Mahle x20 ebike. Introduction

Best Electric Road Bikes: 7 Picks for All Budgets in 2023

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Close your eyes and imagine what an e-bike looks like and your mind probably won’t be drawing a road bike. You’ll probably think of a hybrid, a cargo-bike or mountain bike.

Road bikes joined the mass e-volution of electric bikes slightly later. Perhaps there was less need for pedal assistance as road bikes might have been seen to represent the pinnacle of human-powered transport.

But road bikes are great e-bikes, especially for long rides, for going up hills you might never have considered and generally riding further, not necessarily harder. Their design has moved closer to the traditional looks of the road bike than at any time previously. This guide should help you find the best road electric bikes.

What is a Road Electric Bike?

A road e-bike is a road bike designed and engineered to offer electric pedal assistance when a rider requires it. Road electric bikes have featured somewhere down the queue in terms of sales, research and development. This might be because there are other, more suitable, egalitarian uses for electric power when it comes to bikes.

Sure, the road bike might possess more ‘thoroughbred’ kudos than other bikes. The perception is that road bikes are used by those riders who prioritise fitness and goals over outside assistance. And roadies have the reputation of being lycra-clad weekend warriors for whom pounding the roads with pedal power might be their only exercise. The road bike might not be their main form of transportation – for work or for commercial purposes.

Other bikes like commuters, city bikes, Dutch-style bikes and of course mountain bikes, have called for electrical support first. But a road electric bike has loads going for it. If you want to cycle further than before, tackling more and steeper hills whilst benefitting from all the fitness perks and speed of road riding, then an e-bike might be for you.

And road electric bikes are slimmer and more hidden than they ever have been. Super-sleek batteries slip inside the bike’s down tube or in some cases are camouflaged as a water bottle!

Many of the batteries we’ve seen on road e-bikes cannot be removed without removing the bike’s bottom bracket. So that’s great for security but will require more specialised kit and effort for maintenance and servicing.

Buttons and controllers are minimised so as not to affect the aerodynamics and manufacturers are clearly committed to mimic the styling and aesthetic of a regular road bike.

Charging can be as straightforward as other electric models although there is more call for road bikes with their hidden batteries to be fully plugged into the wall – bike and all. You don’t often see monstrous 500Watt or 1,000Watt motors strapped to a road e-bike, despite their huge potential for torque.

The electric road bike shouldn’t necessarily need these big boosts of power. Pedal-assisted speeds are limited in the UK / Europe to 15mph with the motor only operating during pedalling and 20mph or 28mph in the USA. For that reason, you might expect to see more road e-bikes with a rear hub motor than the crank-based version more often seen on commuter and city bikes, where more torque is needed.

A small rear hub creates a more natural feel than a crank-based system and helps the aesthetic, weight and balance of a road bike. It’s fair to suggest that you might spend more time on a road bike out of the pedal-assist mode and so having a similar feel to an acoustic bike sensation will be important.

Components elsewhere on the bike are just the same as their ‘analogue’ siblings in the same range. As you’ll see, the major worldwide global road bike brands have been quick to adopt electric versions of their entire range of road bike models.

A Filante SLR lookalike

The frame weight of the Filante Hybrid isn’t much heavier than its non-assisted sibling. Oscar Huckle / Our Media

A development from the Cento10 Hybrid, Wilier says the Filante Hybrid is not only lighter in weight but also more aerodynamically efficient. The Filante Hybrid closely resembles the Filante SLR, the brand’s lightweight aero road bike used by Astana-Qazaqstan. It too uses a full-carbon frame, with Wilier claiming a 1,100g frame weight in an unspecified size, 230g heavier than its non-assisted sibling. Unlike the Filante SLR, the carbon construction of the Filante Hybrid isn’t combined with the brand’s Liquid Crystal Polymer, which Wilier says is a special fibre incorporated into the frame that adds vertical elasticity and torsional stiffness.

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The Filante Hybrid can accept slightly larger 32mm rubber compared to the 30mm road bike tyre rating of its flyweight sibling. Both bikes share the same aero seatpost. The integrated bar-stem is carbon and mimics the aero design of the one found on the Filante SLR. Our size-XL test bike has a 125mm stem length and 430mm handlebar width.

The geometry isn’t quite as aggressive as the Filante SLR, with a higher stack and shorter reach. A size-medium Filante Hybrid sports a 379mm reach and 566mm stack, compared to the 388mm reach and 538mm stack of the Filante SLR.

What is Bike of the Week?

Every fortnight, we’ll bring you a detailed first look at one of the latest bikes (or framesets) to arrive at BikeRadar HQ – from road to commuting, gravel to enduro, and anything in between. This is our chance to introduce the bike and everything that makes it unique before hitting the road or trails. Head to our Bike of the Week hub for previous editions.

