E-Bike models - which one is best for you? We get daily questions about the key differences between models and their respective prices.
Here is a review of the Talon E+ 29 3 and Liv Tempt E+2. Why review these two bikes together? Well, they're essentially identical bikes, with the exception of the tire size. The Talon E has 29" tires and Tempt E has 27.5".
As with all our reviews, we don't review any bikes until we've put a few hundred miles on our demo bikes and have sold / serviced a number of them. We'll do a "first ride" type review, but once we've had a lot of experience with a bike, it's truly a review. We've put hundreds of miles on our demo bikes at the stores, and have sold probably 100+ of these models combined.
MOUNTAIN E-BIKE MODELS:
Giant Talon E+ 3 / Liv Tempt E+ 3 ($2,900, but on sale for $2,300 for limited time / as of date of this review on 03/12/2023). The on sale models are dwindling quickly, and we expect the price to be back up to full price, by the end of the month. Also, we have another review where we compare the Talon / Tempt with a multi-trail model, the Roam/Rove.
Both bikes are mid drive, which is much better for off road riding. The mid drive bikes keep the weight in the middle of the bike and have more of a natural feel than a rear hub driven bike. In essence, a rear hub driven bike feels a bit like you’re being pushed, while a mid drive bike feels more like a regular bike, just with extra power. You’ll quickly notice that a comparable mid drive bike is a solid $600 - $700 more than its rear hub driven counterpart. Why is that / what’s the benefit to me, and is it worth it? Other than the description of the ride above, a mid drive bike will be a solid 10+ lbs lighter than a comparable rear hub driven bike, generally will get you quite a few more miles per charge, as the mid drive is more efficient. This also means it can use a lighter motor and battery to propel it. The rear wheel is also much easier to change in the event of a flat, compared to a rear hub driven bike.
GIANT TALON E
LIV TEMPT E
The Talon/TemptBoth bikes are designed for riders who want to mountain bike or ride on gravel/dirt. However, since it has pedal assist, the Talon/Tempt are as good as any other E-bikes on the pavement, with the only real difference being the knobby tires, which make the ride a bit less smooth. So if you want to ride the paved trails, then hit a mountain bike trail or gravel roads – these bikes will do it all.
As far as the mechanical specs on the bikes, I won't list everything as you can view the full specs when you view the bikes on our website.
The bikes have Tektro hydraulic brakes in the front and back, Shimano Altus Shifters and a Shimano Alivio, 9 Speed Derailleur in the back. Now, I would have preferred 10 - 11 speed shifting for a wider gear range, but this is adequate for what the bike is built to do. They've got a Suntour XCM ATB Coil 29" 100mm travel fork in the the front.
How are the specs? For a $2,900 bike (regular price), there aren't a lot of other bikes that compete with it. At $2,300 (while supplies last) it's an amazing deal and no one touches it. What is the bike intended for? I'd say it's great for any beginner to intermediate level mountain bike trails. Naturally, it's great for paved trails and gravel roads as well. If you're looking for something to handle the tougher trails in our area, you're really going to want a bike with a beefier front shock, and more gears in the back. That's where Giant / Liv Full Suspension bikes come into play.
The bikes are both equipped with a SyncDrive Core motor by Yamaha, producing 50Nm of torque. This is plenty for any intermediate mountain bike trails in our area and certainly plenty for the paved roads/trails. It's matched with a 400W battery, which Giant lists as giving you pedal assist up to 93 miles per charge. We've been getting anywhere from 60-90 miles per charge, depending on how the bikes are ridden, which seems in line with Giant's rating. The 93 is an "up to" meaning in a low pedal assist mode. Based on our experience, normal riding, you should get 60 - 70 miles per charge out of the bike.
The bikes have a full color LCD Screen and the motor is paired with a 400Wh battery. As we've detailed in other reviews, batteries on mid drive E-bikes do not need to be as big as those on rear hub bikes, as the mid drives are much more efficient.
We've taken our demo bikes around Lake Fayetteville a number of times, to Centennial Park, Mt. Kessler and a variety of other trails in the area. So far they've handled the trails well with no issues. Having sold over 100 of this model over the past 3 years, we've also experienced very few issues with the bikes.
We like the pedal assist mode. It gives one a very natural feel. There's enough torque to get you up the hills, but not so much that it carries you up the hill.
SPEED: These models give you pedal assist up to 20MPH (Class I).
Overall, the bikes are a blast to ride. Both have 5 different power settings from low to high, so you can adjust how much pedal assist you want.
BATTERIES/MOTORS: Again, they all have the identical Yamaha motor and Giant battery, so there is no difference here.
QUALITY/WARRANTY: Giant has been around since the 80’s and is the largest bike manufacturer in the world. The design, finish and quality of all the bikes is great. Giant has a lifetime warranty on the frame for as long as you own the bike. For the mechanical components, it’s one year and for the battery and motor is two years. We’ve had very few issues with their E-bikes over the past 5 years. How long will the batteries last? No one really seems to know yet. Theoretically, a lithium battery should last for 1,000 charges. If you’re getting 60 miles a charge, well, that’s a very long time.
Both are great bikes that will get you riding more often, more miles and having more fun. In effect – more smiles per hour. You can’t go wrong with any of them. It really just comes down to where you want to ride and use the bike for. I went through the same process last year, and because I ride mountain, gravel (my favorite) and pavement (sometimes all of the above in the same ride!) I got a mountain E-bike.
FREE LIFETIME TUNE-UPS: As with all Lewis & Clark bikes, these models come with professional assembly and our Free Lifetime Tune-Up plan. Any time your bike isn’t shifting gears or stopping like it should, just bring it in, and we’ll take care of it. This includes our Standard Tune-up and adjustments. If you bring an E-bike for us to build that came from elsewhere, we charge $150. So the difference between buying a direct to consumer bike and one from us, is about $150 cost to build, then another $100 to $150 you’ll save in tune ups each year.
30 DAY TEST RIDE: It’s hard to know which bike you like until you’ve ridden it. Lewis & Clark has a 30-day test ride program with every bike you purchase. That means you have 30 days to see if it’s the right bike for you. If not, you can bring it back to trade for any other bike we have. Plus, if you’re a rebate member, you’ll get 5% back on E-bikes in store credit (10% on everything else).
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