- A folding fat tire electric bike with paint-matched aluminum alloy fenders, the bike is available in many beautiful colors and comes with a rear rack, integrated backlight, and a front suspension fork
- Full sized USB type A charging ports on the display panel and battery pack allow you to charge or maintain portable electronics while riding or stopping, 48v battery offers great power and efficiency
- Thanks to welded supports and cast alloy wheels, the frame feels stiffer and sturdy, 4” fat tires, an extra thick Selle Royal saddle, and locking ergonomic grips smooth out the ride, wide 5-30psi range on the tires for many terrain types
- Folding joint is near where knees rotate when pedaling, no retention system included to keep the bike from unfolding, very basic 7-speed drivetrain with large thumb shifters vs. triggers
To run the forums, host the website, and travel, I charge a universal service fee for my reviews. This review was sponsored by E-Lux. My goal is to be transparent and unbiased, this video and written review are not meant to be an endorsement of E-Lux products.
I had a chance to check out the new Sierra Sport, an upgraded version of the E-Lux Sierra that has a lot of the same features with a few upgrades. If you read my review on the regular Sierra, you may see some parallel information, but I will call out the changes as we move along. The E-Lux Sierra Sport is a folding fat bike with all the fixins… With paint matched aluminum alloy fenders, an integrated backlight, and rear rack with pannier hangers, the Sierra is feature rich. It will keep you dry and clean, haul your gear comfortably, and keep you relatively comfortable. Fat tire bicycles tend to be stable and less jarring than traditional bikes because of the increased air volume in a 4″ tire verses a 2″ tire you see in many folding bikes. They are wide and can be set to a wide range of pressure options, from 5-30psi in this case. The lowest pressure setting is optimal for snow, soft dirt or mulch forested terrain, or even sand. I have tested ebikes similar to this one on California and Mexican beaches, and the results were fantastic. Folding electric bikes typically have smaller tires, 20″ diameter in this case, which means lower air volume and a higher attack angle. They aren’t as comfortable as full sized tires but tend to weigh less and take up much less space for portability. E-Lux opted for nicer Kenda Krusade KS tires, with big grippy knobs, but the rims aren’t punched out (which would reduce weight slightly). These tires have puncture protection, and I love these upgraded wheels here. The wheels on the Sierra Sport are cast alloy, so you get a wheel that never needs to be re-spoked, can handle more weight, is more sturdy and stable, and even salt water doesn’t corrode it! Going back to the tire for a moment, E-Lux also offers a Vee Speedster tire. This is a fat tire that is less knobby and more efficient… these are great on paved road and even have a sticky compound to get great grip. The bike looks and works great these tires and it is this kind of attention to detail that really pays off. Notice the black seat post, stem, handlebar, and racks. The kickstand is positioned out of the way, towards the back of the bike, so it won’t get kicked while pedaling or cause pedal lock if left down. The chainring has a plastic guide built on, which reduces snags and marks on pants when pedaling while simultaneously preventing chain drops on rough terrain. The Sierra Sport only comes in one frame size, but the seat post and handlebars offer adjustable height. Don’t go too high on the stem, because it can stretch the cables a bit when you turn. Anyway, another big upgrade here on the Sport is the front suspension. This is an RST Guide spring fork with about 63mm of travel and has adjustments for both lockout and preload adjust. This makes for a super comfortable ride, however, it does bring the weight up just a bit. The bike is now 73.3lbs, so it is a tad on the heavier side for a folding bike. I guess that would be the tradeoff here, you have something really sturdy with fat tires and extra welding tubing for frame support, but makes the compact bike a bit heavier. Make sure to remove the battery or seat post when folding to save on weight when carting it around. Most people know by now that here at EBR, we love bottle cage bosses. The Sierra Sport does not have them, but lucky for us, they did design a platform section behind the seat post that fits and holds a water bottle perfectly! I would call it a frame integrated bottle platform, very cool :)
Driving the bike is a 500-900 watt planetary geared hub motor from Bafang. It’s specifically designed for fat bike rims, which tend to be wider and in this case, cast into the wheel itself. For offering so much power, the hub motor isn’t especially large or heavy. It hides nicely between the basic 7-speed cassette on the right and large 180mm disc brake rotor on the left. Powerful brakes are a good thing to have when your ebike weighs this much and can top 20mph. Both brake rotors are 180mm vs. many competing products that slip by with 160mm. These are mechanical disc brakes vs. hydraulic, so the cables will stretch and could get gunked up with sand and water over time. Both brake levers have motor inhibitors, to cut power to the drive system instantly when pulled, and the left lever has a really nice integrated bell… that I love. Activating the motor is a 12-magnet cadence sensor that’s sealed in a compact unit, mounted to the left side of the bottom bracket. Most older products, and some cheaper current generation products, use a larger disc with visible magnets that can get bumped around and gunked up. For a fat bike like this, which might be driven in snow, sand, and mud, it’s nice to see a sealed sensor. You also get a variable speed trigger throttle that can be activated in any level of assist, 0-5, from standstill. It’s a wonderful tool for those difficult starts in soft terrain or when you have to get off and walk the bike up a steep or rocky section of trail. Basically, the bike can pull itself through difficult patches and help you to balance while pushing.
