Stromer ST5 Review

Stromer St5 Electric Bike Review
Stromer St5
Stromer St5 Gearless Direct Drive Hub Motor 48 Newton Meter Peak
Stromer St5 Side Mount Battery Downtube Bottle Cage Bosses
Stromer St5 Syno Color Lcd Touch Screen Display
Stromer St5 Ergon Gs1 Ergonomic Grips Locking
Stromer St5 Custom Wide Tubular Alloy Fenders
Stromer St5 Signature Led Daytime Running Light With Usb Port
Stromer St5 Pirelli Cycl E 27 5 2 4 Custom Tires
Stromer St5 Trp Quad Piston Calipers
Stromer St5 11 Speed Shimano Xtr Drivetrain
Stromer St5 Battery Door Button Rigid Alloy Fork
Stromer St5 Battery Door Open Charging Port Open
Stromer St5 Ergon Smc40 Saddle
Stromer St5 Tranzx Antishock Alloy Post 31 6
Stromer St5 Electronic Horn Hollow Spindle Bb Chainring Guard
Stromer St5 Hebie Kickstand
Stromer St5 Trp 203 Mm Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Stromer St5 Supernova M99 5 Led Rear Light
Stromer St5 Syno Sport Tdcm Ultra Motor
Stromer St5 Motor Torque Arm Gear Interface
Stromer St5 Hirt Motor Power Connector Disconnect
Stromer St5 Custom Handlebar Integrated Stem Tapered Head Tube
Stromer St5 Custom Stem Electronics
Stromer St5 Large Battery Charger
Stromer St5 Custom Rosenberger Charger 4 5 Amp Output
Stromer St5 Battery Pack
Stromer St5 983 Watt Hour Lithium Ion Battery With Handle
Stromer St5 Battery Pack Bottom Plug
Stromer St5 Left Side
Stromer St5 Electric Bike Review
Stromer St5
Stromer St5 Gearless Direct Drive Hub Motor 48 Newton Meter Peak
Stromer St5 Side Mount Battery Downtube Bottle Cage Bosses
Stromer St5 Syno Color Lcd Touch Screen Display
Stromer St5 Ergon Gs1 Ergonomic Grips Locking
Stromer St5 Custom Wide Tubular Alloy Fenders
Stromer St5 Signature Led Daytime Running Light With Usb Port
Stromer St5 Pirelli Cycl E 27 5 2 4 Custom Tires
Stromer St5 Trp Quad Piston Calipers
Stromer St5 11 Speed Shimano Xtr Drivetrain
Stromer St5 Battery Door Button Rigid Alloy Fork
Stromer St5 Battery Door Open Charging Port Open
Stromer St5 Ergon Smc40 Saddle
Stromer St5 Tranzx Antishock Alloy Post 31 6
Stromer St5 Electronic Horn Hollow Spindle Bb Chainring Guard
Stromer St5 Hebie Kickstand
Stromer St5 Trp 203 Mm Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Stromer St5 Supernova M99 5 Led Rear Light
Stromer St5 Syno Sport Tdcm Ultra Motor
Stromer St5 Motor Torque Arm Gear Interface
Stromer St5 Hirt Motor Power Connector Disconnect
Stromer St5 Custom Handlebar Integrated Stem Tapered Head Tube
Stromer St5 Custom Stem Electronics
Stromer St5 Large Battery Charger
Stromer St5 Custom Rosenberger Charger 4 5 Amp Output
Stromer St5 Battery Pack
Stromer St5 983 Watt Hour Lithium Ion Battery With Handle
Stromer St5 Battery Pack Bottom Plug
Stromer St5 Left Side

Summary

  • One of the fastest accelerating, yet quietest, most technologically advanced electric bikes on the market today, seamless battery integration, hidden wires, pressure-sensitive touch screen with anti-theft and GPS tracking
  • Custom motor tuning via iOS and Android app, peak motor torque output of 48 Nm and 800+ watts, electronic shifting with Shimano Di2 and XTR derailleur with clutch (to reduce chain bounce), narrow-wide chainring to reduce drops
  • Large 203 mm hydraulic disc brakes from TRP designed to cool fast, both brake levers activate bright mode for the rear light as well as recoup, five levels of recoup to simulate hills or recharge the battery on long descents
  • Sturdy tubular alloy fenders with optional cargo rack, custom Pirelli tires, antishock seat post, premium Ergon grips and saddle, 4.5 amp fast charger with magnetic plug, bluetooth auto-locking and unlocking, relatively heavy at 66.5 lbs and very expensive at 10-grand

Video Review

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Introduction

Make:

Stromer

Model:

ST5

Price:

$9,999

Body Position:

Forward Aggressive

Suggested Use:

Commuting, Urban

Electric Bike Class:

Speed Pedelec (Class 3)
Learn more about Ebike classes

Warranty:

2 Year Battery (Or 1,000 Full Charge Cycles with 75% Recharge Remaining), 2 Year Motor, 10 Year Frame

Availability:

United States, Canada, Europe

Model Year:

2018

Bicycle Details

Total Weight:

66.5 lbs (30.16 kg)

Battery Weight:

9.8 lbs (4.44 kg)

Motor Weight:

10.58 lbs (4.79 kg)

Frame Material:

6061 Aluminum Alloy

Frame Sizes:

17 in (43.18 cm)20 in (50.8 cm)22 in (55.88 cm)

Geometry Measurements:

Medium 20" Measurements: 20" Seat Tube, 21.5" Reach (25.5" Effective Reach to Bar), 30.75" Standover Height, 35" Minimum Saddle Height, 27.25" Width, 73" Length

Frame Types:

High-Step

Frame Colors:

Graphite

Frame Fork Details:

Rigid Alloy, Boost 110 mm Hub Spacing, 15 mm Proprietary Axle with Torx T70 Star Bolt

Frame Rear Details:

135 mm Hub Spacing, 12 mm Proprietary Axle with Torx T70 Star Bolt

Attachment Points:

Fender Bosses, Bottle Cage Bosses, Rear Rack Attachment

Gearing Details:

11 Speed 1x11 Shimano XTR Di2 with One Way Clutch and Electronic Shifting, Shimano 11-42 Tooth Cassette

Shifter Details:

