Giant Full-E+ 1 Review

Giant Full E Plus 1 Electric Bike Review
Giant Full E Plus 1
Giant Full E Plus 1 Maestro Floating Pivot Rear Suspension
Giant Full E Plus 1 Energypak Battery 500 Wh
Giant Full E Plus 1 Custom Lcd Display Fluerescent Orange Grips
Giant Full E Plus 1 Rubberized Button Pad For Ebike Controls
Giant Full E Plus 1 Fox 34 Air Fork
Giant Full E Plus 1 Shimano M447 Hydraulic Disc Brake 203 Mm
Giant Full E Plus 1 Contact Saddle Connect Seatpost Dropper
Giant Full E Plus 1 Fox Float Dps Rear Suspension
Giant Full E Plus 1 Schwalbe Rocket Ron Tires
Giant Full E Plus 1 Shimano Deore Xt Shadow Plus 22 Speed Drivetrain
Giant Full E Plus 1 3 Amp Quick Charger With Metal End
Giant Full E Plus 1 Electric Bike Review
Giant Full E Plus 1
Giant Full E Plus 1 Maestro Floating Pivot Rear Suspension
Giant Full E Plus 1 Energypak Battery 500 Wh
Giant Full E Plus 1 Custom Lcd Display Fluerescent Orange Grips
Giant Full E Plus 1 Rubberized Button Pad For Ebike Controls
Giant Full E Plus 1 Fox 34 Air Fork
Giant Full E Plus 1 Shimano M447 Hydraulic Disc Brake 203 Mm
Giant Full E Plus 1 Contact Saddle Connect Seatpost Dropper
Giant Full E Plus 1 Fox Float Dps Rear Suspension
Giant Full E Plus 1 Schwalbe Rocket Ron Tires
Giant Full E Plus 1 Shimano Deore Xt Shadow Plus 22 Speed Drivetrain
Giant Full E Plus 1 3 Amp Quick Charger With Metal End

Summary

  • A full suspension electric mountain bike with capable hardware, excellent dealer support and impressive range, four frame sizes accommodate a range of riders, impressive pricepoint
  • 22-speed drivetrain with Shimano Deore XT Shadow Plus allows you to engage a clutch to tighten the chain and bolster shifting (important given the 80 Nm peak motor torque rating)
  • Custom battery pack design fits neatly into the downtube but can be charged on or off the frame, compact display and button pad were large enough to read and press but stayed out of the way
  • Stiff thru-axles with boost hubs (longer than normal) support 2.6" tires, tapered head tube and ebike specific suspension from Fox is stiff, Maestro suspension design improves stopping and reduces bob

Video Review

Introduction

Make:

Giant

Model:

Full-E+ 1

Price:

$5,300

Body Position:

Forward

Suggested Use:

Trail, Mountain

Electric Bike Class:

Pedal Assist (Class 1)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

2 Year Comprehensive, Lifetime Frame

Availability:

United States

Model Year:

2017

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

54.1 lbs (24.53 kg)

Battery Weight:

7.5 lbs (3.4 kg)

Motor Weight:

7.6 lbs (3.44 kg)

Frame Material:

ALUXX SL-Grade Aluminum

Frame Sizes:

17 in (43.18 cm)19 in (48.26 cm)21 in (53.34 cm)23 in (58.42 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

Large: 21" Seat Tube, 22.5" Reach, 32" Stand Over Height, 77" Length

Frame Types:

High-Step

Frame Colors:

Black with Red and Orange Accents, Black with Blue and Green Accents

Frame Fork Details:

Fox 34 Float Performance 27.5+ Air Suspension, 140 mm Travel, Lockout Adjust, Rebound Adjust, 2-Position Grip Damper, Boost 110 / 15 mm Thru-Axle with Quick Release

Frame Rear Details:

Fox Float Performance DPS Air Suspension, 140 mm Travel, Lockout Clicker (Firm, Soft, Open), Rebound Wheel (Fast/Slow), Extra Volume Sleeve, 185 / 52 mm Trunnion Mount, Custom Tuned, Boost 148 / 12 mm Thru Axle with Quick Release

