Are you faster on a normal bike?

Arron M

Member
Oct 14, 2021
67
45
Australia
Been on my Trek rail (163/180) for 2yrs now, riding is 100% DH/enduro, my bike was unavailable so I jumped on a mates Pivot Firebird for an afternoon. Holy moly that thing is fast - Strava confirmed this.
Are e-bikes destined to be slower DH? Is the Rail just not the right tool for the job? Or am I just not as comfortable on it as u think I am?

I’ve been thinking about a mid power or SL lately, something like a Transition Relay or a Kenevo SL. Has anyone moved to a lighter e-bike and noticed a difference DH?
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,416
1,746
FoD
There’s a lot more to it than e-bike vs non e-bike: geometry, chainstay length, wheel size, fit, suspension travel and quality. In some cases the extra weight of a full fat e-bike adds stability and therefore speed.

Personally my KSL is the fastest bike I own, long, slack, 29” front wheel to ride over stuff, fancy suspension linkage, it’s definitely quicker than my 2018 Patrol, but not as much fun.
 

Arron M

Member
Oct 14, 2021
67
45
Australia
Thanks Dax, yes I’m aware that there’s more to it than e-bike vs normal bike, but jumping on a bike you’re completely unfamiliar with and going fast says something. This is why I posited the idea that maybe the rail is simply not the best bike for me and the riding I do.
Great to hear the KSL works so well for you, my Push coil would bolt straight in . Hanging to ride one with 50nm
 

Tubby G

❤️‍🔥 Hot Stuff ❤️‍🔥
Dec 15, 2020
2,549
5,127
North Yorkshire
My Privateer is faster than my Rise when on the trails, but it’s 170/160 compared to 150/140, slacker head angle, lighter etc. My Rise is certainly quicker going uphill though 😆
 

VWsurfbum

🤴King of Bling🌠
Jan 11, 2021
1,293
1,909
England
It could be down to something as simple as brakes!
More confidence in being able to slow down can make you faster.
Repeat for Tyres/gears/etc
 
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Arron M

Member
Oct 14, 2021
67
45
Australia
It could be down to something as simple as brakes!
More confidence in being able to slow down can make you faster.
Repeat for Tyres/gears/etc

I know what you’re saying, but that’s not it. Both bikes run the same brakes (xt 4pot) both bikes run the same tyres (assegai/disector DD maxgrip). Honestly my e-bike felt quicker through rough stuff, it’s a monster truck. The Firebird rolled in and out of berms fast, it pumps better it changes direction quicker. They’re both long slack bikes, the firebird is just faster
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,416
1,746
FoD
I know what you’re saying, but that’s not it. Both bikes run the same brakes (xt 4pot) both bikes run the same tyres (assegai/disector DD maxgrip). Honestly my e-bike felt quicker through rough stuff, it’s a monster truck. The Firebird rolled in and out of berms fast, it pumps better it changes direction quicker. They’re both long slack bikes, the firebird is just faster

Some bikes are faster than others, some are more fun?

Fwiw the ksl is freaking fantastic (unless you’re a KSL hater, in which case it’s terrible, worst bike ever) and is both fast and a lot of fun. Gets it done down fast chunky stuff, rails berms perfectly. I would struggle to justify buying a full fat if I didn’t already have both ff and sl, because the sl is much more fun. Really it’s about what works for you and where you ride- best thing is to go get some demos and see what you like. If you were a touch closer you’d be welcome to come have a go.
 

Arron M

Member
Oct 14, 2021
67
45
Australia
Some bikes are faster than others, some are more fun?

Fwiw the ksl is freaking fantastic (unless you’re a KSL hater, in which case it’s terrible,…. If you were a touch closer you’d be welcome to come have a go.

Yep and some fast bikes are slow with the wrong rider and vice versa, reinforcing the idea I need to try one out.
I’m sensing a solid dose of sarcasm here, are we talking KSL haters because they genuinely didn’t like the bike? Or spesh haters… cos spesh haters gonna hate?
I have no brand allegiance and am happy to buy whatever I believe to be the right bike for me. I must says 3500 trouble free k’s on my Bosch has made me happy.
Thanks for the offer of the ride, and where I’m from demo bikes are very few and far between, and even if you find one it’s hard to get it between your legs.
 
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jray17

Member
Sep 19, 2018
19
72
California
Ive got a ff kenevo, kenevo sl and a stumpy evo. Each is faster on different types of enduro stages. I found that the terrain determined which was fastest. I also felt faster on certain bikes at certain times but usually wasnt actually faster. All fun bikes but totally different experiences going up and down.
 

Plummet

Flash Git
Mar 16, 2023
861
1,223
New Zealand
Well, it depends on the track.

Slower than motor assist. E bike wins by power alone.

Faster the motor cut out it will depend on much extra pedaling and popping is required. Need to pedal and pop to clear jumps above motor cut out then pedal bike wins

Tight tech, pedal tech, pedal bike.
Gnarly chunk, e bike wins.

For reference I have a 190mm ebike and 165/170 pedal bike.
 

MountainBoy

Active member
Mar 4, 2022
221
193
Washington State, USA
Been on my Trek rail (163/180) for 2yrs now, riding is 100% DH/enduro, my bike was unavailable so I jumped on a mates Pivot Firebird for an afternoon. Holy moly that thing is fast - Strava confirmed this.
Are e-bikes destined to be slower DH? Is the Rail just not the right tool for the job? Or am I just not as comfortable on it as u think I am?

