Winora is a German brand that has been making bicycles for a century. The company has a range of muscle and power-assisted models. Among the latter, there are urban models, trekking and even cargo bikes.
Alongside the Sinus and Tria families, the E-Flitzer completes Winora’s urban family. Nevertheless, the electric bike that we are testing here is distinguished by a profile that is less geared towards comfort and more focused on performance. Exit the very torquey central engine, here, the German manufacturer uses a Mahle X35 engine housed in the hub of the rear wheel. With a torque of 40 Nm, the assistance promises to be less present. The 250 Wh battery housed in the frame, for its part, relies more on lightness than on endurance. The sportier profile of the E-Flitzer carries over to the equipment with a Shimano Deore drivetrain, a pair of hydraulic brakes and a rigid frame.
Launching at €2599, the Winora E-Flitzer regularly trades for less than €2400. It therefore competes with the cheaper, but similarly equipped Cannondale Tesoro Neo SL EQ.
Comfort and ergonomics
The Winora E-Flitzer is a hybrid electric bike that hides its game well. In appearance, its electrical system is discreet and one could take it for a muscular model at first glance. The more knowledgeable will spot the motor placed in the hub of the rear wheel. The battery is completely integrated into the frame, in the diagonal tube. Aesthetically, the E-Flitzer is successful and its matte paint has a lot to do with it. The welds on the frame are very discreet and the cables pass through them without being noticed.
Unlike many urban models, the frame of the E-Flitzer is not open. A choice dictated by a need for rigidity in its quest for sportiness. Winora’s VAE has a geometry that imposes a forward posture, the saddle at handlebar height, far from the relaxed position of a gooseneck model. All this promotes pedaling and dynamism.
For comfort, Winora makes some interesting choices. The E-Flitzer does without actual suspensions. He nevertheless opts for a carbon fork which filters out small shocks well and wears wide tires. The Continental Contact Urban tires and their 2-inch section offer a good volume of air. It is thus possible to play on their inflation to favor performance or cushioning, depending on your preferences and the routes taken. This is obviously not enough to eliminate shocks when descending a boat or on cobblestones, but overall it remains satisfactory.
The 640 mm wide handlebar offers good steering precision, especially since the stem is quite long. The rubber grips and their ridges aren’t the most comfortable we’ve seen, especially on long rides. The cockpit is uncluttered, the E-Flitzer being devoid of a screen. The rider can concentrate on his derailleur shifters, taken from Shimano’s Deore range.
The equipment of the E-Flitzer makes it a possible ally for daily journeys. Its mudguards are correct, although we would have liked the front one to drop lower. The rack is quite short and is only able to hold a maximum of 15 kg. Not ideal for carrying a child. Compatibility with the MIK mounting system is however welcome. It will be better to pay attention to the bottom of his pants, the chain not being hidden by a carter.
At the front, Trelock LS230 lighting delivers just 20 lux. It’s too little to be used without other light aid when driving outside built-up areas. However, this is enough to be identified by other users. At the rear, however, the red light seems to us too small to be effectively visible.
The lightness of the E-Flitzer is largely due to the use of an X35 electric assistance system from Mahle, which is housed quite discreetly in the hub of the rear wheel. With 40 Nm of torque, however, do not expect to climb all the hills without the slightest effort.
The system is minimalist in its approach to assist control. Everything is managed by a single button. This one offers limited functionality and provides little information. Through a set of colored LEDs, the E-Flitzer provides information on the battery level (green, orange and red) and the level of assistance (three levels available). It’s cheap and the operation is not very intuitive at first glance, but it becomes easier with practice.
The geometry and the lightness of the E-Flitzer encourage you to ride with a rather sporty approach. Despite the absence of a torque sensor, the pedaling retains a certain naturalness. The Mahle motor does not give this “all or nothing” side that some hub motors have. Assistance can be switched off or set to three levels offering more or less assistance. On the flat, a cyclist who likes to press the pedals will be able to be satisfied with the first level of assistance and take his mount beyond 25 km/h.
For less fatigue and in case of more frequent ribs, the last two levels will be appreciable. However, keep in mind that this Winora E-Flitzer remains a hybrid model that will not climb big hills with ease. Your legs are put to use quite often, admittedly to a lesser extent than with a muscle bike.
The Mahle application allows you to configure the assistance modes as you wish. Predefined profiles are offered, but it is also possible to precisely choose the percentage of power delivered. This application also provides precise information on the battery level or an estimate of the range in kilometers.
To complete this dynamic and rolling profile, the German manufacturer has chosen a ten-speed Shimano Deore transmission. What offer a very appreciable range, especially for reminders and to drive beyond the speed at which the assistance is cut. In town, where you have to change gear regularly, a transmission of this caliber is pleasant. Gear changes are smooth and quick.
By opting for rather wide tyres, Winora favors comfort and safety over performance. The 27.5″ and 2″ wide Continental Contact Urban tires offer an interesting contact surface for road holding and braking, while providing comfort thanks to their large air volume.
For braking, the Tektro R280 hydraulic disc brakes and their 160mm rotors are effective. The E-Flitzer stops in just 3 meters on dry ground when launched at 25 km/h. The hydraulic brakes allow excellent precision in the dosage, which is very important in town where you have to adjust the speed constantly.
Pleasant to drive.
Feature-rich mobile app.
Limited assistance on hills.