Gearing Details:

22 Speed 2x11 Shimano Deore XT Shadow Plus Rear Derailleur, Shimano HG-M7000 11-40T Cassette, Shimano Deore Front Derailleur 28/38T Chainrings

Shifter Details:

Shimano SLX DYNASYS11 Triggers on Left and Right

Cranks:

Custom Forged, 170 mm Length, Boost 4-Bolt 104BCD Yamaha Specific Spider

Pedals:

Giant Alloy Platform with Pins

Headset:

Tapered 1-1/8" to 1-1/2"

Stem:

Giant Connect Alloy, 80 mm Length, 8° Angle, Three 5 mm Stacks, One 10 mm Stack

Handlebar:

Giant Connect Trail, Alloy Low-Rise, 31.8 Clamp Diameter, 29" (730 mm) Width

Brake Details:

Shimano M615 Hydraulic Disc with 203 Rotors, Shimano M615 Two-Finger Levers with Adjustable Reach

Grips:

Giant, Flat Rubber, Locking, Neon Orange

Saddle:

Giant Contact Neutral

Seat Post:

Giant Connect SL Switch Trail, Aluminum Alloy, Remote Height Adjust

Seat Post Length:

300 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

30.9 mm

Rims:

Giant GE35, 584 x 35 mm, Sleeve Joint Aluminum Alloy, Double Wall, 28 Hole Front, 32 Hole Rear, Reinforcement Eyelets

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 14G Front, 13G Rear, Black with Nipples

Tire Brand:

Schwalbe Rocket Ron, 27.5" x 2.55" (65-584)

Wheel Sizes:

27.5 in (69.85cm)

Tire Details:

Evolution, Tubeless Easy Snakeskin, Pace Star 3, 20 to 45 PSI

Tube Details:

Presta Valves

Accessories:

Heavy-Duty Rubber Slap Guard on Right Chainstay

Other:

Locking Removable Battery Pack, 1.8 lb 3 Amp Charger, KMC X.11e EcoProteQ Chain

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Giant SyncDrive Sport by Yamaha

Motor Type:

Mid-Mounted Geared Motor
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

250 watts

Motor Peak Output:

500 watts

Motor Torque:

80 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Giant EnergyPak

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

13.8 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

496.8 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

4.5 hours

Estimated Min Range:

30 miles (48 km)

Estimated Max Range:

55 miles (89 km)

Display Type:

Giant RideControl, Fixed, Backlit, Monochrome LCD

Readouts:

Battery Info-Graphic, Battery Percentage, Speed, Assist Level (Off, Eco, Normal, Power), Cadence (RPM), Trip Time, Trip Distance, Average Speed, Max Speed, Odometer, Range,

Display Accessories:

Independent Button Pad on Right (On/Off, Up, Down, Light, i, Walk Mode), 5 Volt Micro USB Port on Left Side of Display

Drive Mode:

Advanced Pedal Assist (Wheel Speed, Pedal Torque, Pedal Cadence, Maximum Cadence 100 RPM)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)


