Buyer‘s Guide to Specialized Electric Bikes
Specialized is among the leaders in electric bikes and building them to feel like a normal bike, but perform on another level. Read more on which Specialized electric bike might be right for you.
Specialized Electric Road Bikes
The electric road bikes from Specialized are built to feel like a regular road bike with the added boost up hills and through headwinds that comes with having an electric motor. Find the Specialized road e-bike that fits your riding style today.
Specialized Turbo Creo SL
The Creo is just like the unparalleled road bikes you’ve come to expect from Specialized with the capability to multiply your normal power output. Even though it’s an e-bike, the Creo still features a lively frame with nimble geometry that weighs in at a light 26.8lbs – pounds lighter than the competition.
Whether you’re wanting the base Creo SL for weekend tours on the tarmac or the Creo SL EVO for grinding gravel on fast forward, the Specialized Creo is the ideal electric road bike.
Specialized Electric Mountain Bikes
Specialized electric mountain bikes are designed to give you the power to ride more trails along with the typical ride qualities of their legendary mountain bikes. With a full power output that equals 4 times your own power and up to a 5 hour range, conquering every mountain trail is within reach.
Specialized Turbo Tero
The Tero is not just another versatile hardtail. It’s a stable, fun, and fast MTB that pairs rugged mountain bike handling with the capability that comes with its full power 2.2 motor. The Specialized Tero is just as comfortable on technical trails as it is hauling goods and urban riding.
Featuring an upright riding position for optimum control and top-notch components, the Tero is a great electric hardtail mountain bike for the cyclist wanting versatility.
Specialized Turbo Levo
The Turbo Levo is truly a one-of-a-kind full-suspension mountain bike. It pairs a nimble-yet-stiff chassis, with an ultralight 240-watt motor, and cutting-edge power supply. This combination creates an e-mountain bike that loves to get airborne, carve up technical trails, and allows you to chase more trails.
A Specialized Turbo Levo or Levo SL offers riders either 4x or 2x their pedaling power output and the SL build is about 10lbs lighter than the full-power build.
Specialized Electric Commuter Bikes
Living up to their motto of it’s you, only faster, the electric commuter bikes from Specialized are ideal for weekday commutes, running errands, and any other rides you might take when you ditch the car.
Specialized Turbo Vado
The Turbo Vado is meant to be your vehicle for life in that it’s as fast and versatile as your day-to-day requires. It features a ride-anywhere range of up to 90 miles and a power output as much as 4x your own pedaling power.
The Specialized Vado allows you to ride with confidence given its redesigned geometry, seamless amplification, and plush suspension seatpost. There are too many features to name that makes the Vado one of your best options for a doit-all electric commuter bike. Available also in a SL build.
Specialized Turbo Como
The Turbo Como is built to cruise. Whether your hauling your kiddo for errands, soaring along long rides, or just commuting to work, the Como is the ideal pedal-assisted ride. The bike comes steeped in anti-theft technology including a turbo system lock and a removable and lockable battery.
The Specialized Como comes in both a full power build and a superlight build with options for a step-through design for easy mounts and dismounts on both.
Electric Bikes for Kids and Teens – A Buying Guide and Top Picks
Electric bikes for kids are quickly gaining in popularity, and the technology powering them continues to get better and better. From electric balance bikes for motocross kids to electric commuter bikes and e-mountain bikes, kids ebikes are an incredible tool for enabling kids to go faster and farther than their little legs can carry them on their own.
Whether you have a future bmx star, a young child tackling longer distances, a teenager commuting to work, or you’re a parent looking to replace short car trips, there’s an ebike for that! Ebikes for kids vary widely in purpose, so understanding what to look for as well as what is available is essential to finding the right bike for your child and your family.
In order to help you find the best electric bike for your needs, we’ve broken this article into four sections. The first section is a buying guide that covers everything you need to know about buying an ebike for your child, and the remaining three sections provide tips and specific bike suggestions based on the age of the rider.
While we highly recommend reading our full electric bikes for kids buying guide, here’s are some quick tips and specific bike recommendations for those TL;DR folks :-).
Quick Tips for Buying a Kids ebike
(1) Be aware of your local laws and regulations: Many areas prohibit kids from operating Class II (ebikes with throttles) as well as Class III ebikes (ebikes with a 28mph max w/wo a throttle).
(2) Look for a bike with a torque sensor: Torque sensors allow the rider to control the speed of the bike with the pedals. Without one, pedaling slower will NOT slow down the speed of the bike, which can be very confusing and dangerous for kids.
(3) Say no to the throttle: Throttles allow kids to reach high speeds quickly without pedaling and should be avoided. Throttles on essentially all ebikes, however, can be turned off or removed after purchase.