Shimano Di2 Triggers on Right Bar

Cranks:

FSA Gossamer, Alloy, Hollow Spindle, 52 Tooth Narrow-Wide Chainring with Alloy Guard

Pedals:

Aluminum Alloy Platform

Headset:

Threadless Internal Cups, Tapered 1-1/8" x 1-1/2"

Stem:

Custom, Alloy and Plastic, Internal Circuit Board, Internal Cable Routing, 7° Rise, 110 mm Length, No Handlebar Clamp

Handlebar:

Custom Alloy with Carbon Fiber Inserts (22 mm Diameter)

Brake Details:

Stromer Branded HD944 TRP Hydraulic Disc with 203 mm Carbon Steel Rotors, TRP Quad-Piston Calipers (Red), Three-Finger Levers with Ball-Ends and Brake Light Activation and Recoup Activation

Grips:

Ergon GS1 with Lockers

Saddle:

Stromer Branded Ergon SMC40 (Ultra Thin Y-Flex Construction)

Seat Post:

TranzX Antishock, Aluminum Alloy with Integrated Head, 38.6 mm to 31.6 mm Shim in Seat Tube

Seat Post Length:

400 mm

Seat Post Diameter:

31.6 mm

Rims:

DT Swiss, Alloy, Double Wall, 28 Hole Front, 32 Hole Rear, 40 mm Outer Width, Reinforcement Eyelets

Spokes:

Stainless Steel, 14 Gauge, Black with Nipples

Tire Brand:

Pirelli Cycl-e, 27.5" x 2.4" (57-584)

Wheel Sizes:

27.5 in (69.85cm)

Tire Details:

Custom Rubber Compound, Thicker Puncture Resistant Tread, 1.9 to 2.9 BAR, 27.5 to 42 PSI

Tube Details:

Presta Valve

Accessories:

Custom Alloy Tubular Fenders with License Plate Mount at Rear (73 mm Width), Supernova M99 Pro Headlight (1250 Lumens), Supernova M99 Tail Light (5 Red Back Facing LED's, 3 Down Facing LED's), Daytime Running LED Headlight in Head Tube, Electronic Horn (Button Near Left Grip, 69 Decibel, Integrated Into Downtube), Hebie Center-Mount Kickstand, Optional WREN Inverted Air Suspension with 30 mm Travel and Compression Adjust and Rebound Adjust, Optional Rear Rack (Interfaces with Fender), Optional Compact Charger with Battery Maintainer

Other:

Keyless Electronically Locked Removable Battery Pack, Enhanced Security Features (Electronic Motor Lock, GPS Location Tracking Within GSM Network), Rosenberger Standard Energy Bus Charging Port with Plastic Magnetic Cover, CR245 2.7 lb 4.5 Amp Battery Charger

Electronic Details

Motor Brand:

SYNO Sport (TDCM Ultra Motor)

Motor Type:

Rear-Mounted Gearless Direct Drive Hub
Learn more about Ebike motors

Motor Nominal Output:

700 watts

Motor Peak Output:

850 watts SYNO drive gearless direct drive rear hub motor weighs 11 pounds (5kg) offers 42 Newton meters of torque

Motor Torque:

48 Newton meters

Battery Brand:

BQ983 (Samsung Cells)

Battery Voltage:

48 volts

Battery Amp Hours:

20.5 ah

Battery Watt Hours:

983 wh

Battery Chemistry:

Lithium-ion

Charge Time:

5.5 hours hours for a full charge from empty

Estimated Min Range:

40 miles (64 km)

Estimated Max Range:

112 miles (180 km)

Display Type:

Stromer OMNI, Integrated, Color, Backlit, Capacitive Touch Screen LCD on Top Tube

Readouts:

OMNI Display on Top Tube: Current Speed, Battery Level (Precise Infographic), Range Estimate, Assist Level (1-3, S), Clock, Trip Average Speed, Trip Distance, Trip Time, Mobile App for iOS and Android: Battery Percentage, Trip Distance, Average Trip Speed, GPS Map, Motor Tuning (Speed, Torque, Agility)

Display Accessories:

Independent Backlit Button Pad on Left, Buttons: Light, +, -, Horn, Rubberized Power Button Below Top Tube, Omni Cloud Mobile App (View and Enter Service Records, Update Firmware, System Status, Location Tracking, Motor Block, Lock and Unlock, Performance Tuning)

Drive Mode:

Advanced Pedal Assist (TMM4 Torque Sensor with Accelerometer and Gyroscopic Incline Sensor)

Top Speed:

28 mph (45 kph)

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Written Review

EBR charges a service fee to manufacturers to produce ebike reviews and videos, this began in 2018. It’s the same flat fee for each bike, and it helps us to keep the site going while limiting ad clutter. We appreciate the opportunity to serve you with our opinions and data but respect your right to know that we receive compensation :)