I’ve been thinking about a mid power or SL lately, something like a Transition Relay or a Kenevo SL. Has anyone moved to a lighter e-bike and noticed a difference DH?

Wait a minute...

I thought a "normal" bike was an e-bike!
 

Onetime

Active member
Aug 10, 2022
347
350
Cali
Been on my Trek rail (163/180) for 2yrs now, riding is 100% DH/enduro, my bike was unavailable so I jumped on a mates Pivot Firebird for an afternoon. Holy moly that thing is fast - Strava confirmed this.
Are e-bikes destined to be slower DH? Is the Rail just not the right tool for the job? Or am I just not as comfortable on it as u think I am?

I’ve been thinking about a mid power or SL lately, something like a Transition Relay or a Kenevo SL. Has anyone moved to a lighter e-bike and noticed a difference DH?
I am much faster everywhere on my ebike, (190/200 Pole Voima) up down and everything in between than on my 180/180 Intense Uzzi or my full DH Intense M9, (also confirmed by Strava).
 

Onetime

Active member
Aug 10, 2022
347
350
Cali
Well, it depends on the track.

Slower than motor assist. E bike wins by power alone.

Faster the motor cut out it will depend on much extra pedaling and popping is required. Need to pedal and pop to clear jumps above motor cut out then pedal bike wins

Tight tech, pedal tech, pedal bike.
Gnarly chunk, e bike wins.

For reference I have a 190mm ebike and 165/170 pedal bike.
Just derestrict and no worries about power cut off bro! It’s awesome, (or so I’ve heard)!
 

Plummet

Flash Git
Mar 16, 2023
861
1,223
New Zealand
Just derestrict and no worries about power cut off bro! It’s awesome, (or so I’ve heard)!
One day I will. But not yet.
the reality is 95% if my riding its good. Then when i'm out of town riding the bigger faster lines that need more pedal and pop then its an issue.

No all dh lines need pedal and pop. I would argues its the poorly designed or too flat tracks. Many of the DH line I do theres plenty of speed provided by gravity and a well timed squirt of speed before the steeper stuff.
 

darwink1

Active member
Dec 19, 2022
155
481
Ontario, Canada
I find muscle bikes just feel wierd now when I ride them downhill. I guess I'm used to the extra weight down low now that I've been eebing the last two seasons but regular bikes feel twitchy and the suspension doesn't seem to work nearly as well...

D
 

Mrj35

New Member
Sep 29, 2023
69
33
canada
Been on my Trek rail (163/180) for 2yrs now, riding is 100% DH/enduro, my bike was unavailable so I jumped on a mates Pivot Firebird for an afternoon. Holy moly that thing is fast - Strava confirmed this.
Are e-bikes destined to be slower DH? Is the Rail just not the right tool for the job? Or am I just not as comfortable on it as u think I am?

I’ve been thinking about a mid power or SL lately, something like a Transition Relay or a Kenevo SL. Has anyone moved to a lighter e-bike and noticed a difference DH?
On steep gnarly stuff I'm quite a bit faster on my ebike. But that's cuz its bigger suspension and slacker than my enduro is. It feels a lot close to a dh bike because that's how I set it up. But on a full dh bike I'm probably fastest. I usually just rent a santacruz v10 if I do a whistler day.
 

F4Flyer

Member
Sep 30, 2020
113
54
Denver
On the downhills, yeah I am in general and all my fastest times from smooth to rocky downhills are all faster on my regular MTBs. If I got a really slack ebike and maybe even put a coil shock on it, it is possible that I'd be faster on the rocky downhills.
 

Koban

New Member
Oct 15, 2023
51
68
NL
For me it was not the debat about to be faster. I have more fun on my emtb. I can do more laps with it. More fun going down.

I have some back challenges. This means for me that I loose strength in my legs after an hour or two of biking. Now with an emtb I can do longer rides. My physics improved. I can now also do longer rides on my normal MTB. My back challenges wil never go fully away. Quit happy that I made the step to an emtb. Not to be faster. Having more fun on the bike.

When I'm going with a group then I often bring my normal mtb. Some times one of my friends is using my emtb. So he can keep up. Our rides are not about how is the fastest. Having fun.

I'm faster going down on my emtb's then my normal bike. Not that the normal mtb is a bad bike. I ride more on the emtb. So I have a beter feeling with the bike. Going up. I'm never in a hurry. :D
 

Plummet

Flash Git
Mar 16, 2023
861
1,223
New Zealand
I find muscle bikes just feel wierd now when I ride them downhill. I guess I'm used to the extra weight down low now that I've been eebing the last two seasons but regular bikes feel twitchy and the suspension doesn't seem to work nearly as well...

D
Any bike type swap feels weird if you ride one bike for a while and then ride a different bike. For a fair comparison you need to switcheroo often. Then recalibration is quick without weirdness.
 

Suns_PSD

Active member
Jul 12, 2022
424
318
Austin
This was about 3 years ago and (all) of the bikes have improved, but at a local Enduro race with short TX runs of about 2.5 minutes, several of the Pros raced both the bike & the e-bike class and all went faster on their bikes. The difference was consistently 5-9 seconds.

That said, some e-bikes have really closed the gap in handling performance, and I feel great on my Relay everywhere.
 

Arron M

Member
Oct 14, 2021
67
45
Australia
Thank you everyone for your responses. I decided to bite the bullet and get an SL, a Kenevo SL Expert to be precise. And it’s amazing, it’s fast, it’s fun, and it’s light. It came with carbon wheels and weighs in at 18.2kg.

Happy as a in
 

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