Downhill Bike Vs E Bike Race | Which Is Faster?
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Downhill Bike Vs E Bike Race | Which Is Faster?

October 30, 2019

– We are 10 miles from the
French border in Italy. Behind me, San Remo and the Mediterranean. But between here and there, is an iconic downhill
track called Due Muri. We’re here to ride an
e-bike, the motor off, versus a downhill bike. So here’s the two bikes. Haibike 180, Enduro 10. And the Canyon Sender. (upbeat music) At the top level of downhill there’s been an obsession with weight
loss for many years, be it in carbon fibre or aluminium. If you could remember
that Mondraker brought 32 pound downhill bike in
aluminium, 10 years ago. But still, in the pits, if
you haven’t got a carbon 32 pound bike, you’ve got no chance. So the theory goes. But then, 2010, Gee Atherton
won the World Cup Series on a 42 pound common style. That’s not so long ago, really. Okay, so the e-bike we have is the Haibike XDURO Enduro 10, aluminium
chassis, aluminium wheels, 180 mo travel. So, there’s a lot of talk about e-bikes, that they’re really slow and sluggish, but I mean, of course, if
you’re on a flat pedaler shootout between a 20
pound cross country bike, and a 45 pound e-bike,
then that cross country bike’s gonna win every time. But what about on a super
tough downhill track? Let’s go and ride this. Now there is no doubt that
the challenge we’ve set these two bikes here in
San Remo is a proper one. This is a full on downhill track. You know, it’s worthy of World Cup status. And I think overall, I think
the track is definitely gonna benefit the downhill bike. Because of those big, big, hits, this big arm wrestle sections, you know, just like this one here. Bonkers. (upbeat music) So I think when you’re
in these kind of big extreme downhill sections,
you might need to think of your line choice a
bit more on the e-bike, they kind of mellow align. So yeah, really interesting. It’s places like this where you gotta be super careful of exit speed. (upbeat music) Overall, it’s a story of
profit and loss as you’re working down the hill. The e-bike’s gonna gain in some sections, the downhill in others. But remember, the e-bike is really heavy, so you’ve gotta be really super careful on your entry speed into the corners, because, for example, here’s
a kind of down section followed by a flat section,
so the story here is if you get it wrong on the
corner, you’re gonna be at a disadvantage on the
flat section on the e-bike. But remember, we’re riding
the e-bike with the motor off. (upbeat music) Whoa! Really really liked that track. Wow, it’s gonna be quite
challenging actually, I think the high speed, the
corners is just immense, so flowing, so, I think
my gut feeling is the downhill bike is gonna up
to handle a track like that, but you still got the
weight and the momentum of this e-bike, so I don’t
think it’s gonna be far off. It’s gonna be super close. But, what a treat, riding that. Amazing. (upbeat music) Woo! (laughing) Oh my God! Wow! Crikey. First impressions, there’s
a lot more kind of, lot more movement on the downhill bike compared to the e-bike. So, it’s quite difficult to adapt, ’cause you get locked in a sideways kinda skittering and stuff like that. At the same time, you can
definitely gap sections, quite, well, not easier
but in a different manner on this bike. Ah, wow. Not so sure about the open face
helmet on these both bikes. Should’ve been riding a
downhill helmet for sure. (upbeat music) Tell you what. I don’t feel like I can
bulldoze this bike like I can on the e-bike. Yeah, maybe it’s just a bit
of adaption coming into place. (upbeat music) Yeah, do you know what, I think on sections like that, big rocks, big arm wrestle sections, the longer wheel base
of the downhill bike, the bigger fork, all
contributes to a more stable, straight line ride to it. But do you know what? I think at the end of
this, whichever bike wins, who cares? I mean, this is great fun doing this. Amazing. (upbeat music) The corner exit speed in the downhill bike is gonna be gain intense every second, all the way down this track. It’s just gotta simple
lightweight little bike, really. (upbeat music) Oh, man, Jacko, can we stay here all week? That’s such good fun. Do you know what? Difference between two
bikes, ironically I think it’s exit speed on the downhill bike and pedalling that might give it the edge. Together with the straight line composure on the really big nasty stuff, kind of in the stability
