If you’re into mountain biking, or have even just looked at an entry level mountain bike in the last few years, you might have come across the Trek Marlin. It's sold as a capable, reasonably priced hardtail with playful geometry and short travel and the American brand has now launched an electric version, which it's marketing as a ‘go-anywhere hardtail electric mountain bike.’
There are two models in the range, the Marlin+ 8 and the Marlin+ 6, with the former the more premium option. Both are equipped with the Bosch Active Line Plus mid-drive motor, which boasts a maximum torque rating of 50Nm. This is paired with a Bosch CompactTube 400Wh battery. To maintain a ‘clean’ cockpit, a Purion 200 control pad is used with a small built-in display.
In terms of componentry, both use 120mm travel forks, unless you choose a size XS, where you get 100mm of travel to play with. For the Marlin+ 6 you’re looking at SR Suntour XCM 34, but the Marlin+ 8 gets a slight upgrade in RockShox Recon Silver RL (or SR Suntour XCM 34 for the XS frame).
Where things really start to get different between the bikes is the drivetrain. The Marlin+ 6 comes with a 9-speed Shimano mix, with FSA cranks, whereas the Marlin+ 8 has 12-speed Shimano Deore and FSA cranks.
Both bikes are available in XS to XL sizing, and the colour choices are different for each model. The Marlin+ 6 has a stated weight of 22.45kg in size medium, and the Marlin+ 8 has a stated weight of 21.3kg.
They are both currently out of stock on the Trek website, but are listed at £3,000 for the Marlin+ 8 and £2,500 for the Marlin+ 6 making them quite affordable-looking options given they have mid-motors.
Some of the spec is quite basic on the Marlin+ 6, but if you’re looking for an entryway into e-biking and want something that can tackle road and off-road, it certainly looks like an enticing option.