Saracen Launches Updated Ariel 50E eMTBs

Jan 20, 2023 at 0:37
by Saracen Bikes  

Press Release: Saracen

We are pleased to announce the new-look, three-strong range of Saracen e-MTBs for 2023.

Let’s cut to the chase; E-MTBs are awesome. A few years back people looked at pedal assist and saw it as cheating, but these days most riders have figured out that a bit of extra power means a lot more riding.

That’s one of the things that we love about E-Bikes: they’re the perfect way to turn a big day out into a bigger day out. If you want to cover more miles, get in more runs or just have more fun, a pedal assist bike just helps you get the most out of what you put in which is why all of the Saracen Ariel 50E models now come with the 720WH battery for a bigger range per charge than ever before.

The other notable change is to the Ariel 50E Pro which gets a set of Magura MT E-Stop brakes to add some heavy-duty stop to the EP8 motor’s go. There haven’t been any changes for the sake of change, these bikes still perform at a very high level and match that performance with slick looks. We’re not trying to fix what isn’t broken, or reinvent the wheel or any other related cliché, just build bikes that’ll make you want to get out the door and ride.

The Ariel 50E Elite is the top-of-the-range model. Powered by Shimano's latest EP8 motor housed inside a lightweight magnesium body, EP8 delivers 85NM of torque. But power is nothing without control and Shimano provide a huge range of user-customisation so you can get the best ride out on the trail.

Whether it's choosing between the amount of assistance on the fly using the handlebar mounted controls, or using the E-Tube app to fine-tune the balance between power and torque, Shimano's EP8 system is totally integrated and allows you to find the perfect combination every time. Once your settings are dialled in and you hit the trails, you'll notice it's also a quieter experience, with an integrated 720Wh Darfon battery providing an even greater range for those epic rides. The Saracen Ariel 50E Elite is full dream spec with FOX suspension, DT Swiss wheels and Maxxis rubber and has an RRP of £6,999.99. For full spec visit the website.

Next up is the Ariel 50E Pro which has the same integrated 720Wh Darfon battery providing an even greater range for those epic rides. A Fox Float X2 Performance shock sits inside our aluminium frame, delivering 150mm of travel and giving assured performance when the going gets rough. Up front the E-Bike specific Fox 38-E Performance Elite fork features a lighter compression tune, which Fox have found suits the characteristics of E-Bikes better than a regular 38.

Of course, you'll get all the benefits of the regular 38 fork with the E-Bike version - including phenomenal stiffness, huge adjustment through low and high speed rebound and compression, and the all new bleed valves - making it a great enduro fork. RRP is £5,999.99 and for full spec head to

Finally the entry-level Ariel 50E. The all-aluminium frame features 150mm travel provided by a capable Fox Float X Performance shock, while up front it's a 160mm Marzocchi Bomber Z1. Shimano's E7000 drive unit provides 250-watts of assistance, delivered with 60Nm of torque. What this gives you, is an extremely flexible motor that has the power to propel you over the toughest terrain, while delivering impressive run times in conjunction with the integrated Darfon 720Wh battery.

Along with the preset modes you can also customise boost and trail settings within Shimano's E-tube app, allowing you to match the support you receive with the terrain and your riding style. The drivetrain is provided with a mix of Shimano's capable Deore and SLX components, while braking is handled by two-piston Deore callipers matched to 203mm rotors for extra stopping power. The Ariel 50E RRP is £4,999.99 and the full spec is on the website.

The Ariel 50E is available in three models, with UK RRP listed below*:

- Saracen Ariel 50E - £4,999.99
- Saracen Ariel 50E Pro - £5,999.99
- Saracen Ariel 50E Elite - £6,999.99

*EU pricing may differ - visit your local stockist for further pricing information.

If you’re after the full spec you can find them live on All three new models are available to pre-order on the website right now with stock expected in February. Pre-order before 1st February for guaranteed delivery before February 14th. Finance will be available, but not for pre-orders.

