Lapierre Overvolt FS 900 Review

Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Electric Bike Review 1
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Bosch 350 Centerdrive
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 400 Watt Battery
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Lcd Display
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Long Travel Rockshox
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Rear Suspension
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Shimano Xt Cassette
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Electric Bike Review 1
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Bosch 350 Centerdrive
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 400 Watt Battery
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Lcd Display
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Long Travel Rockshox
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Rear Suspension
Lapierre Overvolt Fs 900 Shimano Xt Cassette

Summary

  • Full suspension cross country (XC) style electric mountain bike with efficient 2nd Gen Bosch Centerdrive system
  • High end components including Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, Rockshox suspension fork and 27.5" Mavic wheelset
  • Relatively light weight at ~43 pounds, solid two year warranty, support through Currie Technologies in the US

Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Lapierre

Model:

Overvolt FS 900

Price:

$5,500 USD

Body Position:

Forward

Suggested Use:

Trail, Mountain

Electric Bike Class:

Pedal Assist (Class 1)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

Lifetime Frame, 2 Year Drivetrain and Electronics

Availability:

United States, Europe

Model Year:

20142015

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

49 lbs (22.22 kg)

Battery Weight:

5.5 lbs (2.49 kg)

Motor Weight:

8.8 lbs (3.99 kg)

Frame Material:

Aluminum Alloy Supreme 6

Frame Sizes:

15.35 in (38.98 cm)17.71 in (44.98 cm)20.07 in (50.97 cm)

Frame Types:

High-Step

Frame Colors:

Black with Blue and White Accents

Frame Fork Details:

RockShox Revelation RL Fast Solo Air Suspension with 140 mm Travel and Lockout, Tapered Head Tube

Frame Rear Details:

Lapierre R Hydraulic Damping, 140 mm Travel

Gearing Details:

10 Speed 1x10 Shimano XT Shadow Plus RDM786GSL

Shifter Details:

Shimano SLX KSLM670BIRA ISpec Triggers on Right Bar

Cranks:

Miranda Delta, 170 mm

Pedals:

Wellog Aluminum Alloy Platform, Black

Headset:

FSA Orbit 1.5E ZS NO.57E Tapered

Stem:

Easton EA50 8° Diameter: 31.8

Handlebar:

Nico Vouilloz Signature by FUNN 6061DB Width: 720 mm Rise: 15 mm Diameter: 31.8 mm

Brake Details:

Shimano XT Hydraulic Disc with 180 mm Rotors

Grips:

Rubber with Lockers

Seat Post:

Easton EA50

Seat Post Length:

350 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

31.6 mm

Rims:

Mavic EN321

Tire Brand:

Michelin Wild Grip

Wheel Sizes:

27.5 in (69.85cm)

Other:

Quick Release Front and Rear Wheels

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

Bosch Gen 2 with Shift Detection

Motor Type:

Mid-Mounted Geared Motor
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

350 watts

Motor Torque:

60 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

Samsung

Battery Voltage:

36 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

11 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

400 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

3.5 hours

Estimated Min Range:

35 miles (56 km)

Estimated Max Range:

65 miles (105 km)

Display Type:

Intuvia Removable Backlit Grayscale LCD

Readouts:

Speed, 4 Assist Levels, Battery Voltage, Odometer, Estimated Range, Clock, Max Speed, Average Speed, Trip Time

Display Accessories:

Independent Button Pad with Tactile Feedback

Drive Mode:

Advanced Pedal Assist (Combined Torque, Cadence and Speed), (Eco 50%, Tour 120%, Sport 190%, Turbo 275%)

Top Speed:

20 mph (32 kph)

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Written Review

The Lapierre Overvolt FS 900 is a light weight full suspension eMountain bike designed for cross country (XC) and moderate downhill style riding. With 140mm of suspension travel on the front fork and rear swing arm you get comfort and performance. I’m a fan of the 27.5″ 650B wheels which provide improved traction and momentum over standard 26″ but aren’t so large that you clip your toes or interfere with suspension travel (as might be the case with a 29er). While Lapierre also offers a hardtail Overvolt 900 series electric bike, I love the comfort the FS model delivers navigating more rugged terrain. It doesn’t cost much more and is one of only a few mid-drive bikes available right now in a full suspension design.

