Lightweight Power: TQ-HPR50 Motor Test
Is this the future of motors?
TQ-group is a German company that makes many types of motors and have for many years had available on the market the TQ HPR 120S motor, which has the largest torque currently available of 120nm on a street legal pedal e-bike. This can be found on two brands of bike Spitzing and Haibike. So TQ have now drawn a solid line in the sand with this new light weight motor the TQ-HPR50, it is a significant development for TQ and for the e-bike market. The size and power to weight ratio of the TQ-HPR50 it is arguably the best on the market today. The secret to this system is the Harmonic Pin-Ring transmission.
TQ HPR50 Motor Test Video
Torque 50 NM
Remote Bar mounted
Weight 1,850g (4.08lbs)
Battery 360wh 1,830g (4.03lbs)
Display 2″ with ANT+
This thing is tiny compared to every other motor out there. Design perfection for frame builders to develop around.
Inside is interesting, looks low maintenance to us, is this the perfect base for more powerful motors in the future?
On specifications alone this motor might not be too dissimilar compared to other lightweight motors, however the actual package is very different. As observed on the Trek Fuel EX-e the first production bike to use this motor, there is very little change to the bike compared to a standard mountain bike when it comes to functional design, geometry and interfaces.
The display is clear to read and embeded in the top tube.
The real difference though is the fact the motor is barely a few inches across in circumference, which means the frame designers have significantly less limits on the geometry and frame forms they can use. Other light weight motors come close but the TQ stands out head and shoulders above the competition as the frame resembles a normal MTB when seen next to it’s electric version.
The whole system is powered by TQ’s 360 Wh battery.
After some limited but spirited initial rides before we went to press, we felt that we had a significant idea of how this motor would fit into the market. Trek as the first brand to use it have made an excellent choice as immediately their product sits as a benchmark to be compared against. What was more immediate in the experience was the fact that a motor with a size between the TQ HPR120s and the TQ-HPR50 might be the magic motor that storms the market in the future and gives the other motor makers a huge run for their money. Competition for the future of electric transmissions is going to be fierce and this latest idea is going to gain a lot of traction, (no pun intended) when people wake up to the low noise and smooth feeling operation.
More on this motor in our February issue of Electric Bike Action Magazine