well as more timid riders who just want to ride slowly. Being able to lock out the top speed(s) is an extremely comforting safety feature. The bike can also be used in a non-powered mode.
  • Compared to gas-powered dirt bikes or even other electric balance bikes, the STACYC models are very lightweight. Kids can easily pick them up on their own and they don’t run hot. Compared to smaller dirt bikes, STACYC are a fraction of the weight (12″ weighs just 17 lb., a similar-sized gas bike weighs roughly 90 lb.)
  • The bikes rely on a more durable gear box with a motor and a chain, versus a standard hub motor that is used on other electric balance bikes. The centrally-placed motor helps the weight of the bike stay low and centered, while the gear box allows for the three different speed settings.
  • Models get faster and more powerful as the bike sizes increase. The next size up not only fits your child better, it also offers increased opportunities for fun.
  • The frame and parts are very durable and can take a beating, but replacements parts are easily available. Unlike lower-end electric balance bikes, STACYC bikes are designed to be repairable so that they have a long lifespan. As a downside, building the bike so that individual parts are replaceable does increase the cost of the bike.
  • STACYC are much quieter than similarly-sized, small, gas powered bikes, so kids can ride them around without bothering neighbors
  • All STACYC bikes have passed UL testing and even several different international safety tests to ensure kids’ safety. Many other brands don’t go through this expensive process.

What you Should Know Before you Buy

  • Your child will pick up the STACYC faster if they have already mastered a traditional balance bike or pedal bike. We found that the balance, control, maneuverability, and braking skills all transferred over.
  • All models have a lot of low-end torque, so they are quick off the line. They are faster off the line than pw50 dirt bikes, but have a lower top speed.
  • If you plan on riding longer distances, you’ll need to purchase several batteries so you can swap them out mid-ride as needed. On the 12e and 16e models we got about 2 miles per battery (30 min to 1 hour depending on surface, rider weight, speed level, etc.).
  • STACYC bikes were originally designed to replace small gas powered motorcycles for kids. As a result, they are fast and provide a lot of power for hitting jumps. While the smaller 12e and 16e models are okay for neighborhood use in their lower settings (as long as they are permitted), the larger 18e and 20e are much faster and should only be used in areas that permit OHV (off-highway vehicle) use.
  • STACYC bikes are also available branded from other companies, including KTM, GasGas, Husquvara, Harley Davidson (Harley bought out STACYC in 2019, but STACYC is run as a independent company). The bikes are typically the same, but with different frame wraps.
  • Replacements parts are widely available through STACYC or other online retailers
  • Due to the speed at which the STACYC can go (especially on the highest settings), strongly consider purchasing your child a full-face helmet as well as additional protective gear, such as boots, gloves and a suit.

What type of rider/family is the STACYC best for?

mountain biking family with a stacyc
  • Parents looking for a fun way for their toddlers to independently ride for several miles. Kids typically get tired after a few miles on a standard balance bike and riding an electric balance bike is a lot more fun that hanging out in a bike trailer.
  • Parents of toddlers who have lost interest in their balance bike or never had any interest to begin with!
  • Outdoor families who want some fabulously fun motivation to keep their kids outside
  • Dirt bike or BMX families who want the potential to speed up their kids’ progression on bike handling in a fun, exciting way
  • Families looking to get their little one into the popular STACYC bike races found throughout the country
young riders lined up for a stacyc electric balance bike race
Image courtesy of STACYC

Who is the STACYC not ideal for?

  • Families with limited access to open outdoor areas or OHV parks. STACYC really shine in wide open spaces wear kids have room to explore!
  • Due to their low clearance, STACYC aren’t suitable for really chunky single track trails as they will quickly bottom out.
  • Areas with strict limitations on motorized vehicles on public walkways or bike trails. Some cities have restrictions against even the smallest electric balance bikes, so be sure to check your local laws prior to purchasing if you plan on riding around town.

STACYC Bike Frequently Asked Questions

Before we jump into our testers’ experiences with the bike, we’ll first answer the most common questions that came up during our review process. From sizes to using drill batteries, we found that many parents want to know the answer to these questions first and foremost.

What size STACYC should I get my child?

