An e-trekking bike that excels at weekend adventures, trail fun and everyday use – is that really possible? Specialized’s answer is the Tero X 6.0, designed to do it all. We put this full suspension e-SUV through its paces and checked how it stacks up against the competition.
Click here for an overview of our SUV ebike buyer’s guide: The best e-SUV 2024 – 10 ebikes in our group test.
Specialized are acclaimed for their premium bicycles and for their substantial investment in ebike development, surpassing that of most other manufacturers. The Californian brand takes a holistic approach. How? They design the frame, fit it with the best components available, and then focus on optimising the interaction of all these components. This approach has resulted not only in an exciting unique selling point, but also in the ability to cater to individual needs. As a result, the Californian bike brand remains independent of the development priorities and time scales of other manufacturers, ensuring control of data and knowledge relating to their bikes and the entire process from development to sales. This also means that there is no doubt about who to contact for any service issues.
Like all Specialized’s ebikes, the new Tero X has been designed in line with the brand’s holistic vision. It is also said to offer even more sportiness and versatility than the Turbo Tero hardtail, which has already been reviewed by our sister magazine DOWNTOWN. The new Specialized Tero X is a full suspension trekking bike and the next logical evolution of the Tero range, which used to be all about hardtails. Yet the Californians have gone the extra mile. They started from scratch and redesigned the bike from the ground up, making no compromises. The Tero X is designed to deliver superior handling and fun in all situations – whether you’re comfortably cruising or hauling loads. At least that’s Specialized’s aim. The Tero X is available in three different configurations, each with a different motor power and battery capacity. The entry-level model, the Specialized Tero X 4.0, comes at a relatively affordable price of € 4,200 and boasts 50 Nm torque with a 530 Wh battery. Next up is the Tero X 5.0, with 70 Nm torque and a 710 Wh battery, with a price tag of € 5,000. Our test bike was the top-of-the-range Tero X 6.0, priced at € 6,200, with 90 Nm torque and a 710 Wh battery. Weighing in at 26.5 kg, it was the lightest bike in the test after the ROTWILD R.C1000.
What sets the Specialized Tero X 6.0 apart?
The Specialized Tero X 6.0 is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. The designers have successfully integrated true eMTB characteristics into the Tero X by drawing on years of expertise in the eMTB sector. They equipped the bike with the powerful Specialized 2.2 motor, with an impressive 90 Nm torque, originally developed for the Turbo Levo trail ebike. The Specialized Tero X 6.0 is powered by a 710 Wh battery that can be easily removed from the down tube, which, unusually for Specialized, is lockable – handy. At first glance, the Tero X looks more like an eMTB than a bulky eSUV. Specialized use a curved aluminium frame and a single-link rear triangle that connects the rear wheel with a fixed swing arm via a single main bearing to the shock. The prominent shock, positioned horizontally within the frame, is a striking focal point. Many of the components of the Tero X 6.0 come from the high-end eMTB segment, including the premium RockShox Lyrik Select+ suspension fork, the powerful SRAM CODE RSC four-piston brakes, and the SRAM X01 12-speed drivetrain. Some of the bikes in our budget group test for the best eMTB under € 7,000 were throwing some envious looks at its top-of-the-range MTB components.
The Specialized Tero X 6.0 manages to look cool and sporty despite all its features. You won’t find an angle-adjustable stem, battery access from the top or even a low step-through entry – but the comprehensive kit includes everything you need and is of a high quality. For example, the wide aluminium mudguards prevent wet trousers when zipping through puddles. The number of mounting points for bags and baskets on the luggage rack was deliberately limited to 2 for optimum weight distribution. This places the load as low and centrally as possible over the wheel axle. If you need extra storage, you can fit an optional front rack using the mount concealed inside the head tube, which can carry an additional 10 kg in front of the handlebar – the Tero X has a maximum load capacity of 136 kg. The front rack doesn’t look all that good, though. On the comfortable CENTURION Country R3000i LX, the front rack fits seamlessly into the overall look, but on the Tero X it detracts somewhat from the sporty appearance. Let’s put it like this, you could put a roof rack on a Ferrari… but why would you do it? If you want to transport even more luggage, the trailer approval means you can add a trailer with up to an extra 60 kg. Even when fully loaded, the side kickstand remains stable. The front light has a high beam function and is well positioned under the stem, but the numerous cables detract from the clean lines. The rear light includes an integrated brake light and is positioned lower. It looks a little modest compared to the best lighting systems on our other test bikes.
Tuning tip: Specialized/Fjällräven Coolcave Pannier with Specialized/Fjällräven Cave Lid Pack for a super secure fit and plenty of heel room
Specialized Turbo Tero X 6.0
Motor Specialized 2.2 90 Nm
Battery Specialized U2-710 710 Wh
Display MasterMind TCD
Fork RockShox Lyrik Select+ 130 mm
Rear Shock RockShox Deluxe Select+ 120 mm
Seatpost X-Fusion Manic 150 – 190 mm
Brakes SRAM Code RSC 200/180 mm
Drivetrain SRAM X01 Eagle 1x12
Stem Specialized Stealth 75 mm
Handlebar Specialized Trail 720 – 750 mm
Wheelset Roval Traverse 29"/27.5"
Tires Specialized Ground Control Grid T7 2.35"
Size M L XL
Weight 26.5 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 136 kg
Trailer approval yes
Kickstand mount yes
– Lezyne lights with high beam and brake signal
– optional front rack 650b wheels in size S
What can the Specialized Tero X 6.0 do that other bikes cannot?
