Electric Bike Action Bike Test: Cannondale Moterra NEO

THE MOTOR 

Our test with the Bosch motor highlights most of our thoughts about the Bosch system in general. With the 625-Wh battery, we found ourselves riding about 20–30 percent further or higher in general terms. The experience after 1000 kilometers was faultless, and the motor is showing signs of being a longevity king. Power delivery is optimal and complements this type of bike extremely well, on both the flat and on climbs. The motor is not super silent, but for us we felt reassured by its presence not being drowned out. 

The feeling of power in e-MTB mode is really good. There is almost no need to touch the power button if you want a more natural ride rather than just motoring along in turbo. Shifting on the Cannondale was good, and passing through the 25 km/h limit is now a much nicer experience than previous generations of the Bosch motor. Although on the Moterra, as it is a heavier bigger bike, you will need well-trained legs to maintain faster than 25 km/h cruising speeds. 

“The Moterra Neo 1 is a beast. It can absolutely go as fast as the rider is able, and we have yet to find the absolute limit of the bike.” 

The battery is housed in the downtube in a sleek manner and is fairly easy to remove for charging. It’s also possible to charge on the bike as well. You use a key to remove the battery. The charge time from empty on the 625-Wh unit was about 3–4 hours depending on how drained it was. 

The Bosch Kiox display is our only less preferred feature of the Moterra Neo 1. We would prefer a different mounting solution or the possibility of a bar-mounted display if we have to have one. We don’t like big displays in general; although, in this case, it also functions as a digital lock when you unclip it from its magnetic mount. Bosch told us that the display has been designed to be able to be mounted by other means as well, such as they provide bike makers the ability to make custom brackets. 

We would prefer it if the display could be mounted next to the stem rather than on it, making it easier to turn the bike upside down, plus keeping it from being knocked off when riding by a stray branch. Yes, there is the ability to fix it with a screw, but that for us means that we have to fiddle with it too much, and it loses the ability to “lock” the bike by taking it off.