There are four different sizes of STACYC bikes – two smaller sizes with 12″ and 16″ wheels and two larger sizes with 18″ and 20″ wheels. Each model is progressively faster and more powerful. In addition to an increase in speed (mph) settings, the voltage of the motor and the amp hours of the battery also increase. As a result, if your child is on the edge between two sizes, be sure to consider the difference in speed as well as fit.

Unlike a traditional balance bike or pedal bike, the seat height of the STACYC is not meant to be adjusted. While the seat post does have about an inch or two for adjustment, it is not necessary to adjust the seat height. Since kids don’t need to pedal or run on the bike, leg extension (and therefore seat height) shouldn’t be a major deciding factor when determining fit. A child just needs to be able to sit on the bike with their feet flat on the ground with at least a slight bend in the knee. As long as your child fits into STACYC’s recommended inseams provided below, they should be good to go.

12161820
MSRP$799$1,049$1,999*$2,599*
Age Reco3 – 55 – 78 – 1010 – 12
Seat Height 13″17″21″23″
Reco Inseam14″ – 20″18″ – 24″22″ – 23″24″ – 26″
Speed Options5, 7, 95, 7.5, 139, 13.5, 1810, 15, 20
BrakesRear DrumRear DrumDual hydraulicDual hydraulic
Motor18V18V36V36V
Battery2Ah4Ah3Ah6Ah
Weight17 lb.20 lb.31 lb.33 lb.
*STACYC also offers the 18″ and 20″ in a Launch Edition (LE) that comes with an upgraded suspension fork, brakes and tires, as well as a frame wrap.

Considering kids bike sizing is highly dependent on seat height, the low-set seat height of the STACYC at first seems to be a red flag, but it is in fact quite beneficial to the rider.

Like a dropper post on a mountain bike, the low seat keeps the saddle out of the way while standing up on the bike. Considering kids don’t need to pedal or walk the bike, they quickly learn that standing is the best way to get and maintain comfortable control of the bike.

preschooler standing up on his 16 inch electric balance bike
5-year-old on the 16″ STACYC

Like on a dirt bike, or downhill on a mountain bike, standing allows the rider the best leverage and control of the bike. If the seat were higher, it would interfere with the rider’s body position.

12 year old riding the 20" STACYC electric balance bike
12-year-old on the STACYC 20″

Where can my child ride a STACYC?

Before purchasing a STACYC, it’s important to understand any local limitations your city may have against riding motorized bikes. Although the smaller bikes have a lower max mph, they still may be restricted.

young riding doing a wheelie on the STACYC 20" bike

The absolute best place to ride the STACYC is on flat, hard ground with plenty of wide open space to cruise. We luckily live in a circle at the end of a dead-end road, which provided our testers plenty of safe room to cruise. The STACYC also got plenty of time on the grass, but the bike is much more efficient (aka the battery lasts longer) on smooth ground.

While the bike does amazing on jumps with short bursts on the throttle, we found that the battery is quickly eaten up when riding up extended hills, especially at steeper grades.

Outside of town, we put the STACYC to work on some basic trails, fire roads, and even on a ranch! With room to roam and explore, the beauty of the STACYC really shines in wide open spaces.

young boy riding the stacyc through a field on a farm

Due to water and electricity not getting along, STACYC bikes can only be ridden in dry conditions. Riding the bike in any wet conditions will void all warranties. This is also true with other electric balance bikes.

How long does the battery last?

The runtime of the battery varies depending on the terrain, speed setting, as well as the child’s size. The batteries on both the 12″, 16″, and 20″ lasted about 30 minutes to an hour. The faster the speed setting, the chunkier the terrain (even grass!), and the more hills our testers tackled, the faster the battery would run out.

While the STACYC is technically an “ebike” for kids, due to their small size, they are designed for shorter rides and don’t have even close to the battery capacity of a traditional adult ebike. If you are truly in the market for a real “ebike” for kids, the STACYC is the closest you are going to get for really young kids. For kids ~10 who fit onto a 24″ bike, the woom UP is a great eMTB with pnly pedal assist, but has enough battery power to go on 15 mile+ rides on varied terrain.

