Which SL Ebike for enduro riding ?

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
Hello everyone!

I'll try to be as concise and precise as possible. I'm 25 years old and I've had a Mondraker Crafty R for just over a year now, which I've been riding with my own components. I really like this bike but on technical descents, tight sections, jumps and other singletracks I find that I'm a bit too much under the weight of the bike.

So I'm gradually turning to an SL ebike. I mainly ride enduro, with 2 or 3 races a year. There are a few models that have caught my eye and I'd like to hear your opinions: (and if you have one of the models mentioned a small photo and the range you manage to get)

- Mondraker Dune
- Trek Fuel Exe
- Scott Voltage
- Giant Trance E Elite

I'm going to start with the cheapest assembly, keeping only the frame and the electrics to reassemble some of my components.

PS : I tend to prefer underbiking than overbiking

Thanks in advance!
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
why no kenevo sl? those on your list are more like trailbikes
Hey ! The Kenevo is not a bad idea, but I tend to prefer bikes with less travel. I find them a bit more nimble, and more playful.

I tried the first version of the Kenevo and I found the motor a bit too physical. But going downhill the bike was quite great !
 

Julie_X1

Active member
Jan 22, 2023
121
102
Canada
I’ve had the EXe for a year. It does not have the best range (sorry, I don’t have screenshots, nor keep track, but that’s what I’ve seen from several e-MTB reviews).

It has however a very natural and quiet motor, and i love how capable it is. I am regularly amazed at how it climbs and descends.

Getting a 9.5 on sale and upgrading it your way seems like a great idea to me. Several people have done that on this forum and my husband also bought a 9.5.

My husband and I also have Scott bikes, but I did not want to deal with the fully integrated shock and everything and more proprietary parts. And I’m someone who loves the Scott lockouts (I think they’re the best).

I haven’t tried the Giant Elite one but I am intrigued by the full powered motor. But the range on the small battery will be used up even quicker if you use the higher power modes and it’s a little heavier than other SL e-MTBs.

I can’t buy Mondraker where I live.

Another I would consider in the Trail/ Light Enduro category is the Santa Cruz Heckler SL. The Fazua 60 motor is more powerful and I think it gets good range but it seems to have a little more reliability issues and the electronic integration does not seem as refined (e.g. the controller). I understand the geo is great.
 

Streddaz

Active member
Jul 7, 2022
265
380
Tasmania
Hey ! The Kenevo is not a bad idea, but I tend to prefer bikes with less travel. I find them a bit more nimble, and more playful.

I tried the first version of the Kenevo and I found the motor a bit too physical. But going downhill the bike was quite great !
Yes but @sethimus mentioned the Kenevo SL, not the full powered Kenevo. It's about the same weight as the EXe and Trance but has more travel. While the Levo SL is a long travel trail bike the Kenvo SL is more of an Enduro bike.

To be honest, any of the bikes you have listed would be fine for Enduro riding.

I have a first gen Levo SL and I've raced it in several Enduros, but I do find that it is very hard to beat a full powered bike unless the descent is pure gravity, with the only pedalling above the speed cut. As soon as there are some slow corners, or an uphill section, you will struggle to compete against a full powered bike. Still good fun to try and I still do beat a lot of riders on full powered bikes and the lighter bike is much more poppy and playful to ride.
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
I’ve had the EXe for a year. It does not have the best range (sorry, I don’t have screenshots, nor keep track, but that’s what I’ve seen from several e-MTB reviews).

It has however a very natural and quiet motor, and i love how capable it is. I am regularly amazed at how it climbs and descends.

Getting a 9.5 on sale and upgrading it your way seems like a great idea to me. Several people have done that on this forum and my husband also bought a 9.5.

My husband and I also have Scott bikes, but I did not want to deal with the fully integrated shock and everything and more proprietary parts. And I’m someone who loves the Scott lockouts (I think they’re the best).

I haven’t tried the Giant Elite one but I am intrigued by the full powered motor. But the range on the small battery will be used up even quicker if you use the higher power modes and it’s a little heavier than other SL e-MTBs.

I can’t buy Mondraker where I live.

Another I would consider in the Trail/ Light Enduro category is the Santa Cruz Heckler SL. The Fazua 60 motor is more powerful and I think it gets good range but it seems to have a little more reliability issues and the electronic integration does not seem as refined (e.g. the controller). I understand the geo is great.
Hey !

First of all, thanks for the feedback !
I have heard and read many good things on the EXE, I'm gonna demo one next week to see how capable the bike is, and what range I can get from it !

For the Heckler SL I have a good friend working in a bike shop, they sold ten of them, every single one they sold had a motor/battery/controller problem. Maybe it's just bad luck ... But that doesn't appeal me much !
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
Yes but @sethimus mentioned the Kenevo SL, not the full powered Kenevo. It's about the same weight as the EXe and Trance but has more travel. While the Levo SL is a long travel trail bike the Kenvo SL is more of an Enduro bike.

To be honest, any of the bikes you have listed would be fine for Enduro riding.