For more information, head to the Saracen website or you can find Saracen on social media in the following places:

- Facebook: Facebook/SaracenBikes
- Instagram: @SaracenBikes


  • 32 2
 Serious question...When you buy an e-bike from a direct sales company where do you take it when the motor fails? Do you just roll up to your nearest Shimano dealer and expect them to start swapping out parts on Saracen's behalf? Just asking because the failure rate on these Shimano motors is ludicrous.
  • 13 6
 p.s. e-bikes are fun as hell and I'll buy one eventually. The technology just isn't there yet and I don't want to deal with the issues.
  • 20 0
 For warranty work our shop will service any bike with a motor from the brands that we sell (Bosh, Shimano, Brose, Fazua) even if its not one of the bike brands we sell . I would think most shops are that way too these days, can't really afford not to.
  • 6 1
 Our shop would work on it. Customer (in the USA) would have to pay our labor rate. Most brands do not pay any labor to do warranty work in the USA.
  • 3 2
 Considering these are about 60% of the cost of a Yeti e bike or decent e bike here in the us, you could just buy 2.
  • 4 0
 Happened to me with a commencal. You have to go to a shop that is "shimano service center" and they send it back to shimano (I imagine sameish procedure with other motor brands). You may have to pay for the shop to unmount and remount the motor.

One negative is that the shop will obviously not fight on your behalf, in my case I had to pay full price for a new motor (4 year old, i.e. 2 years beyond warranty), whereas a lot of people online have said shimano handled their motor replacements for free even out of warranty (i imagine the local bike shop sticking up for their customers a bit more).

Honestly Ebikes are tons of fun, but wait for one manufacturer to actually give a 5 year warranty if you don't want to be shelling out money every few years. They all only give the european legal minimum for a reason...
  • 5 0
 Polygon had me take it to a normal shop. No issues
  • 2 0
 Yes. Shimano has service centers.
  • 7 0
 I was kind of stuck on the "not there yet" argument to hold out on ebikes for a while because I thought there's no way a 50lb bike is fun to ride and most of the power is probably just used to make up for how heavy and terrible the bike is. Then I rode one...

As for the failure rate, don't forget that what you see online is only the people who's motors failed. Nobody with a working ep800 motor starts a new thread to rant about how their motor is still working. Remember when we thought every Kona frame ever made snapped in half? Then we realized actually Kona just sold an absolute shitton of frames, and only the ones with problems surfaced online, creating the illusion of massive flaws.

My $0.02, but the tech certain will keep getting better and better you aren't wrong about that. I love my 55lb full power ebike, but definitely look forward to when the light weight ebikes can have a little more power and range to make them more usable.
  • 3 0
 Madison own Saracen and distribute Shimano in the yeah! Just rock up to any Shimano service center, prove the warranty work and you're good to go.
  • 1 0
 @nerds-on-dirt-mtb: this was my experience, i was happy with the outcome.
  • 4 0
 Most the time if a shop is able to work on the motor, they're able to work on the bike. If it's a warranty thing many times all you'd need to do is contact the manufacturer. Manufacturer can cover the labor of the swap in some situations. P.S failure rate on Shimano motors isn't as egregious as people make it out to be.
  • 34 28
 'A few years back, people looked at pedal assist and saw it as cheating"

