Specialized Turbo Levo FSR 6Fattie or BULLS E-STREAM EVO 45 FS?

Given my situation, which bike would you choose? (Please read before choosing!)


  • Total voters
    5
  • Poll closed .

Devon

New Member
I'm about 5'2" and 95lbs, skinny and in fair shape, but by no means am I athletic. Furthermore, I have about a 60 deg scoliosis in my lower back (hence the desire for a full suspension), a restricted airway that severely limits my breathing abilities, and live in a city with a lot of hills (reason for wanting an ebike).

That said, riding a normal bike around here is literally impossible as I'd be out of breath long before getting up a single hill - and without going into detail, just know that my breathing isn't something that will improve over time. So, given the option of a Specialized Turbo Levo FSR 6Fattie or BULLS E-STREAM EVO 45 FS, any suggestions as to which I should go with?

The Specialized bike has a nice mobile app and IS available locally from a bike shop, but is only 20mph top speed with a 250w custom motor.

Whereas the BULLS bike DOES NOT have a mobile app (has a small screen/controller) and IS NOT available locally (so servicing it would cost extra) but has a 350W Brose motor with 90Nm of torque and assists up to 28mph.

Which would you choose if in my position and why? Which would be better at climbing a hill (mainly concerned about paved roads, not planning to off-road)?
 

bob armani

Well-Known Member
Hi Devon-
That is a hard call. Both bikes are have great components are very well built. The price points are near the same, so I think I would go with the Levo due to better local support for any unforeseen issues with bike functionality. The Brose motor may peak out at 550 watts on both bikes, but I think are very comparable.
Either bike will work for you IMHO. I would test drive both before making a final decision to see where your comfort level is with each bike. I also would see if you need any tweaking for comfort in the stem height, reach and stand over height. This is my best guess. Hope this helps.
BTW-I am not an expert under any means, just my opinion! o_O
 

Robie

Active Member
Of those two I would opt for the Bulls . I am kinda hands on though. If you need support then the pedelum would swing Turbo way. I have a Bulls FS mtb and the thing is superb. Just rode some of Colorado's beautiful trails with my Bulls, but that was off road, excuse me back to your inquiry, Being 5.2 you do not want to big of a frame. Get someone that knows about this if help is needed. And get some good street tires on it when you order make your decision. Great bikes to choose from.
 

Devon

New Member
@Rincon, mainly because it met most of my other requirements and is available locally. Also, I suppose they can also help soften the ride.

Honestly, I don't care for the fat tires but I'm not going to ignore a bike that otherwise seems like a good fit because of them either.

Does the app not allow you to change the assist level while riding? Figured I could just mount my phone and use it as a screen...
 

Scott Adams

Active Member
The turbo levo assist levels can be changed from the handlebars using this $89 Garmin controller sold by Chris Nolte at Propel-

http://propelbikes.com/product/specialized-levo-ebike-garmin-remote/

The fattie tires do make for an even softer ride, even on city streets, which have plenty of uneven pavement and potholes. They also pull a little more energy from your legs and/or the battery per mile.

Specialized sells a non-fattie version of the turbo levo which has niner wheels, but only in Europe. Would be nice to take it on a test ride, it has been mentioned on e-mountainbike magazine's site. It looks sleek.

http://ebike-mtb.com/en/exclusive-specialized-turbo-levo-fsr-st-comp-29-review/

It is frustrating that a USA company does not offer the full line for sale in the USA.

A larger battery would be of use for my riding style, but I haven't ridden a Bulls bike beyond a brief test ride.

The long, thin shape of the battery of the turbo levo would make carrying a second battery more awkward.

This will be the third year in a row for the current turbo levo models, considering that they first shipped in Europe in 2015. There will likely be an update next year with a somewhat smaller and more powerful Brose motor.
 

Devon

New Member
I also really like the quick adjust on the seat height on the Levo, but that alone isn't enough to make me buy it.

