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FREY AM1000 e-bike review: 1.5kW and almost 40 mph, what else can I say?

FREY AM1000 e-bike review: 1.5kW and almost 40 mph, what else can I say? 2020-09-06Leave a comment

electrical mountain bike FREY AM1000 e-bike assessment: 1.5kW and nearly 40 mph, what else can I say?

The FREY AM1000 electrical mountain bike is one thing of an enigma. You may not realize it by taking a look at it, however the unassuming electrical mountain bike is packing extra energy than nearly every other e-bike and has the suspension required to elegantly navigate even probably the most technical terrain.

If the AM1000 was an olympic athlete, it’d be each a powerlifter and a determine skater. And it’d medal in each.

I had the prospect to experience one over a number of days final fall after I was hosted by FREY as a part of an change journey to Jinhua, China and the encircling space.

We visited the factory to see how their bikes are hand built, after which spent the remainder of the time driving trails, mountain roads, staircases, and the whole lot else that might match two tires.

By the point I used to be completed, I bought the purpose. FREY’s e-bikes aren’t simply highly effective, they’re additionally packing among the finest mountain bike elements within the trade, that means they’ll compete in opposition to the priciest $6-8k Euro EMTBs regardless of FREY’s fashions costing lower than half as a lot.

FREY AM1000 electrical mountain bike video assessment

FREY AM1000 tech specs

  • Motor: 1 kW steady, 1.5 kW peak-rated Bafang Extremely mid-drive motor
  • Torque: 160 Nm
  • High pace (examined): 59 km/h (36 mph)
  • Battery: 48V 21Ah (1,008 Wh)
  • Vary: Varies significantly by experience fashion/terrain, however 30-100 km (20-60 miles) is the ballpark
  • Body: 6061 aluminum
  • Entrance suspension: RockShox YARI RC Enhance 110×15 mm, 160 mm journey
  • Rear Suspension: RockShox Deluxe 205x65mm, 160 mm journey
  • Transmission: Shimano Deore XT M8000
  • Brakes: Magura MT5-e hydraulic disc brakes with 203 mm rotors
  • Extras: 3 body sizes (M, L, XL), colour LCD show, aspect stand, Maxxis 27.5*2.8″ REKON+ TLR tires

Frey AM1000 electric mountain bike

Using the dragon

Regardless of providing as much as 1.5kW of peak energy, the AM1000 isn’t onerous to experience. That Bafang Ultra mid-drive motor is well-known for its energy. It may be a bit stunning at first for brand spanking new riders, however is shortly tamed as riders alter to the ability.

And whereas I used to be responsible of utilizing excessive energy typically, particularly whereas climbing mountain trails, riders with extra self-control than me can drop the ability stage down. You don’t at all times must experience it in grime bike mode – you may also deal with it like a easy electrical mountain bike.

I did most of my driving on trails, however did sometimes hit the streets as effectively. There I clocked a prime pace on flat floor of 59 km/h (37 mph), although I used to be on {a partially} depleted battery. E-bike speeds are voltage-dependent (when not software program restricted), and so a full battery will lead to the next prime pace. Others have hit sooner speeds than me, however 59 km/h is what I can personally vouch for.

Needless to say your native legal guidelines may not allow such speeds on public streets, and also you’ll need to take that into consideration. The bike may be simply restricted in each pace and energy, which can assist in the matter.

What’s all of that energy for?

Look, I’ll be the primary to say it. Nobody wants a 1.5kW motor. However dang, it positive is enjoyable!

The realm the place I loved it most was on robust hill climbs. Lots of the driving I did was on a downhill monitor, which suggests you need to pedal again uphill if there’s no chair carry. With 1.5kW of energy, I may both throttle or pedal-assist myself again up these large mountains with out tiring myself out an excessive amount of for the extreme downhill run I might expertise subsequent.

Different methods change into attainable too, corresponding to climbing flights of stairs. Once more, is it essential? After all not. However is it enjoyable? Hell yea!

Frey AM1000 electric mountain bike

What makes the FREY AM1000 completely different?

It’s not like that is my first rodeo. I’ve had the pleasure of driving plenty of really nice, really expensive electric mountain bikes previously.

The issues that drive up the worth of those bikes are normally high-quality building and high-quality elements. That’s why it’s not exceptional for premium electrical mountain bikes to exceed $6,000.

However the FREY AM1000 advantages from a small, devoted staff that builds round 5-10 bikes a day, spends nearly nothing on advertising and marketing, has low labor prices, and has native entry to the most important marketplace for premium e-bike elements on the planet. They’ve additionally designed their very own patented suspension system, that means they don’t should pay a license to anybody else to make use of it.

All of meaning which you could get a premium high quality electrical mountain bike with ridiculously massive 1.5kW motor and 1kWh battery for simply $3,120. There are alternatives to improve some elements, like shifting from a terrific RockShox YARI fork to an insane RockShox Lyric fork (a fork that by itself prices greater than two of the final three e-bikes now we have reviewed). However the bike already comes with premium stage elements, the very best brakes cash should purchase, and efficiency specs that may make a Haibike blush.

So what’s the catch?

Right here’s the rub. FREY isn’t fairly a mom-and-pop firm, however they’re shut. And being China-based, they don’t have any US distributors. They’re engaged on it, however worldwide they solely have a Swiss and UK seller to date.

That signifies that ordering could be very quaint, the place you contact the corporate via the website and commute with emails till you have got the bike designed the best way you want. Or you may also order via Alibaba, although many Westerners discover that course of to be unfamiliar and thus uncomfortable.

Then there’s delivery, which is killer. Like, “I hope you’re sitting down for this” type of killer. If you would like your bike shortly, delivery prices round $800 for air freight. In case you can wait a few months for the sluggish boat, sea delivery is round $500. FREY has also launched a free-shipping option, although it makes use of the ultra-slow boat and may take round 6 months – greater than most individuals need to wait.

So for those who’re an instant-gratification type of individual, ready on a FREY bike goes to be robust. However then once more, at half the price of its rivals, the wait may simply be price it.

I’ve lined a variety of e-bikes in my time, and I’ve hardly ever seen bikes with this a lot worth on the premium finish of the spectrum. Clearly, most riders aren’t going to start out out with a premium electrical mountain bike, however for these which might be able to spend money on the next high quality and extra rugged bike, the AM1000 shocked me with its worth.

There’s nearly nothing I can complain about, moreover the snail-paced ordering and delivery course of. I’d like to see a dropper put up on the saddle, that’s one factor its lacking. However apart from that, it’s only a loopy quick, highly effective, and high-quality machine that introduced a smile to my face whether or not I used to be flying up or down the mountain.

Fast observe about accountable driving

Clearly e-bikes of this energy stage aren’t “regular” by any stretch of the phrase.

Some would even say they’re harmful. I’d are inclined to agree, relying on how the bike is used.

Using at excessive speeds like this on crowded trails or in bike lanes isn’t simply frowned upon – it shouldn’t be achieved. Interval.

With nice (e-bike) energy comes nice (e-bike) duty.

Please experience bikes like these in areas the place they’re a) authorized, b) not a hazard to others, and c) not a hazard to your self.

Meaning checking your native laws and path insurance policies, checking that you just’re driving in an space the place you aren’t a hazard to others, and likewise not driving previous your skills.

Let’s maintain e-bikes enjoyable and leisure by driving responsibly.

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