BIKE TEST: HAIBIKE XDURO ALLMTN 8.0
Maybe the best e-MTB around!
Back in 1995 Haibike was born as a standard pedal bike brand. Fifteen years later they brought out the Xduro line of e-bikes, the very first-ever electric mountain bikes. Initially, they offered four models—full suspension, hardtail, cross and trekking.
Fast-forward to 2017 and they now offer over 50 different models. It has been split up until now, with anything designated “Xduro” using a Bosch motor (typically the Performance Line CX) and the “Sduro” designation meaning it uses a Yamaha PW motor, the latter being typically less expensive.
Unfortunately, they’ve decided to eschew that convention and now use the Sduro for the lower-end bikes and Xduro for the higher end. So much for clarity!
The Haibike AllMtn has everything you’d expect in a good all-mountain bike and some you might not. It features the Yamaha PW-X motor, which is finally coming to the U.S. Unlike the Bosch-powered bikes that use a 1x drivetrain, the Yamaha-powered bikes use a 2×10 setup, and that extra smaller chainring in the front can come in handy for climbs, because it also allows for a taller main gear.
This was only our second time ever on a bike with a Yamaha PW-X motor. The previous motor, the PW, was one of our favorites for its efficiency, long range and steady power, but it had a couple of disadvantages when compared to the Bosch CX. Whereas the latter would let you spin at a cadence of up to 120 rpm, the PW cuts off at around 90 rpm, regardless of wheel speed. It also has great torque from much lower rpm, but it didn’t have the same power output.
“Power to climb hill after hill to enjoy more trails and go
farther, which also means more time on downhill trails!”
The PW-X solves those issues on paper. The first time we tried the PW-X in Europe earlier this year, we hated it. The other OE had put their own software tweaks on the motor, and it made it entirely too torquey and ruined the range.
Riding this bike matches the real expectation we had for the PW-X. It’s incredibly quiet and has all the torque we expect, especially at starting cadence, and range that matches the previous motor. Add to that the fact that it’s a 25-percent higher-capacity battery, long rides don’t mean riding in Eco all day. Where’s the fun in that? Power to climb hill after hill to enjoy more trails and go farther, which also means more time on downhill trails!
One of our test riders remarked that the motor, with all that torque when you first start, can surprise you and lunge and put you outside of a turn in short order. With the power, there are times that you forget which gear you are in. We hit one short, steep climb and got up to the top and realized we were still in fourth gear!
WHO IT’S MADE FOR
The AllMtn is an all-mountain bike, and as such it will serve as a great overall mountain bike. If you don’t want a different bike for every type of riding you do, this is the beast to look at. For five grand, it’s a lot of bike for a reasonable amount of money.
It also has 150mm of travel front and rear, with a beefy 34mm Fox Float Performance air fork and a slack 66-degree head angle. It’s designed to be very controllable and forgiving over big bumps, logs, rocks and more.
A wide 780mm handlebar helps add some leverage and control, and the Yamaha LCD-X display sits behind the bars and is mounted to sit next to the stem. This protects it really well against impacts from almost any angle, and to keep it even safer, it’s in a rugged protective case.
This bike may have the most potential stopping power we’ve yet seen. It’s the first bike we’ve ever seen with Magura MT-5 quad-piston brakes front and rear. Most manufacturers just spec these for the front. The Schwalbe Magic Mary tires mated with these brakes offer an aggressive look with their large, beefy knobs and provide amazing traction for acceleration and braking. The Alex MD40 rims are tubeless-ready.
All our test riders agreed that the Magic Mary tires are our new favorites. They’re right on the edge of being a plus-sized tire at 2.6 inches, but because of the large side knobs, they look bigger. They have large knobs and provide grip for days; whether you’re powering up a steep, loose section or need braking power, they are fantastic. The size may be perfect. They don’t try to roll off cambered trails like a larger plus-sized tire can. There’s so much grip on the front tire that steering input almost feels amplified, offering the feel of a steeper head angle even with it only being 66 degrees.
he Alex rims are tubeless-ready, which is a good and bad thing. When it came time to fix a flat, it took real muscle to get the bead to break from the rim. You have to pull the tire hard to the side with one hand and push at the bead with the other hand. Once you get it away from the rim at any point, the rest goes easier. There was no way we could force the tire levers between the tire and the rim until we were able to muscle the bead away.
We once again appreciated the display being protected here, because it’s possible to flip the bike upside down to fix a flat. The display is small, which can be a good thing for crashing, but it’s hard to see when you are riding. The LCD-X offers colored LED lights to indicate what mode you are in, which makes it much easier to know without even having to look directly at the display.
One of our rides was 14 miles long with 1400 feet of climbing, and we weren’t being gentle with power use, and it used just over 50 percent of the power. That’s pretty impressive, especially considering the power output.
The Fox Float suspension is, in a word, plush! Fox has improved it with a one-piece EVOL air sleeve that improves responsiveness and sensitivity with a new valve design that improves both rebound and compression flow. The beefy 36 Boost fork is buttery smooth with great small-bump sensitivity.
The Shimano Deore XT drivetrain with an SLX Rapidfire shift lever glides lightly and crisply through the gears. The motor can go high cadence, but it’s much more efficient in the meat of the range, so you may still want to shift to a higher gear than you think you need to get the most out of it.
The AllMtn is a complete blast to ride. It handles the most technical terrain with aplomb, and we were confident to ride areas that scared us on most bikes. The geometry, the suspension, the motor—just everything on this bike works well together, and it outperforms many of the bikes we’ve ridden at much higher price points. Haibike keeps improving weight on their bikes. Our test bike weighed in at 50 pounds, and we recall similar bikes were at least 2 pounds heavier a couple of years ago.
We liked this bike so much that we voted it as the best bike of 2017 for the Interbike innovation of the Year awards. Yes, it’s that good !
SPECS: 2018 HAIBIKE XDURO ALLMTN 8.0
Motor: Yamaha PW-X
Battery: Yamaha 500 Wh
Charge time: 4 hours
Top speed: 20 mph (with assist)
Range: 20–35 miles
Drive: Shimano Deore XT
Brakes: Magura MT5, 203mm front/180mm rear
Controls: Yamaha LCD-X
Fork: Fox Float 34 Performance
Frame: 6061 aluminum, hydroformed, gravity-casting interface
Tires: Schwalbe Magic Mary
Weight: 50 lb.
Color choice: olive/orange/silver
Sizes: S, 41cm; M, 44cm; L, 47cm; XL, 50cm
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