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19.6 KG Nox Helium first Look

Check out this Fazua based Nox Helium. Freshly updated with the brand new Black Pepper software upstate from Fazua that unlocks more power from the motor.

  1. Great review Rob. Steeeeep price though.

    You didn’t answer the ultimate question though. Has the Fazua upgrade made it competetive with the Levo SL motor?

    Asking for a friend. :)

    Gordon

  2. I dont think the price is too bad in the current marketplace when you look at some other top end bikes, which is a crazy enough statement in itself!
  3. You didn’t answer the ultimate question though. Has the Fazua upgrade made it competetive with the Levo SL motor?

    I have to do a back to back test! But for sure its competitive!

    Fazua Positive stuff

    • 55nm
    • 300Watts (although needs to be tested properly to see how long it can maintain this power)
    • Can remove system if you want to
    • Available on multiple brands
    • Near silent (like, really really quiet) in normal pedaling
    • Software updates mean they are active in development

    Fazua Negative stuff

    • System weight quite heavy at 4.6KG (Motor Pack, Battery and bottom bracket part)
    • 250 Wh battery
    • Ratchet sound when you stop pedalling to freewheel. AKA the woodpecker!
    • Engagement points not instant. Approx 15 degrees until motor hardware engages
    • Controller looks like its from 1985
    • Have to plug motor into computer using USB cable to update the bike / tune it which is a bit of a faff

    SL 1.1 Positive Stuff

    • 3.75KG system weight (Motor + Battery), 850 grams lighter than Fazua
    • 320Wh battery (28% more battery capacity). Optional 160 range extender
    • Feels more natural in my opinion but I need to test the Black Pepper update a bit more to play around with modes
    • Instant engagement and instant power delivery
    • Super clean neat integration
    • Can adjust / tune software on the trail with the Mission Control App

    SL 1.1 Negative Stuff

    • Noise. It’s noticeably noisier than my Brose motor in the Kenevo and much louder than Fazua
    • Power output might not be enough for some riders.
    • Only available on Levo SL

    Torque Comparisons:

    At a Cadence of 90 RMP, the Fazua will provide approximately 35Nm of torque compared to approx 23Nm on the SL

    FAZUA:

    View attachment 30565

    Levo SL:

    View attachment 30566

    But yes, the Fazua is definitely a good alternative. They will unlikely get a bike down to weights like the SL as the system has a higher overall weight. But its great to see the development that they’ve made.

    The high power mode on the eZesty will kill the battery quickly. I did 9.06 miles only 457 ft of climbing and and used 50% of the battery. It starts to kill off that extra power that the update unlocks as the voltage drops from the battery when you burn through it.

    The engagement points on the Fazua were annoying to me on the eZesty (the cassette had poor engagement also that made it worse). I didnt get to test the Nox as much as I’d like due to current situation etc so just a limited ride.

  4. Are you holding on to it for a bit, or do you have to give it back – shame if you cant take it to the terrain it deserves!

    I get the impression that the SL motor, despite what the facts and figures on paper are, feels as /if not more powerful in terms of support, when riding? Or am I wrong – It was a good year between when I rode a faze bike and the SL, but I was surprised with the SL, thinking it would have minimal assistance.

  5. Are you holding on to it for a bit, or do you have to give it back – shame if you cant take it to the terrain it deserves!

    Its getting picked up tomorrow sadly

    I get the impression that the SL motor, despite what the facts and figures on paper are, feels as if not more powerful in terms of support, when riding? Or am I wrong – It was a good year between when I rode a faze bike and the SL, but I was surprised with the SL, thinking it would have minimal assistance.

    This is why I want to do a back to back style test. Need the eZesty really as thats the closest. Drag race up a hill, timed, 3 runs. It’ll be easy to identify which is more powerful!

    There a bit more to it also though. Software and efficiency come into play. Although the power on the Fazua is higher I think that the battery will be rinsed through much quicker.

    At a cadence of 80, Fazua electrical power is approximately 410 watts, mechanical power is 300 watts. Thats losing 110 watts (27%) of its power through heat loss / low efficiency.

    At a cadence of around 55 there is an even bigger delta. 450 watts Electrical that translates into 300 watts mechanical. 33% of energy is lost (150 watts).

    View attachment 30568

    The SL has an electical power of approximately 290 watts. And a mechanical power of 250 watts. Its losing 40 watts (14%) of its power. So much more efficient. Sadly I cant see the same calculation at 55 cadence on the SL, I didnt capture that. But it will be less efficient also at lower cadence, but I suspect not as much as the Fazua.

    View attachment 30569

    So you can see that its not just all about out and out power. Its about the entire experience / package.

    I suspect that the Fazua will out power the SL on climbs. But id you’re on a longer rider there will be a cross over point where the SL power exceeds that of the Fazua due to the more efficient system.

