Ortler Speeder Review – Bargain Lightweight E-Bike

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I recently sold one of my e-bikes and took an interesting bike back in part-exchange. The Ortler Speeder is sold exclusively by German company Bikester, and in this review, I’ll look at the specification and give you my opinion based on the initial 30 mile test ride.

I’ve been familiar with the Ortler brand for a few years, but have never got round to testing any of their e-bikes. Bikester is a German company, and Ortler is one of their exclusive brands. They are very popular in Europe, but not so well-known in the UK. The model reviewed here is the Ortler Speeder, which is currently on sale at a very reasonable £1119 (€1285).

Ortler Speeder Specification

Motor Bafang G20 250-watt Rear Hub Motor
Pedal AssistTorque and Speed Sensor
Battery252Wh
Range30 – 50 miles / 48 – 80 km
GearingShimano Deore M4100 10-Speed
BrakesShimano MT200
Wheels YAK 3 Six Disc
TyresSchwalbe Marathon Supreme 700x37c
AccessoriesSKS Mudguards, Kickstand, Lights
Availability Visit Bikester

Pros

  • Quality Shimano components
  • Torque sensing pedal assist
  • Bafang hub motor
  • Schwalbe Marathon Supreme tyres
  • Good quality accessories

Cons

  • Low capacity battery
  • No display
  • A bit on the heavy side

ortler speeder review

The Ortler Speeder is designed to look and feel like a regular bike. Being fairly lightweight and with an integrated battery and no display, you certainly have to look twice to notice the Bafang hub motor nestled between the big cassette and disc rotor. The bike used for this review is in ‘as new’ condition and has 166km of use recorded on the app. Below, is a detailed analysis of the electric and bike components, based on my initial test ride.

Electric components

Ortler have gone for a minimalist approach, keeping the battery hidden in an oversized downtube and motor control done via a smartphone app.

Motor

The Speeder uses the reliable Bafang RM G020.250 rear hub motor with a claimed max torque of 45Nm. This is one of the better quality hub motors available. It’s very quiet in operation, with a slight audible whine noticeable in the higher power modes. Nominal power is 250w as per EU and UK laws, and the power cuts-out at 25 km/h (15.5 mph).

bafang rm g020.250 hub motor fitted to ortler speeder

Performance feels lively, more so than the Mahle X35 system. In the higher power setting it flies up moderate hills, but on the steeper climbs I still needed to put in a lot of effort. There doesn’t seem to be any drag from the motor above the assist cut-off limit. I was able to maintain 20 mph + on a fairly flat road over 4 miles without too much trouble (with a tailwind).

Pedal assist

Pedal assist is provided by a combined torque and speed sensor. This is a Bafang component, and is fitted in the bottom bracket. I found the pedal assist to be very smooth and intuitive. Torque sensors measure pedalling force and connect the riders effort with the motor power output. Not only does this improve motor responsiveness, it enhances the riding experience and improves efficiency.

bafang torque sensor fitted to ortler speeder

Bafang Go App

The Ortler Speeder does not have a screen. Instead there is a single button on the top tube (like the Mahle X35). This button has limited functionality – it switches the system on and will go into the default mode set by the app. You can use the bike without the app, but will not be able to change assist levels on the fly. When the battery drops below 30%, the LED changes from blue to red, and when it’s down to less than 10% it starts flashing (red).

ortler speeder control button

Downloading the app is straightforward from Google Play, or the Apple App Store. The Bafang Go app does have some negative reviews, but after installing (on my Samsung S22), it discovered the bike almost instantly. You need to configure the main display which is easy enough. You can choose up to 9 assist levels which is good, also you can set the default mode for the button on start-up – either eco or sport.

bafang go app

There’s a battery screen which shows how many charging cycles the battery has had, and the current charge level (in voltage and MAh). It will also display battery remaining in percentage and estimated range left. You can pair up a heart-rate monitor if required, and it will display motor power and current (amps) in real-time.

bafang go app battery status page

I don’t have a suitable bike mount for a phone, and decent ones like the Quad Lock are quite expensive, although there are cheaper options available. Another consideration is do you have a waterproof phone?

In practice it’s not a bad idea, but I would have preferred a simple control keypad and LED panel. I use a bike computer for speed etc, and don’t like the idea of a big mobile phone cluttering up my handlebar. I decided to keep my phone in a frame bag for the duration of the ride and it worked fine.

Battery

The battery is integrated into the frame and cannot be removed easily. Charging is done in situ, with a charging port beneath a plastic cover where the downtube meets the bottom bracket.

With only 252Wh (watt hours) available, the range isn’t going to be that great if you use full power mode – maybe 25 miles (40 km). If you’re more sensible with the assist, and only use it when you really need to, then much longer ranges are possible.

ortler speed battery charging port

My test route was 31 miles (49 km) with 2500 ft (762m) of elevation gain. The battery was fully charged beforehand. Air temperature was around freezing and there was a strong headwind for half the ride.

For the first 10 miles, I unwittingly had the bike on a high power setting. I hadn’t changed the power setting in the app  – I remember thinking that it was providing way too much assist for level 1! 10 miles in, and it had already lost 56% which would be about right for full power mode.