If you want to go on an extended ride (over a couple miles) with the STACYC, be sure to pack an extra battery along. Extra batteries are available for all size bikes and start at $175. As a size reference, the 4Ah battery that comes on the 16″ is about the size of a soda can (shown below). The 2Ah on the 16″ is slightly narrower, while the 6Ah on the 20″ is about a 1.5″ wider and 1/2″ taller..

stacyc battery size reference
4Ah battery of 16″ STACYC

While the larger bikes do have larger batteries, we found that the battery doesn’t last much longer since they are being ridden faster and more aggressively. When ordering, be aware that the 12″ and 14″ models are compatible with the 20V batteries, while the 18″ and 20″ are only compatible with the 36V batteries.

Can I use drill batteries on a STACYC?

Since many people have drill batteries already lying around, it is quite common to find STACYC bikes modified with aftermarket parts to run on drill batteries. However, doing so voids the bike’s warranty. The main concern is the lack of thermal and voltage protection systems within drill batteries.

The batteries on all STACYC bikes are designed and tested with rider safety and longevity in mind. Every STACYC battery has its own thermal and voltage protection system built into the battery to protect the battery as well as the bike’s electrical system from any potential damage.

Most drill batteries do not provide these protections as they are included in the drill itself. As a result, using drill batteries can put the electrical system of the bike at a higher risk of being damaged if the battery were to overdischarge.

As a result, STACYC bikes are designed to be used with STACYC batteries and the bike’s warranty is dependent on those batteries being used.

What are the three speed setting on the STACYC?

There are three speed settings on all models of these electric balance bikes – slow, medium and fast. Adjusting the speed of the STACYC bikes is easy to do, but just complicated enough that kids can’t do it on their own. Written steps on changing the speed are included later in this review, but if you prefer video, here’s STACYC’s video on changing the speed on the 12e and 16e as well as the STACYC’s 18e and 20e.

Each speed level has a different colored indicator light on the handlebar, allowing parents to easily determine which speed it is on. If the slow speed is set, the red indicator light will be on, the yellow light for the medium speed, and the green light for the fast speed.

speed indicator lights on a stacyc electric bike
Speed light indicators on STACYC 12″ and 16″

Remember that each size bike has a different mph for each speed setting (listed in the size chart above). The fast green setting on the 12″ is 9mph, but the fast setting jumps up to 20mph on the 20″!

Based on our experience, we highly recommend moving the speed settings up SLOWLY to allow your kid time to get used to the increased acceleration and speed of the bike.

Even with plenty of practice time in the saddle, many of our testers preferred NOT to use the highest green setting, but rather stick to yellow. This was actually MORE apparent on the larger 20″, as even our daredevil tester found the 20mph max to be too much.

As a result, never assume that your kid is ready to automatically jump up to the green setting! Keep them safe by slowly adding speed to the bike over time.

STACYC Bike Review – Our Testers’ Experiences

Although we have tested nearly 100 different balance bikes over the last 10 years, the STACYC bikes have been by far the most popular. As soon as the word got out about the STACYC, we had kids knocking on our door daily asking to ride it. There was no questioning whether the STACYC was well loved as we were soon charging the battery multiple times a day to ensure plenty of ride time.

boy riding on a dirt single track trail on an electric balance bike

To get a good feel for the wide variety of riding options with the STACYC, we put the 16″ and 20″ models to work with our testers in various riding conditions (neighborhood, trail, open land, etc.). We also spoke to several parents who own the 12″ model to talk about their experiences over the years.

Before we jump into the individual experiences of our testers, it’s important to point out how to introduce the STACYC to a new rider to ensure everyone’s safety.

Introducing the STACYC to our Testers

Even if your child is a pro on a balance bike or pedal bike, don’t assume they can handle the speed of an electric balance bike from the get go. It is important to start them off in STACYC’s non-powered mode (with the motor turned off and the battery removed).

Thanks to the unique design of the STACYC, their bikes can easily be ridden like a traditional balance bike in the non-powered mode – without any resistance from the motor. Start off by letting your child sit and walk the bike on the sidewalk and then progress to running, breaking and turning. Kids with previous balance bike or pedal bike experience (without training wheels) can pick up on the feel of the bike in minutes, while kids (especially toddlers and preschoolers) new to biking may take months to master.

If your child can run on the bike while sitting, coast with their feet up on the platform, as well as brake on command while in the non-powered mode, they are likely ready to advance to the powered mode. If not, give them time. The last thing you want is for your child to get hurt on their first day of using the bike!