(4) Pay attention to weight: ebikes can weigh up to 60 lb. (or more!) and can be a lot for an adult, let alone a child, to handle.
(5) eBikes vs. electric balance bikes: Small electric balance bikes without pedals (such as STACYC) typically are not covered under ebike laws, but should still be used with caution.
The Best Electric Bikes for Kids
This list was compiled after extensive research as well as leaning heavily on our own experience with electric bikes. Unlike our other “best” lists throughout this site, we fully admit that we have not tested or personally seen all of these bikes.
details about these specific bikes are included in the age-based sections below. Like always, any additional feedback and suggestions are welcome in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев.
|3 to 5
|5 to 7
|5 to 8
|8 to 10
|10 to 12
|8 to 12
|Best all around eMTB
|8 to 12
|Ultimate eMTB for advanced riders
|Comes with light, fenders, and rear seat
|Peppy longtail ebike, holds two kids
|Holds up to 4 kids!
Electric Bikes for Kids – Table of Contents
Jump Down Menu – Click to Jump to your Desired Section
- Electric Bikes for Kids Buying Guide
- eBikes for Kids (Bikes with pedals – age 6)
- Electric Bikes for Toddlers and Preschoolers(Balance bikes – no pedals)
- Electric Cargo Bikes for Carrying Kids(Cargo-esque bikes that allow for a child seat)
eBikes for Kids Buying Guide
If you are new to ebikes, there is certainly a lot to learn! In this guide, we will be focusing on the features of ebikes that are particularly important for kids. While the specifics of battery life, battery volts, motor torque, and countless other ebike components are very important to the overall performance of the bike, they don’t necessarily affect kids more than adults, so we won’t be discussing them here.
For a more general reference about electric bikes, REI’s How to Choose an Electric Bike is a great place to start. For a deep dive into the electric systems of ebikes, ebikes.ca is a top-notch resource, while Juiced Bikes does a great job going into the specifics of batteries. Lastly, for reviews on adult ebikes (including some small enough for tweens and teens), electricbikereview.com is a great resource.
Why an ebike for kids?
Two words – distance and elevation. Electric bikes allow kids to ride their bikes for longer distances as well as tackle greater elevations gains. Based on our experiences with our own kids, ebikes can magically transform rides that were previously too hard, too long, or too boring… into exciting adventures that kids truly enjoy.
Electric bikes are very different than electric scooters. Many people balk at the idea of a child riding an electric bike as they envision kids zipping down the street without taking a single pedal stroke. While this is certainly possible, it’s not probable nor is it the purpose or design of ebikes for kids.
When given the right bike (kids don’t need a throttle!) and in the right conditions (longer rides or in hilly areas), kids can still get plenty of exercise on an ebike.
Kid-specific ebikes don’t have a throttle (more about this below) and require kids to pedal for the motor to even kick on. If they stop pedaling, the motor also stops. While many tweens and teens can technically fit on adult ebikes with throttles (Class II or III), many areas have regulations to prevent kids from riding an ebike with a throttle.
Class of eBikes
Prior to shopping for an ebike, it is important to understand the differences between the three classes of ebikes on the market. Many states do not allow kids under the age of 16 to ride a Class III ebike, while many states don’t allow anyone (even adults!) to ride Class II ebikes on bike paths and trails. Check out Bikes for People’s Electric Bike Laws to learn more about your state’s regulations.
The two main differences between the classes of ebikes are:
What is a bike throttle? A throttle is a lever or button that activates the motor of the bike without having to pedal. If a bike does not have a throttle, the motor can only be activated by pedaling the bike.
|Max mph assist
The motor on Class I ebikes cannot assist the rider above 20 mph max. While the rider can pedal to accelerate the bike faster than 20mph, the motor will stop providing additional assistance once 20mph is reached.
Class I ebikes also cannot have a throttle. The motor can only be activated via pedaling and the rider must continue pedaling in order for the motor to operate. Most ebikes sold in big-box stores are Class I ebikes.
All kid-specific ebikes are Class I, but for added safety, they typically have a lower speed at which the motor will stop assisting. For example, the kid-specific woom UP line maxes out at 12 mph and the Kent Torpedo at 17 mph.
Like Class I bikes, the motor on Class II can only assist up to 20 mph. The main difference is that Class II bikes have a throttle that allows the rider to turn on the motor and propel the bike forward without pedaling the bike. The rider can also choose not to use the throttle and to activate the motor via the pedals as well.
Stepping it up a notch, Class III ebikes can assist the rider up to 28 mph when pedaling, but only up to 20mph when using the optional throttle. Due to their higher speeds, Class III ebikes are the most regulated and in many areas are limited to street use only.
Ebike Sizing vs. Traditional Bike Sizing
Like regular kids bikes, ebikes for kids are sized according to wheel size. So if your child is riding a 24″ bike, they will likely fit on a 24″ kids electric bike.
