Specialized Turbo Kenevo Expert 27.5 Electric Bike


The Turbo Kenevo Expert offers 180mm of travel front and rear. It is constructed from M5 Premium Aluminum, which is equal parts, strong, lightweight, and responsive. The geometry is all business with a low-slung bottom bracket, roomy top tube, and ultra-short chainstays. The cable routing is all internal while the Specialized M1-504 504Wh battery is fully integrated in the down tube and the motor is secured by a forged brace mount. The 250W Specialized 3.1 Rx motor provides plenty of power to get you back up the mountain.


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[Feb 14, 2019]


I have recently read a lot about electric mountain bikes. My opinion on my ideal electric mountain bike crystallised after I went for a 60km ride on a Specialized Turbo Kenevo Comp 2019 before Christmas. I am now confident that the Brose motor has ample torque for the relatively flat terrain that I frequent and I appreciate that the system is quiet, smooth and responsive with the system turned on and low resistance with the electrical system turned off. E-MTB Magazine writes that Integrated Rechargeable Batteries look nice… but currently offer only very few advantages, such as a cleaner design and the option to mount a bottle cage in a front triangle. E-MTB Magazine then goes on to review 12 best-of-2018 premium eMTBs none of which have an external battery. (https://ebike-mtb.com/en/) In my opinion the structural triangle, in particular, the drop tube should not be compromised by large battery access cutouts. These large cutouts exacerbate stress concentrations and consequently reduce fatigue life. I would have thought that if a certain amount of flexibility is desired for ride handling than the frame with a tubular drop tube could be more consistently and easily tuned by selecting the optimum diameter and wall thickness. I applaud Bosch, Brose, Specialized, Haibike and others for the recent development and introduction to market of electric mountain bikes and perhaps the profile aesthetic appeal was or is an essential factor in establishing market share/dominance in the premium end of the market. However I would like to see a bike frame in which it is possible to mount one of a family of external batteries from approximately 300Wh to 1000Wh. Whilst I understand that Lithium battery management systems are complex having a proprietary or industry wide standard socket plug and battery attachment might be a first step in facilitating the market penetration of electric bicycles. This would promote economies of scale because the bike frame could meet the requirements of a spectrum of users from short commute flat terrain riders where 300Wh is adequate and economical through to 1000Wh for long commute and competitive riders. Bosch already has a family of batteries from 300 to 500Wh and a dual 500Wh system. Whilst battery vendors have been competitive rivals in the past I suggest that they may maximise their success in the future by collaborating on standardisation of the interface between batteries, battery management systems and motors, ultimately


I believe I would prefer a dash with a single display screen with seamless integration between electric assist control and GPS navigation although I anticipate some buyers will prefer either; a) a single integrated screen, or; b) separate GPS navigation and electric assist control screens, or; c) separate electric assist control and an Apple or Android phone. Garmin already supports pairing between some of its bike navigation computers and Shimano Steps and plans to extend this functionality to other electric assist systems soon. Although I am not aware that Kervelo has had much market penetration I anticipate that its Quartz mid-drive integrated electric assist and gearbox may have significant technical potential due to a sealed lubricated gearbox which is possibly more efficient than, and substantially reduces the number of ratios required in, a cassette. (https://www.kervelo.com/transmissions/quartz/) I consider that there have been some dramatic improvements in e-MTB technology and performance in recent years and that this rapid innovation will continue. I acknowledge that it is not an easy design challenge to optimise but the bike that I desire has; a) Dual suspension and 29inch tyres, b) Quiet assist system with low resistance when turned off, c) A drink bottle cage, d) Seamless integration between the electric assist control and GPS navigation display, e) Head and tail lights powered by the main battery, f) Bike has a low centre of gravity, low weight and the frame has a long fatigue life, g) Support for a family of batteries from 300Wh to 1000Wh to achieve manufacturing economies of scale. Although Riese & Muller have had some success with external batteries I will be interested to see whether other manufacturers can achieve market success with an external battery in the premium sector or whether I will need to wait for a more mass market bike. The perceived or actual detraction of an external battery from the bike’s aesthetic appeal is a very low priority for me. I am twice as fast on an electric assisted bike as I was on my unassisted bike and this is a transportation mobility transformation that the world needs to mitigate the adverse affects of climate change.

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