Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Mtbr Founder
Joined
·
35,084 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What motors have you tried? What motor do you want on your next bike?

factors:
- power and torque
- noise
- size and weight and form factor
- chainring size
- electronics and apps
- batteries and range
- brand and support Blue Colorfulness Green Text Slope
 

·
10,000,000 Watts
Joined
·
3,151 Posts
I like shimano for its Q factor, ease of parts and reliability. I like having everything shimano in one big group set. Doesn’t need to be the most torquey. “Data produced by specialized “ hmm. 🍺
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
I love the power delivery of the Bosch Performance CX, but I don't completely trust it after it gave me a 500 error code and shut down at the very top of a steep long climb the other day. I was in a hurry and cranked up in Turbo, so it was very hot at the top which probably had something to do with it. Once it threw that code it wouldn't do anything so all I could do was coast back down the hill until it cooled off which was disappointing.

I've tried most of them and the Bosch is somewhat noisier but you only really notice it on the road when comparing directly with a quiet motor like the Specialized 1.2S. For a road commuter I would probably choose Specialized because of that. For a MTB, I'd like to try the Specialized 2.1 next time which probably has better thermal management.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,826 Posts
While the Bosch system works well, the 2.5:1 gear multiplication has a lot of negatives. The chainrings are tiny and wear out quickly, they require a proprietary tool to install, and since Bosch doesn't actually make the cranks, they manufacturers can rip you off on proprietary chainring configurations. (Haibike does this, it is $140 for a single 16T chainring!). The wider Q-factor might be an issue for some, bu it doesn't bother me at all.

I'd like to try a Shimano system on an actual trail ride, I've only ridden them around parking lots. Obviously, they have the upper hand in system integration.

Yamaha works great, uses standard cranks (can be a double chainring setup as well), and seems to be a happy system for most people. The ones I have ridden have been kind of noisy, but worked great on the trail. I know a couple of people with Yamaha-powered commuter ebikes as well, and they love them.

The Specialized/Brose units I have ridden have been great, but ten years from now I predict a lot of whining when people with $10,000 eMTBs in mint condition can't get parts for them. Seriously, if a circuit board or internal gear goes out in 2028 for your 2018 Specialized, I'm guessing you'll be screwed unless you can find an old one to cannibalize. At least the Bosch/Yamaha/Shimano systems should be more plentiful and more easily fixed via a total replacement, from a donor if necessary.
 

·
Mtbr Founder
Joined
·
35,084 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I like shimano for its Q factor, ease of parts and reliability. I like having everything shimano in one big group set. Doesn't need to be the most torquey. "Data produced by specialized " hmm. ?
I added that in the graphic for full disclosure.

It's good data though as it's from the engineers at the Swiss office. They are very open and accurate IMHO. Very Swiss.
 

·
Mtbr Founder
Joined
·
35,084 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I love the power delivery of the Bosch Performance CX, but I don't completely trust it after it gave me a 500 error code and shut down at the very top of a steep long climb the other day. I was in a hurry and cranked up in Turbo, so it was very hot at the top which probably had something to do with it. Once it threw that code it wouldn't do anything so all I could do was coast back down the hill until it cooled off which was disappointing.
...
Your motor overheated and protected itself. Almost all the motors do that if you climb a 4000 foot hill in full Boost/Turbo mode, for more than 30 minutes.

Variable is outside temperature and your body weight.

Interesting that it shut down completely. On my Shimano E-8000, it goes to Eco mode with an error code until it cools down sufficiently.

The old Levo did that but the engineers tell me the new Levo will never do it, no matter how hot or how heavy the rider.

Soo.... nothing to worry about but something to be aware of.

fc
 

·
Mtbr Founder
Joined
·
35,084 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
While the Bosch system works well, the 2.5:1 gear multiplication has a lot of negatives. The chainrings are tiny and wear out quickly, they require a proprietary tool to install, and since Bosch doesn't actually make the cranks, they manufacturers can rip you off on proprietary chainring configurations. (Haibike does this, it is $140 for a single 16T chainring!). The wider Q-factor might be an issue for some, bu it doesn't bother me at all.

I'd like to try a Shimano system on an actual trail ride, I've only ridden them around parking lots. Obviously, they have the upper hand in system integration.

Yamaha works great, uses standard cranks (can be a double chainring setup as well), and seems to be a happy system for most people. The ones I have ridden have been kind of noisy, but worked great on the trail. I know a couple of people with Yamaha-powered commuter ebikes as well, and they love them.

The Specialized/Brose units I have ridden have been great, but ten years from now I predict a lot of whining when people with $10,000 eMTBs in mint condition can't get parts for them. Seriously, if a circuit board or internal gear goes out in 2028 for your 2018 Specialized, I'm guessing you'll be screwed unless you can find an old one to cannibalize. At least the Bosch/Yamaha/Shimano systems should be more plentiful and more easily fixed via a total replacement, from a donor if necessary.
Good info!!!

Yeah, the Bosch chainring size is very unfortunate. Makes it hard to pedal past 20mph due to drag. And makes pulley systems necessary for full suspension swingarms.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,881 Posts
Good point!!!!

What do you know about them?

fc
Either end of the power and weight spectrum. The other motors listed are in the middle. Fazua is going for lightweight and removable, it's a slick system. Not many in the wild though, so we'll see how they do.