A refined motor and battery system

Mahle’s X20 electric bike motor is at the heart of the Filante Hybrid, claimed to provide up to 55Nm of torque. You can configure the system via the Mahle app. The battery that powers the hub motor is integrated in the down tube and has a 236Wh battery capacity. Wilier claims the battery life is around 100km with 1,000m of elevation. If that’s not enough, an additional 171Wh battery can be installed on the seat tube bottle cage. There’s also a new torque and frequency sensor at the bottom bracket, which communicates with the motor. Wilier says the way the assistance is delivered is more progressive because it’s based on the power you’re putting into the cranks. The X20 hub motor is claimed to weigh 3.3kg and has 24 holes to accept straight-pull spokes. Unlike other systems, the bike uses a conventional thru-axle. Wilier has achieved this by integrating a slider with a built-in electrical connector to ensure the hub positions itself directly in contact with the battery without the risk of misalignment.

MAHLE SmartBike Systems in Eurobike 2022

The charge port is integrated neatly into the junction of bottom bracket and down tube. Oscar Huckle / Our Media

The charging point for the system is found at the junction of the down tube and seat tube. The Pulsar One 2.1in display sits in front of the integrated cockpit and connects via ANT to the X20 system.

Mahle’s ‘iWoc’ button is located flush on top of the bar-stem, enabling you to turn the system on and off and monitor your remaining battery life. You can also change between the four pedal assistance modes – ‘Automatic’, ‘Eco’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Boost’.

A spec fitting for the price tag

Our test bike in this classy ‘Silver Glossy and Matt’ colourway comes equipped with a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9200 groupset. The bike features a 50/34t crankset and an 11-30t cassette. Wilier specs its own SLR42KC carbon wheels. They have a 21mm internal rim width and are claimed to weigh 1,587g for the pair. The tubeless-ready carbon rims are paired with Wilier’s own aluminium 7075 T6 hubs, which come specced with Japanese brand EZO’s sealed cartridge bearings.

This bike in this spec retails for a heady £11,800/€12,300 and the range starts at £8,940/€9,300 for a Shimano Ultegra Di2 R8170 groupset and Wilier’s HY-NDR28AC aluminium wheels.

General Overview

You have bought an eBike that includes a MAHLE X20 SmartBike System. This system is designed to support you while you are pedaling under the regional regulations of your country for this application. The X20 is composed of:2.1 SpecificationsMain Component Specifications2.1.1. X20 Drive Unit

  • R142 O.L.D. and Thru Axle (12 mm)
  • 28 Straight-pull spokes
  • 14G Standard
  • Nominal voltage CA: 42 V
  • 55Nm (Compared to Mid Drive)
  • Compatible with 140mm flat mount calipers
  • Max. Speed: 25km/h or 20 mph (Limited per region)
  • Automatic Motor Connection System
  • Standard Freewheel installation
  • CAN BUS Interface
  • Water ingress protection: IP66
  • Weight: 1,399 grs (without freewheel)
  • Nominal voltage CC: 6V
  • Designed for press-fit BB shells
  • 4 different models available (Dimensions depending on the version and standard used)
  • Cadence and torque reading
  • Compatible with all spindles on the market
  • Mixed press-fit and threaded mechanism
  • 92 mm wire to battery
  • CAN BUS Interface
  • Water ingress protection: IP54

2.1.3. iX250 – X20 Internal Battery

  • Nominal voltage CA: 25-42 V
  • Voltage charging current CC: 42C – 2.1A / 4A
  • Capacity: 236Wh / 36V
  • Dimensions: 469.5 x 49.6 x 41.8 mm (LxWxH)
  • CAN BUS Interface
  • Water ingress protection: IP66
  • 2 HMI Accessories connectors
  • Light support 2A/6V (12W)/12V (24W) USB 2A/5V
  • Weight: 1,500 grs
  • Nominal voltage CA: 25-42 V
  • Voltage charging CC: 42C – 2.1A / 4A
  • Capacity: 350Wh / 36V
  • Dimensions: 469.5 x 51 x 52 mm (LxWxH)
  • Water ingress protection: IP54
  • CAN BUS interface
  • 2 HMI Accessories connectors
  • Light support 2A/6V (12W) /12V (24W), USB 2A/5V
  • Weight: 2,250 grs
  • Voltage CC: 6V
  • Ambient temperature: 60 C /.10C
  • Dimensions: 73.1 x 28.2 x 18.9 mm (LxWxH)
  • CAN BUS, ANT and Bluetooth® Interface
  • Water ingress protection: IP54
  • Weight: 32 grs

2.1.6. X20 Dropout Drive Unit Connector

  • 6-pin connector with poka-yoke connection
  • Water ingress protection: IP54
  • Weight: 24 grs