Powering this bike is a 48 volt 10.5 amp hour lithium-ion battery pack containing either Panasonic or Samsung cells. The total capacity, 504 watt hours, is slightly above average for this generation of electric bikes and above average for most folding ebikes I’ve reviewed. What really sets it apart however, is that the pack is completely enclosed in the main section of frame. This adds protection, improves balance with the 5.5lbs of weight low and center on the frame, and looks good. The battery powers the backlit LCD display, the motor, the integrated rear light (which only has one LED and doesn’t use too much energy), and two full sized USB charging ports. One port is built into the left side of the battery pack itself, allowing you to use the pack as a portable power bank for picnics, camping, etc. and the other port is built into the base of the control pad, near the left grip. This charging port is useful for maintaining a smartphone for use with GPS, charging a headlight (since the bike only comes with a backlight), or powering a set of bike speakers. Very cool! For those who weigh more, are planning to ride through soft difficult terrain, climb frequently, or just rely on the zip and speed offered by the throttle, this battery pack is a good solution. It’s neat that you can charge the pack on or off the frame, that the USB port and physical on/off switch is reachable through the rubber cover that’s built into the frame, and that the charger is so light and portable. I’ve been reviewing E-Lux products since 2015 and heard great things about the company from their dealers and directly from their employees. It sounds like the lead engineer used to work at Pedego, and the company offers a comprehensive year long warranty with local dealer and direct sales support through their website. My buddy Sam, who owns the Electric Bicycle Center in Fullerton, CA told me that he appreciates that E-Lux is local and trusts the brand.
Operating the Sierra Sport takes a couple of steps, and has a few advanced features compared to most other folding products I’ve reviewed. You can begin by charging the battery, mounting and locking it in place in the downtube, then clicking the on/off toggle switch. Now, the LCD display panel is ready to be switched on, just hold the power button there for a couple of seconds and you will see it blink to life. This display is not removable, but can swivel a bit to reduce glare if you don’t over tighten the mount. You’ve got a current speed readout, 0-5 pedal assist level, battery charge level (with voltage readout), and timer. I appreciate how large the display itself is, and that you can tap the power button once to activate backlighting. This is useful for night rides, and it also activates the integrated backlight. The four buttons on the display are positioned within reach of the left grip and reach over the brake lever mount perfectly, so you aren’t really having to stretch or get distracted looking down. The + and – buttons are the two lowest items, and they have a physical rise that can be interpreted with touch as you get used to how the bike works. I personally love that the trigger throttle is active with full power, not mater which assist level is active. The upside is that you can always get quick help zipping across a street, getting through a tough section of trail or sand, and quickly catch up to friends or finish scaling a difficult hill without worrying about clicking extra buttons or changing gears. The smaller diameter of the wheels on this ebike provide a mechanical advantage to the motor, so it’s quite powerful and capable. When you add the 7 pedal gears, the bike can take on most terrain. Even at 23 mph, I was able to pedal comfortably and not feel left behind. The cassette range is a bit small at 14-28 tooth vs. 11-36 or 42 on nicer drivetrains, but it keeps the price down. Shifting gears is done independently of the drive system, so you won’t get mashing or strain like a mid-drive setup. The hub motor will work even if your chain breaks. To shift, you press up or in on the large thumb shifter, positioned near the right grip. This is not my favorite shifter, because it requires more dexterity and finger strength, but it works well for larger hands and gloved fingers, because the buttons are big. I’m guessing that E-Lux chose this shifter because it stays out of the way for the trigger throttle. Before moving on, I want to point out that you can change some trip stat readouts on this display by pressing the Set button and you can enter into the settings menu (to change units, adjust wheel size, and change power level) by holding Set. The three power options are Eco, Normal, and Power, which change how zippy the motor will feel. Eco will give you the best range, but accelerate slower. Also there is a walk mode and the USB charging on the display is activated my holding Set and + for a moment.
