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Finding a decent full-suspension electric mountain bike for under £3000 can be a bit tricky unless you wait for the sales. Giant has managed to pull it off with their excellent 2020 model Stance E +2 e-MTB. It offers the perfect compromise between value for money and quality. In this review, I will be taking a closer look at the specification to see how much bike you get for your money.
Giant have been one of the major bicycle manufacturers that have always been at the forefront of e-bike technology. Their choice of motor is the excellent Sync Drive, which is designed and made by Yamaha, and then custom-tuned to Giant’s specifications.
The Yamaha mid-drive motor is, in my opinion, one of the very best e-bike motors available. It not only offers excellent performance, with a very high torque output, but from my research, it seems to be incredibly reliable when compared with other brands.
The Stance E +2 is Giant’s entry-level full-suspension electric mountain bike, and for just shy of £3000, you get a capable off-road machine, with little compromise on specification.
Except for the Decathlon e-Stilus, I would go as far as to say it is one of the best-value e-MTBs in its class.
Yamaha is an amazing company with a long history of fine engineering. Their tuning fork logo pays homage to the company’s early roots in building the finest Piano. More recently they have produced some of the best and fastest production motorcycles in the world.
When Yamaha started producing electric bike motors a few years back, it was obvious to me, they were going to be amongst the best.
The Sync Drive Sport motor fitted to the Stance E is the product of a joint development between Yamaha and Giant. This motor feels a lot more powerful than its 250w output would suggest, with a whopping 70Nm of torque and up to 350% of tuneable support.
When you ride the Stance E, the motor produces assistance in proportion to your effort, the harder you pedal, the more it gives. In boost mode this motor makes you feel Superhuman!
Another great thing about the Sync Drive Sport motor is it will continue to provide electric assist, even when your pedalling cadence reaches 120rpm.
It’s a great e-bike motor to have on a mountain bike, especially at this price. I think it has the edge over the Bosch CX and Shimano Steps E7000.
This is the main compromise on the Stance E +2. The Giant RideControl One doesn’t have a display. There are LEDs to show battery power and assist level. Other features like speed, cadence and trip functions can be accessed via the companion app on a smartphone.
It’s not a big deal in my opinion, as the control panel is discreet, and less prone to damage if you come off the bike while riding.
For 2021 Giant has added a more powerful EnergyPak 500Wh battery that is neatly integrated into the frame of the bike and comes with a 6A fast charger. These batteries are of really high quality and should give a realistic range of between 40-80 miles, depending on the assist level used, rider weight and terrain.
The Giant Stance E +2 electric mountain bike has some fairly decent components considering the price, from the Suntour XCR forks to the RockShox Monarch rear shock and Shimano Deore 10-speed gearing.
The 2021 model has an improved gear range with the excellent 10-speed Shimano Deore gearing utilises an 11-46 rear cassette with a 36t front chainring, making the gearing perfect for off-road riding. As you would expect from Shimano the shifting is precise and crisp and works in perfect harmony with the motor.
Tektro HD-M745 Orion 4-piston hydraulic brake callipers front and rear provide the kind of assured braking you need when trail riding. This is all helped by a 203mm rotor on the front and 180mm at the rear.
The Suntour XCR34 front fork offers a respectable 130mm of travel, with the Rockshox Monarch R rear shock giving 120mm of travel. This is more than adequate for tougher XC rides.
Wheels and Tyres
Giant AM 27.5″ tubeless ready rims with Giant eTracker sports hubs and thru axles are a tough combo and are finished off with Maxxis Rekon Evo Protect 27.5″ x 2.6″ tubeless-ready tyres. They offer plenty of grip for off-road riding and also provide a good level of puncture protection. **The 2021 model uses a 29er wheel size
All the finishing Kit is Giant Connect branded components, from the 30.9mm seatpost through to the handlebars, stem and saddle. Their own branded kit is always tough and of good quality.
Giant’s ALUXX SL grade alloy frame is well constructed with good geometry. It also looks great and is finished off in a striking Cobalt Blue colour scheme.
|Frame:||ALUXX SL-grade aluminium, 120mm FlexPoint suspension system|
|Fork:||SR Suntour XCR 34 Air LO-R, 130mm travel, tapered steerer, Lockout, 110×15 Quick-Loc thru-axle|
|Rear Shock:||RockShox Monarch R, High Volume, 184x44mm, custom tuned|
|Bars:||Giant Connect TR Riser 31.8x780mm|
|Front Brake:||Tektro HD-M745 Orion, 4-piston, hydraulic disc, 203mm|
|Rear Brake:||Tektro HD-M745 Orion, 4-piston, hydraulic disc, 203mm|
|Brake Lever:||Tektro HD-M745 Orion|
|Front Mech:||MRP 1X CS custom|
|Rear Mech:||Shimano Deore, 10-Speed, Shadow+|
|Rims:||Giant XCT 29 Tubeless Ready 25mm e-bike optimized|
|Front Hub:||Giant eTracker Sport, [F] 15mm Thru-Axle [R] 141mm QR|
|Rear Hub:||Giant eTracker Sport, [F] 15mm Thru-Axle [R] 141mm QR|
|Front Tyre:||Maxxis Rekon 29×2.4″ foldable, 60tpi, EXO, Tubeless Ready|
|Rear Tyre:||Maxxis Rekon 29×2.4″ foldable, 60tpi, EXO, Tubeless Ready|
|Seat Post:||Giant 30.9mm, 2-bolt Micro Adjustable, Forged Aluminium|
|Chainset:||Forged Alloy minimal Q-factor, 36T Steel Direct Mount ring (S:160, M/L:165, XL:170)|
|Chain:||KMC e.10 Sport, e-bike optimized|
|Cassette:||Shimano CS-M4100-10, 11-46T, 10-Speed|
|Battery (Wh):||Giant EnergyPak Smart 500, 36V Integrated Lithium-Ion|
|Motor:||Giant SyncDrive Sport|
|User Interface:||Giant RideControl Plus|
Who is the Giant Stance E +2 best suited for?
If you’re looking to make the move from a hardtail to a full-suspension electric mountain bike, but don’t want to spend a small fortune, the Giant Stance E +2 is a great option.
The specification is good enough to enable you to take your off-road riding to the next level, and although you don’t get top-flight components at this price, they are decent enough to meet the needs of most recreational riders.
The Stance E is also incredibly comfortable and would make an excellent daily commuter bike. Riding this on the road, the ride can be best described as plush!
If I was using this on the tarmac regularly, I would be inclined to put some more road-friendly tyres on it to reduce rolling resistance and road noise.
There’s no doubt about it, the 2020 Giant Stance E +2 Full Suspension Electric Mountain Bike offers a lot for the money. The specification is as about as good as you’re going to get on a full suspension e-bike at this price and to be honest it does the job perfectly.
I tend to take it much easier riding off-road these days, so I don’t need to worry about paying a premium for top-flight components. The Stance E is going to be more than enough of a machine for most riders’ abilities.
The Sync Drive Sport motor is an absolute gem and one of the best mid-drives around. Giant’s EnergyPak 400Wh battery will provide enough power for a few hours out on the trails.
The only downside to this bike is the weight – at nearly 26kg, it’s definitely on the heavy side.
Apart from that, riding the Stance E is great fun, and regardless of your age or ability, it’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face.