Stromer introduced it’s ST5 electric bike in April, 2018 and I was invited to a launch event at a shop called Best Electric Bikes USA. At the event, I spoke with several team members, including the CEO and VP of Worldwide Sales. The video review captures some of our conversation and is a bit longer than many others, in part because of the advanced design features, mobile app, and ride interviews I filmed at the event. What you get from the ST5 for $10k is an electric bike that is setup almost like a motorcycle or moped in terms of durability and quality. It’s designed to be a car replacement platform and can travel up to 115 miles on a single charge (more likely 60+ miles if you’re riding in the higher levels of assist). It accelerates extremely quickly and is more than capable of reaching the ~28 mph top speed of other Class 3 “speed pedelec” products. In fact, I was able to reach 29.5 mph and many in attendance expressed that they reached 31 mph (49.8 km/h). Weighing in at 66.5 lbs, the bike is definitely heavier than an average electric bike… by nearly 10 lbs. Custom-made tubular alloy fenders, thicker Pirelli Cycl-e tires, and a battery with nearly twice the capacity of what I’d call “normal” for the 2018 model year, is part of what causes this weight difference. This weight can be reduced by simply removing the 9.8 lb battery pack, and I’d suggest doing so before mounting the bike to an automobile rack or trying to lift it for service. The weight doesn’t impact acceleration and actually improves ride quality, in my experience, because the frame doesn’t vibrate as much. The frame is available in three sizes, to improve fit, and is made from aluminum alloy, along with the fork. You can improve comfort by reducing tire pressure, adding a 31.6 mm seat post suspension, and replacing the rigid fork with the upcoming inverted air suspension from WREN. I was told that this part, along with a rear rack platform, will be available mid-year, but was not given details about pricing. There’s only one color choice, and neither the frame nor tires seem to have any reflective accents. I asked the Stromer team about this and was told that European guidelines have dictated that reflective tires not be used for Class 3 products… which is too bad. One more positive change however, is that the kickstand has also been updated to reflect changing laws, and no longer auto-springs up. It’s just a traditional stand now, with a physical push to stow. The final European guidelines for this ebike include an extra-bright headlight, rear light with bright activation with either brake lever is pulled, and brake levers with ball-ends to reduce the risk of impaling riders in the event of a crash or letting their hands slip off. Hooray for rules! If anyone out there has feedback about the reflective tire guidelines, and why they aren’t allowed for Class 3 in Europe now, please reply below in the comments. I do wish that Stromer would have worked with Pirelli to make a North-America specific tire that was reflective, but you could probably swap the stock tires for something like this down the line, on your own. Before digging in too much further, I want to point out that Stromer offers several complementary e-bike models that are specced down and priced for less. The ST1 X, for example, is priced around $5k and could be a great option for those who are alright skipping the Bluetooth keyless activation, more powerful motor, electronic shifting, larger battery, and fancier brakes on the ST5. This product is the top of the line entry for a company that is already known for producing premium high-priced bikes. Part of what you get for the money is a dealer-exclusive experience with industry-leading two-year warranty and products that are produced using sustainable energy in Switzerland. Neat :)

Driving this bike is Stromer’s most powerful gearless hub motor to date, the SYNO Sport (manufactured by TDCM, Ultra Motor). Being gearless, this motor is near-silent and super durable. There aren’t any reduction gears inside rubbing on each other, so in order to get power, the hub itself is thicker and wider. A series of rare-Earth magnets line the outer wall of the casing and electromagnetic staters branch out from the middle. In addition to reduced noise, this motor also offers regenerative braking and five levels of recoup. It’s a fancy system that reduces wear on brake pads, and can simulate hill climbs or refill your battery on long descents. Why aren’t all motors setup like this, you might wonder? Well, the motor itself is much hevier at roughly 10.58 lbs vs. 7 lbs for an equivalent planetary geared design. There’s also a bit of cogging drag vs. complete freewheeling. The drag does put a small bit of energy back into the battery pack, but many would argue that this natural recoup, and even regenerative braking, is offset by the added weight of the motor. For a heavier bike like the ST5, and many hybrid and electric automobiles, the efficiency and gain from regenerative braking is better. This system is definitely more complex, and more expensive, but Stromer updated their plug design to something called HIRT for 2018. This means that rear-wheel service should be easier and the single cable design presents less clutter than some of their older models. Hub motors provide several benefits that I want to explore quickly, as we see more and more quality mid-drive options on the market today. The motor is completely separate from the pedal drivetrain and won’t interfere with shifting or cause premature wear on your chain, sprockets, and derailleur. It accelerates at a constant, regardless of which gear you’re pedaling in. And, it’s generally quieter and smoother feeling. You won’t get the same efficiency as a mid-drive unit, assuming you were shifting gears thoughtfully, but you also don’t have to shift gears as actively to reach different speeds. For any hardtail electric bike, where unsprung weight is not a concern, hub motors are still a great option. I especially enjoyed the new SYNO Sport, which was noticeably quicker and more powerful than almost all of the other hub motors I have ever tried (having tested over 800 ebikes). Finally, because of how the battery is positioned in the frame, the bike is not especially rear-heavy, in spite of the larger hub motor positioned in the back wheel.

Motors aside, this electric bicycle has a fantastic human-powered drivetrain. The 11-speed Shimano XTR derailleur shifts electronically with Di2 and positions the chain consistently, every time. You won’t suffer from cable stretch and be required to perform tuneups as quickly or as frequently, because the actual cable is much shorter. Pressing the button-style trigger shifters near the left grip requires less physical force, and offers multi-step shifts if you press and hold. This feature was a big delighter for people who had never tried it before, during the launch event. It’s more of a “nice to have” feature in my view, but it definitely changes and improves the experience. One thing that is missing from this e-bike is a readout for which gear is in use. Most other Di2 electronically shifted electric bikes use the Shimano display panel, which doubles as an ebike menu. You can see what I’m talking about on the BULLS E-CORE Di2 FS 27.5+ here, scroll over to the 5th picture. Stromer has gone their own direction with a proprietary top-tube integrated touchscreen LCD unit, instead. It does not show which gear you’re pedaling with, and to be honest, I don’t really miss the information. with such a wide spread, 11 to 42 teeth, this thing is setup almost like a mountain bike for climbing and yet, still feels comfortable at the ~30 mph mark. I found myself sticking with the middle gears and rarely using the lowest two gears, because of how powerful the motor is when starting. It offers up to 48 Newton meters of torque, and that number is not embellished or exaggerated like a lot of other hub motor powered products that say 50 Nm or 60 Nm… but unfortunately, I cannot verify the stats in those cases. With Stromer, you really can feel the power and are getting 700 or 850 watts (and probably more than that at peak). I was a little confused by the communications from different people at the company, who said that they had to measure and report power differently in different geographies (Europe vs. the US). Whatever the number, I can tell you that this bike is powerful and very, very fast. As a final quick tip, you can fine-tune shifting with the Di2 system by holding the little button on the black port at the lower backside of the seat tube for a few seconds. Once it flashes, you can use the trigger shifters to do micro-adjustments and align the derailleur perfectly. This port is also where you charge the Di2 system, which is not connected to the main ebike battery.