Like all bikes, it is also important to take minimum and maximum seat heights into account as they can vary widely within a wheel size, depending on brand. If you aren’t sure what wheel size your child needs, be sure to check out our Kids Bikes Sizing Guide.
Currently, there are only a handful of child-specific ebikes on the market (in the US). The smallest bike we are aware of is the Kent Torpedo 20″, which has a minimum seat height of 27″ and can fit kids as young as 7. The Swagtron EB-6 20″ bike is a popular bike marketed as a kid’s bike, but it is too tall for most kids and with only 1 PAS mode, it is too fast for kids to ride safely.
Larger kids electric bikes are available from woom and Commencal, but they are designed for more aggressive trail riders, versus everyday neighborhood riders. With suspension and top-of-the-line components, these bikes are powerhouses on the trail but also come with a steep price tag that puts them out of reach for many families.
As a result, many older kids (tween and teens at least 5′ not riding on a mountain trail), will likely ride an ebike designed for an adult. Our page on Electric Bicycles for Women has many bikes small enough for a 4’11 – 5’0 kid rider.
The wheel sizes on adult electric bikes vary widely from 20″ fat tires to 700c street tires. As a result, the wheel size on adult ebikes cannot be used as an indication of the overall size of the bike.
Weight of eBikes
Ebikes are heavy! While the motor does help to compensate for the additional weight to get the bike moving, ebikes can still be significantly harder to maneuver than traditional bikes. This is especially true for tweens and teens riding adult ebikes, which can weigh up to 70 pounds.
Kid-specific ebikes tend to be a bit lighter than adult bikes, but they are in turn much more expensive. As a point of reference, the 3,750 woom 6 UP with 26″ wheels weighs 37.3 lb. while the 650 26″ Hyper MTN weighs 48 lb.
Like traditional bikes, lightweight ebikes tend to be very expensive. Don’t be surprised if entry-level ebikes don’t have their total weights listed. When researching for this article, reviews of specific bikes on YouTube and electricbikereview.com were helpful in providing information about the weight and overall size of the bike.
For adults carrying kids as passengers on an ebike, the total weight of the bike can be a lot to negotiate. Over the years, we’ve found Class II ebikes with throttles to be a gamechanger when riding with a heavy load.
Using the throttle to propel that heavy load forward from a standstill is significantly easier than attempting to do so by pedaling, even with pedal assist. Once the bike is moving, it is easy to maintain balance and momentum on the bike by pedaling and the throttle is no longer necessary.
Pedal Assist Modes (PAS)
A bike’s pedal-assist mode or PAS, determines how much “help” the motor provides while pedaling. Most ebikes have 3 to 5 pedal assist modes. The higher the pedal-assist mode, the more the motor will assist in propelling the bike forward.
The PAS modes are easily adjusted by pushing a button on the bike’s display on the handlebars, or on some bikes, the downtube. PAS modes can be changed at any time during a ride.
Pedal-assist modes work by altering the total output of the motor (watts). The higher the pedal-assist mode, the greater the percentage of output the motor will produce, and the less effort the rider has to exert on the pedals to propel the bike forward.
As a point of clarification, be aware that these percentages are the MAX percentages the motor or the rider can have on the total output (basically speed) of the bike. The bike does not need to reach “100% output” in order to move.
The % of the output from the rider, as well as the motor, can vary within the set PAS range. For example, on a bike with 3 PAS modes, in PAS 2 the motor can apply up to 80% of the output, while the rider can apply up to 20%. As a result, the higher the PAS mode, the less effect the rider’s pedaling has on the speed of the bike. In all PAS modes, however, the motor will stop providing additional assistance once the bike reaches its max MPH allowed for motor assistance.
Riding with PAS
The rider must continue to pedal at all times in all PAS modes. If the rider stops pedaling (even in PAS 5), the motor will stop providing output. The bike, however, will not stop as it will continue to coast like a traditional bike. (Note: If you are engaging the throttle on a Class II or Class III ebike, the throttle overrides the PAS and you don’t need to pedal.)
To stop the bike, the rider can stop pedaling and coast to a stop or simply apply the brakes, which automatically turns off the motor.
The “feel” of riding with PAS can vary greatly from bike to bike. Compared to higher-end ebikes, lower-end ebikes tend to be jerkier and can also limit the rider’s ability to control the speed of the bike with the pedals. These differences are the result of the bike’s ability (or inability) to regulate the rate at which the motor output is applied.
Some ebikes will automatically apply the max motor output for every PAS (for example, ramping quickly up to 80% output at the first pedal stroke), while others will slowly ramp up the output based on the pedaling of the rider (slowly increase from 0% to 80% based how hard or fast the rider is pedaling).
