The Norco Sight VLT C1 with its Shimano EP8 motor comes equipped with a huge 900 Wh battery. But is the Canadian powerhouse just a bike for long tours or can it also impress on the trail? Read our review to find out how the Norco fared against the competition in our 2022 eMTB group test.

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2022 – 13 models in review

Norco Sight VLT C1 | Shimano EP8/900 Wh | 160/150 mm (f/r)
25.52 kg in size L | € 9,999 | Manufacturer’s website

Norco rely on a flexible battery concept for all their full-suspension eMTBs, allowing you to choose from three different battery configurations with a 540 Wh, 720 Wh or 900 Wh capacity. While outside the EU customers can choose the battery that best suits their requirements, in the EU the choice is limited: the flagship € 9,999 Sight VLT C1 is only available with a 900 Wh battery. Needless to say, the biggest battery in the entire test field contributes significantly to the high 25.52 kg weight of the Sight (size L). However, at 120 kg, the maximum permissible weight is very low, leaving just 94 kg for a fully-kitted rider – the lowest payload in this group test. The Shimano EP8 motor is tilted upwards by about 45⁰, allowing Norco to position the battery deep and low in the down tube, right in front of the motor. To charge the battery externally, you can slide it out of the bottom of the down tube. The charge port sits right in front of the bottom bracket and is protected by a magnetic cover. Unfortunately, when pedalling hard it’s all too easy to inadvertently disconnect the plug connecting the battery and motor with your foot, shutting down the motor. Moreover, the cable routing is rather messy, reflecting the overall untidy integration of the motor system.

Robust components for tours and trails – The spec of the Norco Sight VLT C1 in detail

The spec of the Sight is well-suited to for trail riding and includes high-quality FOX Factory suspension. This consists of a 36 GRIP2 fork and X2 shock controlling 160/150 mm travel at the front and rear. For heavy riders, a stiffer FOX 38 would ensure more precise handling on rough descents, particularly given the heavy battery. The shock is offset and the stanchion rotated to facilitate setup and keep it out of the way when pedalling. Talking of which, Norco’s user-friendly setup guide will help you dial in your suspension for riders of all abilities. SRAM CODE RSC brakes with a big 220 mm rotor at the front ensure reliable deceleration. Unfortunately, the stiff remote of the 170 mm OneUp dropper post requires strong fingers. A 12-speed SRAM GX drivetrain with an expensive (and superfluous) X01 rear derailleur does the shifting. The 29” MAXXIS ASSEGAI front tire in the robust DoubleDown casing ensures excellent traction, which the shallow tread of the DISSECTOR rear tire can’t match.

Tool time
There’s a tool with three Allen keys hidden under the bottom bracket. This allows you to remove the battery and tighten the cockpit bolts, but that’s about it!
To the limit
The FOX 36 is a top-class fork and doesn’t get fazed easily. That being said, the Norco feels at home on rough bike park tracks, where a stiffer FOX 38 would unlock the full potential of the bike!
Rotational forces
The Shimano EP8 motor is tilted upwards by 45⁰, allowing Norco to run different battery configurations and integrate the huge 900 Wh battery deep into the down tube, right in front of the motor.
Flying low!
The 170 mm OneUp Components dropper post can be inserted all the way into the frame, ensuring maximum freedom of movement. Unfortunately, the stiff remote requires strong fingers and mars the overall impression.

Norco Sight VLT C1

€ 9,999


Motor Shimano EP8 85 Nm
Battery Norco Custom 900 Wh
Display Shimano SC-EM800
Fork FOX 36 Factory GRIP2 E-Bike+ 160 mm
Rear Shock FOX X2 Factory 150 mm
Seatpost OneUp Dropper Post 170 mm
Brakes SRAM CODE RSC 220/200 mm
Drivetrain SRAM X01/GX Eagle 1x12
Stem CNC Alloy 40 mm
Handlebar DEITY Skywire 800 mm
Wheelset DT Swiss E1700 29"

Technical Data

Size S M L XL
Weight 25.52 kg
Perm. total weight 120 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 94 kg
Trailer approval no
Kickstand mount no

Specific Features

selectable battery capacity (depends on region)

Like a wild vine!
The cable routing is rather messy, particularly around the cockpit where the motor cables dangle loosely around the handlebar before disappearing inside the frame.
Smooth criminal!
The suspension is so smooth, it should be illegal! The X2 shock turns the rear into a magic carpet and the stanchion is rotated slightly to make setup easier.
Ticks all the boxes
Far too many manufacturers are still struggling to find a matching set of tires for their bikes. However, the aggressive tread, grippy MaxxGrip rubber compound and robust Doubledown casing of the MAXXIS ASSEGAI tire are a perfect match for the Norco. We wish we could say the same about the DISSECTOR at the rear.
Zodiac sign: camel!
While tester Julian had to rest from time to time, the large 900 Wh battery never seemed to run out of juice, getting us back to the trailhead all day long.

The geometry of the Norco Sight VLT C1 in detail

On level ground, the relatively steep seat tube angle ensures a forward-biased pedalling position but a couple of spacers under the stem will move your weight backwards. The plush suspension contributes massively to the outstanding touring qualities of the Norco. Compared to the equally-comfortable FOCUS, the Sight VLT has a much bigger battery and lets you carry two water bottles on the down tube (size L and above), making it the ideal companion for long days in the saddle. Unlike most of Norco’s analogue mountain bikes, the Sight VLT relies on the same chainstay length across all sizes: at 462, they’re rather long, which becomes particularly evident uphill.