People STILL look at Pedal Assist as cheating....
  • 8 5
 They have their times and their places.
(Won’t replace normal mtb until I’m 60 though)
  • 40 1
 Funny how bike park lifts are total cheating too but most riders are extremely happy to use them Just a thought
  • 21 6
 Why cheat yourself? If you’ve been paying attention to all the ad “articles” the past two years on PB, you’ve seen a lot of the pros are riding and ripping on them because the fun is extended per ride. More time in the saddle, more training laps, etc..
Pretty much every bike sponsored pro has and rides one, and knows what the benefits are beyond just cheating, and they couldn’t give a flip if someone thinks they’re cheating or not. Cheating who? When you see a guy like Peter Sagan ripping tech climbs, and blasting the descents, maybe the question is, why should the Pros and “fat old guys” have all the fun?
Run what ya brung, you do you. The perception that ebikes are somehow cheating is so cliche and done anymore. It just sounds like whining, and a bit of jealousy. Time to move on.
  • 10 1
 Why? What unfair advantage do you get? You can't cheat if you're only doing it for fun.
  • 3 17
flag 2pi (Jan 20, 2023 at 13:30) (Below Threshold)
 @kanioni: The lifts I use are there already there for skiiing. I just use them during summer time when the are essentially useless and basically just sitting there. And it helps hotels to survive if they can count on bikers.
Meanwhile those hotels make nearly as much money as they used to do in winter time.
Those lifts help me to progress faster on the downs.
And for the record: I also go uphill completely unassisted for the fun and excercise and depending on the region.
  • 3 10
flag browner (Jan 21, 2023 at 4:49) (Below Threshold)
 people now look at pedal assist as cheating AND a sign of being a bellend
  • 9 4
 It’s okay if you don’t like e-bikes, but listen to yourself. You sound like a 5 year old. Hey wait up, that’s not fare, I can’t keep up, you’re cheating, slow down. Proceeds to flop on the ground and have a tantrum.
  • 6 2
 @2pi: Wait are you actually trying to hate on riding ebikes while supporting riding lifts? This is comical and can not be justified. Same goes for the haters who use their trucks to get up hills. And then their other truck to go retrieve their truck later. At least ebikers TRY to use their legs.
  • 1 0
 @2pi: some serious copium here
  • 5 0
 A few years back, xc keyboard warriors (who's only mtb talent was to pedal) put their energy in reading and troll commenting on emtb articles.
Those xc keyboard warriors still haven't put their time in learning to ride a bike. They still put their time in trolling emtb articles.
  • 1 0
 Just for the record: Misundertsanding, I do not hate ebikes. Settle down, yall.
  • 1 0
 No cheating, because it’s allowed !!! It’s just a very fun new sport !!!
  • 1 0
 @2pi: "those lifts help me to progress faster on the downs"

BINGO! And now what if someone doesn't have any lifts around? Ebikes got you covered!

I have nothing against either way of "cheating" though I understand it's a PITA if in some locations trail access is compromised because of ebikes.

But seriously, ebikes are a blast
  • 6 0
 Check out the Xc casing tires, - why a brand does this I'll never know .. same on the yt ebike
  • 8 1
 They're cheaper and it keeps the weight down.
  • 2 0
 @TommyNunchuck: not sure why you're getting down voted... That's the exact reason. I don't really like the extra cost and weight of a double down casing vs an exo.
  • 5 0
 Nice bikes. Hopefully will be available in the states
  • 3 0
 Decent looking machines, not too bulbous in the downtube
  • 1 0
 I agree. Blacking out the front part makes it look a little slimmer. Nice.
  • 1 0
 I saw one on the trails (well, parked by the coffee shack) the other day. It was definitely the best-looking full power eeb I've seen IRL.
I wonder if this has updated geometry or just different parts?
  • 2 0
 I've got the last version of the Aerial 50E and it's awesome. Is the new battery retrofitable?
  • 4 1
 Looks clean
  • 22 21
 Use me as the eMTB downvote button.
  • 28 14
 I'll take all the upvotes since i love e bikes. Remember, everybody knows they are awesome.
  • 6 12
flag vinay (Jan 20, 2023 at 8:17) (Below Threshold)
 At this stage, I just shrug when I see these bikes pop up on this website. They used to be so vocal against them, now they feature nearly as many assisted bikes as unassisted bikes. What I do like to see is that the environmental impact of bikes is mentioned in the specs so people are more aware of what they're doing. Both lithium as well as neodymium are essential for the energy transition and the more we buy them for nonessential stuff (like recreation that could be done without such assistance) the more the prices for these materials will rise and the slower the energy transition from fossil to renewable will go. It's just like the awareness around smoking. Be very, very aware of what you're doing. If you're still cool with that, ok. We all have our footprints. Get what's really important for you but make sure to not get what you don't really want or need. Now it is almost like the e-bike is the "green" alternative to the regular bike. If you're old, you can still ride unassisted. You'll just be slower, but so are your reflexes. If you want the same sensation of speed, ride tighter trails. And the descend will be fast anyway, assisted or not.

Saracen did release some cool unassisted bikes too recently though. So let's just look at that instead. They released some cool unassisted bikes recently.
  • 2 0
 @vinay: sorry are you trying to say ebikes will slow the move to EV's?
  • 3 2
 @jbrown-15: If the demand goes up, the price goes up. If you use something, you can't use it for something else. There is a huge demand for lithium for batteries that need to be light and compact (for the amount of energy they store). If you use large quantities for recreation, the price goes up and you'll have less available for different purposes. Same goes for the neodymium. It is a rare earth metal (which implies it can only be sourced in a few places causing huge dependencies on regimes you may not want to be dependent on) which is also important for some ways of sustainable electricity generation (the ones where dynamos are involved). Lack of the material or increased prices will indeed the transition to such way of power generation. Plus it will make it harder to boycot such regimes. Not sure why you focus on "the move to EV's", seems a bit limited as there is so much more to it. The use of electricity in vehicles isn't the biggest challenge at this stage, the sustainable generation of the electricity is. And as the generation of such sustainable energy is as temperamental as our demand is, we need a means to store the energy. Lithium isn't the only or always the best way to do that, but for too many purposes it still is.