You can feel the Specialized Tero X 6.0’s eMTB genes as soon as you get on it. Its geometry reminds you of a traditional eMTB, with a long reach, steep seat angle and low front position. It encourages you to adopt a sporty, low position that will be instantly familiar to anyone who has ever ridden a mountain bike. This riding position offers a well-balanced weight distribution, especially if you ride the bike more aggressively. The Tero X excels at off-road performance and stands out as the only bike in the test field that makes you want to charge through dense undergrowth faster than you would on well-maintained forest paths. That’s simply because it’s so much fun. The robust SRAM CODE RSC four-piston brakes with 200/180 mm discs guarantee safe and reliable braking power. Even at high speeds, the ebike’s equipment stays in place, with only a slight rattle from the kickstand. The combination of mixed wheel sizes, with a 29″ wheel at the front and a 27.5″ wheel at the rear, which is popular on eMTBs, contributes significantly to its outstanding trail performance and intuitive handling. This setup provides excellent rollover characteristics at the front and a responsive rear. The Tero X will put a big grin on your face that’s hard to wipe off – it’s undoubtedly the most fun ride in the entire test field! The dropper post with 190 mm travel in size L gives you more freedom of movement on the trail and makes stopping and starting at traffic lights a breeze. The responsive SRAM X01 12-speed drivetrain offers a wide range of gears. Coupled with Specialized’s own 2.2 motor with 90 Nm torque, you can effortlessly tackle steep climbs. At the same time, the powerful motor maintains a sensitive and natural response that won’t overwhelm beginners. The plushRockShox suspension with 130 mm at the front and 120 mm at the rear not only excels on the trail but also offers exceptional comfort whether you’re sitting or standing.
The Tero X manages to put a big grin on your face that’s hard to wipe off – it’s undoubtedly the most fun ride in the entire test field.
When you’ve packed up and are ready to go on your next adventure, the Tero X 6.0 remains stable, even when fully loaded. However, its short rear end design means that larger bags tend to stick out forward, which can lead to unintentional heel contact. The ideal solution is the Specialized/Fjällraven Coolcave Pannier (€ 80), paired with the Specialized/Fjällraven Cave Lid Pack (€ 70). These panniers fit perfectly with plenty of heel room even for riders with larger shoe sizes. In addition to carrying your expedition gear, it’s important to have reliable maps to navigate. Unfortunately, the Tero X is the only bike in the test that doesn’t have a built-in navigation system, so you’ll have to rely on traditional maps or alternative methods to find your way. But other important information, such as speed, battery status and selected riding mode, is displayed on the easy-to-read MasterMind TCD display mounted centrally on the stem. Despite the lack of navigation, the Specialized Tero X offers a comprehensive connectivity package. The Smart Control feature will soon be available through an upcoming update. It lets you simply enter your desired distance, elevation gain and remaining battery capacity for your destination, and the motor will automatically adjust its assistance so that you don’t run out of power. You can also fully customise the motor settings by adjusting the assistance levels – Eco, Trail and Turbo – to suit your personal preferences in terms of maximum motor power, responsiveness and overall riding experience. Once you’ve conquered the summit and parked your bike on a serene mountain meadow, you can enjoy your picnic in peace because the system lock function ensures that the motor can only be activated via a mobile app or a PIN code on the handlebar remote control. If the bike is tampered with while locked, an alarm sounds to deter potential thieves.
Who should take a closer look at the Specialized Tero X 6.0
The Specialized Tero X 6.0 will undoubtedly appeal to a wide variety of riders due to its outstanding all-round attributes. Especially active riders who can appreciate the bike’s sporty aspirations will enjoy the Tero X. It’s an excellent choice if you’re looking for an eMTB and already have some trail experience, but you also need a bike that can be used for the daily commute and to carry a few things.
Our conclusion on the Specialized Tero X 6.0
Riding fun is guaranteed with the Specialized Tero X 6.0. From the city to the woods to off-road trails, the Tero X has a wide range of uses. Its equipment is kept to a minimum, but scores with high quality. This bike really shines when you push the boundaries of your comfort zone, delivering outstanding off-road performance, comfort and intuitive handling. The E-MOUNTAINBIKE test crew was surprised when emotions triumphed over reason – the Tero X 6 is our clear test winner!
- excellent riding fun off the beaten track
- wide range of uses
- high quality, high performance MTB components
- modern, sporty look
- riding position too sporty for more relaxed riders
- no navigation function
- heel bumps against large rear panniers
- cable clutter in front of handlebar
You can find out more about at specialized.com
The test field
Click here for an overview of our SUV ebike buyer’s guide: The best e-SUV 2024 – 10 ebikes in our group test.
All bikes in test:
ADVANCED Trekking Pro FS Wave | BULLS Vuca EVO FSX 1 | CENTURION Country R3000i LX | CONWAY CAIRON SUV FS 7.7 | FLYER Goroc TR:X 8.63 | GIANT Stormguard E+ 1 | Moustache J. All | Riese & Müller Delite 4 GT Touring | ROTWILD R. C1000 TOUR | Specialized Turbo Tero X 6.0
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Words: Mike Hunger Photos: Jan Richter, Robin Schmitt