Mahle eBikeMotion x20

mahle, ebike
  • Nominal voltage AC: 90-246V, 50-60 Hz
  • Nominal voltage CA: 42 V – 2.1A / 4A
  • Voltage charging CC: 42C – 2.1A / 4A
  • Ambient temperature: 90 C /.15C
  • Dimensions: 187 x 90 x 44.4 mm (LxWxH)
  • Water ingress protection: IP20
  • Weight: 690 grs

2.2 Compatible eBikesThe X20 System can only be assembled on eBikes which were designed for the integration of X20 components. An aftermarket- or retrofit application is not possible. The eBike need to pass all the certifications and homologations required by the specific regions in which the bike is going to be sold. Please check the official MAHLE SmartBike Systems website in order to access our most updated list of eBikes on the market with our X20 System:Website:

Operation and use

  • Europe: EN15194:2017
  • US / CAN (in progress!!): UL2849, UL 1310 (battery charger)
  • Australia: EN15194

Our product is designed under the requirements, which the standards established for being used in EPAC applications and certain environmental conditions in which this kind of applications may be used like rain, salty areas, mud, etc.The MAHLE X20 System overachieves what the standards require, but please also pay attention to what the eBike manufacturer specifies regarding the system integration and design information. Pay special attention to:

  • Mounting and dismounting of the rear wheel, the PAS and the torque sensor inside the bottom bracket.
  • Clean the system only under the specific MAHLE recommendations inside this manual. Never use a power washer to clean your eBike or the electronic components of your eBike.
  • When storing your eBike ensure a sufficient SOC of all batteries.
  • Normal: Everything is OK.Systems shows SOC and current assist level
  • Alert: Head Unit line flashing ORANGE.System does carry a level of malfunction, but your riding and assistance are not restricted.
  • Warning: Head Unit line flashing RED.Malfunction that limits the assistance. Ebike propulsion system is shut off. In this case, please reach out to the MAHLE SmartBike Systems Service or your local dealer

The list of error codes is attached at the end of this document.3.3. Operation3.3.1 Switching the system ON / OFFSwitching the system ONPress the button of the Head Unit onceto turn the system on. The LED of the Head Unit will light up and ‘’hello’’ will be displayed. If everything is in order, the LED will display the battery charging status in white (SOC).Switching the system OFFTo switch the system OFF, simply press and hold for 2 seconds the button of the Head Unit until the LED shows a Goodbye animation. The LED will turn OFF after the animation.3.3.2 Automatic System Switching OFFTo save battery, when there is no speed and the smartphone with the APP is not connected, after 5 min, the system will switch OFF automatically by activation of the Power Safe Mode. At any time, the system can be switched ON again by following the normal procedure. This auto OFF process also occurs while charging process when the inner battery reaches 100% of SOC3.3.3 Change the assist levelThe assist levels can be changed through different methods:Control the assist level using the Head Unit To increase the assist level, briefly press the button on the Head Unit. The assist level of the eBike will increase.Once you reached the highest assist level, by pressing the button, the system will start the cycle again assist-free. NOTICEThe system does remember the last selected assist level before the bike was switched off. If an error occurred before the bike was switched off, the assist level will be 0.Control the assist level using e-ShiftersThe system will allow to optionally add electronic shifters. The e-Shifters are based on 2 small micro buttons that can be installed on your handlebar. If these 2 remote buttons are connected to the Head Unit, you can also control the assistance of the eBike using the micro buttons when the eBike system is switched ON.

mahle, ebike

NOTICEThe eBike manufacturer can configure or change the functionality of the Left and Right remote buttons. The functionality is set by default during the manufacturing process. For more information on this product, check the manual included in the e-Shifters or download it from the website: www.mahle-smartbike.comControl the assist level using Pulsar ONE display Your system can be used with the wireless Pulsar ONE display. The display has all information such as speed, current assist level, batteries SOC, time, distance, power, etc. The Pulsar ONE and your eBike communicates automatically through ANT. The Pulsar ONE display comes with 3 buttons – a small one in the middle and two big ones on each side. With this accessory, you can also control the assistance of your eBike, by using the left and right buttons on your Pulsar ONE display, when the eBike is switched ON.


4.1. Pulsar ONE displayPulsar ONE is an ANT eBike computer developed by MAHLE specially designed to be used with ANT compatible MAHLE systems (X35 or X20). The Pulsar ONE connects wireless to the eBike system using the ANT LEV communication protocol (Light Electronic Vehicle – all new MAHLE systems are fully compatible).The 2.1” wide screen lets you see vital information about your eBike system such as battery level, assistance level, light system status, range and errors, as well as basic riding information such as speed or time. This information is complemented by additional essential data for any rider, such as average speed, maximum speed, ride time, ride distance, eBike odometer, heart rate, cadence, etc.Pulsar ONE displaySKU: 330 100 000 00 000Includes display, Screen protector, battery CR2032 and user manual.

