The Elops 900E is one of the flagship electric bikes of the Decathlon range: 1299 euros, Dutch style, for the city, and well equipped. We tried this e-bike for a few days. Here is our verdict.
Table of Contents
Decathlon Elops 900E: In brief
- Well-designed and well-equipped
- Easy to use
- Reliable transmission
- Good calculation of remaining autonomy
- Removable battery
- Lacking a bit of dynamism
- Providing less power from 25% battery remaining
- The brakes are not biting enough
- Long and heavy
- Recharge time is a bit long
Decathlon Elops 900E: Our full review
Decathlon steps up its e-bike game
Decathlon continues progressing on the electric bike trail with a more complete and versatile offer. That is evidenced by the longtail cargo e-bike presented in November 2021, for example.
Among Decathlon’s flagship modern e-bikes, Elops 900E takes its place. This model, designed for the city, aims to reach modest budget owners while offering a good range and necessary level of equipment, which should be enough for urban users. We tested this model for about a hundred kilometers.
Decathlon Elops 900E Datasheet
|E-bike Model||Decathlon Elops 900E|
|Motor power:||250 watts|
|Electric assistance levels:||3|
|Autonomy announced:||70 km (43 miles)|
|Recharge time announced:||300 minutes|
|Weight||24.5 kg (54 lbs)|
|Wheel size||28 inches|
|Weight limit||125 kg (275 lbs)|
|Retail price||1 299 €|
Decathlon Elops 900E: design
Efficient design, high weight
At 1299 euros, the Decathlon Elops 900 E is considered an entry-level electric bike. It is thus necessary to show a minimum of indulgence towards specific aesthetic details, like the cables of brakes which come to play as the troublemakers at the level of the handlebar, and some folds of weldings scattered on the aluminum frame.
The Elops 900E is nevertheless elegant and pleasing to the eye, especially in its navy blue color, with a nice matte effect. The overall look is not extravagant and plays the card of simplicity as a worthy representative of Dutch bikes with closed and open frames.
Remember that this model is one of the heaviest on the market: 25.4 kg or 54 lbs (size M), mainly concentrated at the rear, where both the motor and the battery are located. Tilting the front wheel is a piece of cake when you want to put your e-bike in an elevator – its large size prevents it from being rolled in.
Given its slender size, consider a large living room, a yard, and a bike room to keep it safe. On the other hand, in a small apartment, this e-bike can take up a lot of space. In addition, its small turning radius is not the most practical for turning around in limited space. It’s also difficult to turn the wheel entirely in an elevator, so it must be tilted.
The advantage of buying a Decathlon e-bike is that you can go to one of the Decathlon stores to see and feel the model you want. This is something we encourage you to do for a better opinion of the e-bike’s design, its weight, and its overall ergonomics.
The Elops 900E is one of the best in comfort and opts for a small set of very nice features. The main asset is the suspension fork, a Suntour Nex with 63 mm travel. That means neither you nor the e-bike’s front end will be jolted when passing a pothole or a slightly elevated sidewalk.
More generally, riding on rough surfaces provides a more pleasant feel. Therefore, equipping an electric bike with a suspension fork is a good initiative from Decathlon. This accessory is supported by a relatively wide saddle that accommodates your buttocks.
Personally, I didn’t notice any particular discomfort, except maybe on trips approaching one hour. But overall, the suspension fork/seat combination works. This pairing is supported by 28-inch wheels equipped with balloon tires. The latter has the particularity of absorbing the roughness of the road for better comfort.
Decathlon advises you to inflate them with a pressure between 3.5 and 4 bars in order to optimize the autonomy and avoid punctures. So remember to check the pressure of your tires from time to time.
Finally, the handles are equipped with small protrusions offering hospitality to your thenar eminences – the whole area below your thumb. It’s a detail, but the detail that counts.
Features: rest assured
Like the Elops 120E, the 900E is no slouch regarding equipment. And just for that, Decathlon scores minor points compared to other brands, sometimes slightly stingy on the edges. But, here, nothing needed seems to be missing.
