Ibis Oso Launched - Bosch Powered EMTB

Had you given up and thought Ibis would never release an emtb? Well, they would, the Ibis Oso is here. This 155/170mm travel bike comes in at U$ 10.999. Photos of the bike have already been leaked online. And the rumor mill picked up after Zakka took a 12th place in the Finale Ligure E-EWS running what could only be this bike. Reading comments online, I saw a few complaints about the looks.

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Clean​

My tastes may have been shaped by only focusing on emtbs for the last few years. But I think it looks very good! Frame tubes are supposed to be chunky. And I like the rear triangle that isn't a triangle because the chainstays are missing. I think the rear stays flows nicely into the main frame and continues up the downtube. Sure, it's one fat tube, but it's got a nice and clean look. And I like the sharp integration of the shock. Can I confess I prefer the looks of this bike over the Ibis Ripmo?

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Also, a bit messy​

The Ibis Oso isn't a top-of-the-line bike with maxxed out specs. The cables for the 12-speed Sram GX drivetrain, combined with a Lupine 900 lumens head light makes the handlebar area a bit busy. So, no wireless shifting for the Oso, and that isn't a big surprise. Ibis usually isn't the most expensive "high-end" mtb brand. And I think the spec level makes perfect sense.

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The Shimano XT dual caliper brakes, Fox 38 Performance fork and Fox Performance Elite X2 shock are all sensible and well performing kit. The Maxxis tires are the burly DoubleDown carcass version of the Dissector and Assegai. Oh, and there’s a rear light too.

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Bosch Smart System 750​

The Bosch Performance CX isn't a new motor, but the Smart System with the 750Wh battery is. A lot of bikes are coming out with this now, and we're seeing a few different ways of integrating the battery. Some bikes come with a non-detachable battery, it’s easier finding room the long battery inside the frame this way. Ibis wanted an easily removable battery, to take it indoors for things like charging or storing. This usually can’t be done without some sort of compromise. Ibis decided to go with the smaller Powertube 625 for the size Small. That makes sense, it’s easier fitting the Powertube 750 in the bigger frames.

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Enough, what about the geometry​

It’s not just the battery size that varies between the frame sizes. No, the Oso is a very different bike between the size S and XL. The two smaller sizes have got mullet wheels. The smaller 27.5 rear wheel allows for a 439mm chainstay length. The L and XL are 29er bikes with 444mm chainstays. Even the seat tube angle is different. It’s 79* for the XL, 78* for the L and 77* for the two smaller ones.

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I think this makes sense. To have similar handling between sizes, the ratio of bike length on either side of the cranks needs to be similar between sizes. A bigger bike has a longer front end and needs longer chainstays to maintain a similar balance. Head angle is similar on all sizes though, and I can’t see why it wouldn’t be. Bottom bracket drop is 341/340mm, which is fairly low and just how I like it.

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Different travel options​

This bike comes as default with a 170mm travel fork. But Ibis says it 180 and 190mm is an option too, even dual crown forks. The 155mm travel rear end has a 205x60mm shock. Swap that for a 205x65mm one for 170mm of rear action. According to Ibis, the Oso is stable yet responsive, mimicking the Ripmo, regardless of configuration. And look at the design of the DW-link rear suspension. This is a floating design with a virtual pivot point. But it looks a bit unusual having all the linkage bolts so high on the frame. Looks like a mid-high pivot point design I think.

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Final Thoughts​

A great addition to the EMTB world, and now we think pretty much every major brand has an ebike in their catalogue. The Bosch powered Oso will appeal to those searching rowdy terrain, but also gives riders a lot of scope for upgrading as they progress. We particularly like the fact that it can run longer forks, and over stroked rear shock for up to 170mm rear wheel travel. Great job, Ibis!
About author
knut7
Started mountainbiking in the 90s. Moved to emtbs in 2014 and have been reviewing them since 2016. Contact me here https://emtb.no/contact/

Comments

Thought I would share as I picked my OSO up last week and have just shy of 100 miles on it. I am coming off of a very modified 2020 Levo that was slacked to 64.2 and had 160/180 travel, Saint brakes, and 220 rotors F&B. It is a very capable bike.

First off, the Ibis is super stiff, super playful and fast as can be. Ibis nailed the tune in this thing. I went down a size to a medium because of the reach numbers as well as wanting mixed wheels. It climbs as well as any trail bike and the short chainstay and mixed wheel allows it to crush switchbacks and turns in quickly at all speeds. Not the longest wheelbase but it seems stable at high speed....so far.

It's not perfect at all. They totally missed it with the controls, a super busy cockpit (I eliminated the Kiosk), max 2.5 tires, FOX 38 Performance (really for that $$), and the Maxxis Dissector rear tire (just my opinion). I added AXS shifting, Magura MT7 HC3 brakes, Ergon saddle and grips. I have Schwalbe tires (big Betty/majic Mary) on the way as well as a Diety Highside bars w/50mm rise and a Renthal stem. The cockpit stuff is all just a personal feel and fits the places I ride well.