Powering this electric bike is a beautifully packaged, extremely high-capacity Lithium-ion battery that is filled at the Stromer headquarters with wind energy. It offers 48 volts and 20.5 amp hours for a total of 983 watt hours (nearly 1 kilowatt hour of capacity). Despite the large size, this battery is fairly easy to deal with, because there’s a swiveling plastic handle built into the top cap. Be very careful not to drop the pack, and store it away from extreme heat or cold to maximize its life. The bike comes with a rather large and bulky 2.7 pound charger that puts out 4.5 amps for faster charging. In my opinion, it doesn’t look as beautiful as the Bosch solution (which puts out 4 amps and weighs just 1.6 lbs) and it is definitely heavier and larger… but it does offer a magnetic charging tip that won’t get bent or pull the bike over if tripped over. This same tip is used to plug into the port at the top left side of the downtube as well as the base of the battery pack itself and is a big improvement over the dongle adapter used for the ST1 models of years past. That dongle adapter was easily lost and had to be plugged in more firmly. In addition to the stock charger, Stromer also offers a compact travel charger with one very neat performance feature; it can maintain the pack over long time periods. Usually, it’s best practice not to leave a large Lithium-ion battery plugged into a charger for days, weeks, or months on end. The battery can overheat and get damaged if the battery management system and charger are not configured properly. With the compact option from Stromer, it sounds like you’re actually encouraged to leave the pack plugged in and this will allow it to automatically top off and avoid the slow discharge and eventual damage of reaching zero (which damages the Lithium-ion chemistry of the cells). I’m not sure how much a replacement battery costs, but my guess is somewhere in the $1,500 range. So, in summary… the battery looks great, fits beautifully into the downtube – nearly hidden, keeping weight low and center, is safe to carry, has a great charger, and should be kept between 20% and 80% at neutral temperatures for best results. It really will offer incredible range, even in the second and third levels of assist, because the bike is so efficient and the tires are so smooth and firm. I personally choose to ride at a lower pressure, around 25 PSI, in favor of comfort… and still expect 60+ miles per ride.

When it comes to actually powering the bike ion, I love how simple Stromer has made their interface. There’s a rubberized button positioned directly below the OMNI LCD screen on the top tube. One press will initiate the display and subsequent presses will switch from ride menus to a settings menu (where you can eject the battery pack). The screen itself is now color and uses a force sensitive touch system that works with generic fabric gloves. The default view shows your current speed, battery level (with a very precise infographic vs. a basic five or ten bar view), a range estimate that dynamically updates as you press the plus and minus keys on the button pad (near the left grip), and your current assist level. There are four levels of assist now, ranging from 1-3 and then up to S (which may stand for sport or speed?) If you press the OMNI display unit, it will cycle to two separate views. The first shows a clock and trip average speed the second shows trip distance and trip time. One of the biggest compromises that I noticed with this display is that it takes a bit longer to boot up. And, in my experience, it’s best not to pedal during the boot-up process because the system is measuring torque and calibrating a zero point. Stromer uses the TMM4 torque sensor at the rear dropout along with some gyroscopic measurements. I noticed that, whenever I started pedaling, the motor would kick on smooth and strong… but would then fade out slowly when I stopped pedaling (unless I pulled the brake levers, activating regen). It’s a smooth stable (safe) feeling that is preferable to other high-powered electric bikes that can go from accelerating to almost shifting you forward when the motor cuts off, even when you aren’t braking. The OMNI display has a light sensor built in that shifts the display from white background to black (at night and low-light situations) and you can also manually set this by going into the settings section of the menu (press the rubber button below the top tube then click settings on the display). I was told that the older ST2 models can be updated to use this same color LCD, but it costs $1,000 to install.

There is so much to say about the display systems and app for this ebike, it starts out very simple, but you can really dig in with the iOS and Android smartphone application to adjust the acceleration and speed settings of the second level of assist (the first, third, and S remain unchangeable). There’s a GPS navigation scree, profile information, and even a way to report your bike as stolen and track it using GPS. I was told that there’s a cell phone chip installed on these bikes and that Stromer pays for the service to track the bikes and aid in recovery. When the bike is locked, you can set it up to respond to your smartphone based on proximity and unlock, or you can use a manual-press pin number. If a would-be thief tries to walk or ride off with your bike, it alerts you and the motor locks up using the highest level of regeneration. I tried to pedal a locked bike and came away convinced that it would be unrideable. Apparently the lights even flash! Another cool feature that Stromer has added to their ST5 is an electronic horn, built into the downtube near the bottom bracket. The button to honk this horn is placed within reach of the left grip, alongside the headlight bright button and + and – keys for assist navigation. It’s very satisfying to hop on this bike, power it up, then pedal along without looking down at a shifter or LCD screen. It’s intuitive and powerful enough that you don’t have to overthink anything or feel distracted by the display. Even if you’ve forgotten to downshift, the motor is powerful enough to get you up to speed quickly and climb steeper inclines without much pedal support. You do have to push in order to activate the TMM4 torque sensor, but the gyroscope and accelerometer make it a much more consistent and predictable experience than many other ebikes that only have the TMM4 and use less advanced control systems. For those who are excited about the smartphone app, and want it in view, Stromer has a hidden mount just below a cap on the custom stem. You can position your phone there and plug in to the full sized USB port on the front of the steering tube. It’s a clever and beautiful design that is within reach so cables won’t be strewn about the bike. Just grab a short black Lightening (for iPhone), USB-C or Micro-USB (for Android) cable and you’re all set.

Not everyone can or would choose to pay $10,000 for an electric bike, but this product does deliver an integrated experience, level of control and safety, and high performance that none other can match. Yes, you could build an electric bike with similar top speed, but it wouldn’t look this beautiful, have the GPS app features, or ride as quietly and smoothly… it probably would not have regeneration, and things like 203 mm hydraulic disc brakes with custom red quad-piston calipers like a fancy Porsche or Tesla. Yes, this is the supercar of electric bikes, and I am SO grateful that they will be releasing a rack upgrade and suspension fork, because those were my two biggest gripes upon first seeing the ST5. I love comfort and prefer a more upright body position. So, it’s great to know that the ST5 frame was designed to be more upright and comfortable than the older ST2 platform. Your body may not be quite as aerodynamic, but that’s okay, given the larger battery and efficient recapture modes. Unfortunately, you cannot swap the stem out, nor can you change the handlebars (which is something I did for fun on an ST1 Limited a couple years back, for my father). One final consideration for me would be adding black reflective stickers to the side of the frame and rims to stand out more. I want to recognize how Stromer uses a plastic leash to keep the magnetic charge port cover from getting lost (unlike many competitors) and that they opted for a narrow-wide chainring to keep the chain from bouncing off while still including an alloy outer guard to keep your pant legs clean and protect from high-center strikes. Is there room for improvement? Yes, definitely. The kickstand is positioned mid-frame which can cause pedal-lock when backing the bike up if not stowed, the unique Torx bolts on the front and rear axles are not commonly used (at least in America) so it would be nice if this bike came with the tool needed to service flats and do maintenance (it’s not expensive to buy a set online yourself, however), and it would be nice to have the suspension fork option ready at launch vs. 6+ months out. Big thanks to Jakob, Tomi, Matt, Brandon, and the team at Best Electric Bikes USA in Denver for their time at the launch event. Thanks to Stromer for partnering with me on this review and to those who went on camera to share their ride expeirences. Please share your own experiences, feedback and corrections for this article, and questions below in the comments or the Stromer Ebike Forums.

