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Propella Mini Max Review: Specs & Features

Frame and fork

The Propella Mini Max comes in one frame design—step-thru. It also comes in a single size, which Propella suggests is intended to best fit riders from 5 feet 2 up to 5 feet 10.

The Mini Max is built with an aluminum fork, which won’t give the cushy ride of a suspension fork, but will give the rider a finer sense of control and most likely a more thrilling ride. The lack of a suspension fork is yet another way they helped keep the cost down on this e-bike.

Motor and battery

The 350W motor is produced by Ananda, and while they aren’t as well-known as Bafang or some of the other manufacturers out there, we’ve ridden other e-bikes equipped with Ananda motors and have found their performance to be in keeping with what other companies deliver.

Because the Propella Mini Max rolls on 20-in. wheels, motors that produce more modest amounts of torque—in this case 45Nm—aren’t handicapped the way they are in e-bikes with bigger, heavier wheels. The combination of 20-in. wheels and low-profile-tread tires and a maximum output of 550W means that this e-bike has both get up and go.

This would be a good spot to point out one other detail that merits mention: In eliminating the multi-speed drivetrain, hydraulic disc brakes, suspension fork and fenders, plus choosing a 350W motor and 355Wh battery, Propella has created an e-bike that weighs only 38 lbs. (without kickstand). Let’s call it 40 lbs. That’s light for an e-bike, which means that the motor will deliver performance that will feel more like what we might expect from a 500W motor on a much heavier e-bike.

Regarding range, our rule of thumb of a 1:1 ratio of battery power to motor power is in play here. The 355Wh battery features LG cells (LG is one of the three best producers of lithium-ion cells, along with Panasonic and Samsung). Riders may hope to see as much as 40 mi. on a single charge, provided they pedal in PAS 1. As this is a Class 2 e-bike, it’s possible to throttle around town, but range is likely to be half that 40 mi. estimate.


When producing a max-value e-bike, the K.I.S.S. rule (Keep It Simple, uh, Silly) is important and Propella did that. The single-speed drivetrain eliminates a fair amount of weight in the form of the cassette, derailleur shifter and cables. That one gear will provide riders with comfortable cruising from about 8-15 mph. To reach its Class 2 max speed of 20 mph, the throttle will be necessary for most riders.

Making a one-size e-bike fit as broad a range of riders as possible is easier to do when the manufacturer spec’s a high-rise alloy bar that can be rolled toward or away from the rider to help adjust reach.

Propella managed to include a rear rack, kickstand and front and rear lights, which is a surprise considering its price. Kudos and high fives.

While they don’t call out many component brands by name, Propella does make a point to mention that the mechanical disc brakes were produced by Shimano. That’s shorthand for power and reliability. There’s not a circumstance where we don’t trust the Shimano name.

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