So, yeah, I did some parking lot laps on the new Specialized Turbo Levo FSR Comp e-bike while stopping in at my local bike shop (Timpanogos Cyclery). I know… blasphemous, right? Well, before you cast stones, let me take a step back and set the table a little bit. So, the plan was to zip in, get a few things and head out, but the manager twisted my arm.
“You want to ride it? Just head out on it… give it a go,” he said.
I hadn’t ridden an e-bike in years and the last one nearly dropped me off the back with its off-the-line torque. This one is different. For starters, there’s no throttle — nope (the Levo is not a moto). More accurate would be to call this one “pedal-assist” since you still have to pedal to get things going and you have to keep pedaling to keep it going. No pedaling equals no power. “Interesting,” I thought.
After some hot laps around the parking lot, I was impressed and found myself pedaling harder and harder to max it out. The harder you pedal, the more the assist kicks in — it’s addicting.
While I’m not going to advocate ditching your traditional bike and Strava is going to have to categorize e-bikes differently, but this bike has some merits:
- You still have to pedal it (albeit, it does significantly augment that)
- You still need some bike handling skills
- I could see this as a great route scouting machine
- Wives/significant others may appreciate a little extra boost
- Slower guys can keep up with their faster friends
I didn’t have a scale, but I’d peg this thing at around 50 lbs., so after powering it down it becomes a bit of a slug. The moral of the story is not to run out of battery on this one or you’ll get more than you bargained for.
Again, this was admittedly a couple of hot laps in the parking lot, but hopefully I can get some real dirt time to give it a full go.
More Info: Visit Specialized.com