At first glance, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 looks very promising and comes across like a rowdy trail bruiser. Combining an alloy frame with 180/170 mm of travel and Bosch Performance Line CX motor, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 should tackle even the toughest of trails, both up and downhill. How does the heaviest competitor in our 2024 eMTB group test fare against the competition?

FOCUS SAM² 6.9 | Bosch Performance Line CX/750 Wh | 180/170 mm (f/r)
27.1 kg in size L | € 7,899 | Manufacturer’s website

The SAM² 6.9 is the most downhill-focused eMTB in FOCUS’ portfolio and, according to the German manufacturer, was developed for uncompromising downhill performance. In other words, it was designed to tackle the toughest descents, to eat rocks for breakfast and to gobble up blood-curling drops for lunch. The SAM² 6.9 rolls on 29” wheels and generates 180/170 mm of travel, tipping the scales at a whopping 27.1 kg in size L. This makes it the heaviest bike in the entire test field, by a huge margin of 2 kg. With its robust alloy frame, it’s also one of only two alloy bikes in this test, alongside the Moustache. It comes equipped with a Bosch Performance Line CX motor, which delivers 85 Nm of torque and draws its power from a 750 Wh Bosch PowerTube battery. At € 7,899, it’s the second cheapest bike in the entire 2024 eMTB group test, right after the Radon. But how did this alloy tank fare against the competition?

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2024 – 27 of the most exciting models in our comparison test

What sets the 2024 FOCUS SAM² 6.9 apart from the competition?

The German manufacturer picked the right spec to match the SAM² 6.9’s downhill oriented character. The massive alloy frame underlines the overall beefy look of the bike and looks almost indestructible, with the exposed weld seams and straight-lined top tube providing a touch of rugged charm. The cables are routed internally and disappear into the frame through FOCUS’ proprietary C.I.S. stem (Cockpit Integration Solution), which ensures a tidy yet unusual look, and might make it harder for home mechanics to service the bike or replace a cable.

Particularly striking are the well-thought-out frame details, like the mounting points for FOCUS’ in-house frame bag behind the head tube, bottle cage mounts, and USB-C port on the top tube, which allows you to charge your smartphone on the fly. Alongside the BULLS VUCA, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 is the only bike in this test with a kickstand mount, and one of the few with trailer approval.

The FOX 38 Factory suspension fork with superior GRIP2 damper delivers a tremendous performance on the trail.
Running out of battery? While the USB-C port might not be powerful enough to fully charge a phone, at least it maintains the battery charge level, preventing the phone from dying on a long tour.
Since the battery slides out from the bottom of the frame, you’re better off turning the bike upside down or laying it on its side to remove the battery from the frame.

The motor integration isn’t as seamless as with the other Bosch Performance Line CX competitors in this test, though not without good reason – the German manufacturer rotated the motor upwards slightly, allowing space to remove the 750 Wh Bosch PowerTube battery from the bottom of the down tube for external charging. To do this, you’ll have to lie the bike on its side or turn it upside down, which can be a bit of a wrestle at nearly 30 kg. The battery can be secured with a key lock for extra protection. Alternatively, there’s a charging port in the seat tube directly above the motor for on-bike charging.

The motor is controlled via a beefy Bosch LED remote, which isn’t the most intuitive out there. A more compact remote would definitely suit the SAM² 6.9’s downhill-oriented character better. The Bosch Kiox 300 display is tucked away behind the handlebars to the left of the stem, where it’s protected from the elements and nasty impacts. Shimano XT brakes with 200 mm rotors front and rear do stopping duties, providing reliable and powerful deceleration even on steep descents. The Japanese component colossus also supplies the 12-speed mechanical XT drivetrain, which is paired with a cheaper SLX cassette. This is slightly heavier than its superior XT counterpart, but ensures the same excellent shifting performance.

FOCUS’ proprietary frame bag is extremely practical as it allows you to stow away all your trail gear, with space for a rain jacket as well as essentials like a spare tube.
The SAM² comes equipped with a FOX DHX Performance coil shock. Unfortunately, the spring rate is set for each frame size, meaning that you’ll have to buy another one if the standard spring doesn’t match your weight or riding style.