Efficient mudguard, rear rack with tight elastic bands (be careful with fragile objects), kickstand, reflectors, and bell. The bell is too far from the handle: your thumb doesn’t fall on it naturally, and you have to move your hand to reach it – at the risk of letting go of the brake handle.
The front light (20 LUX) is directly integrated into the frame. That has the merit of spicing up its look, but the headlight does not follow the direction of your handlebars during a turn. The area you are supposed to look at remains in the dark. Don’t hesitate to install a more powerful light.
The rear rack has the shoulders to support a baby seat (normed at 27 kg or 60 lbs). However, be careful: the stand cannot support the baby’s weight when the bike is stationary. Remember to hold your bike or your child in your arms in this case.
At the front, and if you wish, a basket can be added.
Read also: Selection of our favorite e-bike accessories to help you find the right gear for your needs.
Decathlon Elops 900E: on-board technologies
Expect only a few advanced features from an app … because no app available for this model. If you need a mobile app, you should rather consider the connected version – Decathlon Elops 920E Connect. Due to its integrated GPS, the connected version is also better protected from theft.
Decathlon Elops 900E has only a small display, and four buttons are enough to set up and manage the information displayed. As you might expect, the on/off button is used to turn the bike on and off. But not only. It also allows you to change the interface.
In addition to speed, the display can show the overall mileage, the mileage since your last charge, or the remaining miles before you run out of battery. A percentage bar is also included.
The ” + ” and ” – ” buttons influence the level of assistance. A longer press on the “+” button also turns on the headlights. By the way, when you activate your headlights, the screen gets a brightness boost.
Small problem with that: during the day, you don’t need your headlights. So the screen lacks visibility when it’s hit by the sun.
Decathlon Elops 900E: on the road
Adapted to the city… for a ride with not many hills
The Decathlon Elops 900 E is an urban electric bike by definition. Because of its design, you will naturally opt for a straight-riding style. It is not a question of a dynamic e-bike where sporty riding is required. Your riding position is up-straight.
You can also weave in and out of a line of cars – if there’s no bike lane – with relative ease, thanks to a decent handlebar width: 63 centimeters (24 inches), which is a bit shorter than for some other e-bike models. The vigilance remains necessary.
As we like to repeat, each electric bike has its aptitudes: it is advisable each time to adapt and to tame its mount gently, without rushing, to feel comfortable on it. This Elops 900 E remains classic in its design: the driving is relatively uneventful but efficient.
At high speed, the handling and stability of the Elops 900E are pretty classic. At low speeds, it’s a different story. We shall see in the rest of this test.
Engine, sensors, and transmission
The Decathlon Elops 900 E relies on a motor placed on the rear wheel’s hub, associated with a rotation sensor. We find this type of sensor on entry-level electric bikes because such sensors are less expensive. The principle is simple: when the pedal turns, the sensor detects this movement and transmits it to the motor, which delivers electric assistance.
Generally, a slight delay is observed between the first pedal strokes and the arrival of the assistance. That is why the electric behavior of an e-bike with a rotation sensor seems less natural than a torque sensor that measures the power you put into the pedals. The electric assistance is then proportional.
The idea behind a rotation sensor is to send all the power possible when the user pedals. It’s all or nothing. There is no in-between. The advantage? The rider’s effort can be very low. You can ride at 22 km/h (14 mph) in low gear – grinding in a vacuum – and still get assistance.
More concretely, the Elops 900 E is not the most dynamic of electric bikes. Its 35 Nm torque is OK, but it would have deserved better.
To compare, the Elops 120 E is sold at 400 euros cheaper and offers the same torque. We were therefore entitled to expect something better from Elops 900E, which, unfortunately, is not the case. Consequences: the 900 E can have some difficulties in climbing medium hills. It happened to me several times at 20 or 21 km/h (12-13 mph).
Also, the motor loses some power once the battery is somewhat discharged: with 15 km (10 miles) left, the e-bike accelerates between 23 and 24 km/h (14-15 miles) maximum. The acceleration also seems less punchy.
Finally, let us say that the Elops 900 E primarily takes you from point A to point B. Regarding fun and sensations, it is better to look for other, more expensive models.