    Hope it all makes sense, just thinking it all through in my head!

  6. Its tricky isn’t it, I think as you say the sum of the SL’s systems parts adds up to a better experience out on the trail than the facts on figures on paper might suggest.
  7. Its tricky isn’t it, I think as you say the sum of the SL’s systems parts adds up to a better experience out on the trail than the facts on figures on paper might suggest.

    Yes. Easy to look at numbers and compare. The thing is with batteries and motors theres more too it than stats. But, we all like stats right?! But its about the overall experience as you suggest.

  8. Great vid Rob. A lot to think about there. I think the exciting thing about Fazua is the ability for many more potentially more niche OEMs to adopt it. However, it looks to me that Specialized have a big lead in the packaging and efficiency as you (And @R120) point out. To me that’s why there’s such a cost premium as R&D will have an overhead.

    Do we have a feel for longevity of the Fazua in UK conditions yet? There are far fewer of these motors in the wild but they’ve been around for a while now. I have high hopes for the Mahle motor in the SL on this front.

  9. Hi all, I’ve been waiting for the next review of a fazua system bike for a while and here it is. As usual Rob did a fantastic job.
    I’m also interested to see what you think of the difference between the "lower" powered ebikes however I dont think comparing the sl, e-zesty and even this nox to each other on weight is a fair comparison to make. The fazua is more powerful On the performance mode but as you’ve already said it kills the battery.

    The fazua does have its problems though. This new software update turns the bike into more what the more powerful ebikes are like, but at least we can now customize. It needs a little more refinement. The sl is much more refined. I agree that the remote is also very dated looking, maybe the design of this nox hasn’t allowed them the put on the new remote?

    It’s great to see other transition ebikes coming onto the market though.

  10. Its getting picked up tomorrow sadly

    This is why I want to do a back to back style test. Need the eZesty really as thats the closest. Drag race up a hill, timed, 3 runs. It’ll be easy to identify which is more powerful!

    There a bit more to it also though. Software and efficiency come into play. Although the power on the Fazua is higher I think that the battery will be rinsed through much quicker.

    At a cadence of 80, Fazua electrical power is approximately 410 watts, mechanical power is 300 watts. Thats losing 110 watts (27%) of its power through heat loss / low efficiency.

    At a cadence of around 55 there is an even bigger delta. 450 watts Electrical that translates into 300 watts mechanical. 33% of energy is lost (150 watts).

    View attachment 30568

    The SL has an electical power of approximately 290 watts. And a mechanical power of 250 watts. Its losing 40 watts (14%) of its power. So much more efficient. Sadly I cant see the same calculation at 55 cadence on the SL, I didnt capture that. But it will be less efficient also at lower cadence, but I suspect not as much as the Fazua.

    View attachment 30569

    So you can see that its not just all about out and out power. Its about the entire experience / package.

    I suspect that the Fazua will out power the SL on climbs. But id you’re on a longer rider there will be a cross over point where the SL power exceeds that of the Fazua due to the more efficient system.

    Hope it all makes sense, just thinking it all through in my head!

    Hi Rob,
    These graphs are amazing. This kind of analysis is world class for this field.
    I’m curious do you have the mechanical power and electrical power, or better still efficiency plotted against cadence for the E8000 motor?
    P.s. the bike hut where you are filming this looks awesome. Is it new?

  11. Thank you so much Rob! Seriously, you are the leading authority on EMTB out there for us general users.

    The Fazua upgrade is excellent news, for me, although I haven’t taken advantage of it. I’ve been procrastinating about an e-Zesty since they were released and this upgrade will push me over the edge. I’ve also found the Australian distributor and he’s organising a bike for me. It’ll take a while with the current issues regarding COVID-19. But I have my e-160 that I’m keeping.

    I already have a Fazua powered bike, which I have yet to firmware upgrade. It’s an e-gravel bike though so it’s not quite the same as a full sus MTB and I’ll keep the power delivery lower than I might on an EMTB. I have two batteries now so it’ll be three in total. Perfect for a big day out or a few days bike packing on the Cairn 01, after restrictions are eased. Plus I can interchange not only batteries but the whole motor unit if there are issue with either bike.

    I only get the ratchet sound if I back pedal, so that’s not an issue for me. I love how quiet the bike is and how smooth the disengagement is. I’m not ever going to be a great rider so I’ll be OK with the slower engagement. And if anything needs to lose a kilo it’s me, not the bike. I think I’ll get it to 18kg once I’ve changed a few sensible things.

    And I can take the unit out and have a decent, if not slightly heavy, analogue enduro bike when I ride with my son, who’s just learning to ride off road a bit and is still on green/blue trails.

    I don’t need it to be the most cutting edge thing out there but it’s nice to know it’s somewhat competitive with the Specialized. A lot cheaper too.

    Gordon

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