Because of our economic power, most of us here in the rich west will be the last to experience scarcity. Our suppliers are willing the harvest the world to give us excess at the expense of others. We've seen this with the vaccines for a recent virus, the required syringes and medical protection, wheat shipped from Ukraine just to feed our cattle... Those with a sufficiently limited mind don't need to worry. We'll be getting more than sufficient loot to keep our hobbies going.

So to answer your question, no not at all. The ebikes won't slow the move to EV's.
  • 5 0
 @vinay: I'm trying to understand the whole point of your post/rant in regards to Pinkbike posting about an ebike.
  • 2 1
 @jbrown-15: No worries, take your time.
  • 3 0
 @vinay: eBikes are very practical EVs due to their relatively low cost and weight (compared to cara) and the ability to still transport when the battery is dead. People use eBikes to get to work. Hundreds of millions of people in China use electric motorcycles as their primary vehicle. eBikes are also helping build a market for quality EV batteries. Lithium, Cobalt, Graphite and rare earths are abundant but these miners are somewhat in their infancy in terms of the EV batteries market due to low demand from automakers who’ve been slow to develop the industry. The lithium price crashed a few years ago and miners went bankrupt due to oversupply. Higher market demand typically results in more efficient suppliers with lower costs and better options. For example, the cheapest cell phones were once’s thousands of dollars and now we can buy them for $50 at the corner store. Batteries can also be repurposed and recycled.
  • 1 0
 Every time I see this brand I think of “7” lol
  • 1 2
 i refuse to buy an ebike with a shimano motor until they can PROVE their reliability as well as get rid of that damn rattle that appears after 0.0001 seconds of riding
  • 1 0
 I just rode a Shimano motor e bike today for the first time and the rattle didn’t annoy me at all. Sure it would be nice if they fixed it but it’s not a deal breaker
  • 4 0
 Your hub is too quiet
  • 3 2
 Shimano headquarters right now, CEO: "Ok great thank you entire company for gathering here I know it's a Saturday, but I have important news. Our singular objective effective immediately is to satisfy Abotchway of Pinkbike. Abotchway is the most sacred customer this company has every known, and it is our privilege to serve him. Our first order of business, PROVE the reliability of the ep800 system. Never mind that we just launched our new and improved ep801 system, that is not relevant to the great Abotchway. He is not aware of this and therefore this does not exist. We shall PROVE this systems reliability by producing 1 billion test units to run simultaneously for the next 5 years. Because technically speaking, that is what it will take to PROVE the reliability of a system. And that is what Abotchway wishes us to do. Thank you, that is all, please report promptly at 6am tomorrow, Sunday, to begin your work for Abotchway.

Oh and one last thing, was anyone here aware that our motor makes a rattle sound? This has not been brought to my attention. It has never been mentioned."
  • 2 0
 @ironxcross: wow. I mustve really upset you. I'm allowed to express my opinion and so are you! Every single shimano powered ebike I've ridden has had that dreaded rattle. Just because a few people on pinkbike don't think its a thing, doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Working as a bike mech for the few years that I did, I warrantied far too many motors due to loud rattling and inconsistent performance. To me, that is a deal breaker.
  • 1 4
 i do not want to rely on electricity to go for a ride. That includes shifting. I am positive if they thought they could electrify brake systems that would pass safety standards they would have told us all our oil based systems are useless. wake up and spin that is the key to freedom off the beaten trail.
  • 1 0
 Hey let’s talk e vs non e bikes some
more. Keep it up!
  • 1 0
 200mm, 500mm reach, DC fork Ebike please.
  • 1 0
 Not available in USA? Eh?
  • 1 0
 Why is like every 2nd post another ebike?
  • 9 11
 "Bit of extra power means more riding" TRAIN HARDER
  • 17 2
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