Levo
Pros
  • Sold locally (shop on the trail)
  • Nice mobile app with GPS, stats, and configurable presets
  • Bottle cage
  • About $600 cheaper
Cons
  • 20mph top speed
  • Smaller battery/range
  • 250w motor (may improve batt range)
  • Fat tires (not bad but not preferred)
Evo
Pros
  • Larger battery
  • 350w motor (may use battery faster)
  • 28mph top speed
  • Mounted controller/display
  • Built in headlight/taillight
Cons
  • About $600 more
  • Not available locally (1hr away)
  • No mobile app
  • No quick adjust on the seat
  • No stock bottle cage

Am I missing anything?
 

kathik

Member
I am also 5'2" but not skinny(120 lbs.) and probably much older than you. I gave up cycling five years ago due to lung capacity issues. This past year I have started to ride thanks to finding info on e-bikes. My first purchase was a Raleigh Detour 350w/28mph bike purchased at my local bicycle shop that I had been dealing with for years. I love this bike for road riding but thought I would like to try some easy mountain biking trails in my area. I purchased a Women's Turbo Levo FSR in December. The Levo is a beautiful bike! I have not ridden it as much as I wanted due to winter weather. My personal experience with the Levo is it's great in the woods at lower speeds, but I do not enjoy riding it on hard surface roads. I find myself having to work a lot harder at pedaling which in turn aggravates my breathing issues. Hopefully as I get in better shape this Spring this will be less of an issue. I do want to add that the Levo in a Women's small fits someone my size almost perfectly. As other people have already mentioned try riding many different bikes before you make a choice. I realize this is difficult because when you are petite in size it's hard to find demo's that will fit you. Good Luck with your purchase!
 

Devon

New Member
Not only is it difficult to find demo's my size but there is literally only 1 e-bike shop around here and they only have 1 trek and 1 specialized model e-bike that they keep in stock, those are the only 2 brands they deal with and if you want a model they don't have they have to order it which means no ability to demo them first. The second closest one that I know of is about an hour away and I'm not sure how their selection is, but I am planning to go up and check it out when the weather gets a bit warmer.

Also, one of the things I was looking for on the bike I chose was that the battery was integrated into the downtube. I live in West Virginia and we don't have any e-bike specific laws... I've spoken to a few that haven't had any issues with riding them, but I just feel better if I'm not drawing attention to myself with an obvious battery pack and stuff.
 

kathik

Member
I feel your pain! I live in an area where e-bikes are not popular. I collected lots of info online but when it came time to go shopping I found very little to try even venturing a few hours from home. I ordered my Levo from a mountain bike shop that carried lots of Specialized bikes but no electric ones. Mine was ordered sight unseen. The shop did order a couple more of them at the same time when they saw how interesting they were. Of course, they ordered mens in large sizes. There are no e-bike shops anywhere within 100+ miles of my location and I didn't want to buy online as I am not mechanically inclined and rely on seller to maintain my bike.
 

bob armani

Well-Known Member
@Rincon, mainly because it met most of my other requirements and is available locally. Also, I suppose they can also help soften the ride.

Honestly, I don't care for the fat tires but I'm not going to ignore a bike that otherwise seems like a good fit because of them either.

Does the app not allow you to change the assist level while riding? Figured I could just mount my phone and use it as a screen...
Devon-You can also purchase a handlebar remote for the Levo if you do not want to reach down and adjust the PAS while riding. I have attached the link beow for your reference. Hope this helps!

(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)
 

bob armani

Well-Known Member
The turbo levo assist levels can be changed from the handlebars using this $89 Garmin controller sold by Chris Nolte at Propel-

http://propelbikes.com/product/specialized-levo-ebike-garmin-remote/

The fattie tires do make for an even softer ride, even on city streets, which have plenty of uneven pavement and potholes. They also pull a little more energy from your legs and/or the battery per mile.

Specialized sells a non-fattie version of the turbo levo which has niner wheels, but only in Europe. Would be nice to take it on a test ride, it has been mentioned on e-mountainbike magazine's site. It looks sleek.

http://ebike-mtb.com/en/exclusive-specialized-turbo-levo-fsr-st-comp-29-review/

It is frustrating that a USA company does not offer the full line for sale in the USA.

A larger battery would be of use for my riding style, but I haven't ridden a Bulls bike beyond a brief test ride.

The long, thin shape of the battery of the turbo levo would make carrying a second battery more awkward.

This will be the third year in a row for the current turbo levo models, considering that they first shipped in Europe in 2015. There will likely be an update next year with a somewhat smaller and more powerful Brose motor.
Scott-I really love that variation of the Levo in the non-fattie tires. I think folks here in the USA would opt for that model as well IMHO. Hope it makes it over to the USA! I thought at one time, the Levo came in a 650b version with plus tires, however, I may be confusing it with another specialized model.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Just one point on the 29er wheels. It is possible to fit 29" wheels on the Levo. We've done this for other customers that wanted a wheel set for the trails and one for the street. The rolling diameter is effectively the same as a 27.5 plus.