Written Review

The Giant Full-E+ 1 really impressed me. This is a full suspension electric bike from one of the “Big Three” including Giant, Trek and Specialized. They’ve got dealers all across the USA and have actually been producing electric bikes in Europe for a while so the technology is refined. At $5,300 this product is outfitted with high-end components that just a year back would have gone for upwards of $6.5k on models from Haibike, Specialized and other leaders in the space. For this money, you’re getting a Shimano Deore XT Shadow Plus drivetrain with 22 gear combinations. If you’re a fan of single chainring vs. double, you could convert the bike easily enough and I was even told by Anthony, a technician from Fullerton Bicycles, that they’re setting one of their customers up with electronic Di2 shifting. The great thing about most mid-drive electric bikes is that the human drivetrain components are the same as they would be for non-electric. You don’t have increased unsprung weight on the wheels and you can use quick release (as Giant has done here). This bike comes in two flavors with the Full-E+ 1 having a 2×11 and the Full-E+ 0 having a 1×8 and longer travel suspension. You’re getting an all-mountain enduro bike here with solid 140 mm travel on Fox air suspension overbuilt and custom tuned for electric. You’re getting a custom battery, display and button interface with Micro-USB charging port so you can power a headlight or charge your phone and run GPS or apps like Strava. You’re getting a pair of 203 mm hydraulic disc brakes from Shimano and a seat post dropper… everything you need to enjoy the ride to, up, across and down foothills and mountains. The two main drawbacks I see are weight, with the Giant Full-E+ 1 weighing in about 4 pounds heavier than competing models from Specialized, and a slightly limited RPM range up to 100 vs. 120 with some of the Bosch motor systems… and Yamaha is addressing this second point with a SyncDrive Pro to be released on some future models. And again, the comparative bikes only have a one-by setup with 10 or 11 gears and most have smaller battery packs at 460 vs. 500 watt hours here. I’ll say it again, the bike is really impressive in terms of specs, design and even price. Whether you’re looking to scout trails ahead of a race or in between sets, help with trail maintenance, nurse an injury or accommodate a serious condition like heart sensitivity… or just enjoy weekend rides keeping up with your friends, this and other mainstream electric mountain bikes are starting to take the space seriously in the US and being a Class 1 pedal assist only, the Full-E is permissible on the highest number of trails and should blend in nicely. It comes in two color schemes and has accents on the fork and battery pack for a complete look.

Driving the bike is a SyncDrive Sport motor produced by Yamaha. It offers 80 Newton meters of torque with 250 to 500 watts output. These motors respond very quickly because they measure three signals… rear wheel speed, pedal cadence and pedal torque. Yamaha markets its “zero cadence” feature which helps you “quickly” but in my experience you do need a tiny bit of cadence to get it going. Otherwise, any pressure put on the pedals would get the bike going and create a problem for many riders who rest one of their feet on the pedal at stops. Giant talks about four sensors measuring and then delivering proportional assist in a marketing video here with some cool renders. The motor is positioned low, integrated nicely into the seat post, downtube and rear suspension design so that it blends in with the bike. Some ebike motors seem to hang way down and reduce clearance. In this case, I think the larger chainrings help to hide it (especially compared to Bosch systems which have smaller sprockets which rotate ~2.5 times per crank arm revolution). Again, the drivetrain here is more “normal” and one consequence is that it spins down slower and changes how the motor works (forcing it to produce torque internally through gearing vs. externalizing it). Having weighed and compared both motors side by side (or at least a very similar Yamaha motor from a Haibike), I can say that the motor is slightly lighter than the Bosch Performance Line while the battery is heavier and they sort of even each other out.

Powering the bike and backlit display is a nearly 500 watt-hour battery pack with Lithium-ion cells. These are known for being light weight and long lasting. The pack can be charged on or off the frame and I love the rubber cover design put in place compared with most other e-mountain bikes. The charging port is easy to reach near the lower left side of the pack but if you’ve plugged it in, the left crank arm does collide on rotation and could bend the plug or tip the bike so be careful. The pack itself is very sleek and beautiful, color-matched decals help it blend with the frame. I like how the entire downtube has been enlarged to disguise it and that Giant has integrated several threaded holes along the bottom of the downtube for possible fender accessories and a bottle cage or other standard tool/pump/lock at the skid guard for the motor. I’m not sure I’d use this but am curious about how others might… chime in if you have feedback on what it’s for or how it works? So the pack looks great and locks securely to the frame (you don’t need the key to lock it). I was told by Anthony that his shop received an ebike with a loose battery interface and they discovered that the mount is adjustable. This is a great feature as many ebikes have tight batteries at first which begin to loosen up with riding and plastic scuffing as bumpy terrain is encountered. Most cannot be tightened and I have seen people use duct tape and other soft thin materials as a solution but Giant has engineered their bike to solve this. And it’s especially relevant for a mountain bike like the Full-E+ 1. I like the battery when it’s on the bike but being heavier, am wary of taking it off and carrying it around frequently because a single drop could result in a $900 replacement cost. Ebike batteries tend to be the most expensive single component on bikes as of today and while they eventually do run out on their own (after 1,000+ full cycles) it’s not something you want to speed up… and who wants to scratch those beautiful decals? So again, if you leave the pack on, this is a heavy bike which could overwhelm some car racks (when multiple bikes are onboard) or be difficult to carry up stairs. Before moving on, I want to praise the charger in use here. It’s compact, pretty light at ~1.8 lbs and offers higher 3 Amp current for faster charges. Expect ~5 hours for a full charge but note the first 50% can usually be had in ~2 because cells aren’t being balanced by the battery management system as actively and electricity can flow faster.

