Trek’s Discreet E-Bike Goes Alloy
Trek’s Fuel EXe e-bike took the off-road world by storm when it was launched towards the end of 2022. It was light, near-silent, robust and didn’t really even look like an e-bike, but delivered big-time on rideability. Just enough oomph to get you to the top of your favourite descent, repeatedly, and then all the flickablity and sweet handling of an analog trail bike when pointed downwards.
Initially, the Fuel EXe was only available in sleek carbon fibre – which helped with keeping the weight down, but the price, not so much. Cutting edge costs – and this ‘light’ -bike is the precursor to the Wisconsin firm’s trail bikes to come, non-powered, too. So it brings us joy to announce the alloy version’s arrival – the same dialled geometry, the same battery, motor and general rideability, just with a sturdier, less pricey aluminium chassis that will give riders just as much joy, and some change for an extra cortado after the ride.
The Fuel EXe Alloy is available in two models, in the South African market, both running the firm’s Alpha Platinum Aluminium frame material, a removable battery, internal routing and an alloy rocker link, matched with 140mm rear travel, and a cushy 150mm up front. The 360Wh battery will drive the 50Nm/250w continuous-power motor for two hours, two-and-a-half if you use ECO mode, mostly, and don’t dip into the 300W burst power that is available for short runs, and both models run as quietly and efficiently as their fancier stable mates.
The weight ‘penalty’ for the aluminium base is around a kilo and a half – not much of a factor on an e-bike and worth about R30k at the till – and might even suit the more reckless rider; carbon, while infinitely repairable, doesn’t like being crashed a lot. A badly-angled rock or tree strike can do considerable damage, where alloy is a little kinder. Ride hard, repeat. If that’s your motto, the Fuel EXe alloy range might just be for you.
The Fuel EXe 8 is a trail-ready aluminium electric mountain bike that quietly assists you on the climbs so you’ve got all the power you need on descents. Like its carbon counterpart, it looks and handles like a traditional trail bike, but with the added support of a tiny-but-mighty harmonic pin ring drive system with sleek top-tube display unit and compact remote. It comes ready to rip with upgraded parts where they matter most, like a FOX suspension package, wide Bontrager Line Comp Tubeless Ready wheels and a Shimano XT 12-speed drivetrain.
The Fuel EXe 5 is an aluminium electric mountain bike that brings all the tech of its carbon counterpart into a pocket-friendly package. It boasts the same tiny-but-mighty drive system that quietly disappears under you, plus a sleek display and remote. But what really makes this bike excel is its true trail bike feel that handles just like a traditional mountain bike, just with a little extra power.