If they are ready for speed, be sure your child has on their helmet and close toed shoes, and then find yourself a large grassy field to get started on. In addition to providing a softer place to fall in the event of a crash, the grass also helps to damper the fast takes-offs of the bike, even at the lowest speed. Prior to letting them hop on the bike, also make sure the bike is set on the lowest (red) speed setting.

Our Testers Experiences

We tested the STACYC on several different kids, but we will focus on the experiences of three different testers – a 3-year-old tester on the 12″, a 5-year-old tester on the 16″, and an 12-year-old tester on the 20″. Each rider had a different level of bike experience prior to riding the STACYC.

12″ STACYC Tester: 3-year old from Moto Family

With mom and dad both enjoying riding their dirt bikes, our three-year-old tester started off on her 12″ STACYC when she was two and a half. Having already mastered her traditional Strider balance bike (she could run, glide, stop, and go through turns with some speed), her parents introduced the STACYC 12″. Her solid skills on her balance bike quickly transferred and she was up and riding in no time.

three year old getting ready to race on her stacyc 12 inch bike

A year later, she still loves her STACYC and races in the local league for fun, but she also loves riding her Dirt Hero balance bike (link to the review she is in) as well as her 16″ pedal bike. As she grows, her parents plan on getting her a 16″ STACYC so she can continue to ride along with them on their dirt bikes.

16″ STACYC Tester: 5-year old from Mountain Biking Family

Coming from a mountain bike family, our five-year-old tester had years of experience on both his balance bike and pedal bike. Although he rides his Prevelo Zulu One and Dirt Hero balance bikes (links to reviews he is in) like a champ, he got a taste of a friend’s STACYC which quickly got him even more excited about riding.

5 year old riding his stacyc on a dirt trail

Like our first tester, his mastery of his balance bike played a large role in helping him learn to ride the STACYC. As mountain bikers, his parents now ride along with him on easy green single-track trails. Due to only having one battery, they are limited to a couple miles, but are considering getting another battery for longer rides.

For more technical trails, however, they stick to his regular analog bike (either balance or pedal – depends on the trail). Doing so requires them to use a tow rope to get him to the top of trails, but the additional clearance of those bikes is necessary to get down particularly chunky trails. If your lucky enough to have access to smoothly groomed trails with minimal rocks or roots over ~3″, clearance on the STACYC shouldn’t be an issue.

20″ STACYC Tester: 12-year old from MTB and Moto Family

Having both a dirt bike and mountain bike background, our 12-year-old quickly went to work on the STACYC 20″. To say he loved the bike would be an understatement. From riding to his cousin’s house, to finding new trails in the open spaces around town, the STACYC quickly became his loyal steed.

As a kid who loves to catch air whenever possible, the MANITOU Machete front suspension fork with 80mm travel provided even more motivation to find the best jumps in the open area near his house. Within a week of having the STACYC 20, he was regularly recharging the battery to ensure as much riding time as possible!

12 year old jumping on the stacyc 20 inch electric bike

Even though he is quite adventurous and experienced (on both a dirt bike and a mountain bike), the powerful, low-end torque of the 20″ took some time for him to get used to. In the end, he preferred to stick to the yellow speed level at 15mph; 20mph was too fast for him in the smaller clearings he was riding in.

Talking to his parents, they both loved how quiet and lightweight the STACYC is compared to his dirt bike, but the short battery life does prevent them from using it to replace his gas dirt bike, especially since their rides are paired with camping off the grid.

When is comes to trail riding, the 20″ STACYC wasn’t a great fit due to clearance and lack of range. While he LOVES riding the STACYC, he wouldn’t consider taking it out on a single track MTB ride. He tried once, but ran out of battery and his friend ended up towing him home with some leg power and a tow rope :).

As a result, based on our experience, the 20″ is best for use at pump tracks and OHV tracks (link to video to see the bike in action). If you have extra batteries on hand, it can be used for shorter dirt bike rides.

STACYC Components

Compared to other electric balance bikes on the market, the STACYC is pretty pricey, but for a good reason. Built to last and designed to perform, the individual components of the STACYC absolutely play a role in the added expense of the bike.

Building the bike so that it can be repaired when needed (other bikes are one and done – no replacement parts available), as well as the added expense to be UL certified to ensure battery safety, also help to increase the price.