Pros:

  • This is definitely the most powerful and fastest Stromer electric bike to date, I was able to reach 29.5 mph pretty easily and that provides a sense of confidence and control when riding near automobiles, the frame and tires are solid
  • Despite the higher speed and lack of suspension, the bike feels pretty comfortable because the heavier all-alloy frame doesn’t vibrate and the larger 27.5″ x 2.4″ tires cushion cracks and bumps, especially if you lower the PSI to ~27.5 (I took them down to 25 PSI since I weigh a bit less at ~135 lbs)
  • Hardly any wires are exposed, the bike is super stealthy looking and the motor is extremely quiet, I got the feeling that shops can still access wires easily enough for tuneups however, because of the stem cover design and open downtube (when the battery is removed) exposes them
  • The default battery charger is a bit large and heavy at ~2.7 pounds, but it uses a magnetic connector that won’t tip the bike or get bent and broken as easily and it offers 4.5 amp output vs. 2 amps on most competing chargers, and that makes the battery fill faster which is great when you’re working with a battery that is nearly double the size of normal
  • The battery pack can be charged while mounted inside the frame or stored separately and there’s no dongle required, Stromer also sells a compact charger with smart maintaining feature that will keep the cells from discharging slowly over time if you aren’t riding for months on end (which can damage them)
  • Extra-large tubular alloy fenders feel sturdy, don’t rattle around when riding on bumpy terrain, and are solid enough to support a rear rack (sold separately), but Stromer also included bottle cage bosses on the downtube for bringing fluids or a folding lock, I think the could have added a second set on the seat tube as well, but you could always use an SKS Anywhare adapter for that if you need the space
  • The updated OMNI display panel displays in color and the top level of assist “S” is bright red, so you can tell what mode is selected without having to focus on the small numbers, Also, I love that the display has a touch display that is force sensitive because it seems to work with normal gloves
  • Excellent drivetrain, you get more than enough gears for climbing with a 66.5 lb bike (if the battery does run out) and keeping a steady cadence at ~30 mph, the electronic shifting is crisp and accurate, and the derailleur has a one-way clutch to keep the chain tight on bumpy fast rides (just click the little orange lever into the up position)
  • I really appreciate the Ergon saddle and locking grips, they feel good to me and I wouldn’t replace them like with a lot of cheaper ebikes, the TranzX Antishock seat post also performed well, but I might upgrade that to a 31.6 mm Kinekt suspension post
  • I like how the LED running light in the front has a USB port built-in so you can maintain your phone while riding, this is especially relevant given the Stromer app which uses Bluetooth and can show directions and routes
  • The locking features are pretty cool, you can set the app to lock and unlock the bike based purely on your phone’s proximity… or unlock it remotely for a friend, the bike has a smartphone chip onboard that syncs with GPS for theft tracking and recovery, I was told by a shop tech that registering Stromer products is very easy compared to many other brands, which is nice
  • The chainring uses narrow-wide teeth to keep the chain on track (vs. using a full guide), the alloy guard on the outside of the chainring will protect your pant legs and it also protects the teeth if you collide with a high curb or other obstacle
  • It’s a minor pro, but I really appreciate the large alloy pedals that they specced for the ST5, they provide good traction and a larger surface area than the older alloy cage pedals used on other Stromer ST1 models
  • The electronic horn worked very well and commanded more respect and feedback from fellow cyclists and cars than a tiny bell, for such a powerful and capable electric bike, it’s nice to have that sort of signal built in
  • Every battery that is shipped with a Stromer electric bike, including the ST5, is charged with solar power (which also powers the myStromer AG headquarters in Oberwangen, near Bern / Switzerland)
  • Pedal assist feels very responsive because it relies on signals from a TMM4 torque sensor in combination with a gyroscopic accelerometer, the power ramps up quickly and fades out slowly as you stop pedaling… or you can pull a brake lever to cut it more instantly and activate regen
  • The display panel features a day-night sensor for back lighting and is integrated directly into the top tube which reduces clutter on the handle bars, there are lots of settings to adjust here including dark or light color schemes
  • The custom 15 LED running light (at the head tube) looks cool but the Supernova M99 Pro is the true tool for visibility with two modes (LED vertical lights along the sides or a super-bright main light offering 1250 Lumens), the 5 LED tail light (also by Supernova) works as a running-light in low and when you pull either brake lever it goes high, lights can be shut off using the mobile app
  • Custom designed battery pack slides into the downtube much easier than on the ST1 models (it doesn’t fit onto a track, just into the box area of the downtube)
  • The battery offers high-capacity 983 watt hours and is cross compatible with the ST2 S and ST2 (which had a smaller pack by default), that’s great if you’ve already got a Stromer sitting in your garage and want to swap between bikes or go for a long trekking ride with two batteries
  • Any time you brake with either lever (not just the right one like with ST1 models) power regeneration kicks in and the bike “recoups” some energy, you can also hold the minus button and select from five recoup levels for longer hills to get more energy
  • Premium hydraulic brakes with carbon steel rotors dissipate heat and provide ample stopping power through quad-piston calipers and extra-large 203 mm rotors
  • Stromer is an established brand dating back to 2009 with global distribution, the ST2 received a Eurobike Gold award, Red Dot Quality Seal award, two Testsieger awards, an Outside magazine award, a Taipei Cycle show award and an iF design award and the ST5 shares many design features and just builds on that platform with a stronger motor and more integrated systems
  • The smart phone app interfaces with a cloud platform called OMNI that lets you interact with the bike remotely including an anti-theft measure that will lock the motor, flash the lights and notify you via text, the system will also help you track the bike down using built-in GPS
  • The bike itself has built in wireless technology allowing it receive software updates on the fly… this means you don’t have to go into a bike shop and wait or pay extra to get the latest and greatest