Operating the bike easy and intuitive. There’s actually an additional unused button on the control pad near the left grip for lights that is only relevant on the city models. Otherwise, a power button, info button, up and down arrow and walk button are all you need to worry about. And the interface is sleek but large enough to activate without mistakes, it also seemed well sealed against water with a rubberized coating. You turn the bike on by holding power and the display shows current speed on the right with a precise battery graphic above and battery percentage! I’m loving that, many other ebikes (including Bosch) just show five battery bars representing 20% steps… and that’s not precise enough when you’re going on long out-of-bounds rides. Of course, by pressing the “i” button along the bottom of the control pad you can cycle through odometer, trip distance, trip time and other stats including Range. I love this readout because it further prepares you to enjoy but also maximize your battery storage. As each of the three assist levels are cycled through using the up and down arrows, the range will be dynamically calculated to help you plan and prepare. I found that the Yamaha system offers some of the best range of all ebike systems I have tested and usually feel that it is quieter… but you can see me hitting higher RPM’s in the video with lower climbing gears and it definitely becomes audible then. So the display is great, it’s large enough to read without protruding too far up (which could expose it to damage in the event of a crash). I do wish it was removable like some other Yamaha displays from Haibike but I appreciate the Micro-USB port on the left as mentioned earlier. You get a lot to work with here but it’s all intuitive and there’s even a walk mode button along the top of the control pad so you don’t have to do all the work pushing this ~54 lb bike up steep inclines if you lose balance during a climb… the bike will help.

As mentioned earlier, this is a sweet bike at a solid price. It’s not just checking the boxes, I really feel like it goes above and beyond in many ways. Like the brakes, drivetrain and suspension. I guess it shouldn’t be too much to ask for in an electric bike to have frame size choices but you just don’t get that with cheaper products. I like to buy in person and take advantage of discounted tuneups and thorough fitting and Giant dealers can offer that. I also feel like both Giant and Yamaha are large enough that there will be replacement parts and batteries available years down the line. While I’m not sure I need a 22 speed for a 20 mph top-assisted electric bike, I’m glad both derailleurs are XT and perhaps that’s part of where the additional weight comes from. I’m excited for the new Pro motor that will put out higher RPM because this is how I prefer to ride (spinning fast) but most people have no problem with up to 100 and even prefer a more lumbering pace. It’s not that far off 120 RPM and I was able to shift purposefully without mashing due to the torque sensing feature of the motor controller. As with all ebikes, see if you can test ride this for yourself. Big thanks to Fullerton Bicycles and Giant for partnering with me on this review. You can learn more about the Maestro “floating point” suspension used on the Full-E here at Giant’s website. I don’t think we did it justice in the video, you should experience better braking, less bobbing and reduced bottoming-out with their technology. It’s a system developed for their high-end mountain bikes and now coming through on the ebikes as well.