I have a first gen Levo SL and I've raced it in several Enduros, but I do find that it is very hard to beat a full powered bike unless the descent is pure gravity, with the only pedalling above the speed cut. As soon as there are some slow corners, or an uphill section, you will struggle to compete against a full powered bike. Still good fun to try and I still do beat a lot of riders on full powered bikes and the lighter bike is much more poppy and playful to ride.
In fact I don't really race for a ranking, I race for fun with friends and I end up where I end up haha. That's no big deal if full power ebikes get better results with the bigger motor.

The Kenevo SL is a bit too big, and too bulky for me. As I said in the original post I like to underbike, lower travel bikes gives me a more poppy and playful ride.
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,516
1,881
FoD
The Kenevo SL is a bit too big, and too bulky for me. As I said in the original post I like to underbike, lower travel bikes gives me a more poppy and playful ride.

Have you ridden one?
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
Have you ridden one?
Yup ! Test rode one from a friend which is a specialized dealer.

And I also owned a Specialized Enduro ! And even for pure enduro riding I still liked more the stumpjumper evo I got just after the enduro.

And the same applies to the Kenevo SL and his counterpart the Levo SL. (at least for the V1 of these bikes !)
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,516
1,881
FoD
Yup ! Test rode one from a friend which is a specialized dealer.

And I also owned a Specialized Enduro ! And even for pure enduro riding I still liked more the stumpjumper evo I got just after the enduro.

And the same applies to the Kenevo SL and his counterpart the Levo SL. (at least for the V1 of these bikes !)

Fair enough, maybe try a LSL2? For me the beauty of the ksl is for riding enduro and dh, the bike kinda disappears so all you are thinking about is the trail, not the bike.

The stumpy is a lot of fun, I’ve ridden one in the alps a few times and loved it, not tried the enduro yet.
 

squeegee

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2019
362
269
USA
Orbea Rise LT? Now with the stiffened frame should be an even better descender in rough terrain but still livelier than KSL or Relay. Shimano motor on my 2022 Rise has been super solid and as a bonus can be ridden full power just requires good battery management (sans RS software). If buying new I would get Rise LT with 430 battery personally to save 2lbs and have RE for bigger days, just wish it would accommodate mixed wheel sizing.
 

Desert_Turtle

Active member
Mar 1, 2022
125
155
Palmdale, CA
I’ve had most of the SL bikes and the best one that I’ve ridden is the Transition Relay PNW. It has big bike range, descends like nothing else, and is surprisingly poppy for a long travel bike. I feel like it’s light years ahead of the Kenevo SL. I’ve had both, it’s an opinion based on actual ride experience. If you rode a Stumpjumper Evo, and liked it, the regular Gen2 Levo SL is banger for sure. The only thing about that was a deal breaker for me was the pathetic, but very reliable, motor and even more pathetic range.
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
Orbea Rise LT? Now with the stiffened frame should be an even better descender in rough terrain but still livelier than KSL or Relay. Shimano motor on my 2022 Rise has been super solid and as a bonus can be ridden full power just requires good battery management (sans RS software). If buying new I would get Rise LT with 430 battery personally to save 2lbs and have RE for bigger days, just wish it would accommodate mixed wheel sizing.
I've seen the new rise, but that's totally out of my budget range (for the moment) .. I hope they'll make cheaper options like an alloy model or something.

I'm gonna wait and see, I think we will see more release like this in coming months, I'm not in a hurry I'm waiting a warranty frame in order to sell my crafty.
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
I’ve had most of the SL bikes and the best one that I’ve ridden is the Transition Relay PNW. It has big bike range, descends like nothing else, and is surprisingly poppy for a long travel bike. I feel like it’s light years ahead of the Kenevo SL. I’ve had both, it’s an opinion based on actual ride experience. If you rode a Stumpjumper Evo, and liked it, the regular Gen2 Levo SL is banger for sure. The only thing about that was a deal breaker for me was the pathetic, but very reliable, motor and even more pathetic range.
I need to try one in order to make my own opinion on it. I hear both great and bad things about the Fazua System. But the Relay frame seems to be really great and versatile.
 

franciscoasismm

Active member
May 31, 2021
197
224
Badajoz
Low weight with full-power motor.
Interesting rear linkage concept with flexible tie rods
Well-defined suspension with plenty of support

19.5 kg, 600 Wh and 85Nm is the best power-to-weight ratio of all the 2024 SL Ebikes
 
Last edited:

Housenotes

Member
Aug 20, 2020
51
22
Missouri
Why are you not considering the Levo SL? It has plenty of travel and with the new motor plus range extender you can get long rides.
 

