electrical mountain bike Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 electrical mountain bike evaluation
Regardless of solely being first launched in 2018 as Canyon’s debut electrical mountain bike, simply two years on the Spectral:ON is getting its first main replace.
The replace sees the mixing of the bike’s battery into its down tube, a full carbon entrance triangle with bolstered carbon bash guard and a few minor geometry tweaks.
There are 4 fashions within the Spectral:ON vary — read more about them in our news story here — however I received to experience the top-tier 9.0 XTR and Fox geared up bike that prices £6,499 / €6,999 / AU$11,049.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 body particulars
Constructed from carbon fibre, the brand new Spectral:ON 9.0 is claimed to weigh 21.6kg out of the field, simply over a kilogram lighter than the outgoing bike.
As a result of the bike’s now constructed from carbon fibre, Canyon has managed to make it as stiff because the outdated bike whereas nonetheless shedding pounds. The underside of the bike has a bolstered carbon fibre bash guard.
There’s an built-in on/off button on the bike’s high tube that additionally includes a USB-C port that’s waterproof.
The swingarm is created from 6061 alloy and has a QUIXLE rear axle.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 battery and motor particulars
The bike’s chassis is constructed round a Shimano STEPS E8000 motor with peak help of 300 per cent, 70Nm of torque and a 504Wh battery that, Canyon claims, can last as long as 100km in Eco mode.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 suspension particulars
With 150mm of rear-wheel journey, Canyon tuned the bike’s kinematics to work with a coil shock that naturally will get more durable because it compresses by making the leverage ratio pretty linear.
It’s additionally decreased the anti-squat determine to 70 per cent, which signifies that the rear finish ought to be extra lively underneath energy, absorbing bumps whereas the rider is pedalling. This, it says, ought to give the bike extra grip and make it extra snug over tough terrain.
The Spectral:ON 9.0 is fitted with a Fox DPX2 rear shock with a lockout perform, low-speed compression modify and rebound adjustment.
Up entrance is a 150mm journey Fox 36 Manufacturing unit Float fork with the FIT4 damper that additionally has a lockout perform and low-speed modify with a single low-speed rebound adjuster.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 geometry particulars
The scale giant I examined has a 435mm lengthy chainstay, a 66.5-degree head tube angle and a 74.5-degree digital seat tube angle. These are joined by a 1,221mm wheelbase and a 465mm attain.
The bike runs a mullet wheel arrange with a 27.5in wheel on the rear and 29in on the entrance.
Canyon says it’s elevated the bike’s stack top by including an extended head tube throughout the vary of sizes. This was after rider suggestions indicated that larger entrance ends had been higher for more durable descents.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 elements and specs
This top-of-the-range bike is claimed to weigh roughly 21.6kg and is decked out with some top-spec equipment.
Each the brakes and groupset are Shimano XTR and there’s a Fox Transfer Factory dropper post.
It’s specced with Reynolds TRe carbon wheels and Canyon’s all-in-one CF:ON CP0012 bar and stem.
There are Maxxis DHF and DHRII Huge Path tyres and Canyon’s electrical mountain bike saddle, the SD:ON.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 experience impressions
Canyon invited me out to Barcelona to experience the brand new Spectral:ON on the pure trails surrounding La Poma bike park.
The paths had been dry and grippy due to a sandy soil kind and interspersed sandstone rocks that additionally supplied loads of traction.
I managed to get a strong experience on the Spectral:ON and even rode the identical path greater than as soon as.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 climbing efficiency
The dominating aspect of the bike on the climbs is the motor, as is the case with most electrical bikes. The help supplied by Shimano’s E8000 motor is predictable and comparatively straightforward to handle.
In Eco and Path modes there’s a marked hole between after I began pedalling and when the motor engaged. This may be irritating on techy climbs, particularly if I wanted to pause pedalling to keep away from placing the cranks or pedals on a rock, as a result of the bike’s weight requires important power and talent to manoeuvre with out the motor’s help.
