first opinion on this impressive electric mountain bike

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The French brand Mustache has invited frandroid near Fontainebleau to take control of his VTTAE Saturday 29 Trail 9, the time of two departures of approximately 2 hours in the famous forest of the same name. An ultra-favorable playing field for mountain biking, where positive and negative unevenness, paths, stones and other roots coexist.

It was a chance for yours to experience a high-end electric mountain bike for the first time. This manipulation aims both to expose the capabilities of the proven model and to provide a relatively fresh and novel point of view on this much more exciting discipline than it seems.

Mustache knows how to do it with electric mountain bikes

Mustache and electric mountain bikes is a love story that has lasted 10 years. From the beginning, a first range of VTTAEs formed an integral part of the offer, which was later expanded to form five large families: Saturday 26/27 Off, Saturday 27 Weekend, Saturday 27 Wide, Saturday 29 Trail and Saturday 29 Game.

After having tested the Samedi 29 Game 9 in June 2022, whose features are more outlined for enduro, we had to get on the handlebars of the Samedi 29 Trail 9, intended for both the general public and professionals. The Trail 3, Trail 5, Trail 7 and Trail 11 versions coexist within the range, at progressive prices depending on the characteristics.

The Saturday 29 Trail isn’t just a compilation of premium components. It is an electric mountain bike designed for trail and technical routes, combining power, agility and comfort. Mustache engineers, for example, redesigned the battery and motor mounts.

Mustache Saturday 29 Trail 9 components (13)
Source : Mustache

In doing so, Mustache managed to position these two components as low as possible to improve the overall stability of the bike.

The Saturday 29 Trail also benefits from a multi-scale internal design, starting with the infinitely recyclable 6061-T6 aluminum frame. The Magic Grip Control rear shock, which comes in 4 versions depending on the line of bikes, is designed on its own, which is rare enough to point out.

Finally, Mustache makes its own asymmetrical rims, which allow a balanced tension between the different layers of spokes. According to Mustache, his wheel is more durable in the long run. All these homemade adjustments would make the bike more dynamic and precise.

An impressive electric mountain bike

« Trust your e-MTB »: This advice given by one of the Mustache members when presenting the Trail on Saturday the 29th was one of the most valuable ones heard during the press event. Because when you take the handlebars of your first electric mountain bike, you are not yet aware of all its capabilities.

Step by step, you’ll learn to tame this relatively easy-to-handle beast, as stability and comfort are at the meeting point. Then you venture to cross some first small obstacles, from relatively flat stone to some intermediate potholes, going through more or less marked positive elevations and other roots.

This first warm-up lap really lets you get the hang of the ultra-high-end kit that the Trail 9 equips. And understand how much the FOX Float 36 Performance rear shock and suspension fork with 150mm of travel still have. the margin in front of them: the chances are in fact much greater.

The 29-inch Maxxis Assegai 3C MaxxTerra tires offer excellent grip in all conditions (stones, branches, wet leaves, sandy ground). It’s pretty impressive in practice. The only small difficulty is, in fact, to become aware of your rear axle, which should ideally be positioned according to a well-defined path.

For example, I scuttled between two large boulders, where the narrow passage and curves are not the most obvious given the size of the machine: in this case, the rear wheel tended to rub, not slip. Where the Trail 9 is strong is that it manages to catch up all the time as long as you have good control of it.

As expected, the Bosch Performance Line CX motor is obviously the ideal ally for more technical terrain. This is a monster of power, delivering 85Nm of torque ideal for hills and overcoming obstacles. With it, everything works for you, from the average hill to the steepest: just play with your gear ratio and assist mode, and you’re good to go.

To push the bike a bit further into its entrenchments, Mustache took us into more difficult typologies. “Trust your e-MTB“. It is typically in this type of situation that this sentence takes on its full meaning. Because at first glance, some passages seemed impossible to cross.

This is when the Trail 9 unleashes all its agility and power to clear towering stones, overhanging roots and vicious linings: the front end is capable of jumping over and overturning (almost) anything, while dampening your reception without crashing and destroying the dynamism of the two-wheeled one.

Especially since the power of the Performance Line CX guarantees excellent liveliness, provided, of course, you have good control of the intensity of your pedal strokes. As a reminder, in the presence of a torque sensor, electric assistance is transmitted in proportion to the force you put into the pedals.