A bike’s ability to quickly or slowly apply power to the bike is determined by the bike’s PAS sensor. There are two main types of sensors – a cadence sensor, and a torque sensor.
Cadence Sensors vs. Torque Sensors
While the PAS modes control the max % of output the motor will produce, the sensors on the bike determine the rate at which that max % of output is applied. There are two main types of sensors – cadence sensors, and torque sensors. While seemingly minor, these sensors can make a huge difference in how the bike reacts to the rider.
A cadence sensor detects if you are pedaling (not how fast, but whether the pedals are moving or not) while a torque sensor measures how hard you are pedaling (~how much tension is on the chain). Lower-end bikes typically have cadence sensors, but higher-end bikes have torque sensors.
While riding both bikes is the best way to “feel” the difference between the two, we’ll do our best to explain the difference and why we highly recommend bikes with torque sensors for kids.
Cadence sensors act as on and off switches for the motor. Upon sensing a forward movement on the crank arms and pedals, the cadence sensor turns the motor on. Once the motor is on, it then applies output according to the PAS mode selected. The higher the PAS mode, the more output is available from the motor.
The cadence sensor, however, does not have the ability to determine how fast or how hard you are pedaling, it just looks to see IF you are pedaling in a forward motion. On a bike with a cadence sensor, you can be pedaling in a very low gear with NO tension on the chain at all and the bike will still be propelled forward by the motor.
As a result, the benefit of cadence sensors is that very little effort from the rider is needed for the bike to function, especially at high PAS levels. But on the flip side, since the sensor cannot monitor how fast or slow the rider is pedaling, it can be very challenging, or in some cases not possible at all, for the rider to control the speed of the bike with the pedals.
Regardless of how fast or how slow the rider is pedaling on an ebike with a cadence sensor, the motor will apply the max % of input based on the selected PAS mode. For example, if your bike has 5 PAS modes and you are riding in PAS 3 (60% motor input, 40% human) the bike will automatically ramp up to 60% of its motor output once the pedals start rotating. Slowing down or speeding up your pedal strokes will not affect the amount of output the motor is providing to the bike.
You can increase the speed of the bike by pedaling hard and adding to the 60% output the motor is already providing (the 40% rider output), but you cannot decrease the output of the motor by pedaling slowly. If you are already pedaling at a slower pace (so as to not add to the motor’s output) the only way to slow the speed of the bike is to decrease the PAS mode, brake (which stops the motor), or stop pedaling (which also stops the motor).
It can therefore be very difficult to ride at a slow speed on a bike with a cadence sensor, especially at high PAS levels. Whether you are spinning in granny gear or huffing and puffing in high gear, the output of the motor will remain the same.
For young riders, the lack of ability to control the speed of the bike with their feet can be VERY confusing and potentially dangerous. As a result, we highly recommend ebikes for kids with torque sensors (explained below).
While cadence sensors act as an “ignition” switch to the motor (turning it on or off), bikes with torque sensors take it one step further and essentially turn the pedals into a “gas pedal”.
By monitoring the amount of pressure applied to the cranks and pedals, a torque sensor allows you to slowly ramp up the output of the motor by pedaling faster and decrease the output by pedaling slower in all PAS modes.
So instead of quickly ramping up to the max % output in the selected PAS mode (like on ebikes with a cadence sensor), an ebike with a torque sensor will slowly increase the output of the motor according to how much tension the rider applies to the pedals (until it hits the max PAS %).
For example, if the selected PAS has a max output of 80%, the bike will feather the motor’s output from 0% to 80% depending on the force applied to the pedals by the rider. At a slow pedal rate, the motor may only output 20%, but as the rider pedals faster, the rate will increase until it maxes out at 80%.
So while bikes with torque sensors require more effort from the rider (the rider can’t just coast – they must apply pressure to the pedals), setting the bike to a higher PAS mode still allows the rider to get plenty of assistance from the motor by pedaling harder (like you would on a traditional bike).
As a result, like a traditional bike, an ebike with a torque sensor allows the rider to always be in control of the speed of the bike via the pedals. Want to go faster? Pedal faster. Want to slow down? Pedal slower.
The downside of torque sensors is that they are much more expensive to incorporate on a bike. As a result, ebikes with torque sensors are rarely found under 1,500 and are usually closer to 2,000.
Single-speed or Geared
PAS modes on a bike do not replace the gears. Like traditional bikes, gears on a bike allow you to alter how hard the bike is to pedal. The PAS modes on the bike adjust how much additional input the motor adds to your effort.
Gears are especially important when tackling steep elevation changes or technical terrain. If a bike does not have a “granny gear” to allow you to easily start pedaling the bike, the motor can’t kick in, regardless of the PAS mode you are in. As a result, if you stop on a steep incline you may not be able to get the heavy bike started up again. (Unless you have a throttle.)