the downhill bike gives you. But yeah, like I said, yeah,
can we come back to San Remo and spend two weeks here? – [Man] I’m down. – (laughing) Yes! (upbeat music) Wow. What a day. On a very difficult, very technical, very physical hill in San Remo, right? So what factors contribute
to the final result? Well, the rider, the track,
the weather conditions, the geometry, the suspension
design, the tyres, there’s so many things
that affect a timed run. But what we’re saying here
is just this one rider, one track, one day of the year. We’re not making any big
sweeping generalisations whether e-bike versus downhill bike, one is faster than the other, it’s just. It’s just a bit of fun. – What about the feel of it? Any observations from those rides? – Yeah, I think the
Haibike, it had good grip, good stability, I think
everything except on the super high speed stuff,
it was really good. I could still gap things,
like we were talking, it’s just different timing on the e-bike. – So what about feeling versus fact? I know, in my experience,
29ers for example, they don’t feel fast, but they work. – Yeah, totally. You know, you get on the Sender and it felt lightning quick, immediately. Although a little bit nervy. It felt like there was
a bit more deflection, you need to be a little bit more precise, especially amongst the rocks. Exit speed on the corners was bonkers. It was like, oh my God, I thought this was gonna be tenths
of a second every corner, that thing is about 82
corners on that track. But, do you know what, it’s quite funny, was that I found there was
more arm fatigue in the Sender, and more leg fatigue in the Haibike. But I think that was probably because I should really be riding an XL Haibike, but you know, maybe my suspension set wasn’t brilliant in the Haibike. – But then, I would think
the weight of the e-bike is gonna play through,
and I think you’ll be feeling less fatigued,
certainly in your arms. But that’s not scientific by any means, that’s just what I feel I
think from those two bikes. But, let’s hit you with
the results, Steve. – Okay, this is, yeah, I’m feeling, I’m definitely feeling kinda,
I’m feeling Sender here. – Well. – Definitely feeling Sender, kind of. – Three minutes 35 on the e-bike. So, it’s a medium length track. – Yeah, yeah. – Three minutes 37 on the
Canyon Sender downhill bike. – Really? Are you serious? – It’s only two seconds,
that’s not a huge amount. – No. – In a downhill race,
yes, that’s win or lose, but on the case of one person, two runs, that’s very very close. – Do you know, I mean, I’m surprised there because you know, you got a smaller fork on the Haibike, you got some
big big hits on that track, and yeah, I guess it comes back again to feeling versus fact. I’m pretty surprised about that. – You’re not using the
motor at all on that trail, you’re above the pedal
assist speed for most of it, on the South side, it’s not down. – I think exactly, done. I had the motor off. – That was it. I didn’t know that. You’ve shocked me with this news. – Sorry. But do you know what? I think the bottom line
Don, is I absolutely loved riding that Canyon Sender
down that downhill track, every second of the day. But I think I loved riding the Haibike just a little bit more. – [Don] Well, two great bikes, of course. But I definitely think, you
get to the bottom of the run, you’re gonna turn around your e-bike and get straight back up the hill, you don’t have to wait for an uplift. – Yeah, totally, and another thing as well is that most people won’t
be putting their life on the line–
– Yeah, absolutely. – Doing downhill runs on their bike. But at least they can be
happy in the knowledge that riding an e-bike, it’s not gonna be disadvantaging them. – Yeah, absolutely. – So there you go. There’s our e-bike versus downhill bike. So like I said, we’re not
making sweeping generalisations, just a bit of fun, and who
cares about the results, really. – Well let’s do some more of these, we’ll do some more versus videos, leave us your suggestions
in the comments down below. – Yeah, and give us thumbs up, and don’t forget to subscribe. – Hit over there for
how to climb an e-bike, and over here for the EMBN show.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. Suggestion. Uphill climb with pedal power meters fitted – e vs analogue, rider outputs same human power on each for the same time. How much further does the e travel?

