TREK SUPER COMMUTER+ 9
Trek’s futuristic-looking Super Commuter is a practical electric bike that’s as fun to ride as any e-bike we’ve ridden and, in our eyes, currently sets the benchmark in this category. The beating heart is the Bosch Performance CX motor, which is situated beneath the cranks. The 500-watt battery is also positioned nice and low.
The Bosch Purion interface at the bike’s riser handlebar relays all you need to know about the motor, battery status and whether or not the integrated lights are on. Like other Bosch-powered bikes, the Super Commuter’s assistance can be tailored from barely noticeable through to its lively Turbo setting, which gives you maximum oomph but takes its toll on the battery.
We enjoyed the bike most in its Sport setting that makes getting close to the bike’s 25km/hr limit relatively easy regardless of gradient. Riders who want a purer cycling experience can turn the assistance down further or even off, but with a tad over 25kg to power with your legs alone, this option is reserved for the hardcore only.
A full charge will provide anywhere between 24 and 80 miles depending on the terrain and power setting chosen but, typically, you average around 40. The stout alloy frame and carbon fork are secured by bolted axles, keeping flex to a minimum and leaving suspension duties to the plump 2.4in Schwalbe Super Moto-X tyres.
Their balloon-like shape absorbs the worst from poor surfaces without losing significant feel, and the way they spread over the Trek’s wide rims elicits consistent, confidence-inspiring grip.
A pannier rack at the rear means there’s no need for a backpack, while full-length mudguards ensure you won’t have to dodge puddles. Trek’s Nuvinci hub gear is a quality component that’s controlled by a gripshift-style shifter. It takes a bit of getting used to but, when acclimatised, it works well. Less impressive are the Magura MT brakes that don’t offer the feel of some of their competitors.
Trek’s Super Commuter is genuinely practical enough to replace a car yet fun enough to leave your regular bicycle gathering dust. Quite simply, the only reason there aren’t more of these around is the hefty asking price. Sleek, stylish electric bike… but at a price