Photos by Max Rhulen & Dusten Ryen
Video by Brian Niles / Treeline Cinematic

The Epocalypse is Evil’s first eBike, for which they decided to electrify their Wreckoning 166mm travel 29er enduro bike with a Shimano EP8 motor and 630Wh battery. In standard Evil fashion, their eMTB employs a DELTA suspension system in the rear, which allows them to get a 29er wheel in the rear with just a 442mm chainstay length. With mean looks and purposeful geometry, our eight testers were excited to welcome this machine into the roster for our 2023 eMTB Shootout, so let us report back on how the Evil Epocalypse performed.

2023 EMTB SHOOTOUT SERIES – This bike was one of 13 that our staff thoroughly tested with absolute objectivity in mind. From different types of riders to terrain, our goal is to present the best and most honest information possible to help you make your best decision. Of course, we’d love to thank Fox Racing and Schwalbe Tires for being invaluable partners to this series and making it happen.


• 166mm DELTA Suspension
• 29” Wheels
• Shimano EP8 Motor
• 630Wh Battery
• 2-Position Flip Chip
• HTA 64.5
• STA 75.6 (effective)
• REACH 475 (Large)

Price: $9,999
Website: Evil-bikes.com


The Evil Epocalypse is an enduro eMTB, designed to carry the Evil DNA into the electric world with an element of play-friendliness to its enduro capabilities. The Epocalypse has a Unidirectional (UD) carbon fiber frame with 166mm travel through the DELTA suspension platform, which is paired to a 170mm fork and a pair of 29-inch wheels. Power is delivered from a 630Wh removable integrated battery to the common Shimano EP8 drive system.

Evil’s Epocalypse features full internal cable routing, with their vascular system to guide the housings through the frame. Protection is provided by a custom skid plate on the motor; shuttle shield on the downtube, and “sound mound” chainstay and seatstay protectors. The main pivot of the DELTA suspension uses oversized bearings to handle the high loads, and there’s a SRAM UDH for the derailleur to mount to. The rear end uses the SuperBoost+ 157mm rear end to afford impressive 29×2.6” tire clearance and add strength and stiffness to the rear wheel. The frame features a flip chip to give options of Low or X-Low geometry settings, which doesn’t affect the suspension characteristics. Evil offers an impressive lifetime warranty for the frame and bearings.

Evil Epocalypse Profile Shot


The Epocalypse is powered by the Shimano STEPS EP8 motor with a 630Wh removable integrated battery. This battery can be switched out in under 10 seconds according to Evil, letting you swap out a charged spare in quick time to extend your ride. The 85Nm Shimano EP8 motor is one of the most common on the market and featured on seven of our 13 bikes in this year’s shootout. The Shimano motor has proved to be a solid offering, which when combined with the widely available support network makes it a reasonable choice. The EM800 display and EM-800L assist switch show and control the different modes: ECO, TRAIL and BOOST, which have two profiles that can be adjusted using the Shimano E-TUBE PROJECT app.

Evil Epocalypse Geo Sheet


Geometry on the Epocalypse is largely shared with the Evil Wreckoning analogue enduro bike, aside from the slightly longer chainstay length at 442mm across the size range. This size range goes from Small to Extra Large, catering for riders from 5’3” to 6’4”+. We opted to test the size large, which has a 475mm reach and 647mm stack and 1263mm wheelbase in the Low geometry setting. All sizes share a 64.5-degree head tube angle, 75.6-degree effective seat tube angle and 18mm bottom bracket drop in this Low setting. The flip chip offers 0.5-degree slackening to the head tube and seat tube angles, and an 8mm drop in the bottom bracket height.

The geometry of the Evil Epocalypse is fairly typical for the aggressive enduro segment, aside from the relatively high bottom bracket with only 18mm drop. The sum of the numbers led to a fairly well-rounded performance on the descents, with a playful nature but without losing confidence due to instability.


Evil Bikes are currently offering a single “XT” build spec for their Epocalypse, with the choice of either an Industry Nine Enduro alloy wheelset for $9,999 or the Evil Loopholes carbon wheelset for $10,999. This is spec’d with a RockShox ZEB Ultimate 170mm fork and Super Deluxe Ultimate coil rear shock. Shifting and braking duties are handled by Shimano’s XT offerings, with the 4-piston XT M8120 brake set with 203mm center lock rotors and XT HypergGlide+ 12spd drivetrain. This includes the XT M8150 cranks in 170mm length to drive the EP8 motor. The cockpit is all-Evil, with their 12 Gauge 45mm long stem and 35mm rise Energy Carbon bar with internal cable routing. There’s a BikeYoke Revive dropper with size-specific lengths, on top of which sits a WTB Volt saddle.

The wheelset on the build tested was the Industry Nine Enduro S Hydra, which is wrapped in a Maxxis Minion DHF EXO 29×2.5” tire combo as standard. However, thanks to Schwalbe, for the 5th year running we fitted the Magic Mary Soft Super Gravity in the front and Big Betty Soft Super Gravity in the rear on all bikes in this year’s group test. This made for consistent and dependable performance across the test fleet and made for a more fair comparison bike-to-bike. Other than the stock tire spec, the Epocalypse XT is certainly a purposeful build spec that highlights the aggressive intentions of the Evil e-Mountain bike.

