A bike show in mainland Europe means one thing these days: eMTBs. Lots of them. We grabbed six from the stands for a closer look.
GT had their new Force Amp on display. Powered by a Shimano E8000 motor it sports a 500w/h battery with 150mm Rockshox-damped travel front and rear, rolling on 29x2.6" rubber and a SRAM SX drivetrain. This version is their higher spec version (there is a cheaper current-spec version available too) which comes in at €4999 - there is no US pricing available yet.
Bianchi had the T-Tronik on their stand. What sets this bike apart is the proprietary OLE motor - manufactured by a German company they back it up with a 3 year warranty and are confident that their dealer network will offer the all-important aftermarket support. This model sports a 630w/h battery, 150mm travel front and 140mm rear, a SRAM NX drivetrain and Fox Rhythm suspension - yours for €5000.
Peugeot had the EM01 on their stand - in French it sounds nothing like "emo", so we suspect any jokes would be lost on them. It has been developed with feedback from their racers Nico Lau and Morgane Jonnier with a steeper seat angle than the previous model, an updated kinematic that they claims offers a lot of sensitivity at the start, but then with plenty of ramp up towards the end of the stroke and a revised, more robust linkage and increased stiffness to compensate for the internal battery. One of the challenges they found with the frame was that as they fine-tuned the layout the stack climbed and climbed, so they address that with an unusual downwards stem to bring it in line with a standard stack height. It has 160mm travel front and rear handled by Rockshox, rolls on 29x2.6 rubber and runs on a Bosch G4 motor with a 630w/h battery and SRAM X01 running gear for €6000 when they hit shops next spring.
Raymon are a relatively new brand that come under the Pexco umbrella. They are mostly focused on slightly lower down the price range, with this, the Full E-Seven 10.0 sitting as their highest
-spec offering. It runs on the latest motor from Yamaha paired with a 630w/h battery. With Fox Performance (GRIP) damping controlling 140mm of travel front and rear, a SRAM GX drivetrain and 27.5x2.6 rubber it will set you back €4999.
Slightly better known within the Pexco portfolio are Husqvana - although the bikes are produced under license separately from Husqvana itself. The Hard Cross HC8 is a big hitting monster truck of a thing. It runs a Shimano E8000 unit with a 630w/w battery. With 180mm of Fox-controlled suspension front and rear, giant, tough 27.5x2.8 Schwalbe Edyy Current rubber front and rear and a Shimano XT drivetrain it looks ready to go. Yours for €5999.
Last but not least is the limited edition Lapierre Overvolt GLP. This is a bit of a specialized beast, developed by none other than Nico Vouilloz - the idea being to create the ultimate performance eMTB. Chasing that they have gone for a carbon frame with an external battery placed centrally in the frame - not only is this apparently lighter than an integrated battery, it also offers better weight distribution. The result is possible the lightest eMTB on the market today—of course I wasn't carrying a scale and they didn't have the weight offhand, but it's easily the lightest eMTB I've picked up. The only downside of the external battery is that it ties them to Bosch's previous generation of battery and thus 500w/h, but pared with the latest G4 motor. It was the one of the few mullet bikes on display, running the preferred combo among many experienced eMTB riders of 29 front with 27.5+ rear for maximum climbing traction. The spec is top drawer with a Rockshox Lyrik Ultimate up front, Super Deluxe at the rear and X01 running gear. They should be available in Lapierre dealers now, but in very limited numbers with pricing to be confirmed.