Voluminous 2.6” tires, eMTB looks, a 120 mm fork and approved for jumps. There’s no doubt who BULLS had in mind when they designed their step-through E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+: trail riders! Due to its trail-oriented componentry, it’s less suitable for everyday use, but we still found out what the € 3,599 bike is capable of.

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best off-road step-through bike of 2020 – 10 models tested head to head

BULLS E-Stream EVO 1 Wave 27,5 | Brose Drive S Mag/750 Wh | 120/0 mm (f/r)
23.8 kg (size L) | € 3,599 | Manufacturer’s website

The BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+ makes quite an impression. The bend in the down tube is eye-catching and it’s immediately obvious that this is just an eMTB without a top tube rather than a trekking ebike. The Brose Drive S Mag motor is tilted upwards in the frame, cleanly integrated without a cover. You have the option of a 550 or 750 Wh battery from BMZ, with a very fair price difference of € 200. With the 750 Wh version, you have the additional option of a GPS tracker, allowing you to keep tabs on your bike via an app. The frame is reinforced above the motor, slightly marring the otherwise sleek design and increasing the height of the step-through section. If you want to avoid lifting your leg too high, you’ll have to make do without a water bottle. BULLS put the bottle cage bosses low on the down tube where the bottle obstructs the step-through section. On the other hand, the low position of the water bottle means that the freedom of movement afforded by the missing top tube remains unrestricted for maximum fun on the trails. BULLS opted against a dropper post or a suspension seat post.

Keeping the cockpit nice and tidy, BULLS rely on typical mountain bike components with a 65 mm stem, 720 mm handlebar and, unfortunately, two-finger brake levers. The minimalist BLOKS 14D display is an elegant solution but it scratches easily and is difficult to read when exposed to direct sunlight. The E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+ doesn’t come with a pannier rack, side stand, mudguards or lights. However, there are enough mounting points to fit them if you want to use the BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+ for everyday errands. BULLS’ Monkey Link adapter comes as standard, front and rear. This keeps the bike looking clean and makes lights easy to attach: clip them on and off you go. A set of 130 lumen Monkey Link lights are available from approximately € 80. With this bike, you should carefully consider whether a pannier rack will actually be of much use since the 101 kg maximum payload doesn’t leave you with much spare carrying capacity.

False economy
The BULLS Lytro 34 fork offers few adjustment options and limits the bike’s performance on the trails.
Low step-through vs. hydration
If you choose to carry a water bottle on the BULLS, the height of the step-through section increases significantly. At least the Fidlock bottle only comes loose when you’re very rough, a normal bottle cage would bend.
Pure eMTB feeling
With its short stem and wide handlebars, the cockpit not only feels that of an eMTB, but it’s also nice and tidy – that’s exactly how we like it!
Not specced for everyday practicality
It’s got mounting points for mudguards, racks and the like, including the Monkey Link adapter, front and rear, but nothing fitted to them as standard.

BULLS E-Stream EVO 1 Wave 27,5

€ 3,599

Specifications

Motor Brose Drive S Mag 90 Nm
Battery BMZ 750 Wh
Display BLOKS 14D
Fork BULLS Lytro 34 120 mm
Rear Shock mm
Seatpost Kalloy SP-368 - mm
Brakes Shimano BR-MT420/BR-MT400 180/180 (v/h) mm
Drivetrain Shimano Deore 1x10
Stem MonkeyLink AS-ML1 65 mm
Handlebar Kalloy HB-RB12L 720 mm
Wheelset 27.5
Tires Schwalbe Smart Sam Performance 2.6

Technical Data

Size S, M, L, XL
Weight 23.8 kg
Perm. total weight 125 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 101 kg
Trailer approval yes
Kickstand mount yes

Specific Features

Monkey Link light mount (f/r)
GPS option (only with 750 Wh battery)


Excellent
The charging port is well protected from dirt and the magnetic cover is easy to use.
Brose Drive S Mag
The most powerful motor in the test field. But you have to be careful not to spin out when you go off-road. With the help of an app, you can adjust the support levels to suit your preference.
Too small?
Unlike the Moustache, the 10-speed drivetrain on the BULLS performs well even on steep climbs, thanks to the powerful Brose Drive S Mag motor.
Tubeless-ready
Excellent: the tires and rims are tubeless-ready and we recommend doing the conversion.
Pants Fox Flexair | Jacket GORE BIKE WEAR WINDSTOPPER Urban Camo | Helmet MET Roam

The BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE is the best option for those who want to spend their time chasing trails on moderate terrain!