  2. I'm curious how much the camera distorts our impression of that trail. From my comfy chair in my living room that looks like what we would consider a good XC route here in SW British Columbia. I'm pretty sure the crew chose that section for the sight lines as much as anything else. My wife and I often comment as we watch the various GMBN type videos that it must be nice to have so many trails that you can see 150 meters ahead.

  3. bonjour , je sais pas lequel acheter , Expert ou Kenevo , 180mm contre équipement plus haut de gamme … que faire , help

  4. Why is he measuring how heavy they are in pounds?? Every bike and bike review outlet on the planet is measures in metric, including gmbn??


  6. I can't understand how a really heavy bike ebike can be faster than a really high end DH bike?

    A DH bike is the result of years of R&D to to get the point they are at now. They are meant to be the fastest thing from A to B on a DH track…

    If the ebike is faster without even using the assist, then DH bike designers need a kick in the arse!

  7. It's no surprise to me, I ride Enduro dirt bikes around France on the same sort of paths, when I get on a MTB, the LACK of weight is the biggest problem for me, my KDX weighs 100KG and just rolls over that stuff with ease.
    I've built my self an ebike and I've not even tried to make it light, it's a tank at around 60lb, feel so much more confident riding it than my mates superlight downhill bike.

  8. I just reached the point in this vid where he said the power is off? So this is a test between a downhill bike and essentially an endure bike on a downhill coarse. This video doesn't make sense. What are we actually comparing. This isn't an E bike if the power is off lool. I already know the downhill bike will be faster, it really is just down to the rider to see by how much, I'm not seeing the point of this video…….ok just finished the video and he was slower on the downhill bike on the downhill coarse. This just says he slower on a downhill bike and more confident on an enduro. Click bait title is your answer.
    This video would make a whole lot more sense if it was the 'Ebike' vs endruo bike on the downhill coarse, Same geometry….which is faster downhill for you weekend punter. That would make more sense.

  9. I deal with just the facts…and they are these..I have been riding Mountain Bikes for 20 years plus with a preference for Specialized S Works..I tried an ebike for the first time 18 months ago and I have never looked back and also never had as much fun I am out longer I can do climbs I would never take on without smoke blowing out of where it shouldn't .

    If the purpose of bikes is to keep you fit take on challenges and have fun then get an ebike and ignore these "its cheating morons" who I have to tell you they dont know what they are talking about..My Haibike all mtn 9 is my best friend keeps me fit and puts a smile permanently planted on my face whilst i am riding it….I love it.

  10. But shuttling/Tailgating, truck dropping and throwing your bike on a gondola/chairlift is perfectly cool and fine.STFU!

  11. Whoa, Steve has serious shredding skills!! But you should've really used a full face helmet on that track… 😉

  12. Haven't seen all the video yet but have noticed you will mention the price of a spare battery or other bits but never the price of the bike ,, un yet that's what this channel is all about e bikes but no current uk price ,,, guess people will be shocked when they find out as much as a very good second hand car. ,, is the price of one of these e bikes ,,,, the biggest negative bit THE PRICE ….

  13. Hi great video. I wonder if the ebike makes you a better rider? I mean riding heavier ebike pushes you to be more active and eventually you will gain more skills to move bike around. What do you think about that?

  14. Pull up did this guy not say the motor was turned off on the ebike so what study really was this if that's the fact

  15. My guess is that the time result is because Steve is used to riding ebikes so he is more at home on an ebike than a DH bike. Get a down hill rider to do the same test and possibly get the opposite result?

  16. I’m loving your channel guys, and this video was a key reason for my purchase of a Levo. I’m absolutely loving it, and it’s great to see that you’ve Still Got It, Steve!