The transmission is a Shimano 7-speed. The first gear seems a bit too rigid. We would have liked it to be softer to help facilitate launching the e-bike from a standing position. That can cause a slight imbalance when starting, although the assistance is transmitted relatively quickly to start from the front.
Read also: Decathlon Elops 940 E test and review – the best city e-bike by Decathlon so far. Decathlon Elops 500 E test and review – a good e-bike, priced at 699 euros. Decathlon Elops 920 E test and review – best balanced e-bike. Decathlon Elops 120 E test and review – great value entry-level e-bike.
We also noticed a small anomaly on the 5th gear, which can have trouble engaging. A small clicking noise is heard, pushing you to drop down to the previous. Nothing too serious.
Three assist modes are available: mode 1 limits you to 15 km/h (9 mph), mode 2 to 20 km/h (14 mph), and mode 3 to 25 km/h (15.5 mph), as required by European legislation. I used mode 3 the vast majority of the time. It is also the one you will probably prefer unless you want to keep your autonomy for longer rides.
The little extra: a “Walt” mode can be activated via mode 1 by pressing the “+” button for 5 seconds. That can be useful if you walk along your e-bike on the sidewalk, for example.
The mechanical disc brakes – Tektro’s Auriga model – is decent for this price but still lack the bite to brake hard. Let’s say you need to anticipate situations more to react in advance. These brakes are good, though: safety is guaranteed.
But, indeed, hydraulic disc brakes are not in the same league, except that some concessions must be made to bring the price of electric bikes down. That is a step up from the Elops 120 E, which has pad brakes.
Decathlon Elops 900E: autonomy
If e-bike price is the main obstacle to purchase, autonomy also remains an essential criterion to consider. Of course, you will only go so far with a bicycle that can travel only 20 kilometers (15 miles). However, with a model capable of covering a distance of 50 kilometers (31 miles), it’s already better. And this is precisely what the Elops 900 E offers.
Fifty kilometers for an e-bike sold for 1299 euros – this is indeed good value for money. Above all, the e-bike calculates your routes and the number of remaining kilometers with excellent accuracy. According to our records of routes throughout the test, the difference a few hundred meters.
If the Elops 900E tells you it has only 10.4 kilometers (6 miles) of autonomy left, you can trust it. But, of course, the rider’s size, the type of terrain, or the tire pressure can affect the overall range.
Weighing 2.64 kg (5.8 lbs), the battery has a capacity of 417 Wh and is removable. Always practical if you leave your e-bike outside; for example. It is enough to extract the battery from its place and then take it with you. To do this, a small key is given to you to unlock or lock the battery.
The recharge takes about 3h30. So it is relatively long, but that can correspond to a morning or a short afternoon if you wish to recharge it during the day.
Decathlon Elops 900E: price and availability
The Decathlon Elops 900 E is available on the brand’s official website for 1299 euros. A “reasonable” price compared to the average cost of electric bikes. This, in many cases, can be further reduced by grants and compensations from your city or local municipality.
The model is available in S/M for people measuring between 155 and 175 cm and L/XL for those measuring between 175 and 195 centimeters.
Read also: Is Decathlon a good e-bike brand to buy? Brand and models review.
Decathlon Elops 900E: Final test score
At 1299 euros, the Decathlon Elops 900 E is a worthwhile alternative for getting around town. It is well equipped (kickstand, luggage rack, mudguards), has a pleasant look, and is comfortable (thanks to the suspension fork). In addition, it is simple to use, which will please non-technophiles.
However, you should know that it is not the most dynamic of electric bikes: its rotation sensor does not make its behavior very natural, and its 35 Nm torque limits it to 21 km/h (13 mph) on moderate hills. Its brakes could also have been more biting. Let’s not forget that this e-bike belongs to the entry-level range.
Nevertheless, its range of 50 kilometers (31 miles) is very satisfactory for anyone who travels daily. Above all, the e-bike calculates the remaining mileage well enough. Only a slight drop in electric assistance power can be noted once you approach the last 25 percent of battery life.
Read also: Is Decathlon a good e-bike brand to buy? Brand and models review.