California-based startup Ride1Up has opened up pre-orders for their brand new Roadster v2 “Gravel” variant. This new electric gravel bike is available in 52cm and 58cm frame sizes, and both are priced at $1,245.

Unlike most other offerings in the gravel e-bike market, the Ride1Up Roadster v2 “Gravel” implements a Gates Carbon Drive system rather than a chain drive mechanism. 

Let’s talk about some of the benefits of that Gates Carbon Drive.

Belt it out

For the uninitiated, the Gates Carbon Drive is what’s known as a belt drive system. While the chain drive system has been around for over 100 years, belt drives offer many more benefits—and are generally more expensive to produce. 

Belt drives typically require little to no maintenance, unlike chain drives. They do not require oiling and will not leave nasty grease stains on your clothes. 

Read more: 10 best electric bicycles you can get – October 2021

If any of the components on a belt drive need to be replaced, they will admittedly be much costlier to acquire than with a chain drive. That said, belt drives last longer than chain drives in general. Some Gates belt drives are rated for 50,000 miles or more.


They are also quieter and smoother than your average chain drive system. This, of course, makes for a more enjoyable cycling experience in all situations.

Belt drives have generally been reserved for the upper echelon of today’s premium e-bikes. The fact that the Gates Carbon Drive is appearing on this affordable gravel e-bike is astonishing to say the least.

If you’re interested in grabbing a Roadster v2 electric gravel bike for yourself, you can head over to Ride1Up’s website and select the “Gravel” colorway from their Roadster v2 menu. They plan to start shipping them out in December.