I'll add more as I get more laps in but in closing, I love it!

If you are considering an OSO and have any questions, send me a PM.

Cheers,
Scott
 

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Thought I would share as I picked my OSO up last week and have just shy of 100 miles on it. I am coming off of a very modified 2020 Levo that was slacked to 64.2 and had 160/180 travel, Saint brakes, and 220 rotors F&B. It is a very capable bike.

First off, the Ibis is super stiff, super playful and fast as can be. Ibis nailed the tune in this thing. I went down a size to a medium because of the reach numbers as well as wanting mixed wheels. It climbs as well as any trail bike and the short chainstay and mixed wheel allows it to crush switchbacks and turns in quickly at all speeds. Not the longest wheelbase but it seems stable at high speed....so far.

It's not perfect at all. They totally missed it with the controls, a super busy cockpit (I eliminated the Kiosk), max 2.5 tires, FOX 38 Performance (really for that $$), and the Maxxis Dissector rear tire (just my opinion). I added AXS shifting, Magura MT7 HC3 brakes, Ergon saddle and grips. I have Schwalbe tires (big Betty/majic Mary) on the way as well as a Diety Highside bars w/50mm rise and a Renthal stem. The cockpit stuff is all just a personal feel and fits the places I ride well.

I'll add more as I get more laps in but in closing, I love it!

If you are considering an OSO and have any questions, send me a PM.

Cheers,
Scott

Really curious to hear more of your thoughts on the sizing, it sounds like you normally ride a large? I do too and the sizing has me thinking a medium would be better, anymore feedback would be appreciated!
 
I went with the XL, and I'm a hair under 6'2". I also recently upgraded the travel to 180/170 and put in the Grip 2 damper in the fork.

The bike is extremely nimble for having a wheelbase 2" longer than my Trek Rail.

In short, it's an incredible bike climbing and descending and very very fun to ride.

FWIW - my 750W battery seems likes its not fucntioning at 100% as my range is about the same as my Rail with the 625.
 
FWIW - my 750W battery seems likes its not fucntioning at 100% as my range is about the same as my Rail with the 625.
Keep in mind that the Bosch software partitions the battery capacity to maintain some reserve just for the light. Since the Oso has an integrated light, I'm sure that's in play. If you take it to a dealer, they should be able to either reduce or eliminate the battery partition.
 
Really curious to hear more of your thoughts on the sizing, it sounds like you normally ride a large? I do too and the sizing has me thinking a medium would be better, anymore feedback would be appreciated!
@Pacific Ryder +1 to this question. I am 5/10" (178cm) and the large looks very large. I assume you're not far off based on your comments. How are you doing with the medium Oso? Would you go with a medium again or size up?
 
I absolutely love the look of this bike ! Can you not clean the cockpit up possibly by using some shrink wrap on the cables ?
I have recently sold my Yeti e160 as or tho i loved the bike i hated the motor, this bike has on paper what i want …… size wise im 6’1 so sounds like the large would be spot on….. Its one of these for me or take a different route and by a much cheaper but arguably better speck Cube Stereo Hybrid ActionTeam 140 or 160 ……🤷‍♀️
 
@Pacific Ryder +1 to this question. I am 5/10" (178cm) and the large looks very large. I assume you're not far off based on your comments. How are you doing with the medium Oso? Would you go with a medium again or size up?

For what it’s worth people who are still curious about sizing, a buddy just picked up a medium and I was able to hop on it, def feels med, I would 100% go large. I’m 5’10 pretty much always ride large, currently on a large sc bullit.
 
For what it’s worth people who are still curious about sizing, a buddy just picked up a medium and I was able to hop on it, def feels med, I would 100% go large. I’m 5’10 pretty much always ride large, currently on a large sc bullit.
At 5'10", I took a chance and ordered a medium Oso which I just received yesterday. Out of the box it definitely felt on the small side. I swapped out the stock 40mm stem for a 50mm, adjusted the seat, dialed the bar rotation and it feels fine. It seems like I'm forever in between med and large size and over time have come to the conclusion that I much prefer the playful feel that I get from sizing down.
 
At 5'10", I took a chance and ordered a medium Oso which I just received yesterday. Out of the box it definitely felt on the small side. I swapped out the stock 40mm stem for a 50mm, adjusted the seat, dialed the bar rotation and it feels fine. It seems like I'm forever in between med and large size and over time have come to the conclusion that I much prefer the playful feel that I get from sizing down.
I am 5'10" as well and have always ridden a large. With the adjustment to the stem and some Diety 50mm rise bars, I am set. The medium is so fun to charge hard on.....and the mixed wheel makes a big difference IMO. I also bumped the front travel to 180 and rear to 170.......great upgrade that only needed internal parts and some labor from my LBS.....Congrats on the new bike.
 
