The market of full suspension E-MTBs aimed at demanding terrain is growing tremendously; one bike, which fits exactly in this segment, is the Giant Full-E+ 1 offering a potent chassis and persuasive downhill performance. Reason enough for us to take a closer look and to put this e-bike to the test.
Contrary to most e-bike manufacturer in this segment, Giant does not rely on Bosch drive system, but instead they mount a specially built Yamaha SyncDriveC central motor with over 250 watts and a torque of 60 newton meters. The following test will let you know if the system proved successful and what else there is to know about the Giant Full-E+ 1.
Regarding the chassis, Giant relies on components by RockShox; they mounted a RockShox Revelation RL suspension fork with 140 mm of travel to the front, which can be lowered to 110 mm if necessary, and for road use and smooth climbs it is equipped with a lockout.
With its 127 mm of travel, the rear suspension is controlled by a RockShox Monarch RL shock. The shock is equipped with three different shock modes and can be locked out just like the fork. Regarding performance, both products definitely impressed us as they react precisely, without using too much travel. This allows the bike to stay plush on the trail while encouraging the rider to try some spirited maneuvers. Thanks to the fork’s efficient compression damping, the fork does not bottom out on steep sections and therefore provides a nice and secure feeling.
The German Alpine foothills often play the same game over and over again: Even though the mountains are well served with lifts, the entertainment of bikes is often not allowed. This is where the Giant Full-E+ comes in real handy; its powerful 250-watt drivetrain makes the climb to the awesome trails around Garmisch-Partenkirchen almost effortless. Particularly striking here is the high torque of 60 nm with 600 watts maximum power when compared to the competition. The rider may choose between three levels of assist modes, called “Eco”, “Standard” and “Sports” providing a speed of up to 25 km/h with “tailwind”.
Once seated on the bike, you instantly feel relaxed, the seating position is a nice compromise – sporting but still compact enough to finish longer tours comfortably. However, for the ones who put more emphasis on downhills, we recommend a slightly shorter stem as well as a slightly wider handlebar, as we consider this one a little too narrow at 680 mm.
There was nothing to complain about when looking at the flawless equipment by Shimano; the only reason for grief was the missing dropper seatpost – not least because of the limited lowering ability of the post into the frame: This is where investment into a dropper post that can be controlled via the handlebar would definitely pay off in order to achieve more riding fun and security on the trail.
With the Full-E+ 1, Giant has managed to introduce an extremely elaborate and well functioning E-MTB to the market. It scores with a superb chassis, well-made geometry and good equipment. Only the cockpit and the absence of a dropper seatpost slightly dull the overall impression but can be easily “upgraded” at your retailer.
Text & Photo: Christoph Bayer