We think Trek got it spot on with their range of Powerfly e-bikes. Occupying a space between the gnarly Rail and hybrids like the Allant, Powerfly is a super-versatile ride that’s happy in all kinds of environments.
Many stores are struggling to get a reliable supply of bikes at the moment but we’re delighted to say we’ve just taken delivery of 30 Powerflys – or should that be Powerflies? – with sizes and specs across the board. So we thought we’d take an in-depth look at what makes this machine so great and who might want to own one.
Who’s it for?
As we said, Powerfly is a genuinely versatile bike that’s great on the commute, hitting the gravel, going cross country and on anything up to the more challenging trails, as a result of the medium travel suspension. It loves the downhill and you’ll love it when it comes to going back uphill, thanks to the meaty Bosch drive system that’s there to offer assistance when you want it. The motor is also great if you’re looking for adventures that last longer and take you further as it’s the latest, super-powerful Gen 4 Bosch motor with a choice of 500Wh or 625Wh battery, depending on model.
We’re finding that Powerfly is equally popular with male and female riders, with variations on the core spec that mean it can be tailored to all kinds of riding styles and terrain. We think Powerfly is a great pick if your choice of ride is pretty varied and you want a single bike that’s comfortable just about anywhere. As e-mountain bike alternatives to Powerfly, if you’re all about the red and black routes, we’d suggest Trek Rail and for cross country race pace speed, Trek E-Caliber is the one for you.
How much does Trek Powerfly cost?
The range goes from £3,150 for the Powerfly 4 to £6,600 for the Powerfly FS 9 Equipped.
What are the specs?
We’ll look in detail at the Powerfly 5 (pictured above), which is at the middle of the range but still packed with awesome components.
The frame is Alpha Platinum Aluminium with Removable Integrated Battery (RIB), tapered head tube and Control Freak internal routing. For sizes small to extra large, the fork features RockShox Recon Silver RL with Motion Control damper and 120 mm travel. The brakes are Shimano MT420 4-piston hydraulic disc.
Wheels are tubeless-ready Bontrager Kovee Comp 23s with Bontrager XR3 comp tyres. These are 27.5-inch x 2.35 on the extra small and small, and 29-inch x 2.30 on medium to extra large. The SRAM drivetrain features 12-speed SX Eagle shifter, NX Eagle rear derailleur and PG-1210 Eagle 12-speed cassette.
The motor is a Bosch Performance CX 250 Watt with 15.5 mph max assist, while the battery is a Bosch Powertube 625 and a Bosch Purion controller. Bosch estimates this is good for 100km on a full charge when riding an average of 22km/h on tour mode, so that’s perfect for day-long excursions.
Full suspension options are available throughout the range, aimed at those who are doing more trail riding than gentler rides like commuting. There’s also some great practical touches, such as the “Equipped” models, with mudguards, front and rear lights, and a rear rack that’s perfect for stowing your laptop on the way to work or a picnic if you’re heading out for an all-day adventure.
A rider’s verdict
Tanita Cox received her Powerfly in August, a 600-mile round trip for our man Dave, who delivered it to her in Poole, Dorset, along with a Trek Rail for her brother, David (also pictured above) . But she only had chance to ride it round the block before she caught COVID and then developed long COVID which kept her off her bike for several weeks. She told us what she thinks of her new machine and how having an e-bike made it easier for her to get back on two wheels after illness.
I wanted to go for long rides in the countryside because we have the New Forest and the Jurassic Coast which is really up and down so you have to have elite fitness if you want to do that without any assistance. Also, I have asthma and on my old bike I used to have asthma attacks.
When we went into lockdown there was a high pollen count. Cycling, asthma and a high pollen count are a bad combination. I had the bike dropped off and I got COVID a week later, and then I got long COVID.
Getting long COVID was really bad. I couldn’t do much training. I got out of breath really easily. I couldn’t get deep enough breaths and when I was exercising I wanted to go back to bed because my muscles were so fatigued. I don’t think I’d have got back into it without having an e-bike.
What I love is that sometimes you want a hard cycle and sometimes you want to take it a bit easier, and I can do both with my Powerfly. I wanted to commute to work on it eight miles away and Dorset is very hilly so it’s quite hard going.
It’s taken a while to learn how good it actually is. I didn’t realise how many gears there are and you have a number of settings for the power. It definitely took some time to get user to it but when I did I realised there was so much more to it.
It’s very much the same as riding a normal bike – I ride a lot without the power on – but you can choose to have the extra boost if you want to. It’s definitely worth getting because you can do so much more and go faster and just really enjoy it, even on days when you don’t really feel like making the effort.
I love it. It’s a brilliant asset to have. It just adds more joy to cycling, no doubt. A new level of fun!
Our team’s verdict
Alex says, “A super versatile model in any variant, full suspension or hardtail. Amazing top-spec Bosch Performance CX line motor with neat and tidy RIB battery system. Enough models to cater for every level of rider from pootling about on the road to trekking over the moors and everywhere in between!”
If you’re looking for one bike that’s great on just about any ride, Trek Powerfly is a fantastic choice, with lots of variations across the range. Come along to our store in Pickering and try Powerfly for yourself in our spacious car park. Our friendly and knowledgeable team are also here to give you advice and answer your questions.