  17. This was kind of a dumb test. We are going to compare a full suspension bike to a non suspension bike, but were going to lock out the suspension. The advantage of an ebike is the power assist. If you take away the advantage, the bike will be heavier and harder to pedal. Yea, we know that Captain Obvious. There is really no comparison. The designers of ebikes make compromises and sacrifices to put a motor it to give the bike the advantage of pedal power assist up hill while trying to minimize the disadvantage to weight. Lets take a pro level road bike on a down hill and compare it to a corvette car and turn the motor off and compare handling characteristics. Dumb.. You said.. " the motor was off so that we could focus more on the dynamic ride characteristics of the two bikes and get a feel for such things as fatigue, grip, weight distribution etc. " did anyone with a brain think that the ebike would win in any category? The answer is no. Lets take 2 of the same model downhill bikes and on one take a gym bar bell weight and weld it to it, put some resistance in the crank and see which handles better. Again dumb. Would anyone with a brain buy an ebike to ride to turn the motor off and never use it, or to ride it on downhills without power?. No. If you would have made one more run with the motor available, you could at least commented on whether having the motor helped with either speed or fatigue on the down hill and added anything to the down hill experience and forget it would help you pedal back up for a second run. What did we learn, the ebike with no power was heavier and did not handle as well… DUH. Normally I love the vids and the effort put into them. This one was a fail and we learned nothing we didn't already know… A job for Captain Obvious.

  18. I just wanted to say Steve that this channel inspired me to set a goal last year of getting a new E mountain bike. Even though I recently just spent a lot of money on 2 new mountain bikes a new E bike was never intended in my future. But you guys have just inspired me to get an e bike so much that I had to go out and get one. I’ve had to work many very hard hours over the last few months and had to give up a lot of things. I am proud to say the new bike is in and I get to pick it up tomorrow! Thanking you in advance for all the fun that I’m going to be having! And thanks so much for all the guidance that I have learned from you all and the clear picture you have presented of what I can or cannot expect from this new bicycle. I understand you guys work very hard on all of your biking channels and it looks like you guys have to make a lot of sacrifices in order to get your shows out to your audience. Just know that it is appreciated!

  19. Dh vs enduro ebile !?!?! Really. Why not the haibike DH 10.0 with same suspension travel and motor ON …. it’s like comparing oranges and apples . The minimum would have been similar travel lenght. The point of and ebike is the assistance … it’s like doing a run with 800 hp car leaving half of the cylinders off ????

  20. Sorry to hear ur still suffering with migranes! Should we put it down to you over sniggering at my expense in the mountain biking dept? 👎😘👍

  21. I am thinking it is time to repeat this challenge with Chris on his Kenevo v's the DH bike as they are a fair bit more close in suspension spec , might be the perfect excuse to go back and do it again with several different E bikes to see exactly what things make the most difference to a riders pace when shredding a down hill on an E bike .

  22. Great test but correct me if I’m wrong doesn’t gravity pull a heavier bike downhill faster than a lighter bike. So the e bike should be good but there saying weights a problem but it isn’t

  23. I think you really nailed it at 4:55…."who cares?" You're right, they're both amazing fun. The ebike will allow you to get back up for more fun more often more easily.

  24. Come on this bs.
    If it were true DH wc riders would ride enduro bike with weights strapped to them….
    Ebike marketing…

  25. The same e bike was 3 seconds faster than the mega enduro bike in a similar test, this clearly demonstrates DH bikes are not really any faster than enduro bikes and e bikes are faster across all disciplines despite not being specifically designed for the discipline it was racing in…..well I’m sold!

  26. As is usually the case manufacturers will inevitably strive to make e bikes lighter and I’m pretty sure the rhetoric will continue to be lighter is better despite the current vogue for heavier being better. At some point the e bike will loose the weight ‘advantage’ and become slower? Or maybe it will spin up faster to make even more time? If I add some weight to my enduro bike will it go faster than a DH bike?

  27. Lads great stuff. To your point about more “vs” videos, have you done one about pedals? What I’m thinking is: same bike, same rider, same day, same trail, but Clip ins vs flats? I’m wondering as I jump head long into ebikes whether I can get away with some good shoes and flats only. But I wouldn’t want to lose much climbing efficiency. Just a thought!

  28. The weight in the e-bike is real alright but you also have better energy conversion with the motor assist. We can not, of course, create new energy but only convert to another form. This video encourages you of course of considering e-bike for the future possibly a market for the older senior type of riders in the future.

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