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Supercar maker McLaren is entering the e-bike business. They have introduced four eMTBs—two full-suspension models and two hardtails—all of which are assisted by a mid-drive motor bearing the McLaren logo on its housing.

McLaren’s big claim is that two of the models, the Extreme 600 and the Sport 600, are the most powerful trail-legal eMTBs on the market. The other two are built with 250W motors. The claim that they are the most powerful trail-legal eMTBs on the market comes with an asterisk

. Normally, when someone uses an asterisk like that they include an explanation at the bottom of the page, but we can’t find one on the McLaren site.

Without any deeper explanation from McLaren, it appears that the Extreme 600 and Sport 600 feature motors that produce 600W nominally and 161Nm of torque, with power peaking at 852W.

There’s a lot to unpack in this announcement, some of it awesome and some just curious. With no clarification from McLaren, we’re drawing the conclusion that what they mean by trail-legal is that these are all Class 1 eMTBs that max out their assistance at 20 mph and come with no throttle. They offer four PAS levels: Eco, Trail, Sport and Race.

So what does that extra power get you? Let’s compare it to Bosch’s very desirable Performance Line SX motor. The Performance Line SX maxes out at 600W and 55Nm of torque, so the McLaren motor offers 42 percent more power and nearly three times the torque. What that gives you is better acceleration and more raw climbing power. Compared to many other eMTBs, the McLaren Extreme 600 and Sport 600 will allow a rider to soft-pedal through most terrain. You could climb our infamous Hell Hole all day and not break a sweat, maybe.

Some readers are probably wondering why McLaren would choose to enter the e-bike market with high-end eMTBs. This isn’t exactly McLaren’ first rodeo in cycling. They have worked with Specialized to produce special versions of Specialized’s Tarmac and Roubaix road bikes. These bikes featured optimized carbon fiber layups that yielded frames that were lighter, stronger and offered a more lively ride. There’s a special division of McLaren called McLaren Applied that takes the company’s know-how and applies it to other technologies.

There’s another curious statement on McLaren’s page, that their designers spent more than 1000 engineering hours crafting the carbon fiber frame to Class A surface standards. If you’ve never heard of this, that’s okay. It’s an automotive standard—not one used in cycling—that translates to a flawless surface finish. There are no visible surface imperfections of any kind and the whole of the appearance is, to cut to the chase, impeccable.

The four e-bikes also include an integrated carbon fiber bar and stem that incorporates a relatively large display and a 1550 lumen headlight into a single, swooping component. The full-suspension Extreme 600 and Extreme 250 feature a 160mm-travel fork and 145mm-travel rear suspension, while the hardtails are spec’d with a 140mm-travel fork.

The full-suspension Extreme uses a mullet wheel setup with a 29-in. wheel front and a 27.5-in. wheel in the rear; the Sport goes with 29-in. wheels front and rear. All four bikes will be spec’d with high-end SRAM components.

The McLaren eMTBs are priced as we would expect to see high-end eMTBs from big manufacturers. The least expensive of them, the Sport 250, costs a little less than $8000 and they go up from there. Each model comes in three sizes.
#McLaren #Joins #eMTBs #Interesting #Claims

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