Canyon have launched their new 'fitness' e-bike for 2020, the Roadlite:ON. It comes in three spec levels starting from £2,499, and all are powered by the Fazua Evation 1.0 drive system with a downtube-mounted integrated remote.
The three models all weigh in at around the 15kg mark, with the Roadlite:ON 9.0 coming in at just under that claimed weight. The removable Fazua 1.0 unit adds 4.6kg to this, but it can be swapped out for a cover (purchased separately from Fazua) that drops the weight by a further 2.9kg if you want to ride without assistance.
The three assistance levels can be customised, with the lowest 'Breeze' setting allowing you to keep to 25km/h with just 100 watts of power. The remote can either be tapped or swiped to change the assistance levels, and the colour key also tells you the health of the battery level so you know when to charge.
Canyon say you should get around 60km/two and a half hours of range out of the Fazua system with reasonable use before it needs to be recharged.
All customisation options and maintenance tasks for the motor system are performed via the Fazua app, and Canyon also tell us they're working with Fazua to produce a Canyon-branded version that will make it even more user-friendly. The torque sensor has the capabilities to tell the rider their power stats and plenty more data, which Canyon say riders will be able to get access to with an additonal app subscription fee for a premium version.
There's also an additional Topeak phone mount available so you can see all your data up front, which is available separately.
Unlike the majority of road and e-road bikes with disc brakes that utilise the 12mm standard, Canyon have chosen to use 15mm thru-axles to add some extra stiffness. All the models come with 1x drivetrains, with the entry-level 7.0 getting 1x11 and 1x12 appearing on the 8.0 and 9.0 - Canyon have chosen to spec 1x for convenience and simplicity, saying the assistance means riders have less need for super close ratios and are more likely to value ease of use over additional gears.
All models have aluminium frames, a carbon fork and come with 35mm tyres - officially Canyon suggest this is the max clearance as they say there should be a 6mm gap between the tyre and the front fork/rear stays, but you could in theory run a 38mm with no issues.
The Roadlite:ON comes in three different variants, the 7.0, 8.0 and 9.0. The 7.0 costs £2,499 and has an aluminium bar and stem with a 1x11 drivetrain, the 8.0 is £3,049 and has a Shimano Deore XT 1x12 groupset and the 9.0 is £3,499 with Shimano's XTR 1x12 groupset - both the 8.0 and 9.0 come with Canyon's CP04 CF carbon integrated bar and stem, also found on Canyon's standard Roadlite range.
We don't have any solid shipping dates yet but you can sign up to be notified of availability now on Canyon's website.
A (very short) first ride report
After meeting Canyon at Rapha Spitalfields for some seriously strong espresso, I was taken on a short, traffic-heavy test pootle around central London to try out the bike. What the route lacked in pretty scenery it made up for in ample opportunities to try out the assistance at traffic lights, and the smooth, reliable Fazua unit made accelerating a joy. I was told that on the highest setting you actually get an initial boost that is somewhere in the region of around 400 watts before it settles down to the 250 watt limit when you hit 25km/h.
The downtube-mounted remote does away with the less aesthetically pleasing bar-mounted version on previous Fazua-powered bikes we've tested, and it certainly cleans up the appearance. In use it's pretty easy to access and having the option to touch the buttons or swipe to alter the assistance level is welcome. Although reaching down to alter the assist like downtube shifters of yore isn't quite as convenient as having it on your bars, Canyon say this is because the people this bike is aimed at won't be needing to constantly change it all the time like e-mtb riders, and you'll mostly be on the lowest setting most of the time unless you hit a hill.
The ride is pleasant enough, with comfortable flat bars, powerful Shimano disc brakes and the wide-ranging cassette on my 1x12 groupset providing gears for every eventuality; I don't think I was off the smallest four sprockets during our pretty flat journey through central London.
It's interesting that Canyon have chosen to promote the Roadlite:ON as a 'fitness bike', as I can also see it being used as a high-end commuter. That said, it's a little too luxurious to leave it locked up out of sight and the spec list would suggest it's built to ride seriously, so perhaps there's a strong market for those who want a performance-orientated bike with a flat bar for some extra comfort and versatility for long commutes or casual riding for fitness.
Of course we'll be looking to test a Roadlite:ON more thoroughly, so will be enquiring about a test bike shortly... stay tuned!