Cons:

  • I’m really glad that Stromer has been able to drop the spring loaded auto-stow kickstands that they used to spec, because they made it easy for bikes to tip over accidentally (apparently the European regulations changed and allowed for this), but the existing stand is still mid-mounted and can block the left pedal when backing the bike up, creating pedal lock
  • This ebike is heavy, the heaviest Stromer to date, actually… weighing in at roughly 66.5 lbs (30.16 kg) it’s nearly eight pounds heavier than the ST2 S I reviewed a year prior, perhaps it’s the larger tire diameter and thickness combined with the custom handlebar and stem setup, at least the bike feels very sturdy
  • Most of the Stromer electric bikes have been priced at the high-end, and the ST5 is ~$10k which puts it at the very top, for the money… you do get three frame sizes, two years of full warranty support, and one of the fastest and most powerful urban electric bikes around, but it’s still a lot to spend, consider getting bicycle insurance to protect the bike and any accessories you add
  • Unless you’re using a phone app, the display is positioned pretty far down and back, which means you’ll have to take your eyes off the road to read how fast you’re going or approximate range… I recommend pulling over to read and interact with the display here, or just clicking the left button pad and guessing what level of assist is active vs. glancing down because the screen is a bit small and so far down
  • If you want to add a suspension fork and still have the front fender and custom stem work… you may have to purchase directly from Stromer (which is partnering with WREN to offer an inverted air fork in mid-2018)
  • The ST5 is said to have a more upright geometry than some of the older ST2, ST1 X and ST1 models, but you can’t really do much to shorten or raise the stem or swap-in mid-rise or backsweep handlebars because it’s all so proprietary
  • I was disappointed to see that the tires do not have reflective stripes, but I asked the Stromer team and they said that this is a European requirement (not to have the reflective paint) because the bike is Class 3 and treated more like a moped, perhaps the reflectivity was just too much? I’d probably use black reflective stickers all over the sides of the frame to help it stand out at night because the headlight and backlight do not shine out from the sides very much
  • I was told by Stromer that the bolts which secure the wheels require a T70 star driver… which is very rare, someone at the shop told me it was a T60 and I couldn’t confirm, this would be a good accessory to pick up when you get the bike (probably online because it is rare), so you can change flats and do basic maintenance, here’s a kit with both sizes for $16 on Amazon and I welcome your comments below to confirm the correct sizing
  • Cogging slows down the rear wheel when motor is not in use vs. a freewheel (metal staters repel the strong rare earth magnets located around the circumference of the hub casing – this is a con for all direct drive gearless motors but more noticeable on high power motors such as the one used for the ST5), a benefit that negates this con somewhat is the active regeneration and regenerative braking
  • The Di2 electronic shifting unit and derailleur run on independent batteries, there’s a charging port on the bottom backside portion of the seat tube and this is also where you can activate derailleur adjustment (by holding the button for a few seconds until it flashes and then using the trigger shifters to calibrate and offset any cable stretch that may have occurred over miles of riding), frankly, it would be nice if the Di2 electronic shifting was just wired into the bike’s main battery vs. using a separate one
  • While the bike is available in three sizes, you only get one color scheme (gray with red accents) and a traditional high-step frame style vs. the standard ST2 which comes in a step-thru frame that some may find easier to mount
  • The ST5 models that we looked at didn’t have neoprene wraps on the chainstays to protect from chain slap, perhaps the final builds will have these… but you can always use clear plastic packing tape or get an aftermarket sticker like this
  • It seems like the display panel takes a while to boot up, it’s not instant (or nearly as fast as Bosch or Yamaha systems) and I think it’s best not to mount and pedal the bike while it is turning on because the TMM4 torque sensor has to calibrate

Resources:

More Stromer Reviews

Stromer ST1 X Review

  • MSRP: $4,999
  • MODEL YEAR: 2017

A more affordable Stromer electric bike that still offers regenerative braking and speed pedelec performance with ~28 mph top speeds, available in high-step and mid-step frames. Beautifully integrated touch display and companion mobile app can be used to track the bike…...

Stromer ST1 Limited Edition Review

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A limited run (only 399 produced) speed pedelec with premium integrated lights from Supernova and Toplight, Aluminum fenders, rear carry rack from Racktime and Magura hydraulic disc brakes. High end Shimano Deore XT drive train with nine sprockets geared for 28+ mph riding…...

Stromer ST2 S Review

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  • MODEL YEAR: 2016, 2017

An urban racer with smooth electronic shifting, app-driven performance tuning, ultra-bright dynamic lighting that responds to braking, five levels of power regen and regenerative braking. Available in three high-step frame sizes for improved fit, impressive weight distribution for a hub-powered…...

Stromer ST1 S Review

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A high speed urban electric bike emphasizing sport riding (flatter handle bar, no rack) available in two frame sizes, one high-step style and one color (metallic lime green). Carbon fiber fork reduces weight and dampens vibration, oversized road tires cushion the ride and…...

Stromer ST1 T Review

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Stromer ST2 Review

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Extremely polished, high performance urban style electric bike available in two frame sizes and configurations. One of the most responsive and satisfying electric bikes I've tested, speed pedelec can reach…...

Stromer ST1 Platinum Review

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High quality components, beautiful clean aesthetic, pedal assist only. Powerful 500 watt gearless rear hub motor with regenerative braking...

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Comments (17) YouTube Comments

Mark
2 years ago

Very nice ebike but very expensive. Besides the price, there’s one thing that I foresee as a likely problem and it would be the horn’s placement that is exposed to the front wheel’s splash and dirt trajectory (the rear end of the front fender is not low enough to cover it). If you notice muffling or deterioration of the horn’s sound, that could be due to dirt caking on the horn surface. Or it could fail altogether due to water damage (from front wheel splash).

