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Maxx Fab4 EL tested: Maxx is a custom bike company from Rosenheim in Bavaria. Their approach is all about customisation and giving riders exactly what they want. With a huge range of bikes available, including bikes based around the Pinion gear box, we were very interested to see how their E-Bikes are. Their latest model, the FAB4 El, is an All Mountain focused eMTB, based on the all new Brose Drive S motor. All in all with excellent trail conditions during the Eurobike Media Days in Kronplatz, Italy, we couldn’t refuse a ride and spent a day thundering around the trails to see, what Maxx had come up with.
Maxx Fab4 EL – In Brief
Make it any colour you like, then ride it a long way.
The Maxx Fab4 EL is an interesting bike from an established German custom bike builder. The model we focused on in our test was for agressive All Mountain riding, which considering our test location was an excellent choice. We were able to see well, how the bike worked in those conditions. The build of the model we tested suited our needs well. However, making changes to the parts specified is no trouble. There are may options available, with different width, length, quality and so on. You can change the colour or even have your name or logo printed on the top tube.
Price starts at 4,999 € (RRP) | Bikemarkt: Maxx Fab4 EL kaufen
Maxx Fab4 EL – Technical Data
Standover: 847 mm (frame size L)
|Seattube||1||420 mm||450 mm||480 mm||520 mm||570 mm|
|Top Tube||2||611 mm||622 mm||632 mm||650 mm||669 mm|
|Seat Angle (effective)||4||74°||74°||74°||74°||74°|
|Seat Tube||5||130 mm||130 mm||130 mm||150 mm||170 mm|
|Chain Stay||6||465 mm||465 mm||465 mm||465 mm||465 mm|
|Wheel Base||7||1202 mm||1213 mm||1201 mm||1243 mm||1243 mm|
|BB Height/ Drop (standard tires)||9||360/6 mm||360/6 mm||360/6 mm||360/6 mm||360/6 mm|
|Travel (rear)||10||150 mm||150 mm||150 mm||150 mm||150 mm|
|Travel (fork)||11||150 mm||150 mm||150–160 mm||150–160 mm||150–160 mm|
|Stack||S||627 mm||627 mm||627 mm||646 mm||664 mm|
|Reach||R||431 mm||442 mm||452 mm||465 mm||479 mm|
Our test bike had a few little extras, that we would recommend to anyone. This included the RockShox Pike RCT3 fork and Kindshock Lev DX seat post.
|Frame||Rahmen||6061-T6 Alu MAXX Custom tubing|
|Fork||Gabel||Rockshox Pike RCT3 150 mm (Option)|
|Shock||Dämpfer||Rockshox Deluxe RT3|
|Derailleur||Schaltwerk||Shimano Deore XT Shadow Plus|
|Cassette||Kassette||Deore SLX, 11–46 T, 1 x 11|
|Cranks||Kurbel||FSA Boost 34 T|
|Brakes||Bremse||Magura MT5 4 piston, 203/180 mm|
|Wheels||Laufräder||Sun Ringle Duroc 40, 32H, SV,black. DT 370, through axle.|
|Tires||Reifen||Schwalbe Nobby Nic Performance folding|
|Seat||Sattel||Lookin 3D Athletic|
|Seatpost||Sattelstütze||Kindshock LEV DX (option)|
|Battery||Akku||BMZ V7, 36V / 13,8 Ah / 496,8 Wh – removable|
|Price (RRP)||Preis (UVP)||4999 €|
Motor & Battery
The Brose motor makes for a silent ride.
This was our first time testing the Brose Drive S motor system. We were able to also ride some other variants of the Brose motor on other bikes and from this we were able to understand that the Drive S motor has a much improved tune compared to the previous version. Power delivery is more supportive – essentially we felt it got us to the top of the hill a bit quicker, although battery life is comparable to before. The torque curve is more similar to other motors on the market now. However, ride operation is still very silent with the Brose Drive S motor. The belt drive gives a more silent feel and incredibly smooth transition when passing the 25 km/h limit.
We would prefer a different, more slimline display that is closer to the bar. The Bloks display is pretty common with Brose systems and it’s not super clear to read in bright light, although it’s very easy to use and change power settings.
- Motor: Brose Drive S
- Battery: 500 Wh
- Power: max. 250 Watt
- Display: Bloks
Maxx Fab4 EL – Hands On
You can customise this bike a lot.
The mounting kit on the Maxx Fab4 EL is aimed at the more conservative rider who wants to explore some rough trails now and then. This is confirmed with a conservative geometry that supports a bike that will be manoeuvrable on tight twisting trails and responsive to pedal inputs. The rider has a reasonable reach, but again, the aim here is a more conservative body position for riding trails, more than extreme descents.