In Europe, Lapierre has released one other full suspension electric Overvolt model (simply called the Overvolt FS) that relies on a European specced 250 watt Bosch System. The new FS 900 shown in this review (available in the US for Q4 2014) will get an upgraded 2nd generation Bosch 350 watt Centerdrive. In my experience it delivers great power, isn’t too loud and keeps weight low and center on the frame for improved balance vs. a hub motor. There’s no twist throttle or regenerative braking at work here but the range on this bike is still quite impressive with upwards of 50 miles in Eco mode.

In addition to Eco mode you can choose from Tour, Sport or Turbo for maximum power. The Overvolt FS 900 is a capable climber and I’ve had no problem ascending even the steepest trails without stressing my knees and leg muscles. Riding rigorous terrain becomes a test of balance instead of just stamina and brute force. The battery pack powering this bike offers 36 volts of power and 11 amp hours of capacity. This is slightly above average in terms of size and the the drive system really rations power in the Eco and Tour mode. The battery chemistry is Lithium Manganese Cobalt (akin to that used in electric cars) which is incredibly light, stable and durable. I love that you can easily take the battery off for charging and safe storage away from the bike. This reduces the overall weight by ~5.5 pounds which is handy when transporting it on car racks.

The display unit on the Overvolt FS 900 is large and easy to use. The screen is backlit for use in low light or night riding conditions and shows speed, distance and assist level. Just like all of the Bosch Intuvia systems this one has an external button pad that’s easy to reach when pedaling. You don’t have to take your hand off the left grip to change assist levels or check your range (very handy when riding through rough potentially hazardous terrain). The display itself is large and beautiful but also easily removable so you can limit tampering and vandalism. Overall, the cockpit of this bike is clean, intuitive and easy to use (physically speaking). The hydraulic disc brake levers are easy to reach, as are the trigger shifters. One area for potential improvement is a remote lockout for the front suspension fork, the model I tried had the standard cap lever on the right side of the fork. The rear suspension also features a little lever for adjusting rebound.

Lapierre bicycles are new to me but I was really impressed with the overall quality and light weight of the FS 900. It looks beautiful, performs well and is priced in line with similar full suspension Bosch powered electric bikes like the Haibike XDURO FS 27.5″. Having had limited experience with this company (and frequently mispronouncing the company name in the video review) I was excited to meet a member of the actual Lapierre family at a recent press event in New Jersey named Stephane. He and I talked about the history of the company and their goals with this bike, you can see the video interview here. I’m sure more companies will be hopping onto the Bosch bandwagon but one thing Lapierre has as a member of the Accell group is distribution and support to US markets through Currie Technologies. These guys have a dedicated customer service team and years of experience selling ebikes. Ultimately, this is a well engineered bike that takes advantage of high end components to deliver a new type of riding experience. I love mountain biking but have been limited by a knee injury and this type of setup brings back the energy and excitement without the pain.

Pros:

  • High performance 350 watt Bosch Centerdrive is quite powerful, provides great acceleration and climbing
  • Motor and battery pack are kept low and center for improved balance and handling off-road, battery is removable
  • Sophisticated control console has a break out button pad for easy reach when riding, it’s removable and backlit
  • Drive system uses three sensors (cadence, torque and speed) to activate the motor making it extremely responsive, it measures these things 1,000 per second and relies on a 32 bit processor
  • Thanks to the Supreme 6 Alloy frame and RockShox Revelation air fork this bike is very light weight for a full suspension electric bike weighing in at about 43 pounds
  • Shimano XT 180mm hydraulic disc brakes deliver excellent, smooth stopping power without tiring your wrist or fingers
  • 27.5″ Mavic EN321 wheelset is strong but light, this “in between” wheel size balances improved rolling momentum, traction and bump navigation with responsive handling
  • LCD screen is removable and the unit can be swiveled forward or back to reduce glare, all of the wires for the control system are integrated through the frame so they stay out of the way

Cons:

  • The battery pack takes up space on the downtube where a water bottle cage might otherwise mount, consider a seat adapter like this
  • Externalized battery, larger bottom bracket and quiet whine during operation make it more obvious that this is an electric bike “less stealth”
  • No throttle mode, this bike only uses pedal assist (like all Bosch powered systems)
  • Only available in a high-step configuration but the top tube does curve down a bit for easier standing or bails (avoid racking yourself)
  • Does not include a front chain guide like some other full suspension Bosch powered ebikes (including the Haibike FS 27.5″, see the second picture) but it still rides well, may not need it

Resources:

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