  Reply
Court
2 years ago

Great observation Mark, I was starting to notice that as well. I touched the area around the horn and it felt rubberized, so hopefully the horn itself won’t be damaged this way, but I could see the sound being muffled. I suppose you’d also want to be careful when cleaning the horn area, so as not to push too hard on the little rubber circle that seems to cover it.

  Reply
Captain Walnut
2 years ago

Looks lovely, refined, and way too expensive. Nice big battery, nice features and integration, but I can’t understand the price.

  Reply
Court
2 years ago

Yeah, you’re not alone there… I can see how this new model incorporates some very fancy custom design solutions and software, and how they might expect to sell less and thus, need a higher price point to support the dealer network. I think it also moved some of the older products down to lower prices and sort of rounds out the Stromer portfolio. Maybe the ST5 will come down in price as new models launch in the future? I see this a lot with video game consoles, as new generations come out and competition increases.

  Reply
Robert Poor
2 years ago

I have two direct drive, or as you call them gearless, hub bikes that don’t have any cogging. Maybe its the Statorade in there that also aids in keeping things cool? I admit that my first experience with a DD motor, Golden Motor Magic Pie, did exhibit cogging that I couldn’t live with and turned me off to DD motors for years. But now I prefer them for my road bikes. Quiet, power and regen is good.

The 66.5 lb. weight of this bike and the locked-in bar and stem are two things that I feel will keep this bike an expensive toy no matter how many digital bells and whistles it has. As you say, you can make bikes that are as or more powerful that lack the sophistication of the ST5 but in the bike world light as possible weight and ability to adjust fitment are key to conscious cyclists. One of my road bikes that has the Grin All Axle DD motor weighs in at 45 lbs. with a 10 ah battery. Even if I put another battery on it, it still would be 12 lbs lighter than the ST5. I get all the information and set up ability from a Cycle Analyst 3 and use a simple hand held GPS that is also useful for other things like hiking and boating.

So, I guess I won’t be a Stromer customer but I am sure that those that invest will like them just fine.

  Reply
Court
2 years ago

Great feedback Robert, thanks for being specific about your chosen solution. I love Justin and the Grin products! and it sounds like you’ve built something really special. Perhaps this feedback will encourage Stromer to balance style against open-design so people can adjust the important parts but still have something that looks beautiful. Also, glad to hear that your motor isn’t cogging (much, or at all?) I should have tested this on the ST5 and will remember to do so when I have another chance someday to post back here :)

  Reply
Ken
2 years ago

I have test ridden this bike while being presented in Denver and I was impressed with the performance. This platform does demonstrate that a gearless rear hub motor is arguably a better solution for a fast urban mobility bike vs a mid drive where the importance of unsprung weight, low speed / climbing use of the drive train, and centered weight distribution are not significant. At higher speeds the performance of a gearless rear hub shines.

The tires are superb (nice ride quality combined with excellent road grip), the shifting was flawless, smooth, and quiet. I have a ??? back so I felt the riding posture was slightly aggressive but probably comfortable for most riders. I really didn’t feel the hidden cable/wiring was a significant value add given the likelihood that it complicates servicing the bike but I can respect that high-end desire for something like that.

The bike looks wonderful except the integrated bar and stem seemed bit awkward cosmetically (didn’t seem to match the overall smooth cosmetic of the rest of the bike). I think some alternative colors would make sense but I understand the single color makes sense given the limited release of this model.

Obviously I wonder about the value given the high price. I really think Stromer should have gone with carbon forks, bars, and seat post to improve the value proposition (and the ride quality given the improved vibration dampening) as they have done on earlier models.

  Reply
Court
2 years ago

Great feedback, Ken! Perhaps they skipped a carbon seat post because they wanted to do the TranzX vibration dampening thing. I can’t say how well it worked, but the bike did feel pretty good to me (just solid and less vibration than similar products). It’s nice to hear your experience and perspective :)

  Reply
ken
2 years ago

Court,

Have to be honest, I missed the TransX seatpost and the carbon handle bar inserts but still seams like these touch point items (fork, stem, bars, seatpost) could be better. I didn’t get a lot of time on the bike but the ride was fairly plush so the seat post probably does improve ride quality but maybe a flexible carbon post like Canyon and Ergon have available would be even a bit better (the perceived value would likely be better as those are high-end seat posts that are simpler than active suspension posts). I agree with your comments about the custom integrated stem & bars. – they are nice but there is no fitting adjustment possible. I tend to like a more upright position – I wonder why the bike manufacturers always cut the steer tubes because if they left them un-cut with plenty of spacers the customer could have them cut to preference. Again I do think full carbon forks, stem and bars would be better touch points but would not have been so easy to hide the cables/wires.

Regardless there are some features on this bike that will migrate to other eBikes. Hopefully those Pirelli tires, or a similar model become available for purchase for any urban ebike as I felt they were impressive. Overall, I think eBike tech just keeps getting better and this bike is a show case for that tech.

I was actually at the shop for the unveiling but was a bit shy because about 8 weeks ago I fractured a vertebrae during a fall so I was really struggling to even look up because of lingering pain and stiffness (couldn’t ride a bike for about 6 weeks at all but I really wanted to ride the ST5 even with my back still not fully healed). You may have noticed me … it was bothering me enough that I was hanging back a bit and I knew you had a job to do. We’ll cross paths again in the future when I’m more myself. :-)

Jim
1 year ago

Hi Court – Great review!

I have owned an ST2 for the past 3 years and operate it all the time. When the ST2S came out – I did not feel that it was significant enough upgrade for me to consider upgrading. The ST5 has me more tempted – and I may pull the trigger but I had a couple of questions/comments.