At first, the 382 % gear range of the 10-speed Shimano DEORE drivetrain seems like too little but with the 90 Nm Brose Drive S Mag motor assisting you, you’ll still get up steep climbs with ease. However, you have to be careful to keep the rear wheel from spinning out. If the motor does feel too powerful, you can always adjust the support levels to suit your preferences via the BULLS app.

The riding position is upright and comfortable, perfect for long rides on bike paths or on moderate terrain. On really steep climbs, the BULLS just keeps on going. No other step-through eMTB in the test felt so relaxed on the climbs, easily conquering steep and technical climbs. However, the E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+ really starts to when the trail heads back down. On flowing trails, pumping through rollers and hitting small jumps, the step-through eMTB is a lot of fun and the missing top tube gives you plenty of freedom of movement. The handling is both precise and predictable. When things get steep, the tall front end instils you with confidence. The 120 mm BULLS Lytro 34 fork is based on a Suntour Axon, but sadly offers limited adjustment options and doesn’t do the bike’s capabilities justice. Schwalbe’s voluminous 2.6” Smart Sam tires provide a lot of comfort by absorbing small bumps, are tubeless-ready and provide grip on almost any surface. Given the BULLS’ intended use and potential, we missed having a dropper post, but fortunately, the seat post has a quick-release clamp. The frame of the BULLS, together with that of Centurion and Riese & Müller, is one of the stiffest in the test.

Tuning tips: mount a dropper seat post

Conclusion

Apart from the lack of a dropper post and the poor performance of the fork, the BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27.5+ handles as well as any hardtail eMTB. No other bike on test can keep up with the performance of the BULLS on the trails, going both up- or downhill. Even if the step-through section isn’t the lowest in the test, it still offers significant benefits as long as you aren’t carrying a water bottle. The BULLS is aimed at beginners and more versed trail riders alike. We were convinced by the concept, the handling and by how fun it is to ride. It’s fairly priced too, making it our Best Buy!

Tops

  • eMTB feeling
  • stiff frame
  • comfortable tires
  • mountain goat with a powerful motor
  • lots of fun

Flops

  • no dropper post
  • maximum payload of only 101 kg

For more info head to: bulls.de

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best off-road step-through bike of 2020 – 10 models tested head to head

All bikes in test: BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27,5+ | CENTURION E-Fire Country F3500 (Click for review) | Corratec Life CX 6X Connect (Click for review) | FANTIC ISSIMO FUN (Click for review) | HNF-NICOLAI UD 3 (Click for review) | INFRONT IF-4 Wave (Click for review) | Kalkhoff Entice 5.B Excite (Click for review) | KETTLER QUADRIGA TOWN & COUNTRY COMP (Click for review) | Moustache Samedi 27 Off 2 Open (Click for review) | Riese & Müller Homage GT (Click for review)

Words: Jonas Müssig Photos: Robin Schmitt, Jonas Müssig, Philipp Schwab

About the author

Jonas Müssig

Actually, it really should be Dr. Müssig. After all, Jonas completed his doctorate in chemistry shortly before he started working with us. However, his true passion ultimately prevailed over science. Of course, that doesn't mean chemistry no longer plays a role. Jonas’ scientific background and his long-standing passion for (e)biking are a perfect match. On the hunt for the optimal ride life balance, Jonas can be found on the trails in the summer and with his backpack in Asia or his camper in southern Europe in winter.