In Enhance mode that is much less of a difficulty. After I finished pedalling, the motor continued to supply help for a brief time frame, serving to me recover from difficult obstacles as I re-aligned the cranks.
I managed to finish a 27.3km experience with 1,250m of climbing on one single cost, and with one in every of 5 battery indicator bars nonetheless remaining. This was in combined mode utilization with a couple of brief bursts in Enhance.
The seat tube angle feels prefer it may very well be steeper nonetheless. Due to the bike’s deliberately excessive stack and 27.5in rear wheel it feels just like the rear finish sits fairly low and the bars excessive.
Whereas that is nice on the descents, I did discover myself compensating by angling the seat nostril down and pushing it as far forwards within the seatpost’s rails as potential.
Though Canyon’s SD:ON saddle does job of masking the slack seat tube angle, due to the big raised part on the rear, this does really feel like a band-aid repair.
This bike was constructed from the bottom up on a completely new chassis, so Canyon might have elevated the seat tube angle with none payoffs.
Regardless of having the seat forwards on the rails when climbing seated, I felt just like the 50mm efficient stem size and high tube meant that there was loads of room.
Conversely, the attain determine made standing pedalling somewhat cramped and I’d have preferred this to be a bit longer to really feel genuinely snug. I’m solely 178cm tall and wanted to experience a measurement giant to be snug.
General, the Spectral:ON feels very settled on climbs, even when gradients had been impressively steep.
The entrance wheel did surprise when my focus lapsed, however typically talking the bike was straightforward to regulate and level within the appropriate path.
The 27.5in rear wheel and tyre supplied loads of grip and the suspension felt significantly supple on flat and climbing sections – each of those parts helped me to climb rapidly and proficiently.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 descending efficiency
The Spectral:ON took some time to arrange appropriately for the descents and I ended up counting on larger shock and fork pressures than beneficial to maintain the bike propped up in its journey.
I additionally added a good quantity of low-speed compression to the rear shock to assist this additional. I did discover the FIT4 fork damper to be underwhelming at greatest, nevertheless, and relied on spring stress quite than the damping changes to maintain it performing how I needed.
As soon as it was arrange, although, it rode confidently and playfully with loads of help from the bike’s suspension. This made it straightforward to push laborious by means of turns and up take-offs in addition to by means of tough sections of path.
The experience traits lean in direction of playful quite than planted, however that’s no dangerous factor. This looks like it’s generated by the mullet wheel configuration for essentially the most half and it’s straightforward to provoke drifts round turns after which maintain them there predictably.
Though, when the dial will get turned as much as 11, larger speeds do spotlight some limitations of the bike’s geometry.
Whereas the chassis’ building eggs you on, the geometry can maintain you again; the brief chainstays, comparatively brief attain and pretty steep head angle do point out that this bike is a rugged path bike quite than an enduro or all-mountain rig.
However so long as you’re driving the varieties of trails the geometry is designed for there aren’t any issues. The low-slung weight of the motor additionally helped the bike to really feel extra managed and extra secure than it will have accomplished in any other case.
The Canyon CF:ON CP0012 bar and stem felt good and the rise and sweep had been spot-on for my tastes.
Nevertheless, the paths I rode weren’t tough sufficient for me to have the ability to touch upon whether or not they had been too stiff or effectively damped. Extra testing on rougher trails ought to present some decisive evaluation right here.
Canyon Spectral:ON 9.0 backside line
On the delightfully grippy and gratifying trails in Spain, the Spectral:ON 9.0 confirmed itself to be a tremendously enjoyable bike to experience, particularly if you’re cruising or not driving as quick as you’ll be able to.
Do the updates to the Spectral:ON translate to success on the path? The geometry encourages a playful manner on the bike and the way in which it rips is undoubtedly helped by its low-slung weight.
General, it’s a enjoyable shredder — one thing that an electrical mountain bike in all probability ought to attempt to be — however it’s by no means going to be a path destroying machine due to geometry limitations.