On technical terrain, this is especially important as the PAS modes can’t help you power through a particularly rough part of a trail if the bike is in too hard of a gear to pedal. On an electric bike with a torque sensor (which most e-mountain bikes do), in order to get full input from the motor in your set PAS mode, you also need to be able to pedal at a decent speed.
If technical terrain or strong elevation gains are not in your plans, then a single-speed ebike with several PAS modes should suit you just fine. Bikes with throttles also typically don’t necessarily need multiple gears as you can always rely on the throttle to power you up a hill.
Keep in mind, however, that regardless of the class of ebike, the throttle can never accelerate the bike past 20 mph. Speeds beyond 20 mph require input from the rider via the drivetrain (you gotta pedal hard!), so gears are also essential for riders aiming for higher speeds.
Motor Placement – Hub vs. Mid-drive motor
The motor on ebikes can be located in three different places, (1) within the hub of the front wheel, (2) the rear wheel, or (3) at the bike’s bottom bracket (called mid-drive motors). Rear hub motors are the most common on low to mid-range ebikes, while mid-drive motors are standard on most high-end bikes. Front hub motors are not common.
Mid-drive Motor vs. Rear Hub Motor
For basic riding on paved surfaces, rear-hub motors do just fine. Bikes with hub motors are typically much cheaper than bikes with mid-drive motors, but they can throw off the weight distribution of the bike. As a result, for more technical riding, mid-drive motors are always recommended. In addition to being centrally located on the bike, they are also placed lower, thereby helping to lower the overall center of gravity of the bike.
Another benefit of mid-drive motors is that it is much easier to repair or replace the rear tire of the bike. With a rear hub motor, removing a rear wheel is certainly possible, it just takes a lot more time and effort.
The Best Electric Bikes for Kids (with Pedals)
From 8-year-olds taking on longer distances with their parents to teens needing a budget ebike to commute to work, we’ve done hours of research to find the best electric bikes for kids. While we have not personally seen all of these bikes, we have tested four different ebikes with seven different kids on a variety of trails.
The best ride for your child really comes down to your budget and how you plan on using it. Per our explanation provided in our buying guide above, we have not included any Class III ebikes. While we do not recommend bikes with throttles for kids, we have included several Class II on this list knowing that the throttles on essentially all ebikes can be removed.
We have also not included high-end kids eMTB bikes (with the exception of the woom UP which can be used as an eMTB and a commuter). From geometry to tires, suspension and brakes, there are a lot more variables to consider when shopping for an eMTB, but the basics outlined here still certainly apply.
If you are unaware of the importance of a torque sensor, please read our section about the differences in ebikes sensors above. Essentially, without a torque sensor, the speed of the bike cannot be controlled by the pedals.
Electric Bikes for Kids Comparison
|4’11 – 5’11
The Best Electric Balance Bikes
While electric balance bikes should never be a replacement for a traditional balance bike, they are great fun for tiny riders, especially future motocross or riders or BMX racers. From doing laps at the track to simply riding around the campground or backyard, these electric balance bikes can help instill a passion for riding at a very young age.
STACYC electric balance bikes (owned by Harley Davidson) are by far the best quality and most popular. While other cheaper brands have hit the market, most are significantly heavier than the STACYC line and don’t offer as many speed settings.
Compared to the similarly-sized Yamaha PW50 kids motorcycle, electric balance bikes are quieter, lighter, and significantly cheaper! Like the PW50’s governor, most electric balance bikes have several speed settings to limit the top speed for new riders.
|Bikes for ages 2 – 5
|14″ – 16″
|(3) 5, 7, 9mph
|30 – 60 min
|Bikes for ages 5 – 7
|19.3″ – 20.9″
|(1) 15.5 mph
|STACYC Brushless 16eDrive
|17″ – 19″
|(3) 5, 7.5, 13 mph
|30 – 60 min
STACYC bikes are also available under several other brand names, including Harley Davidson (who purchased STACYC in 2019), KTM, GASGAS, and Husqvarna. As far as we are aware, besides aesthetics, the bikes themselves remain the same across all lines.
Electric Cargo Bikes for Hauling Kids
From quick drop-offs at a friend’s house to skipping the pick-up lane after school, electric cargo bikes are a fun and fast way to get around the neighborhood! With the flexibility to hold everything from toddlers in child bike seats to a full-grown adult, your family is sure to get many years of use from an electric family bike.
There are many different types of electric cargo bikes (or trikes!) to consider. In addition to the information covered in our buying guide above, there are a lot of variables to consider. For an in-depth dive into the specifics of cargo bikes for families, we highly recommend checking out Bike Shop Girl’s Cargo Bike buying guide.
