Are you ready for a strong statement? The future is now! Well, at least it is according to Austrian bike manufacturer SIMPLON, who is claiming that the Rapcon Pmax Pinion ushers in a new generation of eMTBs, putting everything else that’s happened till now in the shade. Is it just a very bold statement or is the new Rapcon really the game changer many were waiting for?

SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion | Pinion MGU E1.12/720 Wh | 170/165 mm (f/r)
24.72 kg in size M | € 10,984 | Manufacturer’s website

SIMPLON’s proven Rapcon model is available in four different variants. There’s an analogue version to choose from, along with three electric models, all of which come in two different wheel configurations and with different amounts of travel. The 150/150 mm (f/r) variant is primarily aimed at trail riders, while the downhill-oriented 170/165 mm model is the weapon of choice for rowdy rippers. For the motor system, you can choose between a conventional Bosch Performance Line CX motor, its rowdy CX Race counterpart, a TQ HPR 50 drive and a Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit. The spec of the Rapcon Pmax Pinion can be customised almost entirely using SIMPLON’s online configurator – awesome! For our huge 2024 eMTB group test, we asked SIMPLON to send in the Rapcon Pmax Pinion, which comes equipped with an 85 Nm Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit and a FIT Ultracore 720 Wh battery. To fully exploit the bike’s downhill potential, we opted for the 170/165 mm suspension variant with 29″ wheels. Our test bike in size M tips the scales at 24.72 kg, which is well above the 23.9 kg average in our full-power test field. In our test configuration, the SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion retails at € 10,984.

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

Mine’s bigger than yours – What sets the 2024 SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion apart from the competition?

Our test bike comes in the “Moon Grey Glossy/Dark Grey Glossy” paint finish, which might sound fancy on paper, but is a lot more discreet and understated than most bikes in this group test, especially next to loud eccentrics like the SCOR. However, if you like a touch of eccentricity and want to add a splash of colour, you can choose a slightly less serious “Moon Grey Glossy/Orange Glossy” finish from Simplon’s configurator. Significantly more striking than the colour is the frame silhouette, which is typical of bikes with a Pinion motor. In fact, the Rapcon shares a similar massive bottom bracket area with the BULLS VUCA EVO AM 2 and ROTWILD R.X1000 ULTRA. Together with the chunky down tube, this makes for a rather beefy overall look. The battery is located in the down tube and secured with a key. While our test bike features a 720 Wh FIT Ultracore battery, if you’re a taller rider, SIMPLON also give you the option to spec a bigger 960 Wh FIT Ultracore variant in frame sizes L and XL, for an extra € 200.. However, the bigger battery makes for a saggy silhouette, which is the same thing that happens with the ROTWILD R.X1000 Ultra. If you still feel the need for more capacity, you can expand the main battery with the 470 Wh range extender, which can be selected from the configurator for € 780. This means that you could potentially arm your Rapcon with a mind-boggling 1,430 Wh capacity!. In this configuration you could embark on some epic backcountry expeditions without having to stop for charging – and probably even power an entire mountain refuge if you stay overnight! If you somehow manage to run out of juice, you can top up the battery using the charging port on the side of the motor, which is well protected by a spring-loaded flap. The range extender fits to the bottle cage mounts on the down tube.

Clever solution! The cables of the SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion are neatly routed through the headset, ensuring a very tidy cockpit. However, this also makes it harder to service the bike.
Level up, cool down! SIMPLON rely on two small vent grilles on the headtube to prevent the battery from overheating.
Despite being SRAM’s entry-level stoppers, the DB8 brakes provide reliable deceleration in combination with the big 220 mm front rotor.

To keep everything cool, SIMPLON placed ventilation grilles on the head tube. For the motor system, the Austrian manufacturer relies on a belt-driven Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit – a clever solution! The belt requires virtually no maintenance and saves you the headache of a broken rear derailleur, while cleaning and lubricating the chain are nothing more than a bad memory. The motor itself, on the other hand, only requires an oil change every 10,000 kilometres. The drive is paired with a joystick-style, bar-mounted FIT Remote Basic, which is rather big and clunky to operate. A FIT Display Compact provides all crucial riding data, but it’s mounted on a massive bracket right in front of the handlebars, where it’s constantly exposed to impacts. If you can do without a big display, select the bar-mounted FIT LCD Remote from the configurator and also save yourself € 120. Although the cockpit is rather packed with cables, these are neatly organised, and routed internally through the headset directly into the frame. However, this also means additional swearing during maintenance work! The rear brake line reappears just above the motor, and runs along the chainstay all the way to the brake calliper.

SIMPLON rely on a quick release seat clamp for faster adjustments.
Low-maintenance powerhouse! The belt-driven Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit is virtually maintenance free and provides powerful support.

While our test bike features RockShox suspension, you can also choose FOX components using the online configurator if you prefer. Our Rapcon Pmax Pinion comes equipped with a 170 mm RockShox ZEB Select+ fork, which employs the same Charger 3 damper as the top-tier ZEB Ultimate model. As a result, the fork delivers a tremendous performance on the trail, and is extremely intuitive to set up. The fork is paired with RockShox Super Deluxe Select+ shock, which manages 165 mm of travel but only allows for minimal adjustments compared to its Ultimate counterpart. SRAM’s entry-level DB8 brakes with 220/200 mm rotors do stopping duties, providing decent deceleration, despite being the cheapest model in the lineup. The 185 mm BikeYoke REVIVE dropper is held in place by an old-school quick release clamp, which is nevertheless quite practical as it allows you to quickly adjust the saddle height. The SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion rolls on a 29″ DT Swiss HX 1501 alloy wheelset, which is also available in a mullet version on the configurator. The wheels are paired with MAXXIS tires, with an ASSEGAI in the soft MaxxGrip rubber compound and EXO+ casing at the front and a Minion DHR II in the harder MaxxTerra compound and robust Doubledown casing at the rear. For extra peace of mind, you can also get a FIT IOT Venture Tracker from the configurator when ordering your bike.

SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion

€ 10,984


Motor Pinion MGU E1.12 85 Nm
Battery FIT Ultracore 720 720 Wh
Display FIT Display Compact
Fork RockShox ZEB Select + 170 mm
Rear Shock RockShox Super Deluxe Select + 165 mm
Seatpost BikeYoke REVIVE 185 mm
Brakes SRAM DB-8 220/200 mm
Drivetrain Pinion MGU E1.12 1x12
Stem ZERO3 45 mm
Handlebar SIMPLON Carbon Riser 800 800 mm
Wheelset DT Swiss HX1501 29"
Tires MAXXIS ASSEGAI, MaxxGrip, EXO+/MAXXIS Minion DHR II MaxxTerra, Doubledown 2.5/2.4

Technical Data

Size S M L XL
Weight 24.72 kg
Perm. total weight 140 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 115 kg
Trailer approval no
Kickstand mount no

Tuning tip: Retrofitting the FIT IOT Venture Tracker for tours and everyday riding provides extra peace of mind

What is the 2024 SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion capable of on the trail?

Our test bike in size M feels extremely short and places you in a very compact pedalling position. The Pinion MGU E1.12 motor provides reliable assistance on gravel paths and offers a wide gear range, allowing you to negotiate even the steepest climbs in the lowest gear. Overall, the motor/gearbox unit can keep up with the most powerful motors in this test but struggles to keep up with the direct response of the Bosch Performance Line CX-Race, which you’ll get with both the Pivot Shuttle AM and Orbea WILD. The motor is pretty loud in the lower gears, and when shifting between gears 4 and 5 the process takes slightly longer, which is due to the internal shift logic and the cog arrangement, requiring two internal gear shifts to select the next ratio. The rear suspension bobs slightly when pedalling but absorbs bumps and hits reliably, ensuring a comfortable climbing performance. As a result, the Rapcon proved to be one of the best gravel path climbers in this test. On technical climbs, however, the high system weight becomes quickly evident, robbing the SIMPLON of agility while at the same time requiring great physical effort to pull the bike over steps and obstacles.

On straight trails, the SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion offers a high level of comfort.
Downhill, the SIMPLON requires a little more physical effort to throw around the trail.

When gravity takes over, the first thing you’ll notice is the front-heavy riding position. Overall, the Rapcon is intuitive and easy to ride, but it requires great physical effort to move around the trail. The plush RockShox suspension provides little feedback from the ground and tends to sit deep in its travel, lacking support when you need it the most. This becomes particularly evident when pumping through flow trails, where the suspension sucks up the rider input like a sandbag. Even on fast, rough trails, the suspension quickly reaches its limit and blows through its travel. As far as downhill performance goes, the Rapcon Pmax Pinion sits at the lower end of the test field, and the loud rattling noise of the battery in the frame really detracted from the fun factor during our test runs.

The SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion will grind its way up the steepest climbs in the lowest gear, but the motor/gearbox unit can keep up with the most powerful motors in this test.

Size S M L XL
Top tube 550 mm 582 mm 604 mm 625 mm
Seat tube 395 mm 400 mm 420 mm 445 mm
Head tube 108 mm 108 mm 118 mm 126 mm
Head angle 65.0° 65.0° 65.0° 65.0°
Seat angle 79.5° 79.5° 79.5° 79.5°
Chainstays 447 mm 447 mm 447 mm 447 mm
BB Drop 32 mm 32 mm 32 mm 32 mm
Wheelbase 1,204 mm 1,237 mm 1,262 mm 1,285 mm
Reach 435 mm 466 mm 486 mm 506 mm
Stack 620 mm 625 mm 635 mm 642 mm
Helmet Fox Mainframe MIPS Helm | Backpack Thule Rail Hydration Pack eMTB 18
Jersey POC Reform Enduro | Pants ´ Endura MT500 Burner Hose | Shoes Five Ten 2.0 Flat
Socks Fox Ranger Sock | Gloves Endura FS260-Pro Nemo II

Who should take a closer look at the 2024 SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion and who should look elsewhere?

The SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion is aimed primarily at sporty tourers who want to customise their bike using the online configurator. If you’re looking for decent battery capacity and a low-maintenance motor system, the Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit and matching FIT Ultracore 720 battery might be exactly what you’re looking for. The Rapcon Pmax Pinion is not a bike for aggressive, active riders, which is mainly due to the sluggish handling and spongy suspension. If that’s your case, you should take a closer look at the slightly sportier, nimbler BULLS VUCA. Hardcore Rapcon fans should check out the Rapcon Pmax TQ and Rapcon Pmax CX eMTBs, which we compared directly with the Rapcon Pmax Pinion in this review.

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 SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax Pinion

With the Rapcon Pmax Pinion, SIMPLON created a reliable tourer that impresses above all with its intuitive handling and high level of comfort, both up and downhill. The low-maintenance Pinion MGU E1.12 motor/gearbox unit ensures a carefree experience even after the ride. Using SIMPLON’s extensive online configurator, you can customise the spec to suit your needs and preferences. However, the soggy suspension lacks feedback from the ground, making the SIMPLON rather unappealing to active riders.


  • Extensive online configurator
  • Intuitive handling
  • Low maintenance motor/gearbox unit


  • Battery rattles inside the frame
  • Spongy rear suspension
  • Display integration

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 (Click for review) | 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 | 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: Benedikt Schmidt Photos: Peter Walker