Electric bikes are becoming a popular and fast growing transport option in the environmentally conscious climate that we live in today. Cycling is a much healthier alternative to our usual transport, however you can end up spending a lot of money on electric bikes if you are not careful.
Luckily, the Rockrider E-ST 900 electric mountain bike designed by decathlon is budget friendly and delivers a good ride in comparison with more expensive products out there. This electric bike that decathlon has brought out is truly a strong contender in the decathlon range; with an electric assistance of 320% boosting your pedalling to the maximum, the comfort of the 6061 aluminium frame with hydroformed tubes and its Brose T aluminium central motor which is designed to handle even the most toughest terrains and inclines, what could seem like a more perfect budget mountain bike designed in the B'twin village of France? Hopefully this electric bike decathlon review will help you decide.
Decathlon.co.uk is a French outdoor company who specialise in all kind of sports. They have a range of electric bikes such as the btwin mountain bike, the previous E-ST500 Rockrider and it's b'twin decathlon folding bikes.
Decathlon has always been known to provide quality btwin bikes with good value for a cheaper price and have been praised by the electric bike community for their good reputation. Decathlon make sure to test out each and every one of there bikes with experienced MTB riders and give customer service of the highest standard, such as maintenance and repair for your electric bike if needed.
Due to different electric bike demands in the market, decathlon is continuing to create a variety of affordable high quality ebike options such as decathlon hybrid, decathlon folding bike and city e-bikes.
After reading some high rated reviews online about the other decathlon b twin bikes and the older Rockrider E-ST 500, I was keen to review the new Rockrider E-ST 900 and see what this electric bike was about.
This powerful electric bike in particular is one of the newest in the decathlon range. Firstly, the geometry of this product is similar to the traditional mountain bike, it's frame comes in four different sizes from small to extra large and it's aluminium frame keeps the 500Wh Samsung battery tucked neatly away in the rear, while looking sleek with it's 2.8" wide tyres and Rockshox JUDY fork upfront.
The new electric Rockrider is pretty much giving you the best specs and design for less than £1,700, not to mention the Brose T motor which is designed by one of the leading hub motor companies in the ebike industry. It certainly gives the b twin bikes a good competition.
Anyway, let's get into the detailed specifications and electrical components on this electric bike so we can see what this bike is all about.
Main specification overview -
So, the motor is probably the most special feature on this e-bike. As I said earlier this is a Brose T motor (one of the leading motor brands) with 70Nm torque, that can handle nearly all off-road scenarios with an assisted speed to 15.5mph. It is also a central motor rather than a rear hub motor.
Not to mention this motor is extremely quiet due to it's belt, when you use this motor you might think it wouldn't really compete against a more powerful competition such as the Shimano STEPS E8000 motor and yes, it has it's limitations but for a price of under £2000, its a bargain.
The lcd display on this electric bike is located conveniently next to your left grip on the frame giving you useful information such as; the assistance and battery level you are riding on, speed, power, battery life and distance. It also has a usb charging port. The assistance levels are in four different modes that range from 40%, 80%, 160% and 320%, which helps give a choice of what support you want according to the difficulty of the terrain you are riding on, or it can give you that extra assistance just when you need it on an adventure.
The only downfall to this electric display would be the size, this size can prove difficult when using the touch screen especially if you are wearing gloves. I will get deeper into this when I share my riding experience.
The battery on this electric bike is located nicely among the frame and contains the Samsung SDI cells with a 500Wh capacity. This battery range could give anything from 80 miles to even 100 miles plus which is more than enough juice for some fun trail riding. The locking system on this electric bike keeps the battery stable during off-road adventures and there is key lock installed for anti theft protection meaning you can leave the bike alone on an outing without having to worry about the battery being nicked.
The electric bike is equipped with Tektro TKD32 hydraulic disc brakes on the front and rear with 180mm rotors. Pretty standard for most bikes of this level and will provide enough power for this kind of bike on the road.
The gearing for this electric bike is once again the best considering its price. This electric bike has Shimano's M6000 10 speed group set with an 11-42 cassette. You can start to see where Decathlon delivers value for a competitive price now.
The wheels on this bike are tubleless-ready tyres and rims. I think the 36mm Sun Ringle rims are great and the extra wide 2.8" Hutchinson Taipan Koloss tyres are just suited perfectly for any terrain and fit nicely with size of the frame. I found that these tyres handled uneven slippy surfaces with no problem, but I would be interested to see how they perform on some more technical terrains.
Suspension wise this electric bike has the Rockshox JUDY fork with 120 mm of travel and can ride over any obstacles such as pebbles or uneven terrain. These forks are pretty decent when you take into account the Rockrider's overall price, they are also hydraulic and pneumatic. Overall the fork provides a pretty decent suspension for off-roading on this bike, compared to other bikes of this price that are normally fitted with a Suntour fork, this a winner.
All of the finishing kit on this bike is Decathlon. The 720mm alloy handle bars and stem are completely adjustable, which is excellent for control and they have soft touch ergonomic grips for comfort. The saddle on this electric bike is the btwin Ergofit pro, said to be designed for long rides ensuring you are comfortable for the whole duration.
Finally we can get to my favourite part, the ride. So first of all I have tested out many other electric m-bikes similar to price of the Rockrider E-ST 900 and none have had the upfront quality and value of this decathlon bike.
Now I decided to ride this bike up some of my local trails which have hilly and rocky terrains and was thoroughly impressed with how it performed. I could certainly feel the quality of the Brose T motor providing assistance on the rear wheel of the electric bike. The motor didn't let me down no matter how hard the terrain and incline was, keeping a consistent speed, the ride still felt very natural. I also fitted the bike with my own mudguards and rear pannier rack just to see how it would look/feel and they fitted seamlessly with the rear wheel and frame of the bike. I did around a 20 km ride and messed around with nearly all of the modes, I even used the boost mode a fair bit and I still had half of the battery left by the end of my ride. I found this surprising as some other bikes I have ridden for this distance on a boost mode would normally be way under the half-way mark battery wise.
I really appreciated how fun this electric bike made off-roading and I felt confident if I was to take it out on some harder and longer trails that the bike and battery would still do a sufficient job. Some downfalls would be that I did find the display size a little small but that is a minor inconvenience. Also the Hutchinson tyres are good but I feel like they could be a little a stronger if I was to be using them on more technical terrains.
The battery took a while to recharge after my first ride out as I had completely drained it. I would recommend you hook it up overnight so as it can get a full charge for when you next take the bike out, unfortunately I don't think a short charge would sustain a long ride out during the day, which is fine as long as you are prepared!
Honestly, 100% yes. Compared to other electric mountain bikes I have ridden and reviewed nothing compares to the Rockrider E-ST 900 for this price of £1,699.99. The electric components, performance and battery are just such good value for the price. It's not bad looking either and makes mountain biking fun and enjoyable. After riding this electric bike I would even be eager to buy it myself or check out some of the electric folding bike decathlon has along with the b twin bikes.
It truly is an accessible quality electric bike for people with a budget of under £2000.
I said there was some very small minors such as the display size, recharge time and tyre quality however these are more down to personal preference. I wouldn't want to mark this brilliant bike down because of them. Do bear in mind you will need to buy some mudguards and a pannier rack if needed.
If you are looking for a quality all rounder sturdy electric bike to take out off-road, this is hands down the winner.