Pros:

  • SOlid pricepoint, for $5,300 you’re getting some high-end components like the Shimano Deore XT Shadow Plus derailleur, a 22 speed drivetrain (most eMountain bikes have 1×10 or 11) and great hydraulic disc brakes froma leading company with trusted drive system from Yamaha
  • The battery charge is light, compact and puts out three amps vs. two on many other chargers… this extra current helps fill the battery pack faster
  • Giant designed their own battery, display and button pad for their ebikes and I was really impressed with how they turned out, the display is easy to read and I love that there is a 5 Volt Micro-USB port on the left side for charging a phone or other electronic device
  • You get Giant’s Maestro Suspension design that aims to isolate braking and improve pedaling efficiency, their website says it’s a full-spectrum design that can handle high frequency as well heavy-hits on downhill riding and Anthony told me this ebike is meant for all-mountain riding
  • Great pedals on this bike, I wouldn’t feel the need to swap them out right away because they’re large, stiff and offer plenty of traction
  • The rear derailleur is upgraded with the Shadow Plus one-way clutch mechanism designed to keep the chain tight reducing bouncing and breaking under pressure over rough terrain, you can unlock the clutch for easier shifts on less rigorous terrain
  • Since the motor measures pedal torque, you can shift smoothly by letting off a bit, there is no shift sensing technology but I’ve found that to be imperfect on Bosch and would advise to always reduce load when shifting on any mountain bike
  • Battery and motor weight are well positioned low and center on this electric bike, this improves handling and balance which is critical off-road
  • The suspension components are custom-made for ebikes, offering improved strength and tuning for the heavier frame and higher forces of riding
  • Thru-axles front and rear with longer hubs (Boost Technology) combine with the custom suspension and tapered head tube for a stiffer more responsive ride
  • I’ve become a huge fan of dropper seat posts, they make sense if you’re transitioning from trail to descent and like to hit rocks or take jumps, this post had an internally routed cable to keep the frame clean
  • Both wheels have 203 mm disc brake rotors! I’m used to only seeing the front at 203 mm and the rear at 180 mm, that means extra braking power and cooling (perfect for a heavier bike and more high-speed riding)
  • Both wheels offer quick release to make flat fixes quick and easy, also makes tuneups a breeze…
    the drivetrain is very similar to an unpowered bicycle with all of the wires and specialty hardware for e-assist hidden and out of the way
  • Dealers can adjust the battery mount interface to tighten it down if you hear any rattling, it’s more serviceable than a lot of other ebikes with one solid piece of hardware that can wear down and loosen up over time without any way to tighten it up
  • The battery can be charged on or off the bike and has a nice rubber cover at the charging port…
    many competing models have rubber caps that don’t seat well and can let dust or water in over time
  • Along the bottom portion of the downtube there are screws that look like you could mount a bottle cage or folding lock etc. but some of the higher screws are set too far apart… maybe they are for a fender adapter or something? In any case, it’s nice to have options
  • The display shows battery percentage instead of bars (usually just four or five bars) so it’s more precise and you also get dynamic range estimate with one of the menus (cycle through by pressing the top “information” button on the button pad)
  • Giant offers the Full-E+ 1 in four frame sizes so you can really dial it into your body type (height and leg length) and they even have two color options!
  • You can swap the double chainring out with a single and even change the drivetrain to electronic shifting if you want, I was impressed with how versatile this and many other mid-drive electric bicycle systems can be

Cons:

  • While the SyncDrive Sport a step up from the standard Yamaha mid-drive motors I test on a lot of urban electric bikes, it still caps out at 100 RPM vs. 120 on Bosch and some other mid-drives… it also limits power modes to three vs. for our five so if you like to spin at a high RPM and prefer finer increments this could leave you feeling limited at times, look for the SyncDrive Pro to get 110 to 120 RPM and five assist levels
  • I love how the battery looks (both the graphics and the form, how it fits into the frame) but there aren’t any handles to carry it with and it weighs two pounds more than the equivalent Bosch Powerpack 500 making it easier to drop… and damage
  • While you are getting full suspension and a large battery pack here, the bike weighs a bit more than its competition at ~54 lbs compared to the similarly specced Specialized Turbo Levo Comp at ~49 lbs
  • The display looks great and works well, it’s not as tall as some competing products from Bosch and Yamaha on Haibikes but it isn’t removable which could expose it to more weather or damage at the rack
  • Be extra careful not to trip on the cable or have the bike tip over if you’re charging the pack while mounted, the interface is solid and the plug-end is metal but it could collide with the left crank arm and cause damage (this is not especially unique to this ebike but some products use magnetic chargers that unclip easily to reduce this sort of hazard)

Resources:

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Comments (12) YouTube Comments

Jim Eder
3 years ago

Great review on Giant Full-E+1. Amazing Video of power tran. & suspension while operating bike . Like to know how you did that. Either way. Exceptional review with details that riders want to know prior to dropping 5K + !

