- One of the most iconic mountain bike frame brands, has finally added an e-bike
- Yeti only does high-end carbon-fibre and the 160E is a big-mounatin bike e-bike
- It uses the Shimano EP8 mid-drive motor and an impressive new six-bar rear-suspension linkage
In the world of boutique mountain bike brands, Yeti is revered.
The Coloradoan company only make mountain bikes. No gravel bikes. No aluminium frames. Only premium carbon-fibre mountain bikes.
Pricing is not shy, but with intricate rear-suspension systems, Yeti mountain bikes have won the brand a few Enduro World Series titles and established a very credible product niche.
The e-bike that had to happen
Although Yeti resists the move to more affordable alloy frames in its current range, there is no resisting the e-bike revolution. With global demand for e-bikes showing no sign of ebbing, Yeti has now relented and revealed its 160E – the brand’s first pedal-assisted mountain bike.
Rolling 29er wheels and featuring 160mm of suspension travel, the 160E is designed as an e-enduro bike. It will appeal to riders who aren’t afraid of nudging a front wheel over the edge, and dropping into those steep and technical descents.
Providing the 160E’s pedal-assistance is a Shimano EP8 mid-drive motor, which has been integrated into the frame design quite neatly, whilst a 630Wh battery pack nestles in the down tube, without creating a 'fat-frame' look.
The future of e-bike suspension?
Although some brands have shown battery packs up to 900Wh of power density in recent months, Yeti had opted for the 630Wh size. This configuration is more standardised and widely aviabale, if customers need a replacement.
Most mountain bikes with a vertical rear shock placement feature a four-bar linkage suspension. Yeti evolved this with its interpretation of a six-bar suspension design, adding a 'timing-bar' arm to help balance kinematics between the short upper and lower links.
Some of the other innovations are a thermoplastic handlebar, which neatly ports the display wiring and three geometry adjustment settings, all triggered by a simple flip-chip.