2021 eMTB SHOOTOUT
BEATEN & BASHED IN GREATER ZION, UTAH
PRESENTED BY CATALYST | A BETTER LIFE
The quest to find the best eMTB on the market is never ending and we love the opportunity to put our annual eMTB Shootout together. This shootout lets us bring eBikes and testers with different styles and backgrounds together for the chance to have some fun and rate as many eMTBs as we can. Unfortunately due to some COVID-19 delivery and availability issues, this year’s test fleet was reduced as brands simply didn’t have the bikes available to send down to St. George, Utah with us. Nevertheless, we proceeded with 12 bikes and are beyond grateful for all the brands involved in helping us make our third annual eMTB Shootout happen.
Each year is a learning process and for 2021 we decided to keep our Trail (150mm rear travel or less) and Enduro (155mm + rear travel) categories alive, while also creating more detailed reviews of each bike before our grand finale and round table video. The goal is to give consumers a better insight into each bike as they may be specifically interested in one model rather than every bike we tested. Plus, it keeps us from making a 60 minute long eMTB Shootout round table video, which nobody wants! Especially our video editor.
Our crew gathered in beautiful St. George, Utah and with help from the Greater Zion Tourism Office, we were lucky enough to stay in a spacious and centrally located house that had us just minutes away from three completely different and equally fun trail networks that are all eMTB friendly. Most of our days were spent riding rocky, technical terrain with plenty of elevation and scenery that only Southern Utah can provide. A couple of field trip days to nearby Zion put us on legendary trails and let us push the limits of our nerves and what we’ve ever done eBikes. It was an absolute blast and the fact we were able to put so many of these eMTBs into these situations with only a couple of issues is a testament to how fast this segment is improving.
Thanks for tuning in and enjoy the The Loam Wolf’s 2021 eMTB Shootout.
The Best in Class winner is the bike that has the absolute best performance up and down the trail, that our riders want to keep for themselves.
The Absolute Shredder award is given to the bikes that place aggressive riding and downhill performance above all else.
The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing award is given to the most unassuming bikes or the ones that surprise our testers the most.
150MM OF REAR TRAVEL OR LESS
155MM OF REAR TRAVEL OR MORE
OUR CREW OF MISFITS
38 | 5’11” | 165 lbs
Former ebike hater who’s fully embraced the Boost Life. He lives for raw, natural trails with lots of rough sections where you have to work to find flow and natural gaps. Drew has been testing and riding nearly 20 bikes a year, for the last ten years, making his depth of knowledge and experience aboard a wide variety of platforms incredibly deep. He regularly uses hand/foot feedback as a barometer for how suspension handles repeated high-speed hits or chatter on his favorite trails and doesn’t love the trend of making every bike a “flow trail” bike with super long, low and slack geometry numbers.
You may not know: Drew drinks Mountain Dew to get jacked up and eats too many burritos. He also has a theory that the best things in life are round, ask him about it.
SEAN “SOURPATCH” LEICHT
30 | 6’1” | 160 lbs
As someone who hates climbing, it was odd that Sourpatch resisted riding an ebike for so long. He’s now a convert and loves zipping to the top of his favorite downhills. Sourpatch isn’t a big suspension tweaker or bike set up kinda guy. He likes to get on and go and let the factory settings be his guide. He’s a good barometer for the average consumer who may not spend a lot of time testing and tuning the bike from the shop floor. Sean likes jumping, steep downhills and hitting berms.
You may not know: Not an exaggeration when we say he hasn’t eaten a vegetable in years. If it ain’t neon, he ain’t eating it. He also doesn’t like sauce, or anything that’s not bagged for that matter.
COLE “HIGH MAINTENANCE” GREGG
29 | 6’1” | 175lbs
Cole is relatively new to the team but brings tons of expertise to the game. He’s got a penchant for jumping high and taking way too long to set up his bike before he can ride it. He’s from Washington and spends most of his time catching air and ripping berms in that fine PNW soil, but we’re forcing him to learn to love rocks as much as we do. Cole is passionate about photography, diesel trucks, catching big air and has a serious fear of frogs.
You may not know: Cole has the most sensitive diet of anyone we’ve met.
NIC “U-TURN” HALL
34 | 5’10” | 160 lbs
Recovering XC-dork turned endurbro, Nic Hall loves training, pedaling to stay fit and drinking gluten free beers. He’d never eaten El Pollo Loco until our trip and has joined the rest of the Pack as a full-blown ebike convert. Nic still loves going out for long training pedals, but now he can cover twice as much ground, get even more descents and shake his head in disbelief that his heart rate monitor actually tells him he’s getting a better workout on these ebikes. He’s also our resident Medic, and we’re glad we haven’t had to use his services very often.
You May Not Know: Nic has earned the reputation of being “The married bachelor.” Despite having a wife and two young daughters, Nic is always making the rest of us jealous with his new toys and willingness to say, “Yes” to whatever adventure gets thrown his way.
RYAN “FRENCHIE” GAGNON
33 | 6’0” | 160lbs
The loose goose – Frenchie has been helping Drew test bikes for a number of years and is almost guaranteed to either break a part or crash trying. As a new dad, Frenchie’s riding time went from some to none real quick. He’s just now getting back on the bike and enjoying the benefits of ebiking as they allow him to get more DH laps in during his short pre-work rides. He represents the hardcore shredder who’s looking to ride fast and hard.
You may not know: Frenchie is partially blind in one eye after a high-heel incident at a party.
BRIAN “DON’T YOU KNOW WHO I AM” NILES
Cinematographer | @Treelinecinematic
You may Not Know: As the oldest member of the crew, we are constantly impressed with Brian’s permanent smile and energy. His camera pack is almost as big as he is, yet he still hangs with us on the long days. Sadly for Brian, he’s seen more male genitalia than anyone else in our group and probably wonders why he still works with us. Will we ever grow out of this?
DUSTEN “GINGER SAM ELLIOT” RYEN
Photographer | @DustenRyen
Artsy coffee fiend who masters the snaps behind the lens, Dusten is a vital piece of the crew and will amaze you with how long he can talk about any topic at all. If you ask, he’s got a story!
And he’s a great Craigslister.