While the last innovations with the Ride 50 from Fazua seemed more like a small update, the manufacturer from Munich is splashing out now with a novelty that has everything it takes to be a game changer — the new Fazua Ride 60 drive for e-bikes! This not only offers a more powerful motor, but also a battery with higher capacity at a very low overall weight. In addition, the new system can be integrated even more inconspicuously in e-bikes.
But from the beginning: The unique feature of Fazua’s drive system was its ability to remove the entire Drivepack — a compact unit consisting of battery and motor — from the bike. This meant that you could ride without the e-drive at all, making the bike correspondingly lighter. A feature that sounds quite tempting, but is rarely used in everyday life. Because, let’s be honest: an e-drive primarily provides a boost in terms of riding fun that you would rarely want to miss out on!
Lightweight and powerful
Fazua will also have been aware of this and now builds the new Ride 60 motor permanently in the bike. Means: it is now a “regular” mid-drive motor, but continues to stand out from the rest: Thus, it is not just very lightweight with only 1.96 kg, but also offers a decent torque of 60 Nm.
To put these figures into context, it’s worth taking a look at the competition: stronger motors like Shimano’s EP8, Bosch’s Performance Line CX or Brose’s Drive S offer more torque of 85 Nm to 90 Nm, but they also weigh between 2.6 kg and 2.9 kg. If you compare less powerful motors, however, the difference becomes even bigger: Bosch’s regular Performance Line motor offers a similar torque of 65 Nm as Fazua’s new Ride 60, but weighs a whopping 3.2 kg — and thus more than half as much. Specialized, on the other hand, can provide with the SL 1.1 a motor that is also 1.9 kg light, but its torque of 35 Nm is significantly lower.
Hardly visible and barely hearable
But that’s not all: also in its dimensions, the newcomer puts many other motors in the shade! While the previous Ride 50 drive was already quite inconspicuous, the Ride 60 can go one step further thanks to its firm integration into the frame. Thus, only a small area of the entire motor unit is visible with cooling fins below the bottom bracket, the remaining part is inside the frame down tube. As with the predecessor, Fazua achieves the compact design by rotating the motor by 90° to the bottom bracket — making the latter almost as compact as an ordinary bicycle bottom bracket. And the drive should also be quite close to the “analog” bicycle in terms of sound volume: Fazua emphasizes a “virtually silent riding experience” of the Ride 60.
Higher capacity for longer range
Due to the removable Drivepack unit of the Ride 50 drive there was quite limited space for the battery, which is why only a capacity of 250 Wh could be realized. Fazua is also setting a new course here with the new Ride 60 system, because the new battery now has a significantly higher capacity of 430 Wh. In addition, it is up to the manufacturers whether they want to install a fixed battery integrated into the frame or a removable battery in the future. The weight difference is only 100 g, by which the variant with permanently integrated battery is lighter.
In total, the Ride 60 system with motor and battery together now weighs a maximum of 4.26 kg – which is really very light! The predecessor model Ride 50 brought with less power and battery capacity 4.4 kg on the scale. And if you just look at the weight of e-bike drives, until now there was hardly any way around systems with hub motors: For example, the popular X35 system from Mahle weighs only 3.5 kg — but offers a comparatively weak motor with 40 Nm torque and a small battery with 250 Wh capacity, which is also permanently installed in the bike. Seen in this light, the new Fazua drive system offers a significant increase in performance and battery capacity with an additional weight of only 700 g.
Easy to use, inconspicuous integrated
Although the old Fazua drive could already convince in the test of the Canyon Commuter:ON in its riding characteristics, there were also some points of criticism. Among them was the lack of a way to charge the battery directly inside the bike — as you can do with almost all other e-bikes. Fazua has finally caught up here and the new battery can now be charged without having to remove it from the bike.
Basically, the development of the new system was focused on ease of use: so there is now still an LED display on the top tube of the Ride 60, the LED HUB. However, only information on the assist mode and battery status is displayed here, but there is also a new USB-C socket for charging the smartphone. The operation of the drive itself is now but always handlebars with the new RING CONTROL (in combination with the LED HUB): a compact and unobtrusive thumb button, with which the driving modes can be changed and light and push help activated. Optionally, there is also the CONTROL HUB, which bundles the functions of the two former parts.
Thanks to ANT+, Bluetooth and USB-C interface, the Ride 60 system can also be paired with the smartphone and Fazua’s app, which allows, among other things, the customization of the three assist modes Breeze, River and Rocket.
Finally: according to the specs and images, Fazua’s new Ride 60 drive system actually has what it takes to be a game changer: A powerful and quiet mid-mounted motor with a reasonable battery capacity that is sufficient, an unobtrusive integration and the light overall weight all come together here to form a complete system that should make (not only) attractive urban e-bikes possible.
The specs of motor and battery are likely to hit the current sweet spot — the ideal balance of power, range and weight. Not too much of anything, but not too little either. The power of the motor should be more than enough, at least in urban use, and its 430 Wh battery will also allow longer rides.
Due to the angular design of the new battery, the frames will also have to adapt in their shape — while so far the down tube of bikes with Fazua’s drive system has been almost round, this will probably get a more rectangular shape in the future. Canyon and Riese & Müller will be the first brands to release new bikes with the Ride 60 drive this year, with other brands to follow.
Whether these high expectations will be fulfilled can only be proven by tests of the final bikes. In addition, it is still unknown in which price range these bikes will be positioned. But until then, you can just enjoy the anticipation!
Update: the first bikes have now already been unveiled:
— Riese & Müller UBN Five and UBN Seven
— Canyon Commuter:ON and Roadlite:ON