Wrapping up the Sierra Sport, I think it is a very clever, fun, and approachable folding bike. I love the compact off-road capabilities mixed with the convince, comfort, and upgrades from the regular Sierra. However, there are some tradeoffs here. I love that they included a battery integrated rear light, but sadly, there is no headlight present. Also, some folding bikes have bungie cords included, or a large magnet in the frame to keep a folded bike nice and tight when packed up. This bike has neither, so you may want to consider getting a bungie or bag or something to help keep it folded. And finally, the big folding joint is near where some peoples knees can rotate when pedaling… be careful not to get your knees bashed when pedaling aggressively, I have seen it happen before, so something to be aware of. The Sierra Sport is still a great bike and when you consider the power, capabilities, compact mechanical advantages, 1 year head to toe warranty, great customer service, and competitive price point, I think the bike holds up very well and would be a great companion should you consider it. I want to thank E-Lux for inviting me out to see the new lineup and look forward to reviewing the others.
As always, I welcome questions and feedback in the comment section below. Whether you own a previous version of the bike, have taken a test ride, or are brand new to the space, my goal is to provide an objective and honest resource. You can also join the E-Lux ebike bike forums and share your own photos, videos, and review updates to help others! Have fun out there, and ride safe :)
- Great utility here, the fat tires allow you to ride in many different environments, the chain guide should reduce drops on bumpy surfaces and keep your pant legs clean, and the included rear rack is sturdy and has pannier hangers… it’s cool that you can order a matching front rack too
- Uses an RST Guide spring fork with about 63mm of travel and has adjustments for both lockout and preload adjust. This makes for a super comfortable ride
- E-Lux now offers an optional Vee Speedster tire, this is a fat tire that is less knobby and more efficient… these are great on paved road and even have a sticky compound to get great grip
- The wheels on the Sierra Sport are cast alloy, so you get a wheel that never needs to be re-spoked, can handle more weight, is more sturdy and stable, and even salt water doesn’t corrode it
- The display panel has a full sized USB type A port built into the base so you could power an aftermarket headlight, or charge your smartphone for music or GPS… the battery pack also has a USB port that could be used while riding or if you take the battery off for camping or a picnic, it’s great to have both of these options to tap into the high capacity battery
- I really liked the wide, paint-matched, aluminum alloy fenders that come with this ebike, they look good and will keep you from getting dirty and wet
- The kickstand offers some adjustability for length and is positioned far out of the way from the bottom bracket and left crank arm, E-Lux chose very well here
- The ergonomic grips, slightly thicker saddle, and large 4″ wide tires offer a good deal of comfort here, sometimes smaller folding bikes don’t feel as good because of the low air volume in the tires and higher attack angle of the smaller wheel size but this one felt great
- Excellent motor and battery integration here (both technically and visually), the battery is completely hidden in the downtube which offers protection and looks great
- Good battery power and size for a folding ebike, the roughly 500 watt hour pack is wired into a 48v system for more zip and is positioned low and center on the frame for optimal balance, it would be nice if the included charger were a bit faster than 2amps, but this is fairly typical of value priced products
- For $1,995, I feel that this electric bicycle offers a lot of style, comfort, and performance, I was amazed that it came with so many accessories!
- The Kenda Krusade Sport tires used here are pretty nice and should last longer than Chao Yang or other off-brand products, you can lower the pressure all the way down to 5psi and ride this in sand or semi-packed snow, having a trigger throttle makes it much easier to get started in soft terrain vs. only pedal assist
- The Sierra Sport folding fat bike only comes in one frame size, but the 350mm long seat post and telescoping height stem allow it to fit a wide range of body types, I’d call the frame itself a mid-step vs. low step
- Excellent stopping power here, the larger 180mm mechanical disc brakes provide a huge mechanical advantage over the smaller 20″ wheel size, mechanical can get gunked up with water, sand, dust etc. over time vs. hydraulic but cost less and are easier to service for most end users… I appreciate the motor inhibitors built in to both levers and the sturdy integrated bell on the left brake lever housing
- E-Lux opted for a nicer sealed cadence sensor at the bottom bracket, it contains 12 magnets and responds pretty quickly and naturally (though not as much as a torque sensor or multi-sensor), it’s nice that both brakes also have motor inhibitors to override
- The on demand throttle is a bit of a double edge sword, since the throttle is always live, even at pedal assist level 0, so do be aware not to bump or jostle it when the bike is turned on
- The display is still great, but it is not like some of the fancy new ones out there, notably, no battery percentage level, so you have to guess in 20% increments how much battery you have left, could be bad on the last tick since it could be 1%-20% left to get you home
- I love that they included a battery integrated rear light, but sadly, there is no headlight present, this may have been done to keep cost down or because folding could get a headlight smashed, so I guess it makes sense here
- Some folding bikes have bungie cords included, or a large magnet in the frame to keep a folded bike nice and tight when packed up, this bike has neither so you may want to consider getting a bungie or bag or something to help keep it folded
- The big folding joint is near where some peoples knees can rotate when pedaling, be careful not to get your knees bashed when pedaling aggressively
- Official Site: https://www.eluxbikes.com/