  • 2.1” black white LCD with 3 buttons
  • Wireless connectivity by ANT
  • Waterproofness IP67
  • Battery type CR2032 (Included)
  • Certifications (CE, FCC, IC, KCC, Telec and RCM) ANT LEV, HR, CAD, PWR, CTF
  • Dimensions (57.7 mm x 41.1 mm)
  • Weight 28 grs (with CR2032)

Mahle X20: ultra-light motor for e-bikes presented

Unfortunately, if you don’t have enough money or a suitable parking space, you can’t participate in the electric car boom. Nevertheless, you can become part of electromobility, and on two wheels. E-bikes are becoming more and more popular, as they take their riders to school, university or work without much effort, but with plenty of fresh air. But modern bikes almost all have one Achilles’ heel in common. They usually weigh a lot. That’s about to come to an end, if the drive experts at Mahle have their way. That’s because the company has launched a brand-new drive system that, thanks to its lighter weight, should also be able to make e-bikes lighter.

A total weight of 3.2 kg

Even high-priced electric bikes sometimes bring so much weight on the scale that you can not just carry them up or down the basement stairs. That’s where the newcomer from Mahle comes in just right. The so-called X20 is said to weigh just 3.2 kg in total. This weight is made up of the motor, control unit and battery.

The company could thus succeed in eradicating the main cause of heavyweight e-bikes. But the automotive supplier from Stuttgart does not only seem to attach great importance to low weight. The X20 also sounds promising in terms of user comfort. After all, the rear wheel can be detached from the frame with little effort. For this, probably only a simple click is needed.

A lot of power

Despite its low weight of just 1.4 kg, the Mahle X20 hub motor should be able to offer a lot of power. According to the manufacturer, for example, 23 Newton meters of torque are inside. Of course, other manufacturers such as Bosch offer more here. However, it is not only worth taking a look at the pure torque when it comes to e-bikes. The type of motor is also important. Since the X20 is a hub motor, you should be able to compare its performance with that of a classic mid-mounted motor, which offers 55 Newton meters. But Mahle does not only come up with a low weight and high performance.

The features should also be able to convince. First of all, it’s worth taking a look at the battery. Unfortunately, we don’t know exactly how big it is yet. However, the manufacturer will certainly comment on this soon. What is already known is that the battery of the e-bike can also be used as a power bank. All you need is a suitable docking station. The desired electronic device can then be conveniently charged. The charging time also sounds promising. Within just 60 minutes, you should be able to charge the battery to 80 percent.


The e-bike world is always evolving with new technology being constantly developed. German company Mahle has been a big contributor in this field for years now. Their innovative X35 ebikemotion system has been the mainstay of lightweight e-bikes and in particular electric road bikes since it was first seen on the Orbea Gain D50 way back in 2018.

Since then the X35 ebikemotion system has been adopted by most of the major brands and can be found on Scott, Cannondale, Ribble, Colnago, Wilier, and many more, high-end electric road bikes.

X20 vs X35 What’s Changed?

When will the Mahle X20 be available?

The new Mahle X20 is available now on a small selection of electric road bikes. Although these aren’t available at UK dealers yet, I expect it will be some time before supply starts to trickle through. I expect over time, the X35 will be phased out and replaced by the X20. Below I’ve listed some of the e-bikes this new system is available on now.

Scott Addict eRide

The latest 2022 version of the Scott Addict eRide will have the new X20 motor fitted. I’ve checked with some suppliers and it’s not available to buy right now but should be available in the not-too-distant future. Weighing in at just 10.75kg, it’s going to be one of the lightest e-road bikes on the market.

Wilier Filante Hybrid

Wilier is another early adopter of the new X20 system. The Wilier Filante Hybrid looks gorgeous and will also come in at under 11kg. As with Scott, I haven’t been able to find any dealers with this in stock yet, but I will update this article as soon as I know.


The Mahle X20 system looks like a big step forward in the search for the ultimate electric-assist system for electric road bikes. It won’t just be limited to e-road bikes and I’m certain it will be used on electric gravel bikes and lightweight urban e-bikes as well. I’m looking forward to trying this out as soon as possible so I can give you my thoughts.

If it’s as good as it looks, it is going to take electric integration to a new level. This new system will help keep the wheels turning. I’ve witnessed, first-hand the positive effect of the X35 motor keeping passionate cyclists on two wheels in their 70s and beyond.

Meet Tony, a passionate e-bike advocate and enthusiast who discovered the life-changing benefits of electric bikes back in 2016. Tony’s technical experience within the e-bike field was gained while running a successful electric bike conversion business for 5 years in his home county of Cornwall, UK.

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