From the farmyard to the world: based in Oberried, in the Swiss canton of Bern, the esteemed bike brand Thömus thrive on direct engagement with their customers. Right now their brand new Lightrider E1 is getting a bit of hype, so we were keen to see it up close.

Thömus Lightrider E1 | CHF 11,045 | 20.54 kg | Shimano

The team at Thömus have launched the all-new Lightrider E1 to meet the direct demands of their clients, meaning that each rider can customize the bike to suit their needs. Built around a super-lightweight carbon frame, our test bike came sporting the finest components available on the market. The 500 Wh battery is integrated into the downtube, from where it feeds not only the Shimano STEPS E8000 MTB motor, but also the first-rate Shimano XTR Di2 shifters. The matched 150 mm of FOX Factory suspension consists of a 36 FLOAT fork and an X2 rear shock (which takes some know-how to dial in the perfect setup – but once correct, it lets you revel in the ultimate damping performance). The rest of the spec list is equally as exclusive, although the narrow 740 mm bars are not ideal, as they are less than confidence-inspiring.

Weighing in at just 20.54 kg, the Lightrider E1 is noticeably the lightest, chirpiest bike on test, with a playful and agile ride that puts a grin on your face. The handling package has been honed to corner with precision and responsiveness, inspiring you to get airborne whenever possible. Its suspension is perfectly poised to perform on both long, lung-busting climbs and steep descents, seeing it willingly gobble up the burl on trails and glide over tricky root sections. The XTR brakes are satisfyingly powerful, although we’d question their stopping power on long descents and would consider upgrading to bigger rotors. In a size medium (447 mm reach), the riding position for our 180 cm test rider was fairly upright, but with a good dose of comfort, and we reckon you’d be very content to tick off the miles on board the Thömus.

Helmet Specialized Ambush | Jersey ION TEE LS SCRUB_AMP | Shorts ION BIKESHORTS SCRUB_AMP

The Thömus Lightrider E1 in Detail

Fork FOX 36 FLOAT Factory 150 mm
Rear shock FOX X2 FLOAT Factory 150 mm
Motor / Battery Shimano STEPS E8000 MTB / 504 Wh
Brakes Shimano XTR
Drivetrain Shimano XTR Di2
Seatpost KindShox LEV Integra
Stem Richtey WCS 45 mm
Bars Richtey MTN Low Rizer 740 mm
Tires Schwalbe Nobby Nic 2.8″
Wheels DT Swiss EX1501 Spline One

Packed
The roomy downtube is emblazoned with the brand name and is home to the 500 Wh battery.
On the small side
The XTR brakes perform well, but the rear’s 180 mm rotor isn’t up for long descents – we’d recommend upgrading to 200 mm rotors or even going for the Saint model brakes.
Integrated
The bike’s clean silhouette is even more refined with their choice of internal cable routing.
Complex
The FOX FLOAT X2 might be one of the best-performing shocks around, but it certainly isn’t easy to set up. To obtain the ultimate performance, you’ll need to dedicate some time to brushing up your knowledge. The best idea is to start on the FOX website.

The geometry of the Thömus Lightrider E1.

Conclusion

A real piece of beauty, the Thömus Lightrider E1 won acclaim across the board for its agility and directness on the trails. Its svelte carbon frame and high-end spec keep its weight to a minimum and will surely set hearts racing. But technical Swiss elegance like this has a price, and this one asks for upwards of 11,000 Swiss Francs. However, prices do begin from 5,490 Swiss Francs, so the Lightrider doesn’t need to be scratched from your to-do list just yet.

Strengths

– Very agile handling
– Beautiful frame
– Low weight

Weaknesses

– Price 🙁

For more information head to thoemus.ch!

For an overview of the test fleet head to the main article: What is the Best E-MTB of 2017? – 14 Models in Test

All bikes in test: BULLS E-Core Di2 FS 27,5+ | CUBE Stereo Hybrid 160 Action Team | FLYER Uproc7 8.70 | FOCUS JAM2 FACTORY | Giant Full-E+ 0 SX | Haibike XDURO AllMtn 8.0 | Lapierre Overvolt AM 900+ Carbon | MERIDA eONE-SIXTY 900E | NOX EDF 6.7 Hybrid | ROTWILD R.E+ FS PRO | SCOTT E-Genius Tuned 700 Plus | Specialized Turbo Levo FSR Expert 6Fattie | STEVENS E-Sledge+ ES

Words & Photos: Christoph Bayer

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Christoph Bayer