Size S M L XL
Top tube 567 mm 596 mm 624 mm 652 mm
Seat tube 395 mm 415 mm 440 mm 455 mm
Head tube 100 mm 110 mm 120 mm 130 mm
Head angle 64.0° 64.0° 64.0° 64.0°
Seat angle 77.0° 77.3° 77.7° 78.0°
Chainstays 462 mm 462 mm 462 mm 462 mm
BB Height 350 mm 350 mm 350 mm 350 mm
Wheelbase 1,224 mm 1,258 mm 1,292 mm 1,327 mm
Reach 425 mm 455 mm 485 mm 515 mm
Stack 616 mm 625 mm 634 mm 643 mm
Helmet Troy Lee Designs A2 MIPS Sliver Silver | Glasses 100% Glendale | Jersey Troy Lee Designs
Pants Troy Lee Designs Sprint Ultra Pants | Kneepad Troy Lee Designs Raid | Shoes ION Rascal

A tame pony rather than a fiery stallion – The Norco Sight VLT C1 uphill

The steep seat tube angle and long chainstays ensure a central pedalling position, which keeps the front wheel tracking the ground on steep climbs. Unfortunately, the shallow tread of the rear tire struggles to generate traction on technical climbs, spinning out of control on loose and slippery terrain. On winding climbs with flowing turns, the Sight VLT is predictable and good-natured, allowing inexperienced riders to wind their way up the mountain in wide circles and only requiring more significant physical effort through tight turns. The Norco is just too sluggish to playfully drift from one corner into the next.

Around the world on two wheels – the Norco Sight VLT is a comfortable tourer with a massive range.

Keeping its cool!
On gnarly descents, the Norco Sight VLT C1 feels composed and always holds its line. That being said, it only responds to rider input with great physical effort.

Dropping into the valley in a straight line – The Norco Sight VLT C1 downhill

On technical descents, the Norco stays firmly planted on the trail. The plush suspension swallows up big hits and generates plenty of traction while ensuring excellent composure. The downside: spontaneous direction changes require significant physical effort, particularly through tight corners. On steep trails, the front wheel literally sucks itself into the ground, making it hard to lift over obstacles.

Ploughing your way into the valley in a straight line is the Norco’s credo. Once the Sight VLT C1 picks up speed, it’s hard to stop!

The Norco isn’t too agile on flowing trails either, where the plush suspension doesn’t generate enough pop to change direction spontaneously. In return, the Norco holds the line with stoic composure through long open corners, regardless of your riding skills. With its beginner-friendly handling, the Norco reminds us of the SCOTT Ransom, ironing out stutter bumps and conveying huge amounts of confidence. The one drawback is that both bikes only deliver fun at high-speeds.

Tuning tip: upgrade the rear tire to a model with a more aggressive tread and the tough Doubledown casing when the first tire change is due

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. stable


  1. demanding
  2. balanced

Riding fun

  1. boring
  2. lively

Motor feeling

  1. digital
  2. natural

Motor power

  1. weak
  2. strong

Value for money

  1. poor
  2. top


Forest road


Flow trail uphill


Flow trail downhill


Technical single trail uphill


Technical single trail downhill


Downhill tracks



The Norco Sight VLT C1 excels at the two extremes of the spectrum. The comfortable suspension, balanced riding position and huge battery make it the ideal eMTB tourer while the composed and intuitive handling make it a great fix for high-speed junkies and an excellent companion for inexperienced riders. However, the sluggish Norco can’t keep up with the lively all-rounders on winding trails and thus falls back to the middle of the field of our 2022 eMTB group test.


  • long-distance comfort
  • spec suitable for trail riding
  • intuitive handling excellent for beginners
  • plenty of composure for speed freaks


  • poor motor integration and reliability
  • lowest payload in the entire test field
  • stiff dropper post remote

You can find out more about at

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2022 – 13 models in review

All bikes in test: FOCUS JAM² 7.0 (Click for review) | MERIDA eONE-SIXTY 10k (Click for review) | Norco Sight VLT C1 | Orbea Rise M-Team (Click for review) | Rocky Mountain Altitude Powerplay C70 (Click for review) | ROTWILD R.E375 PRO (Click for review) | SCOR 4060 Z ST XT (Click for review) | SCOTT Ransom eRIDE 910 (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Turbo Kenevo SL (Click for review) | Trek Rail 9.9 XX1 AXS (Click for review) | Yeti 160E T1 (Click for review) | YT DECOY MX CORE 4 (Click for review)

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Words: Rudolf Fischer Photos: Robin Schmitt, Julian Lemme

About the author

Rudolf Fischer

In his previous life Rudolf was a dab hand at promoting innovation, putting his brain behind big-ticket patent assessments that easily ran into six-or-seven-plus figures. These days, the self-confessed data nerd’s role as editor at DOWNTOWN and E-MOUNTAINBIKE is no less exciting. Given his specialism in connectivity, Rudolf’s often placed on the front line of future mobility conversations, but he’s also big into testing new bikes–both on the daily as a committed commuter and intensively for our group tests. The business economist graduate is as versatile as a Swiss penknife, and that’s no hyperbole. Away from two wheels, his background in parkour means he’s a master of front, side and backflips, plus he speaks German, English, French, Russian and a touch of Esperanto. Japanese remains woefully unmastered, despite his best home-learning attempts. Good to know: Rudolf’s sharp tongue has made him a figure of fear in the office, where he’s got a reputation for flexing a dry wittiness à la Ricky Gervais... interestingly, he's usually the one laughing hardest.