The TQ is the same motor that has been in the M1 Sporttechnik ebike for a number of years, it's @ a 1000w motor that Haibike has running at 250w in Europe. 120nm of torque though. I'm wondering if Haibike has plans to release it at a higher voltage and wattage here to have a selling point over the other manufacturers.

There are some innovative motor and gearbox combos starting to be teased too.
 

·
Mtbr Founder
Joined
·
35,084 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So if you had an ebike you were happy with, but were thinking of upgrading in the future, would you buy or wait a year?
Buy the Levo now.

Other brands, I'd wait a year or two. Pivot Shuttle is great but $10k only. Lower price options will for it will surely come.

What is your current ebike?

fc
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
215 Posts
So if you had an ebike you were happy with, but were thinking of upgrading in the future, would you buy or wait a year?
Wait for sure. Look at what we have seen for the 2019 models. Larger batteries integrated for a sleek look, more motors coming out (Fazu, TQ) with differing qualities, lighter overall weight etc. This is predicated on your comment that you have an ebike that you are happy with, if you didn't have an ebike I'd say get one now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
215 Posts
I only have ridden the Shimano E8000 system and have no way of testing any others but I would love to see the difference between them all. The chart is informative but I wonder how much each system's software contributes to the overall feel on the trail, power might not be everything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
461 Posts
Ive ridden the Brose, Bosch CX motors and have owned the Yamaha PW and now the Shimano E8000.

My favorite is the Brose do to its silent operation and great power delivery. It is very close to the Shimano, but the Shimano motor can get loud on the steep climbs. The lower the gearing the louder it gets.

The Bosch CX and Yamaha PW are almost identical in performance but the power delivery on the Yamaha feels more "natural" but it can get loud. The Bosch is just a brute. Too much instant torque that it'll pull you back a little. Can be an issue when climbing the chunky trails.

My current bike is a 2018 Meta Power and I love it! A little loud, but I'm cool with that


 

·
XC iconoclast
XC HT, AM HT
Joined
·
2,058 Posts
I've only tried the 500W Bafang as a conversion. At $379 it's rough around the edges but it works. It also is a cheap way to find out what I want and do not want in an e-bike and its motor. For those on a budget it does the job, but hub drives on trails are not nearly as fun; a mid-drive for sure in the future.


factors:
- power and torque: really depends on how much traction I can get on the rear wheel. You can have all the power you want, but if the rear wheel slips up a steep section none of that matters. I would only get more power if I got a + or fat bike with gobs of rear traction, in order to actually use that power up hills/mountains. Otherwise 500W is plenty.

- noise: my current setup is fine. I kind of like a little bit of hum just to make sure it's working when I'm coasting anyway.

- size and weight and form factor: current bike is 56 lbs and the inertia is huge. As above either I get a + or fat bike with 1000+W or I go down to XC in the 40-45 lb range with 250-500W. I cannot emphasize enough that I'd like a bike that can go up steep sections without issue. If the bike is lighter, then even if it's only 250W that may be better than 1000W and heavier without good traction.

- chainring size: 44t due to the climbing reasons above

- electronics and apps: don't care

- batteries and range 10-17 Ah is fine. 10 Ah if the battery is light, like 5-6 lbs, otherwise 13-17 Ah

- brand and support: don't care
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,826 Posts
Are eBikes available at outerbike or a separate ebike specific event?

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Manufacturers bring what they want, so some will have their eBikes at the demo area, and some will not.

The trails you can ride at the Moab Outerbike are severely restricted. You basically have to do loops on the gravel roads east of the demo area. None of the singletrack trails around the demo area are open to eBikes. You *could* ride up the Gemini Bridges road to Bull Canyon I suppose, but that would burn a lot of battery. You could also ride dirt all the way out to Sovereign, but that would take a long time and burn even more battery.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
215 Posts
I've only tried the 500W Bafang as a conversion. At $379 it's rough around the edges but it works. It also is a cheap way to find out what I want and do not want in an e-bike and its motor. For those on a budget it does the job, but hub drives on trails are not nearly as fun; a mid-drive for sure in the future.

factors:
- power and torque: really depends on how much traction I can get on the rear wheel. You can have all the power you want, but if the rear wheel slips up a steep section none of that matters. I would only get more power if I got a + or fat bike with gobs of rear traction, in order to actually use that power up hills/mountains. Otherwise 500W is plenty.

- noise: my current setup is fine. I kind of like a little bit of hum just to make sure it's working when I'm coasting anyway.

- size and weight and form factor: current bike is 56 lbs and the inertia is huge. As above either I get a + or fat bike with 1000+W or I go down to XC in the 40-45 lb range with 250-500W. I cannot emphasize enough that I'd like a bike that can go up steep sections without issue. If the bike is lighter, then even if it's only 250W that may be better than 1000W and heavier without good traction.

- chainring size: 44t due to the climbing reasons above

- electronics and apps: don't care

- batteries and range 10-17 Ah is fine. 10 Ah if the battery is light, like 5-6 lbs, otherwise 13-17 Ah

- brand and support: don't care
Not sure how you are climbing but a 44t chainring probably wouldn't work with my Shimano system and not just to sizing considerations, the motor works best with some rpm's applied. Trying to brute force low rpm climbing won't get the best torque out of the motor, look at the chart and see that most of the motors start to work best above 70 rpm. Of course if you are talking about a 44t rear sprocket then never mind what I've said.

The Shimano system and I suspect the others as well don't make any noise when you are coasting along, they are essentially off unless you are pedaling.
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top