With e-bikes booming in popularity, something of a rivalry has popped up between renowned brands seeking to produce electric bikes in tandem with their traditional bike offerings and small startups that focus solely on producing e-bikes. Among the former is Schwinn, which has stood as one of the mainstays of the bicycle industry for over 125 years, and has recently released the Coston DX e-bike. Biking season is on the way, so we thought now would be a good time to share our review of the Schwinn Coston DX.
We tested the Coston DX extensively alongside several other leading bikes from the industry’s top brands. It was ridden in a variety of conditions — hills, flat roads, and on concrete slicked with water and ice — over the course of several days. Suffice to say that it has been thoroughly tested. Our assessment: This great-looking bike needs more power to match its bold design.
The Schwinn Coston DX is, for all practical purposes an around-town commuter e-bike that gives the impression that it’s supposed to be used somewhat ruggedly because of its sturdy appearance and build. Available in both step-through and traditional layouts and intended to suit riders within a general height range of 5-foot-4 and 6-foot-4, the Coston seems to be largely geared toward families.
Schwinn Coston DX
The Schwinn Coston DX is a Class 2 e-bike, which means that it has a throttle that is capable of reaching up to 20 mph without pedaling. Its motor is hub-mounted, and it has a 360-watt-hour battery.
- 250-watt motor
- 360-watt-hour internal downtube battery
- 5-hour recharge time
- 7-function LCD controller
- Pedal assist and throttle
- Integrated LED frame light, headlight, and taillight
- Underseat storage compartment
In terms of design, the Coston looks fantastic. It looks like a tough, no-nonsense bike that verges on mountain bike durability. The layout is also comfortable, with a seat and ergonomic setup that is suited to long rides.
That being said, the more you ride the Coston, the more it feels less sturdy than you first thought. The seat post has a tendency to slide under weight, and the fenders and other elements feel a bit cheap and rattly. That’s surprising, considering Schwinn’s reputation for quality.
Lighting and storage
The Coston DX does have a flat-out great lighting system, with a bright headlight, taillight, and running light beneath the central frame that provides solid surrounding visibility. It also has a hidden pocket in the seat, which is a pretty neat way to store your phone, keys, and other small items.
In terms of performance, the Coston DX falls flat. Its throttle was so lackluster and slow — especially when compared with other bikes of a similar price class — that it sometimes didn’t feel like it was powered at all. Once you’re up to speed and cruising on a flat surface, the ride quality feels smooth and reasonably quick, but the motor struggles up moderate hills. And when it comes to serious hills, the Coston gets left far behind other e-bikes.
In regards to battery life and range, once again the Coston DX falls behind the pack. Some similarly priced e-bikes like the Juiced RipCurrent S, for example, have ranges upward of 70 miles on a single charge. The Coston DX claims to have a range of up to only 45 miles, but in my experience it was actually well short of this.
Most buyers who have reviewed the Schwinn Coston DX have, admittedly, left positive reviews. It has a 4.1-star review average on Amazon, with plenty of customers praising its speed and durable design. Most of the concerns involve difficulties with assembly, with less tool-savvy users reporting that they had some trouble putting it together. Most questions riders have involve general bike specifications.
What size are the handle grips?
How many millimeters is the handlebar?
740 millimeters and the rise is 95 millimeters
Does it have a kickstand?
How do you turn it on?
There’s a button located on the underside of the downtube near the cranks.
How do you turn on the controller?
Press the power button to turn it on, which will enable use of the motor, lights, and other electronics.
How do you control the lights?
Press and hold the “+” button for three seconds to switch on the headlight. Press again for headlight with the battery light. Press one more time for battery light only. Press a fourth time to switch the lights off.
How do you open the seat?
Press the button on the back of the seat.
The simple, somewhat disappointing truth is that the Coston DX doesn’t stack up against other e-bikes of a similar price. At over $2,000, it should have better acceleration and range, and as a Schwinn it should have better craftsmanship. It’s undeniably a great-looking bike, but the performance simply doesn’t deliver on that promise.
This would be a fine choice for younger or beginner e-bike riders thanks to its excellent lighting and comfortable layout — if, that is, its price were a few hundred dollars lower.
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