RLE titanium e-bikes combine light weight with hidden electronics
Looking for a lightweight e-bike? Something a bit different? Well, we’ve got you covered. RLE Bike from Russia got in touch to tell us about their 2018 range, which comprises a number of builds of their proprietary titanium frame.
Now, two things might immediately cross your mind here. One might be, “that doesn’t look like an e-bike”. And that might be closely followed (or even preceded) by the thought, “What in holy hell is going on with that seat tube?” Well, the two things are closely connected.
The RLE Bike frame contains a 345Wh internal battery; that’s big for a fully internal system and it flls both the top tube and the seat tube. That, in turn, means that there’s nowhere to shove the seatpost, so there’s a separate mini seatpost behind the main one. That also means the the batteries can easily be removed from the frame, although you don’t need to to that to charge the bike up; there’s a charging port underneat the top tube.
The bike uses a 250W rear hub motor (a 500W version is also available) and RLE claim a range of between 50 and 80km, which seems pretty reasonable. You can have the frame built up in a number of ways: The gravel bike at the top, using a SRAM Rival 1×11 drivetrain, is the lightest of the lot at 13.3kg.
There’s also a 27.5+ hardtail mountain bike, for which RLE claim a weight of 14.9kg. That’s not quite as light as the Focus Raven2 Pro, which uses the Fazua motor system (with a smaller battery) and is around 13kg, but it’s still very light. It’s probably the lightest mountain bike with 27.5+ wheels that we’ve seen.
All this titanium and tech doesn’t come cheap: the list price for these bikes is between €3350 for the urban build and €6175 for the 27.5+ mountain bike.