The wheel package is a comfort package that gives good grip in corners, but with tyres that are not designed for hard riding. Suspension duties are well considered with RockShox units front and rear, which are easy to set up. The rear shock drives a classic four-bar linkage that keeps the rear wheel in constant floating contact with the ground. This is ideal for pedalling and almost the standard on trail bikes. Very few companies wander off this design nowadays.
Frame build quality is good and the ability to custom paint your ride and have it decaled up anyway you like is cool. The battery integration is pretty smooth and rattle free. The battery can be removed for charging and also swapping out. Interestingly, Maxx gives an option of ordering a second battery for 529 € when you buy the bike. Few bike companies so far explicitly offer this, leaving the user to ask or discover how to do it – Maxx make it easy.
Maxx Fab4 EL On The Trail
The Fab4 EL is made for climbing uphill without fuss.
During our test at the Kronplatz in Italy we often used lift assisted trails, to get as much trail time as possible. This meant our overall uphill time was a bit limited, but still enough to get a good first impression of the Maxx Fab4 EL. When we did get the chance to experience the ride characteristics uphill, we found ourselves pleasantly surprised. The Fab4 EL has ideal uphill geometry for a trail bike, meaning the rider is always in a good position for keeping the power down. The rear suspension was active and direct in operation keeping us moving forward constantly. The fairly upright seat tube angle also adds to this superior climbing ability.
Not an extreme descender, but can cope if needed.
We spent a significant amount of time descending and blasting around, including back-to-back jumps. The Maxx Fab4 EL is not a park bike or a descending machine – it is stable and responsive, but needs to be ridden with that in mind. The rider needs to spend time finding the ideal balance point for their body weight and maintain it as much as possible on steep descents. The geometry is such that the rider needs to be precise with his movements in order to get the best out of the bike. Also, the rear shock has a tendency to feel a bit harsh and uncomfortable on really rough terrain – maybe a result of the compromises that were made, to ensure the bikes pedals well.
The plus size wheel combination has been chosen to give a supportive feel to the rider and does insulate against some of these compromises. On rough ground we felt the ability to float happily over the terrain without worry because of the plus tyres, but not at extreme speed. We liked the Magura brakes and Shimano gearing – even in wet conditions. All components gave us a reliable response when called upon.
The Maxx Fab4 EL is a very solid trail bike.
The Maxx Fab4 EL is in our opinion a solid trail machine. When the trail goes up and down and the rider wants to whip along, the geometry and component package is exactly what this bike is meant for. Up and down trail changes and various ground surface type changes are all dealt with and give the rider a smooth feeling and progressive edge to the ride. If you want to get somewhere quickly, then the Fab4 EL will help you do that. The bike stands up well and pops around corners without fuss. The steering in this respect is direct and ideal for this type of riding and indicative of the 68° head angle.
Maxx has a full option list on their website when ordering – including every colour you can imagine. Our test bike came with the upgraded fork option and the KS Lev seat post, which we would consider a minimum to do, if you wish to ride aggressively off-road.
Conclusion – Maxx Fab4 EL
The Maxx Fab4 EL has many advantages over its competition in a crowded market. It is fully customisable, silent in operation and is ideal in ride feel for those, who want to ride endless up and down flowing trails. With its rather conservative geometry it won’t win any prices for its radical downhill performance, but it’s a very efficient and capable all-rounder.
- Silent ride
- Battery removal is easy
- Ideal for long distance trails
- Downhill performance
- Display hard to read
- Kronplatz, Italy: Here we tested on very long descending lift accessed trails that are full of flow and banked corners. It was an ideal location for All Mountain riding, with some technical sections.
Tester profile Alex Boyce
- Name: Alex Boyce
- Height: 183 cm
- Weight (with riding-gear): 95 kg
- Inside leg: 88 cm
- Arm’s length: 69 cm
- Torso: 67 cm
- Riding style: soft, jumps preferred, every terrain, Uphill in turbo-mode
- What do I ride mainly: E-Bike, Enduro, Gravel.
- Preferred suspension: Responsive and direct steering, Plus-Tires
- Preferred geometry: Wide bars (800 mm), long frame, chainstays mid-length
What would you customise when ordering the Maxx Fab4 EL?
Further Information On The Maxx Fab4 EL
Text & Edit: Alex Boyce | eMTB-News.de
Photos: Jens Staudt
Maxx Fab4 EL
- 0 to 120 mm Travel (Hardtails and Full-Suspension)
- 100 to 150 mm Travel (Hardtails and Full-Suspension)
- 120 to 150 mm Travel (Full-Suspension)
- 150 to 180 mm Travel (Full-Suspension)
- more than 180 mm Travel (Full-Suspension)
- Das hier angegebene Gewicht ist die Summe aus den Einzelgewichten (E-Bike, Fahrer, Rucksack usw.), welches bei unserem Reichweitentest zum Einsatz kam.
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