Benefits of Motor with Gearbox vs. Rear Hub Motor

The STACYC is built with a mid-drive motor with a gearbox. The electric motor provides the power while the gearbox sets the speed.

With the speed set, the motor turns the chain, which then turns the rear wheel via a rear cog. When not in power mode, the rear cog has a freewheel function that allows the rear wheel to freely spin without resistance from the chain.

Other electric balance bikes have a rear hub motor. These bikes do not require a chain as the motor is located within the rear wheel and spins the rear wheel directly.

The mid-drive motor on the STACYC is located “mid” way through the bike, below the saddle (yellow arrow below), while a rear hub motor is located within the rear wheel (red arrow below).

mid-drive motor on the STACYC versus rear hub motor
STACYC mid-drive motor with gearbox vs. rear hub motor

In addition to durability and performance, there are four main benefits of the STACYC mid-drive motor over rear-hub motors: (1) the ability to adjust max speed, (2) better weight distribution, (3) no rolling resistance and (4) replaceable parts.

Ability to Adjust Max Speed

One of the major selling points of the STACYC bikes is the ability to limit the top speed of the bike. The ability to do so is the result of a gearbox and motor combo (yellow arrow above) versus a rear drum motor (red arrow) found on cheaper bikes. As a result, while the child is learning how to ride a STACYC, you can set the max speed to ensure their safety.

For example, on the 16″ STACYC, the speed can be set to 5, 7.5 or 13mph. Regardless of how much the child pulls on the throttle, the STACYC will not travel faster than the set mph. As the child progresses, you can raise the set speed to one of the higher options.

On the 14″ GoTrax electric balance bike with a rear hub motor, the speed can only be controlled by the throttle. As a result, the child has to learn how to “feather” the throttle in order to go slower than the bike’s max speed of 15.5 mph. There is no learning mode, so if a child accidentally fully engages the throttle (which is easy for young ones to do), the bike will accelerate up to 15.5 mph.

Due to the set high speed of the GoTrax and the difficulty of controlling their speed, we did have several young testers get quickly scared away from the GoTrax. Even with their parents by their side helping them out, they wanted nothing to do with it!

Better Weight Distribution

The center placement of the motor and gearbox on the STACYC versus the rear placement of rear hub motors allows the weight of the bike to be better distributed between the front and rear tires. This is especially beneficial when learning to maneuver the bike.

young child racing on his stacyc 12 inch bike
Image courtesy of STACYC

No Rolling Resistance

Another benefit of STACYC’s motor is that it provides no resistance to the rear wheel when in non-powered mode. So whether your little one is just learning to ride in non-powered mode or the battery runs out during a ride, all models of the STACYC can still be ridden like a traditional balance bike.

As a comparison, this is not the case with the GoTrax electric balance bike as the rear drum brake provides a good amount of resistance when ridden without the motor.

Due to this resistance, the GoTrax wasn’t able to “coast” nearly as well as the STACYC. Whether rolling through the grass or down a small hill, the STACYC was able to go much farther without having to use the throttle compared to the GoTrax.

5 year old riding down a hill on his electric balance bike

Replaceable Parts

Everything from the throttle to motor and gearbox are replaceable on the STACYC. If one part goes out, it can be fixed. We were not able to find replacements parts for other electric balance bikes.

Tires

All models of STACYC come with knobby tread tires (on left below) for plenty of grip on dirt and gravel surfaces. As a comparison, the GoTrax comes with a smooth street tread (shown on right) for use only on paved surfaces.

Difference in tire patterns on the stacyc and the gotrax

The tires on the STACYC are standard bike tires and can be swapped out for different treads if desired.

Brakes on the STACYC

The 12″ and 16″ models have a rear drum brake while the 18″ and 20″ have dual hydraulic disc brakes. Both braking systems provide plenty of stopping power and we didn’t experience any issues with either system. For added safety, when the brake is engaged on all models, the motor is automatically cut off.