  1. Can the regen mode of the motor still be accessed via the power +/- button? On my ST2 to get to regen you had to: press the +/- power buttons down to level 0 and then continue to press/hold for another 3 seconds and the display would then change to “regen” mode. Once in regen mode, the level of motor breaking/regen could be adjust via the same power button – plus would lower the resistance and minus would increase it – I believe there are about 7 levels of this. This feature was very important to me – because it allowed me to fine tune the amount of regen I wanted when going downhill. When I would do a workout on the bike – I used regen downhill so that I would still have to be pedaling, and thus still exercising. On this same topic – If Stromer retained this feature – I would hope that it would be made easier to access. Let’s say I top a hill in Level 3 and then almost immediately I am going down hill picking up speed. I have to downpress to Level 0 – then downpress and hold for 3 seconds – It takes 4-5 seconds where you’re looking down at the display and picking up speed. It’s awkward and a little unsafe. There are a lot of ways to mechanize this quicker (for instance you can have the brake lever automatically take you to regen mode after a short delay or you could have a separate switch with tactile clicks so you don’t have to look down at screen)
  2. I would love it if Stromer would include a display that shows how pedel work is being done by the battery and how much is done by me. It would be great to get done from a ride and see a summary – how many calories I burned on the ride. A force meter on the crank would be an easy and accurate way to do this. Right now I have to look at how much battery was used, how long the ride took, how many miles I went – and then do a long calculation that is not all that accurate.
  3. Anti theft mode. As well as this may work in theory – the truth is that in practice you feel extremely worried leaving this $10,000 bike unattended. Even at 60 lbs the bike can easily be picked up and carried away. The GPS should set off the alarms and notification for any positional change – not just rolling of the wheels. Also, to help theft prevention a lock such as retractable cable (that fits in the downtube) that locks the crank and activates the horn if cut would be a simple theft prevention that would allow the rider to feel a little better about leaving the bike for short coffee shop stops without having to carry a heavy chain. The other thing I found with the anti-theft mode was that: although moving the bike forward is very difficult – moving it backwards is easy. The way it is now, in theft mode a thief can simply just back the bike away. Also – I have found that the bike needs to be on in order for its position to reported back to my smart phone app. The app should be modified so that once you put the bike in lock mode – if it is moved at all – the app immediately starts notifying you on your cell phone.
  4. My ST2 has a carbon fork – A bike of this speed really needs some form of front absorption – Not happy with any of the aftermarket forks out there. I am really surprised Stromer opted for Aluminum with ST2.

Thats a few items – I have more. I would pay more than 10K for a bike that had those additions. Stromer are you listening?? Court keep up the great reviews – I really appreciated the hour long review on that – Fantastic!!

  Reply
Court
1 year ago

You made some excellent points Jim! Yes, I think the regen is still there and functions much like before… pulling the brake will activate it and you can also arrow down into different levels by pressing the – button. Your ideas for making it more seamless and fast are great. I also really enjoyed your feedback around how you use your ST2 and the value of suspension and improvements to theft prevention would tempt you into the $10k range. I agree that it can be very stressful to leave a bike like this unattended, and that negates from the fun and frequency of riding. I don’t have perfect answers for all of these questions, but maybe an owner could chime in if you ask around in the Stromer forums. I hope this helps :D

  Reply
Juan Agudelo
1 year ago

Court, I Messaged you 2 years ago telling you how I wished my 2015 Turbo S wouldn’t cut off at 23 mph again thanks for that reply, but I could not fix that problem. I guess the watts are to low on that one specifically. But anyways, you could just reply to this with a one sentence answer please. Considering every little part that this bike has to offer, in your very educated opinion, how over priced is this bike? I know I’m over paying for the hype and Stromer wants to stay on top of the world with this price tag, but again how much in your opinion are they hiking up the price for this cause?

And lastly, do U.S customers get a lower watt output than other countries? I don’t get the (650 watts u.s) note they leave on the specs. Are they really making a different less powerful motor because of us regulations.

Thank you so much if you reply, I play professional soccer in Major League Soccer (MLS), I would love to give you and your friends complimentary tickets anytime, your reviews have been massively helpful.

  Reply
Court
1 year ago

How cool! I’d love to see a game sometime Juan. Do you guys ever plan near Los Angeles, CA? Anyway, it’s hard to put a number on how a product might be overpriced. There is so much that goes into design, shipping, merchandising at retailers, support, etc. and there are also marketing expenses. It all adds up, but my guess is that the ST5 costs similar to the ST1 X model, which is $5k MSRP. I’m thinking, these ebikes probably sell with at least a 30% margin for dealers and the manufacturer gets a 30% markup too… so that’s $2,500. I’m guessing the ST5 costs in the neighborhood of $3k for Stromer to produce, now that it has been developed… but that’s not counting all of the R&D or other expenses to make, deliver, and sell it :)

  Reply
Jim
7 months ago

With overhead I would bet it costs close to 4k when all is said and done. Maybe even more because of the components being used. That being said there should be plenty of negotiating room at the dealer. If someone was a friendly persuader especially if the shop owner was a soccer fan I could see this bike being bought for a relative bargain compared to other bikes on the market.

Juan
1 year ago

We/ve already had our 2 away games in L.A this year. Won’t have a game there until next year but I will be sure to keep in touch and let you know. And, before I purchase. What are the things that the “ST6” let’s say might have in 2 years? Like how much better can the ST5 bike improve? It’s already at peak amount of Watts for the U.S. Maybe a few more newton meters of torque, but they can’t go past 750 watts anyway. A belt drive instead of a chain? Lighter Weight? (Weight even really matter on this thing?) 52v battery maybe? There much more they can really improve on this bike? Or is it like the past 2 iPhones where it’s kind of not much of a difference? And, lastly if you had insurance on the bike (you’ve tested the omni security system) are we cool enough yet to travel without locks and just leave it hanging there with confidence? That would be a really cool futuristic thing but you seem to be the only one that’s really tested the security system. Thanks Court, Juan

  Reply
Court
1 year ago

Hi Juan! Great questions… I do think that in many ways, we’re at the point where improvements become incremental and more like refinements. Perhaps we could see a belt or a lighter battery, maybe as Lithium-ion cells become more advanced, we could even see the frame change a little. The OMNI display and security system is already ahead of the pack in a big way, but I’m not sure I’d be comfortable leaving the bike unattended because the general population probably doesn’t know that it’s tracked and you could end up with a big hassle trying to get it back or the would-be thief could just abandon it on the side of the road or toss it into a ditch or something. I’ll probably be reviewing another Stromer later this year but am not sure it’s much different than this one… it’s not an ST6. I’ll keep you updated on whatever I find :)

  Reply

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