Evil Epocalypse Air Time


SETUP | The crew was unanimous in thinking the Epocalypse was a badass looking bike, so we were excited to find out if the performance would stack up. Getting the Evil set up was fairly simple, with their coil spring rate guide making for easy rear end sag setting.

ELECTRONICS & INTEGRATION | Evil’s integration of the Shimano system is quite typical, and makes for a relatively clean look overall. The black motor cover blends neatly into the all black…ahem, “Wasabi Shadow”… frame, looking coherent and without any ugly additions for the drive unit or battery. The Shimano system is the most popular amongst manufacturers in this group test, and while it makes for few complaints, it does fall short of the other motors on test when it comes to power delivery in steeper terrain.

Evil Epocalypse Climbing

CLIMBING | The Epocalypse is unlikely to win any awards uphill, but it does an acceptable job at getting up all but the steepest of climbs. The relatively short rear end; higher than average bottom bracket and somewhat slack seat tube angle compared with many combine to make the front wheel go light when in the easiest couple gears. Pedal clearance is satisfactory for pedaling through the chunk, and there’s reasonable pedaling support in the Delta suspension. Overall, it goes uphill well enough to satisfy most riders but does feel a bit light in the front end.

Evil Epocalypse rock drop

DESCENDING | On the way down, all of the crew agreed that the Evil likes to attack. From the loose dirt and rocks of the desert to the coastal loam, the Evil Epocalypse came alive when it was held wide open. Some testers found the rear end to be susceptible to hanging up from time to time, and suggested there was a little more feedback through high frequency washboard zones than they’d have liked, whereas others were satisfied by the level of sensitivity. Mid-stroke support and bottom out resistance were stellar, no doubt in part thanks to the hydraulic bottom out (HBO) in the new RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate coil rear shock. The geometry retains an element of playfulness, which when combined with the stout feeling of the frame and reasonable weight meant it would still pop and play fairly well when trail speeds weren’t super high. The Epocalypse would be a killer self-shuttle park eMTB.

FINISH AND VALUE | Frame quality on the Evil appears good, with all the details well covered and a quiet ride. We did have to tighten up the linkage hardware on one instance as it had come a little loose. With so many different pieces of hardware in the Delta linkage, it can take a little longer to find the source of a rattle, but it’s not a major issue. As stock the Epocalypse comes with a pair of EXO casing Minion DHF tires, which left us bewildered – this thin tire casing on a coil sprung 166mm travel bike makes zero sense, so we were thankful for the more suitable Super Gravity Schwalbe benchmark tires we were fitting instead. Otherwise, the parts spec is solid and performed great, but the price tag feels a little elevated when you compare it with the likes of the Fezzari. This is unlikely to deter the Evil die-hards, but we’d have a hard time recommending the Evil over the Fezzari in this case. That said, the lifetime warranty for frame and bearings is nice to have.

Evil Epocalypse Ski Jump

The Wolf’s Last Word

The Evil Epocalypse is a solid performer and an excellent first venture into the eMTB world for a relatively small company. It’s not the best climber in steep terrain nor the most sensitive bike on the square edges but inspires aggressive riding while retaining some agility to pop and play on less gnarly terrain. The value proposition is not fantastic, but if you’ve got to have that murdered out aggressive shredder in your stable, then you’re unlikely to be disappointed.


Without a doubt, the Evil Epocalypse would make for a killer self-shuttle park bike. Riders who own the Epocalypse should be prepared to attack the trails and push this enduro eBike hard to get the best out of it. 

Price: $9,999
Weight: 54.6 lbs
Website: Evil-bikes.com


Frame: UD Carbon; 166mm
Fork: Rockshox ZEB Ultimate | 170 mm
Shock: Rockshox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate

Motor: Shimano EP8 | 85 Nm
Battery: Shimano BT-E8036 | 630Wh
Display: Shimano SC-EM800

Brakes: Shimano XT BR-M8120 | 203 / 203mm rotors
Bar: Evil Energy UD Carbon Bar | Rise: 35mm | Width: 800mm
Stem: Evil 12 Gauge | Clamp: 35mm | Length: 45mm
Seatpost: Bike Yoke Revive | S:125mm | M: 160mm | L/XL:185mm
Saddle: WTB Volt Medium

Hubs: Industry Nine Hydra | SB157+ rear spacing
Rims: Industry Nine Enduro S
Front tire: Maxxis Minion DHF 29×2.5″WT | EXO Casing
Rear tire: Maxxis Minion DHF 29×2.5″WT | EXO Casing

Cassette: Shimano XT CS-M8100-12 | 10-51T
Cranks: Shimano XT FC-M8150 | 170mm
Shifter: Shimano XT | 12spd
Derailleur: Shimano XT | 12spd

Cannondale Moterra Neo LT rocks

We Dig

Aggressive Looks
Hard charging capability
Retains some agility
Quality finish

We Don’t

Not the best value
Square edge harshness
Steep terrain climbing struggles


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