Inde_Si

Member
May 3, 2023
13
6
France
Why are you not considering the Levo SL? It has plenty of travel and with the new motor plus range extender you can get long rides.
Currently not considered because it's really expensive, I like to wait a bit before buying a product that just came out, and I don't have any great specialized dealer in my area.
 

squeegee

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2019
362
269
USA
The downside to Relay to me is weight, especially if you're talking PNW model (w/coil). KSL is realistic at 43 lbs with proper tires/air shock including pedals. I think a Relay with proper tires and air shock (including pedals) would still be over 44lbs or more, PNW you can add a lb for coil or more in alloy. Lower weight has a lot to do with nimble, special geo can't just "erase" the effect of added weight in all situations, I hear that a lot but not really true in my experience. Gen2 LSL (sub 40lbs possible) or new Rise (seems like sub 40 possible) or SC Heckler (sub 40 possible??). Pivot SL might work depending on just how nimble you want to go. If nimble is what you want, I'd only be considering carbon frames for mere fact that you shave a chunk of weight right there over alloy. Price tolerance vs. desired result is bottomline. Fazua still no RE if that matters to you.
 

Desert_Turtle

Active member
Mar 1, 2022
125
155
Palmdale, CA
I can’t really argue all of the points about the Relay. It is portly compared to to the new SL and it’s very slack. So, while it’s very poppy it does not turn as well as a Gen2 Levo SL but it’s an absolute beast at speed.

I was able to get one of my 2 Levo SLs down to 39lbs with reasonable tires (without a Range Extender). So the weight difference between the bikes with the Levo SL having an extender is pretty small.

My size M Relay is probably 44-45lbs but it has real tires on it. Transition’s approach to bikes is very unique. One of the things I like most about it is that the size M has a 180mm dropper and I can sit on the bike flat footed. I’m a short king @ 5’8 1/2”.

The Gen2 SL is a poor climber while the Relay is a best in class climber. I really like the Fazua system. It has way more power than the new Levo SL motor and it’s more efficient. The Range of the Relay is as good or better than the SL with Extender. Fazua is really making an effort to improve it. It feels remarkably natural. I actually like the ring controller but I see why people don’t like it. I could go on forever.

All that being said, the Gen2 Levo SL is a hell of a bike that’s saddled with a shitty but reliable motor and a battery that’s too small. Again, like I said before, if you like the Stumpy or Stump Evo, you’d love the Gen2 SL.

I think the new Motara would be pretty cool but the geo is Terrible. Unless I read the announcement wrong it has an advertised 62.3 degree head angle. I don’t think they meant for it to turn.
 

steveL

Member
Nov 11, 2022
36
41
Southeast BC
I am going to put a plug in for the EXe. I have been riding it for about one year. It was my first e-bike, and I didn't want a 55-pound bike that felt like it weighed 55 pounds. I find the EXe a complete blast to descend on, and I don't feel the weight of the bike and motor any more than I did an analog bike. And it is blissfully quiet!

It will be interesting to hear what you think after you try it.
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,516
1,881
FoD
I really like the Fazua system. It has way more power than the new Levo SL motor and it’s more efficient. The Range of the Relay is as good or better than the SL with Extender. Fazua is really making an effort to improve it. It feels remarkably natural. I actually like the ring controller but I see why people don’t like it. I could go on forever.

I was disappointed with the drag on the Fazua with the motor turned off when I tested a Shuttle SL, it was way worse than the Bosch or SX or Specilized SL which you can happily pedal with the motor off. With the Fazua you could always feel the drag.

Bosch SX blows away Fazua for power too, it’s obviously a generation on from the rest of the SL motors.
 

OZ-E

Member
Jun 21, 2021
24
21
Australia
I was disappointed with the drag on the Fazua with the motor turned off when I tested a Shuttle SL, it was way worse than the Bosch or SX or Specilized SL which you can happily pedal with the motor off. With the Fazua you could always feel the drag.

Bosch SX blows away Fazua for power too, it’s obviously a generation on from the rest of the SL motors.
This seems to be the opposite of what all others are saying.
The Fazua has minimal drag as far as I could tell.

Also it makes good torque throughout the RPM range. The Bosch only makes good power if you pedal over 100RPM
 

Dax

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
May 25, 2018
1,516
1,881
FoD
This seems to be the opposite of what all others are saying.
The Fazua has minimal drag as far as I could tell.

Also it makes good torque throughout the RPM range. The Bosch only makes good power if you pedal over 100RPM

I spent a day demoing a Shuttle SL, ELyte 140, ELyte 150, Repeater and e150 with some mates, doing back to back comparisons of the Bosch and Fazua. Unfortunately Transition hadn’t bothered to bring any spare batteries for the Relays and they were all flat by 11am, so we didn’t get to test one. With hindsight I should have taken one without a battery.

We all noticed the drag on the Fazua and were impressed how the Bosch SX wasn’t far enough behind the full fats to care about. I’ve got about 1000km on my KSL now, so reasonably familiar with that motor too.

The pivot was definitely the nicest frame, was just fantastic to ride, but was let down by the motor, lack of AXS and the price tag. Roughly £3k more than the elyte 150 was a lot of money given the compromises. Since then I’ve done a few more miles on the elyte and remain impressed, it was happy towing a mates kids up a hill the other day, but it’s also a nice descender. I prefer the ksl for the riding I do, but would be hard to turn down that Bosch motor if I was buying today.
 

EMTB Forums

Since 2018

The World's largest electric mountain bike community.

528K
Messages
26,181
Members
Join Our Community

Latest articles


Top