Italian manufacturer Olympia already has a number of city e-bikes in its catalogue for the past five years, but now they've announced a three-bike range of electric mountain bikes, called Performer. There are two 29" models, with the top-of-the-range Performer Plus using the 27.5+ standard.
All of the bikes use a hardtail alloy frameset, and each of the three has a different power system. The cheapest bike, the Performer 29 Max, uses the Bafang MAX mid motor coupled with a 400Wh Samsung battery pack. You get Shimano Alivio transmission and Tektro Hydraulic brakes.
The MAX motor puts out 80Nm of torque, which is actually the highest of the three bikes. That should be handy when you're scrabbling up the steep stuff. The range is stated as "50-130km" which is quite a wide estimate, but for off-road riding we'd expect it to be much nearer to the former figure than that latter.
Up front there's a Suntour XCM 100mm fork, and you get a fairly standard alloy wheelset and Olympia-branded finishing kit.
Next up and in the middle of the range is the Performer, which swaps the Bafang motor for a Bosch mid motor and a matching 400Wh power pack. At 60Nm of torque the Performance Line Bosch Motor isn't quite as eager from a standing start, but the Bosch system is a firm favourite for quality of build and application of power. You'll probably get a slightly bigger range too, although we'll be generous and call Olympia's maximum stated range of 175km "optimistic". You can also have the Performer with the Active line motor commonly used on city bikes, which is a bit cheaper.
Transmission steps up to Shimano's Deore groupset and the fork, a Suntour XCR, is better too. You get Schwalbe's Excellent Rapid Rob 2.35" tyres fitted as well.
Top of the pile is the Performer Plus, which swaps the 29" wheels for 27.5+. The Plus ,eans bigger tyres: three-inch Schwalbe Rocket Rons in this instance. 27.5+ is a popular format for electric mountain bikes as the bike tyres give plenty of traction and cushioning for the extra weight of the transmission. They weigh a bit more, but that's incidental on an e-MTB.
Drive is by Bosch again; this time you get a choice of the Performance Line or the top-of-the-range Performance Line CX, putting out 75Nm of torque. You get a 400Wh battery. Up front the bike sports a 120mm Rockshox Reba fork, and the drivetrain is a mix of Shimano XT and Deore.
We don't have UK prices for the bikes just yet, but we'll update this story when we do.