- Silicon Valley
Every now and then you need to go to Italy and ride bikes in the sunshine. Or, at least, I do. This time I persuaded the nice folks at Bianchi to lend me their new Manhattan city e-bike for the week, and I'm glad I did: it's a very nicely-specced fast urban bike that's fun to ride and built to...
First ride: Bianchi Manhattan £2,799.00
by Dave Atkinson and Vicki Pearson June 13, 2017
Verdict: Well specced, nimble and light city bike with a good motor
Bianchi's Manhattan range consists of four bikes: two different builds in two different frame designs. There's a standard diamond frame (the one being tested here) and a slightly lower step version that Bianchi call a Unisex frame. The down tube mounting of the battery limits the amount that they can drop the top tube, but it'll make it a bit easier to swing a leg over.
Shimano XT gearing is high quality and dependable stuff - The frame is nicely built with smoothed welds
Build-wise, both bikes are pretty high spec. This derailleur-geared version gets a Shimano XT 10-speed drivetrain, Shimano hydraulic brakes and decent-looking Tec Sport wheels. That little lot will set you back £2,799. There's also a hub-geared version using Shimano's excellent Alfine 8-speed unit, which is £200 more. Both bikes use the same alloy frame and fork, and both feature Shimano's STEPS city motor with a 400Wh down tube battery and the larger of the two LCD displays. With 50Nm of torque on hand Shimano's E6000 motor is well up to the task of hauling you up the hills, and we've found that the direct-drive nature of the motor means that it's a bit more pleasant to ride without power than its main competitor, the Bosch Active Line. That easy rolling is certainly helped here by the 37mm slick tires which also add a touch of comfort to what's a fairly stiff bike.