One of the spec’s undisputed highlights is the FOX suspension, which consists of a 180 mm Factory fork and a DHX Performance rear shock controlling 170mm of rear travel, both in a bright orange finish. The fork relies on FOX’s top-tier GRIP2 damper, which offers countless adjustment options and delivers a tremendous performance on the trail. Moreover, at 180 mm, it’s the fork with the most travel in the entire test field. While the FOX DHX Performance coil shock might be a perfect match for the SAM² 6.9’s rowdy look, it doesn’t offer externally adjustable compression adjustment, making it more important to find exactly the right spring if the stock one doesn’t match your weight. That said, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 can be purchased directly from a dealer, meaning that your LBS might be able to help you with the initial setup and swap the standard spring with a suitable one free of charge. FOCUS’ in-house 170 mm dropper post is easy to operate but could do with a few more extra mm of travel.

For the wheels, the German manufacturer relies on a robust Mavic E-Deemax 30 wheelset and Schwalbe Magic Mary tires, in the Super Trail casing and Soft compound at the front and Super Gravity casing with Soft compound at the rear. A tire with the Super Gravity casing and softer Ultra Soft rubber compound would be the icing on the cake, providing even more grip and control. The tougher casing is particularly useful for heavy riders. While the frame doesn’t have a down tube guard, it comes standard with a generously sized chainstay protector that prevents chain slap and paint chips. Unfortunately, the plastic motor cover sits pretty low, meaning that it’s continuously exposed to impacts – ours shattered into a million pieces after just a few laps! Moreover, the motor protrudes far forwards, limiting ground clearance significantly. After reporting the same issue in our 2023 eMTB group test, FOCUS went back to the drawing board to improve the motor/battery cover’s ground clearance. However, the new design still hasn’t addressed the problem, and the new motor cover still tends to hit the ground – it only survived a few laps of our testing.


€ 7,899


Motor Bosch Performance Line CX 85 Nm
Battery Bosch PowerTube 750 Wh
Display Bosch Kiox 300
Fork FOX 38 Factory GRIP2 180 mm
Rear Shock FOX DHX Performance Coil 170 mm
Seatpost Post Moderne 170 mm
Brakes Shimano XT 200/200 mm
Drivetrain Shimano XT/SLX 1x12
Stem FOCUS C.I.S. 50 mm
Handlebar Race Face Atlas 820 mm
Wheelset Mavic E-Deemax 30 29"
Tires Schwalbe Magic Mary, Super Trail, Soft/ Magic Mary, Super Gravity, Soft 2.6

Technical Data

Size S M L XL
Weight 27.1 kg
Perm. total weight 150 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 122 kg
Trailer approval ja
Kickstand mount ja

Specific Features

Toolmount bag

Tuning tip: Upgrade the front tire to the tougher Super Gravity casing and Ultra Soft rubber compound for more grip and better puncture protection

What is the 2024 FOCUS SAM² 6.9 capable on the trail?

When you swing your leg over the saddle and start pedalling, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 places you in an upright pedalling position. While the heavy frame is clearly noticeable, when you start climbing, the Bosch Performance Line CX packs a punch, pushing the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 to top of the mountain with great eagerness despite the heavy system weight, providing ample power even on steep climbs at low cadences. The rear suspension responds sensitively and feels composed, ensuring a high level of comfort on rough terrain – a clear plus point for climbing enthusiasts. However, the combination of long wheelbase and heavy weight can make it quite difficult to manoeuvre on technical climbs, making it hard to keep your balance and follow your line.

The FOCUS SAM² 6.9 is a gargantuan rig that’s still fun to ride downhill!

The Bosch CX motor pushes willingly on climbs and only reaches its limits in tight, technical sections.
Thanks to its composed character, the FOCUS SAM² is great fun downhill!

When gravity takes over, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 places you in a central riding position, with the weight evenly distributed between the front and rear. Despite being the heaviest bike in this test, it’s relatively easy to manoeuvre and surprisingly nimble through corners. Handling is intuitive and doesn’t require major weight shifts. As a result, the SAM² 6.9 implements steering inputs willingly and precisely, making you feel at ease regardless of whether you’re a beginner or experienced rider. On fast descents, the FOCUS shines with excellent composure, with the high front end inspiring huge amounts of confidence and encouraging you to plough through nasty rock gardens and root carpets head-on. With its coil shock, the plush rear suspension is extremely sensitive off the top but provides little feedback from the ground. At the same time, it provides enough support and reserves, ensuring a predictable character.

However, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 lacks a little nimbleness, and requires quite a lot of effort to pump through rollers and berms on flowing trails. The sluggish handling makes it hard to spontaneously change your line or to pop off ledges and berms.

If your mobile phone runs out of juice on an epic backcountry expedition, you can maintain the battery charge while riding using the USB-C port on the top tube.

Size S M L XL
Top tube 578 mm 608 mm 637 mm 671 mm
Seat tube 390 420mm 440 mm 460 mm
Head tube 100 mm 100 mm 120 mm 140 mm
Head angle 64.5° 64.5° 64.5° 64.5°
Seat angle 77.5° 77.5° 77.5° 77.5°
Chainstay 450 mm 450 mm 450 mm 450 mm
BB Drop 20 mm 20 mm 20 mm 20 mm
Wheelbase 1,229 mm 1,259 mm 1,293 mm 1,332 mm
Reach 440 mm 470 mm 495 mm 525 mm
Stack 623 mm 623 mm 641 mm 659 mm
Helmet Sweet Protection Trailblazer | Glasses NAKED Optics The VOLT | Hip Pack EVOC HIP PACK 3 | Jersey Monserat F02 | Pants ION MTB Tech Logo | Shoes Five Ten Freerider Pro | Socks Fox Ranger Sock | Gloves Troy Lee Designs Flowline

Who should take a closer look at the 2024 FOCUS SAM² 6.9 and who should look elsewhere?

The FOCUS SAM² 6.9 is an excellent choice for the price-conscious rider who doesn’t want to give up a first-class spec. At the same time, it’s an excellent companion for those who want to turn it up to eleven at the bike park, regardless of whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced rider.
The FOCUS is also a great option for tourers with trail ambitions, who will also get a kickstand mount and trailer approval for their money. If you’re after a super agile, light-footed eMTB, however, you might be better off looking elsewhere.

Riding Characteristics


  1. unbalanced
  2. coherent


  1. cumbersome
  2. clever


  1. flop
  2. top


  1. low
  2. high


  1. demanding
  2. intuitive


  1. boring
  2. lively

Intended Use

Gravel roads

Technical climbs

Flowtrail descents

Technical descents

Our conclusions about the 2024 FOCUS SAM² 6.9

The FOCUS SAM² 6.9 is a potent trail bruiser with a top spec and well thought-out frame details. The alluring price-performance ratio makes it particularly interesting for downhill-oriented riders who don’t give a damn about the weight of their bike and care more about capability than agility. If you’re not an enthusiastic corner carver, the FOCUS SAM² 6.9 might be exactly what you’re looking for.


  • Composed
  • You get a LOT of bike for your money
  • Inspires huge amounts of confidence


  • High system weight
  • The motor cover hits the ground in rough trail sections
  • Sluggish handling

For more information, visit

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2024 – 27 of the most exciting models in our comparison test

All bikes in test: BULLS VUCA EVO AM 2 (Click for review) | BULLS SONIC EVO AM SX-I (Click for review) | Canyon Strive:ON CFR LTD (Click for review) | Canyon Torque:ON CF Roczen (Click for review) | CENTURION No Pogo SL R8000i (Click for review) | CUBE AMS Hybrid ONE44 (Click for review) | FLYER Uproc X 8.70 (Click for review) | FOCUS SAM² 6.9 | GASGAS ECC 6 (Click for review) | GIANT Trance X Advanced E+ Elite 0 (Click for review) | KTM Macina Scarp SX Prime (Click for review) | Lapierre Overvolt GLP3 (Click for review) | Merida eOne-Sixty 10K (Click for review) | Mondraker Neat RR SL (Click for review) | Moustache Samedi 29 Game 11 FOX (Click for review) | Orbea WILD M-LTD (Click for review) | Pivot Shuttle AM Team (Click for review) | Propain Ekano 2 CF (Click for review) | RADON RENDER 10.0 HD (Click for review) | ROTWILD R.X 1000 Ultra (Click for review) | Santa Cruz Heckler SL XX AXS RSV (Click for review) | SCOR 4060 ST (Click for review) | SCOTT Voltage eRide 900 Tuned (Click for review) | SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion (Click for review) | Specialized Turbo Levo SL Expert (Click for review) | Specialized Turbo Levo Pro (Click for review) | Spherik E-SMT XX AXS (Click for review)

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Words: Antonia Feder Photos: Mike Hunger