I managed to change it to the lowest setting, which for me felt like just the right amount of assist – very subtle and just enough help to take the sting out of the long climb up to Princetown on Dartmoor.

ortler speeder test ride strava hill climb segment

When I got back, I checked the app and still had 22% remaining. I think considering the power was set high for the first ten miles, that’s pretty good going for such a small battery. It’s certainly similar to what one would expect with the Mahle X35 ebikemotion system.

I’m going for a 40 mile ride tomorrow to see how it goes, but I reckon as long as I’m sensible with the assist level, it should be easily achievable.

Bike components

This is what really impressed me about the Ortler Speeder. Most electric bikes at this price point use budget components. The Speeder, however is adorned with some top-quality gear, like Schwalbe tyres and Shimano XT gearing.

ortler speeder review

Gearing

I had to do a double-take when I checked out the gear components. There’s a Shimano Deore M4100 10-speed shifter, Shimano XT long-cage rear derailleur and KMC-E10 chain. The cassette is also top quality – a Shimano HG500 11-42.  These kind of components are usually found on e-bikes retailing for well over £2000. Needless to say, gear shifting was totally flawless. With each click of the shifter, the gears changed smoothly and quickly.

ortler speed gearing components

Brakes

Another pleasant surprise. Shimano MT200 hydraulic disc brakes are at the lower end of the scale, but work really well. I have used these brakes before on several different bikes and they never fail to impress. The Speeder is set-up European style so the rear brake is on the right hand side.

ortler speed brakes

Wheels and tyres

The rims are decent quality Schurmann YAK 3 Six disc, with the front wheel using a Shimano TX-505 hub. These rims are German and look to be very good quality. Tyres are the excellent Schwalbe Marathon Supreme in 37-622. They are fast-rolling while offering similar levels of puncture protection to the standard Marathon. Very good tyres with top marks on bicyclerollingresistance.com.

ortler speeder tyres

Frame and finishing kit

I like the look and finish of the frame. It’s finished in a deep gloss black powder coat and looks fairly resistant to scratches and chips. The frame and fork is made from 6061 alloy. There’s an oversized downtube to house the battery, but it’s not too big, and to the untrained eye you wouldn’t even know it was an e-bike.

ergon gp-1 grips fitted to the ortler speeder

There’s a quality FSA headset which was very smooth. The handlebar and stem are Promax and the 31.6mm seat post is by Kalloy – all good quality stuff. The grips are the excellent Ergon GP-1 which are both comfortable and stylish.

Accessories

Once again, all the accessories fitted to the Ortler Speeder are top quality. There’s a set of SKS mudguards, Pletsher direct mount kickstand and a B & M Lumotec front light with Herrmans H-Trace rear light. Finally, there’s a Racktime rear pannier rack which has a load capacity of up to 20kg.

ortler speeder headlight

Saddle and comfort

The saddle is a Velo VL3135 and I found it remarkably comfortable. It’s quite firm, but does mold itself nicely to your behind. It may not suit everyone as some people prefer more padding. I was wearing cycling leggings for the ride which had additional padding.

velo saddle on ortler speeder

Who is the Ortler Speeder suitable for?

This is going to be a great electric bike for commuting as it has everything you’d need. Plus, with good quality components you’re not going to worry about replacing things too quickly. It also has some potential for touring, although the electric assist would need to be rationed, and saved for the hills. Unfortunately, there’s no range extender available (that I’m aware of), so longer distance riding may be problematic.

If you’re looking for an e-bike to help improve your fitness, this bike would make a great motivational tool, as the power is provided in relation to your pedalling effort. The Speeder is a cyclists e-bike, it’s not a free ride and you still need to put the effort in.

ortler speeder review

Conclusion

I’m really impressed with the Ortler Speeder for the price. It’s identical to the Rabeneick TS-E which retails for about €1900.  The components are top-quality and the bike feels very nice to ride. The handling inspires confidence and it feels like a regular bike without the assist activated.

My only complaint is the lack of a control pad, as some people will not like having to rely on a phone app to change assist settings. I’ve looked into the possibility of adding a display. This bike uses Bafang’s CAN-BUS communication protocol and there are several displays available that might be compatible.

ortler speed review

The battery range seems about on par with the Mahle X35, although if you use it in full power everywhere, you’ll be lucky to see 25 miles out of a charge. Use it sensibly and I reckon 40-50 miles is possible.

As for the weight, it’s not particularly lightweight for an e-bike of this kind. The Ribble AL e weighs in at under 15kg and the Ortler comes in at a hefty 19.2kg. Having said that, the weight didn’t seem to hamper progress on the flatter sections when riding about the assist limit.

All in all, if you’re after an e-bike that’s got top quality components, is fairly lightweight and looks / rides like a regular bike, then the Ortler Speeder is well worth considering and at its current price is an absolute bargain!

Tony

Passionate E-Bike advocate and enthusiast since 2016. Riding an electric bike helped me to lose weight, get fit and reignite my passion for cycling!

Tony has 228 posts and counting. See all posts by Tony

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