Of the big four brands here in Australia, Specialized and Scott have gone deep with e-mountain bikes, while Giant and Trek have played things a little more cautiously. This is our first time on a Trek e-bike and we've got their top-tier model, the Powerfly 7 FS, on test.
The not-so-minor details
Trek Powerfly FS 7
Builds on the bones of one of our fave trail bikes.
RockShox Recon fork is not up to scratch!
Hooley dooley, it looks like a fire truck. What’s the Trek Powerfly 7 FS about?
The Trek Powerfly FS is the e-bike e-quivalent of the Trek Fuel, in terms of suspension travel and intended usage. It runs 130mm travel at both ends, but rather than the 29″ wheels found on the Fuel, the Powerfly rolls on 27.5″ wheels with 2.8″ Schwalbe rubber. Plus sized rubber is pretty common in the e-bike world, giving you the grip to make the most of the power on tap.
While we’re starting to see more and more long-travel e-bikes, this one is intended as an all-round trail bike. Trek do have a more aggro version of the Powerfly too, the LT, but it’s not available in Australia yet. Insert face-palm and crying face emojis here.
What’s under the hood?
Bosch have been given the job of making you feel invincible on the climbs. The Performance CX Line 250W motor is a mountain bike specific unit with gobs of power and a 500 amH battery, which is nestled nicely in the down tube.
The Bosch system has an e-MTB specific drive mode too, which automatically alters the power output to suit your pedalling forces, rather than forcing you to toggle between power modes. We actually tested this mode out a few months ago on a Bosch e-bike demo day, read about it here.
We swapped the fork out. Sorry Trek.
The Powerfly 7FS comes with a basic RockShox Recon fork. Ermahgawd… We understand that a motor ain’t cheap, but this is still a $6500 bike, it should not come with a fork that is commonly found on a $1200 hardtail.
We didn’t even leave the workshop till we’d swapped the Recon out for something more appropriate, taking this opportunity to try out one of FOX’s new e-bike optimised numbers. These get a stiffer chassis than a conventional FOX 34 and a damper tune that was originally intended for the bigger hits of Enduro racing, which is what you really want with the extra weight and speed of an e-bike.
The Trek Fuel series is a long-standing favourite of ours, so we’re looking forward to seeing how it goes with a little bit of battery behind it! Stay tuned.