I finally had a chance to get out for my first ride after having spent a few weeks staring at the bike in the garage (sick with covid). I can confirm this thing is a ripper. The suspension tune and kinematics pair really well with the Bosch torque curve. It feels poppy like a heavier version of my Pivot Switchblade. The torque delivery makes the bike feel lighter than it Is when you get on the gas. When turning, the low bottom bracket and mullet wheel result in a quick turn in (but still stable). Ibis really did an awesome job with the design and motor choice to make it feel lighter than other bikes around the same weight. At 5’10”, I was also concerned about the potential side effects of sizing down like wheel lift on steep climbs but this is a non issue. Downhill stability is also excellent. I nearly bought a Fuel Exe but decided against it for the bigger battery and more torque. I can say that I am very happy with my choice.

A couple of other notes:
I rode the same trails on a med Pivot Shuttle LT which also has some glowing reviews. It felt like the Shimano motor constantly needed to be shifted into the right gear to maintain peak torque. If you are good about shifting and getting into the right gear it also gave a poppy feel off of ledges and features but if you weren’t in the right gear you could really feel the weight and needed to muscle it more to play on it. That extra effort wore me down faster than on the Oso. I attribute some of that feeling to a more supple suspension and low/peaky torque from the Shimano. The more technical the trails got, the more noticeable (in a bad way) the Shimano performs. So glad I demoed this before I bought one.


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I’m considering an Oso and would appreciate your feedback from current owners.

Background: coming from Ransom, Levo3, Rail, Kenevo, and Levo2.

1. How is the breakover and pedal clearance with the low BB? Do you find yourself scraping the motor guard a lot on split up and over moves?

2. I’m hoping for good range from the 750wh battery. Are you getting 24-25 in boost and 35miles or more in Emtb? I’m really into big back country rides. Some have speculated that there is a battery reserve issue due to the lights?
Thanks for your help!
JP
 
I’m considering an Oso and would appreciate your feedback from current owners.

Background: coming from Ransom, Levo3, Rail, Kenevo, and Levo2.

1. How is the breakover and pedal clearance with the low BB? Do you find yourself scraping the motor guard a lot on split up and over moves?

2. I’m hoping for good range from the 750wh battery. Are you getting 24-25 in boost and 35miles or more in Emtb? I’m really into big back country rides. Some have speculated that there is a battery reserve issue due to the lights?
Thanks for your help!
JP
Hi JP,
I can address pedal strikes but I haven't done any long rides yet to speak to ultimate range.

Most of my riding is on rocky trails (Phoenix - South Mountain) and I was also really concerned about pedal strikes with the lower bb on the Oso. TBH, even with the stock pedals I didn't find it a major issue. I think it might also come down to your riding skills. I'm coming from mountain biking background on the same trails and have become very good at timing pedal rotation to avoid pedal strikes. If you're a new rider and not versed at this, it might be noticeable? Before I could even ride the bike, I purchased a set of Hope Evo 155 crank arms expecting the worst given my trails. They helped a little on awkward tight switchbacks, where one pedal see closer rocks but I don't know if I would have gone to 155mm if I had just ridden it first. One tradeoff of the shorter cranks is a noticeable loss in the ability to boost due to lower leverage. The suspension kinematics and torque curve really help to make the bike feel light, enabling easier manualing and boosting off things which crank length also plays into.
 
Hi JP,
I can address pedal strikes but I haven't done any long rides yet to speak to ultimate range.

Most of my riding is on rocky trails (Phoenix - South Mountain) and I was also really concerned about pedal strikes with the lower bb on the Oso. TBH, even with the stock pedals I didn't find it a major issue. I think it might also come down to your riding skills. I'm coming from mountain biking background on the same trails and have become very good at timing pedal rotation to avoid pedal strikes. If you're a new rider and not versed at this, it might be noticeable? Before I could even ride the bike, I purchased a set of Hope Evo 155 crank arms expecting the worst given my trails. They helped a little on awkward tight switchbacks, where one pedal see closer rocks but I don't know if I would have gone to 155mm if I had just ridden it first. One tradeoff of the shorter cranks is a noticeable loss in the ability to boost due to lower leverage. The suspension kinematics and torque curve really help to make the bike feel light, enabling easier manualing and boosting off things which crank length also plays into.
Thanks, SoMo

Yes, I have much experience riding rocky and janky trails.

My question was actually different (not about pedal strikes)…what I was looking for was feedback on getting high centered often or not with the low BB. I’ve had some bikes that I found scraped bottom bracket/motor when slow rolling features too much. Has anyone had a noticeable issue of dragging the bottom middle of an Oso excessively?
 
Thanks, SoMo

Yes, I have much experience riding rocky and janky trails.

My question was actually different (not about pedal strikes)…what I was looking for was feedback on getting high centered often or not with the low BB. I’ve had some bikes that I found scraped bottom bracket/motor when slow rolling features too much. Has anyone had a noticeable issue of dragging the bottom middle of an Oso excessively?
I've not experienced a high-center on the rocks (I actively tried on my ride last night). This might also depend on the frame size due to changes in the break over angle. I've only experienced high centers once before on a Specialized Enduro S4 size but not on the S3, riding on the same trail.
 
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