With a store in a posh bit of London where its Grand Tour winning road bikes sell for over £10,000, Pinarello really hammers you with its premium brand status. But how much of a premium will you pay for one of its less storied hybrids? And has any of the Italian brand’s racing knowhow trickled its way into the more practical Pinarello eTreviso electric bike?
On first departing into the London traffic aboard this slick-looking electric bike, a degree of the famed Pinarello pizzazz did indeed seem evident.
Composed and nippy, the eTreviso doesn’t give away its electrical assistance to the casual observer but cranked up to the maximum its motor imparts a Vespa-like ability to zip through traffic.
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Weighing only a few kilos more than a conventional hybrid, it’s very easy to chuck around. However, a sturdy bolt-through-axle-equipped frame, carbon fork and balloon-style tyres combine to plant it solidly to the surface of the road.
With superfluous extras like suspension or display done away with, it doesn’t overcomplicate things. The result is a bike that’s quick to get going even without assistance – turning on its Fazua mid-motor only serves to further caffeinate proceedings.
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Frame and fork
The eTreviso’s frame is an interesting-looking affair – perhaps a little gangly, but not without its charms. At the back, raised chainstays help accommodate a compact mid-drive motor assembly above the bottom bracket.
Equally striking is the flat top tube which slopes drastically down towards the seat tube assembly.
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However, contrary to what you might expect this configuration doesn’t achieve much in the way of extra stand-over height. Still, some people will dig the unconventional styling, while the neat cable routing and flat-mount brake tabs will garner universal approval.
The staunch front fork is also excellent, its carbon construction taking the edge off bumps while also cutting down mass. Done up in matt black with barely-there gloss logos, the whole package is classy, yet doesn’t scream ‘steal me’.
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As its heart, the eTreviso employs the excellent mid-motor Fazua Evation drive system. Split into two parts, the element that spins the cranks is integrated into the frame’s bottom bracket area.
The battery and motor itself then form a separate tube-like assembly that’s housed in the frame’s oversize down tube. Allowing for removal and remote charging, it’s a superbly neat and self-contained system, which can also be locked in place for added security.
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Even with the whole tube weighing about 4.5kg, plus a bit of added weight built into the frame, the eTreviso is still a good deal lighter than most e-bikes.
With three power modes, the most full-throated allows you to pedal for show only, with the motor doing almost all the work. By comparison, levels one and two provide more subtle assistance.
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Turning on and adjusting is done via a button on the down tube. This also houses a series of LEDs, which light up to show the charge remaining. Unfortunately, on the eTreviso the top tube obscures this display, making it tricky to keep an eye on the level of juice remaining.
An alternative to peering between your legs is to mount your phone to the handlebar and use the Fazua app to provide information on current speed, range and location. We were happy doing without.
Either way, the lack of a traditional display keeps the handlebars uncluttered and leaves one less thing for thieves to have a go at pinching.
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With a 250-watt-hour battery, range is likely to be around 55km if you ride at a leisurely pace. A slight trade-off in favour of a compact weight and size, this is nevertheless easily enough for most commutes.
On the plus side, the design of the bike is such that it never feels a drag, so longer trips where you supply more of the drive yourself are still enjoyable and efficient.
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Parts and finishing kit
Looking to the bike’s secondary characteristics, the ergonomic saddle and grips are comfy without being obtrusive. Also included is a superb Supernova light set. Enclosed in a machined aluminium housing, the front lamp is enough to see by if you keep the speed low and easily enough to get you recognised in traffic.
Turning it on via a button on the back also activates the discreet rear light which is attached to the mudguard.
The Shimano brakes are powerful enough to keep everything under control, while a single front chainring twinned with 10 gears keeps things simple. It employs a clutch mechanism on the rear derailleur to ensure everything stays silent whatever surface you find yourself riding.
By comparison, the metallic mudguards are robust, if somewhat noisy when smacked by any flying gravel. There’s a neat built-in rack plus a handy kickstand.
Taken together, the eTreviso arrives ready to go without requiring you to fling any more money or kit at it. Which given you’re spending four grand is only as it should be.
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Conclusion and pricing
Whether through its racing heritage or smart choices, Pinarello has put together a stellar configuration for an electric hybrid. The Fazua Evation drive is probably the slickest mid-drive system you’ll find. Assuming you’re not hunting after a huge range, its low weight, simple operation and discrete integration all score highly.
Despite a slightly odd profile, the aluminium frame is rigid and unfussy. The carbon fork cuts weight, while bolt-through axles keep handling sharp.
Big tyres provide all the suspension and roll-over you’re likely to require. They allow the bike to ride everything from tarmac to forest paths, and while their size might be a slight drag on a conventional bike, the motor assistance more than nullifies this.
Unlike Pinarello’s racing bikes, the eTreviso is also satisfyingly low-key for something that you will probably want to occasionally leave locked outside. In short, I found very little to dislike.
Which brings us to price. Pinarello wants £11,500 for the top-spec version of its F12 racer. The eTreviso comes in at £4,000. By comparison, although it does without lights, German rival Focus only wants £3,400 for its similarly-specced Paralane2. So you pay a premium, but not a huge one.
If you’re the sort to count the pennies, you might not be the standard Pinarello customer anyway. However, if you’ve splashed out on one of the brand’s racers, getting the matching hybrid will certainly not be a bad choice.
Will the eTreviso see Pinarello corner the electric hybrid market in the same way it has the more rarified sectors of the road bike sector? Probably not.
However, it’s still a lively and well-designed bike which has just enough of the brand’s stardust to justify its slightly inflated price.
Source: Cycling – Cyclist