When it comes to your budget, higher-end bikes are typically lighter, offer better speed control via a torque sensor, as well as increased durability from the drivetrain and electronics. If your planned trips are within a few miles around your neighborhood, however, don’t be afraid to go for a lower-end cargo bike, such as the RadRunner Plus shown above. Although heavy and not as fine-tuned as other bikes, it works great for quick trips and after 100s of miles, we have no complaints!
|Bikes for 1 Child
|up to 50 Mi.
|Bikes for 2 Kids
|up to 50 Mi.
|up to 60 Mi.
|Tricycles for 2 Kids
|Ferla Family Bike
All bikes listed, except the Bunch Coupe, have a throttle
Natalie has basically been obsessed with kids’ bikes since 2010 when her oldest of three kids began riding a balance bike. After trying to convince everyone she knew about how amazing balance bikes are, she began Two Wheeling Tots. As a certified secondary science teacher, she loves digging deep into the why and how of kids biking. With her in-depth knowledge of the kids’ bike world, she has consulted with many top brands as well as contributed to articles at NY Strategist, the Today Show, and more.
Specialized Turbo E-Bikes Boast ‘Mission Control,’ Radar, Theft-Thwarting Motor
Specialized rolls out its next-gen Turbo e-bike collection with the Vado, Como, and Tero models.
Not that long ago, e-bikes seemed like a gimmick, a passing fad that functioned like a heavy sit-down motorized scooter. A couple of years of RD and quarantine, and suddenly, e-bikes are … cool? Sexy, even.
That’s certainly the case with Specialized’s new line of turbo-powered e-bikes. Launched and available worldwide beginning Sept. 21, Specialized offers three models: Como, Vado, and Tero. Each Specialized Turbo model boasts power, clever tech, and seamless integration.
“These new Full Power Turbo electric bikes are the smoothest, quietest, most powerful, and most secure ride from Specialized, perfectly suited for everyday commutes, workouts, and adventures,” the brand said in a press release.
Specialized Turbo E-Bikes
The company eyed three types of riders in designing its next-gen models.
The Como is its laid-back, step-through city bike built for cycling and e-cycling newbies or everyday runabouts.
Specialized couches the Vado as “the vehicle for everything from daily commutes to fast workouts to longer-than-planned adventures … designed to boldly take on the ever-changing landscape you’ll encounter as a daily rider, carry whatever you need it to, and keep you riding more often.”
Finally, the Tero is the brand’s all-terrain eMTB. “Tero’s strengths are the fusion of power, confidence, and versatility.
“Developed in concert together toward a single end goal, these attributes result in a strong, efficient, adaptable bike that is a joy to ride everywhere from city streets to backcountry trails,” Specialized said.
Turbo Power and Design
All three bike trims are available in standard (full power with 90-mile range) and SL (lighter, with a 62- to 80-mile range) and come complete with a 2.2 motor (90 Nm of torque) and a 710Wh battery for smooth, quiet operation regardless of speed.
Riders should expect top speeds between 20 mph (typical in class 1 offroaders like the Tero) and 28 mph (usual in class 3 commuters like the Como and Vado). range will result from lower ride assist settings. Specialized claims that the Turbo e-bikes produce up to four times more power than the human output on the highest rider-assist setting.
It also states that the acceleration feels natural thanks to intelligent suspension damping. A custom testing mechanism analyzes bumps to increase comfort and vision.
The brand pairs that precision with an E5 aluminum frame, an integrated downtube battery, internal cable routing, locking dropout, a suspended seat post, higher-volume tires, and an 80mm suspension fork.
It adds DRYTECH fenders, a LED front and rear light set, a front rack mount with lock, and a 60-pound-capacity rear rack compatible with child bike seats. And the e-bikes are rated to pull a thru-axle trailer.
Ride Intelligence and Smart Controls
Where Specialized’s next-gen e-bikes stand out may very well be in their programming. The MasterMind onboard computer and Mission Control Bluetooth feature comprise the bike’s neural command center.
MasterMind Computer and Mission Control App
MasterMind dually integrates with the bike’s local systems and the Mission Control smartphone app. The MasterMind operating system is the conduit for Cloud-based software updates, range-optimization tools, ride history, essential hardware and diagnostic stats, advanced tuning intel, and antitheft control. Users can even adjust the degree of ride assistance, all through a handlebar-mounted display and the app.
The app’s OTA software updates deliver improvements and new features on a rolling basis. “As we learn and continue to develop from a software standpoint, the bike gets better over time,” said brand leader Ian Kenny.
Antitheft Turbo System Lock
A Turbo System Lock and the Mission Control app make up the Turbo line’s antitheft feature set. The on-bike System Lock technology ties the bike’s tangible aspects to its intangible capabilities.