  Reply
Court Rye
3 years ago

Thanks Jim! I’ve done my best to create a video setup that’s mobile but also stable and quiet. Lots of practice filming and riding as well ;) the products I use are:

Thanks again for your compliments and good luck with your own projects!

  Reply
Tom W
3 years ago

I briefly owned a 2017 Giant Full E+0, and my experience with the bike was not good. On my first ride the pedal threads on the crank arm failed catastrophically on a small drop, causing my brand new pedal to rip completely out of the drive side crank arm. I was very lucky to walk away uninjured, and I believe there are serious safety and honesty issues involved. I would encourage anyone with an interest to read this thread in the forums.

  Reply
Court Rye
3 years ago

Thanks for your feedback Tom, I’m sorry to hear about your issues and hope that this is isolated… it’s discouraging that the company wasn’t as responsive or clear about the product, based on what you shared, as they could have been.

  Reply
Hernan Elgueta
3 years ago

Hola amigos! quiciera saber si tienen envios a chile o algun centro de venta. El presio es de referencia? y cual es su valor en dolares. Gracias.

  Reply
Court Rye
3 years ago

Hola Hernan, no estoy seguro de si este producto está disponible en Chile. ¿Has visto alguna bicicleta eléctrica donde vives? Giant es una gran empresa, pero es posible que no se vendan en todos los países. Tal vez una tienda podría enviarte uno allí, pero no sé cuánto costaría.

  Reply
Greg
3 years ago

I just committed to purchase a Full-e+ 1 because I got what I think was a good deal on one for a new 2017. I was just about to purchase a Luna Cycle bike but was nervous about not being able to ride one before purchasing. Haha… I’m nervous now… hope I made the right choice. I pay for it on Tuesday but will probably leave it at the shop until spring.

  Reply
Court Rye
3 years ago

Cool, it sounds like you got a good deal Greg! I hope it works out well for you and welcome your feedback in the future. From what I have seen and heard, Giant dealers offer excellent service and warranty support. It’s one of the things that gets compromised a bit when purchasing online direct. You may save some money or get something unique, but kind of be on your own :/

  Reply
Greg
3 years ago

Thanks for the response Court. Love your reviews. I also bought a Cube Allroad 400 based on your review of that bike, for my girlfriend. It also had a lot of money off due to last years models. You didn’t love everything about that bike but you wrapped up the review on a positive note. Kudos….you have the best video reviews out there on ebikes.

Dan
1 year ago

Bought my 2017 Giant full e + 1 last December for a screaming deal and been riding at our local bike park every weekend since. This bike is awesome! I personalized it by upgrading the motor controller to Giant’s 5 level controller and switched out the 2by drivetrain for Sram’s Eagle 1 by 12. The xt 2by was excellent, i just prefer the the simplicity of the 1×12.

This bike is epic! Great handling in the technical single track climbs and shreds the double diamond descents. The Yamaha motor is very intuitive and the 500 watt battery packs more than enough to keep you energized for the day. With the combo of the motor, battery and drivetrain (even the xt 2by) the weight of the bike is a non-issue. I’ve read reviews about the noise of the motor and that too is a non issue for me. The motor is more than tolerably quiet enough. After five months of putting my Full e +1 through its paces, its five stars for me all day long.

  Reply
Court
1 year ago

Nice! I also prefer the 1x setup. So glad to hear that the Full-E+ is working well for you, I hope it holds up and welcome any further comments down the line. Thank you Dan :D

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