The wider diameter grip of the 12″ and 16″ bikes do create a bit of a stretch for small hands to reach the brake lever. Our 3 and 5-year-old testers did complain a bit about their hands getting tired, but it didn’t stop them from wanting to ride.

young boy pulling on the brake handle on of the stacyc

While both of these young testers still used the hand brake, they also used their feet to stop quite a bit, especially in more technical sections.

boy dragging his feet as he rides down a hill on his 16 inch stacyc

The 18″ and 20″ bikes feature hydraulic disc brakes with 160mm rotors on the front and rear. Considering the 20″ tops out at 20mph, the powerful hydraulic brakes are a necessity and provide plenty of stopping power.

hydraulic disc rotor on the 20 inch stacyc

STACYC vs. Other Electric Balance Bikes

With the high-cost of STACYC, it comes as no surprise that many parents go looking for cheaper alternatives. All of the cheaper electric balance bikes we found, however, had rear hub motors which are heavier and prevent the bike from being ridden in non-power mode without resistance from the rear wheel. As outlined above, there are several disadvantages of bikes with these motors (see motor section above for more details).

STACYCRear-hub Motor Bikes
Different Speed SettingsX
Removable BatteryX
Wheel turns freely without motor onX
Lightweight*X
Replacement Parts widely availableX
*As an example, the 16″ STACYC weighs 20 lb., while the 16″ GoTrax weighs 27 lb.

We did some digging of our own and found the GoTrax to be a great electric balance bike for about half the price, BUT it offers a VERY different riding experience than the STACYC. With smooth street tires as well as a more upright body position for the rider, the GoTrax is not well-suited for dirt.

side by side comparison of the stacyc and the gotrax electric balance bikes

The GoTrax also doesn’t have the ability to limit the max speed, so it’s really easy for young riders to accelerate the bike to its max of 15.5 mph. The GoTrax, however, does have a larger battery than the STACYC which lasted twice as long, but the battery is not removable and takes longer to charge.

STACYC vs. Gas Powered Dirt Bikes

If your family is into dirt bikes, it’s more than likely you have seen the STACYC in action and know of their wide appeal. As a quick recap, here are just a few of the benefits of the STACYC bikes over gas bikes (like a pw50).

STACYCRegular dirt bike
Different Speed SettingsX
Cool to TouchX
Lightweight X
Runs pretty quietX

Changing the Speed Setting of the STACYC

Adjusting the speed setting seems (and is!) complicated at first, but is easy to do once you get the hang of it. It is, however, surprisingly easy to forget how to do, so here’s a recap for future reference🤪.

If you prefer video, here’s STACYC’s video on changing the 12e and 16e. On the 18e and 20e, there is only 1 LED light that changes color versus three different lights as shown here in STACYC’s 18e and 20e video.

Changing the STACYC Speed

  1. With the power switch in the off position and with the battery installed…
  2. Turn the throttle gently until it stops and hold it in place.
  3. With the throttle still in full twist, turn the power switch to “ON”.
  4. While the throttle is in full twist, wait for the yellow LED light to flash 5 times, followed by all the LED lights flashing once and then 5 beeps. After the 5 beeps, all the LED lights should remain on.
  5. Once all the lights are on, wait 1 second and then release the throttle. Upon doing so all the LED lights should turn off.
  6. With the lights off, slowly twist the throttle until the colored LED lights match the speed level you want to set the bike to. (red – slow, yellow – medium, green – fast).
  7. Once the light of your desired speed lights up, hold the throttle still until you hear 2 beeps.
  8. Release the throttle. All the LED lights will blink together 1 time followed by 1 long beep. The color of your desired speed should now be lit up.

STACYC Electric Balance Bike Bottom Line

Whether you’re chomping at the bit to get your little one out racing on the dirt track, or just trying to motivate them to ride a bike at all, the STACYC is an essentially fool-proof bike for the job. Offering plenty of safety features to keep mom and dad happy as well as plenty of speed and fun to keep little smiles coming, the STACYC is a win-win across the board for outdoorsy families.

The smaller 12″ and 16″ are awesome little bikes for toddlers and preschoolers of all skill levels, while the larger 18″ and 20″ are speedy bikes best for older riders ready to hit up the dirt park.

FTC Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this review.  No monetary compensation was provided for this review, however, 16″ and 20″ STACYC bikes were supplied by STACYC to help facilitate this review. With exception to noted images, all opinions and images are that of Two Wheeling Tots LLC.  All content and images are copyrighted and should not be used or replicated in any way. View our Terms of Use.

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