By tapping into System Lock via the Mission Control app, riders can place their bikes in a virtual Faraday cage, and they can do so from just about anywhere. The e-bike owner’s Mission Control account allows them to remote disable and re-enable the bike motor and computer, plus activate and deactivate the motion-detecting alarm.
Garmin Rear-Facing Radar
Garmin’s rad new rear-facing radar detection holds down the security fort and integrates with the handlebar display. Garmin indicated that the detector, which is primarily designed for automotive traffic but can detect other moving objects, picks up on moving objects from a distance up to 460 feet (140 m).
And, of course, what would Garmin be without a readout? The Radar routes visual, audio, and haptic notifications to the MasterMind computer. A glance down at the display can give the rider info about approaching vehicles’ proximities and speed.
As of Sept. 21, the Como, Vado, and Tero e-bikes are available in a number of finishes through Specialized and its many partner dealers worldwide. vary by model and range from 3,250 MSRP to 5,500 MSRP. Put some power in your ride over at Specialized.com.
Pedal-Powered Tax Credit: Senate Introduces E-Bike Rebate Bill
A bill that would offer Americans a refundable tax credit on electric bicycle purchases just hit the Senate floor. Read more…
Specialized Turbo Vado Review – 2022
We need to open this electric bike review of the Specialized Turbo Vado with a bit of an explanation. Most bikes we review come in a single version with a set price and then possibly some accessories that can be added. Every now and then a manufacturer might add an opportunity for an extra battery or a different size (or style frame) or even a different motor on rare occasions. The Specialized Turbo Vado is different and a bit more complicated.
The Specialized Turbo Vado is produced at five different price points: 3250, 3750, 4000, 5000 and 5500. Rather than taking a look at just one variant in the series, we’re going to give you an overview of the e-bike and why the top-of-the-line version costs 80% more than the entry-level model. They produce each of these different versions of this e-bike in both a traditional frame and a mid-step version (not quite as low as a step-thru).
Broadly speaking, at the 3250 price point the Turbo Vado is an incredible value in an electric bike, while at the 5500 price point it would be difficult to find a more sophisticated e-bike; one could spend more, but it isn’t exactly necessary.
E-Bike Category: Commuter
Who the Specialized Turbo Vado Electric Bike Is For:
The Turbo Vado is an ideal bike for anyone who wants a bike sophisticated enough to serve as a substitute for a car. From riding to work to picking up groceries, the Turbo Vado is secure, comfortable transportation.
Specialized Turbo Vado E-Bike Specs
- Battery: Specialized U2-710, alloy casing, state of charge display, 710Wh
- Expected Range:
- Charger: Custom charger, 42V4A w/ Rosenberger plug, 100-240V
- Motor: Specialized 2.0, 70Nm torque, custom tuned motor, 250W nominal
- Pedal Assist: Three levels—eco, sport and turbo
- Throttle: N/A
- Display: MasterMind TCD, w/handlebar remote, built-in anti-theft feature, Bluetooth connectivity, customizable display pages
- Headlight: Lezyne Ebike Hecto E65, 210 Lumen, 12V
- Taillight: Spanninga Commuter Glow XE, 12V
- Frame: E5 Aluminum, bottom bracket motor mount, fully integrated lockable downtube battery, internal cable routing, lock and front rack mount
- Fork: SR Suntour MobieA32, 80mm travel, lockout, fender-mounts, integrated light mount
- Fenders: Specialized DRYTECH fenders, 65mm width, aluminum fenderstay
- Kickstand: Specialized kickstand, 40mm mount
- Handlebars: Specialized, alloy, 15-degree backsweep, 46mm rise, 31.8mm
- Grips: Specialized Body Geometry Contour, lock-on
- Drivetrain: SRAM NX, 11-speed
- Brakes: SRAM Level, 2-piston caliper, hydraulic disc, 180mm 6-bolt
- Pedals: Specialized Commuter w/ grip tape reflectors
- Saddle: Rivo Sport, steel rails, 155mm
- Tires: Pathfinder Sport Reflect, 650Bx2.3
All ratings are relative to e-bikes of a similar style and price point
|Warranty Customer Service
In-Depth Specialized Turbo Vado Review
Specialized Turbo Vado Review: Comfort, Handling, and Ride Qualities
Specialized has built a reputation for making bikes that handle well. It can be hard to appreciate just how good a Specialized bike handles until someone takes a test ride. Their talent is to create a bike that feels stable and yet maneuverable, which sounds like saying someone is both short and tall, but is an accurate portrayal of what their bikes manage, and the Turbo Vado is no different. At speed, the Turbo Vado is assured and imparts confidence, but at lower speeds, like when threading parked cars and pedestrians, it is surprisingly agile.