The overall shock absorption is probably one of its greatest strengths – you never feel unduly rushed, whatever your speed. Speaking of speed, and like VAE, the Trail 9 has an electronic limit of 25 km/h, which is extremely easy to reach with Turbo mode.

On descents, speeds of 35 km/h or more can be reached, without fear of the slightest slip: maintain good handlebar control, anticipate the route and raise your sitting position towards the back of the saddle to balance the total weight and add stability to your rear.

Mustache Saturday 29 Trail 9
Source : Mustache

The Trail is equipped with an ultra-practical accessory that is none other than a telescopic seat post, adjustable from a small trigger attached to the handlebar. Put some weight on it, pull the trigger and your saddle will go down in one fell swoop. Raise your butt, reactivate the trigger for the opposite effect.

This piece of equipment may seem trivial to ordinary mortals, but it’s actually devilishly essential for mountain biking. Because with every relatively hard fall, whether positive or negative, it’s important to lower the saddle to get into a lower riding position.

Downhill, this position offers, for example, better control and better balance of the machine. Once back on flat ground, simply play with the trigger to raise the saddle and return to a more classic riding position. You get used to it very quickly.

The brakes are extremely effective: these are Shimano XT BR-M8120, front and rear, with 4 pistons and generous 203mm discs. Each brake lever can be manipulated with just one finger as the bite and progressivity are there. It is very practical to keep your other fingers on the grips and thus maintain good control of the bike.

An intelligent system on board

The version of the Trail 9 tested for a few hours was equipped with the Bosch Smart System and the Kiox 300 computer. This intelligent system allows the bike to receive updates remotely with new features. Everything can be connected to your smartphone via Bluetooth, via the eBike Flow app.

Mustache Saturday 29 Trail 9
Source : Mustache

GPS navigation, driving statistics (time, distance, average speed, etc.), customization of very fine assistance modes, battery level and autonomy, eBike Lock, nature of the routes (unevenness, type of terrain): the application will let you it provides a lot of useful and interesting information if you are a data lover.

We plan to write a complete dossier on the Bosch Smart System. This article will be updated accordingly.

A very comfortable autonomy

The autonomy of an urban VAE and an electric mountain bike probably do not have the same value: an urban bike is intended to be used every day, for cycling to work, for example. Therefore, the range can be a more than important criterion for the user. A mountain bike will be used mainly on weekends, for outings in the woods or in the mountains.

The fact is that the distances traveled during these small escapades can reach several tens of kilometers if you plan to have fun all day. On our first outing, for example, we covered about 10 km in just 50 minutes. Our second 1h20 outing took us to complete 15.5 km.

Mustache Saturday 29 Trail 9
Source : Mustache

Fortunately, the Trail 9 is equipped with the best Bosch batteries in terms of energy capacity: either the 625 Wh version or the 750 Wh version, giving you a very good headroom. In eMTB mode, it adapts to the terrain and your needs, showing 64 km of remaining autonomy for 84% battery.

In Turbo mode, the most powerful, the system indicates a range of 46 km with 98% energy. In short, it is more than enough to have fun for a whole day, or even a whole weekend. Then simply recharge it to prepare it for your next excursion to the mountains or into the woods. Please note that the battery is removable for convenience.

Price and user objective

At 7,499 euros (750 Wh battery), the Saturday 29 Trail 9 is clearly not for every budget. Not all kinds of profiles. It is true that Mustache does not hesitate to point out that his model is intended for both beginners and professionals, but it is clear that both the means and the passion are needed to complete the act of purchase. .

So AE ATV enthusiasts could fall in love with this little electric gem, or even save a few thousand euros by turning to the Saturday 29 Trail 3 (625Wh battery) sold for 5299 euros. However, the Trail 9 is a machine made for technical trails, the potential of which must be fully exploited to get the most out of it.

Mustache Saturday 29 Trail 9
Source : Mustache

It is true that its price may seem exorbitant, but this two-wheeled vehicle has been designed to withstand time and delicate terrain. Each skillfully chosen component is a significant expense, as evidenced by the Fox fork sold for over 1000 euros in the trade: we imagine Mustache negotiated its prices with the manufacturer.

The driving experience and sensations remain singular, for relatively unique exhaust possibilities. Only one question torments me: when is the next one?driveon a high-end electric mountain bike?

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