Where comfort is concerned, this is one of the most comfortable e-bikes we’ve encountered. Not only are the tires wide to give a cushy ride, the bike includes an 80mm suspension fork and a 40mm suspension seatpost. The Turbo Vado isn’t a couch, but it’s close.
Specialized Turbo Vado Review: Motor, Battery, and Drivetrain Performance
Specialized works with Brose on their motors, which are known for smooth but quick acceleration. Because it’s a mid-drive motor the fact that the motor averages 250W isn’t a drawback and because it can forcefully turn with 70Nm of torque, the Turbo Vado is a very capable climber.
The 710Wh battery is estimated to deliver 40 Mi. of range in PAS 3 (turbo) and 87 in PAS 1 (eco), though our friends at Electricbikereport.com found that their test bike got 23 and 61 Mi. in PAS 3 and PAS 1, respectively.
While many of the e-bikes we review that are Class 3 also include a throttle, making them usable as Class 1, 2 or 3 rides, the Specialized Turbo Vado is strictly a Class 3 bike with a maximum speed of 28 mph, and no throttle. Some riders may see that as a drawback, but the amazing power of the e-bike in turbo mode means that even when tired, riders are unlikely to have any trouble getting home.
It’s worth noting that with only three pedal-assist levels and a maximum speed of 28 mph, the difference in assistance between eco, sport and turbo is not just perceptible, but absolutely distinct.
We see plenty of 7-speed drivetrains on more budget-oriented e-bikes and while they work serviceably, the jumps in quality to a 9-speed Shimano drivetrain (3250), SRAM’s 11-speed NV or GX drivetrain (4000 or 5000) or the Enviolo internally geared hub are all terrific values. At each increasing price point, the shifting becomes smoother, the steps between gears more reasonable and the gear range grows noticeably broader; each bike is a great value relative to its price.
Specialized Turbo Vado Review: Braking, Safety, Customer Service Warranty
As we mentioned, each jump in price results in a noticeable jump in quality. At 3250, the brakes are good quality Shimano hydraulic discs with 180mm rotors. At 4000 the brakes are SRAM Level, spec’d on many mountain bikes, while at 5000 and 5500 the brakes are SRAM’s 4-piston G2 brakes, which are powerful enough to stop the gravity jockeys. Those 4-piston stoppers are not, by any means necessary. Often, what makes someone comfortable with controlling a bike isn’t absolute stopping power, but the ability to modulate the brakes and alter how quickly the bike is slowing. The 2-piston brakes here will be plenty powerful for any rider.
We liked the tires on the Turbo Vado; the Pathfinder is a 27.5 x 2.3-in. semi-slick tire. Good tires are a balance of comfort and traction against fast rolling, and the Pathfinder rolls quickly without sacrificing traction and comfort.
Specialized integrates an app with its display to give riders an unusual amount of control over their e-bike. The Mission Control app adds safety features like the ability to disable the motor should the bike be stolen, as well as to track the bike’s location. To detail all the features Mission Control offers would require a review of its own (hmm).
Specialized offers one of the better warranties we’ve encountered in the e-bike world. The frame and fork are covered by a lifetime warranty, while all the Specialized-branded parts (thinks like the motor, battery, hubs, fenders and grips) are covered by a two-year warranty and everything else by a one-year warranty.
With one of the largest dealer networks in the world, Specialized has one of the best-oiled machines for dealing with warranty issues (which are negligible), and service. Buying an e-bike from Specialized is a bit like purchasing an insurance policy against a host of future problems.
Specialized Turbo Vado Review: Recommendation/Final Verdict
The Specialized Turbo Vado is a terrific bike, no matter which price point someone considers. To pick up our car analogy again, think of the different price points as trim levels. And while the base trim of many cars often lacks many of the features a model might be known for, the parts chosen for the 3250 version are solid. A fair comparison would be to equate the 3250 and 350 options with Hyundai, the 4000 with Honda and 5000 and 5500 versions with Mercedes.
As much as we like each of the price points for the Specialized Turbo Vado, our favorite is the 4000 edition, with SRAM Level brakes and NV drivetrain. The quality of the parts is very high and represents a notable saving over the two most expensive versions.
One of the very best features of the Turbo Vado is Specialized’s Mission Control app which provides a suite of terrific features, but none more valuable than the ability to track the e-bike and disable the motor in the event of a theft. We’re pleased to see that Mission Control is standard on all versions of the Turbo Vado, not just the pricey ones.
We’ve long respected Specialized’s bikes and the Turbo Vado is a terrific example of why they continue to be one of the leading bike makers in the world. Even the least expensive version of this e-bike will serve capably for many years and because Specialized has dealers most everywhere, including some craters of the moon, seeing this bike serviced won’t be a challenge.
Thank you for reading through our review of the Specialized Turbo Vado. Still have further questions? Wondering how it compares to a similar bike? Let us know in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев below!