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Moots Express is… a Carbon e-Gravel eBike?

moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike
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Wait, what? This new model takes the Steamboat Springs titanium bike brand in two new directions all at once, with their first carbon fiber frame and their first ebike.

The Moots Express e-gravel bike takes everything they’ve learned from offering five differnet titanium gravel models over many years and distills it into the type of bike their customers and dealers have been asking for. I interviewed Moots president Nate Bradley if you’d like to hear the development story in his own words, check that podcast episode here for the “why” behind it. Here, we’ll focus on the tech and details…

Moots Express Carbon Frame & Tech

closeup details of moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike

Designed to be the “ultimate adventure-ready ebike”, the Express blends a lightweight frame with a lightweight motor to give it a claimed 100-mile range, though they say you could get more than that.

It’s a full carbon fiber frame that, unlike their house-made ti frames, is made for them in Asia from a partner factory. Keep in mind that Moots has been making carbon forks for nearly two decades, and recently debuted their own carbon handlebar and stem combo, so it’s not their first rodeo.

closeup details of moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike

The bike uses that new MOD cockpit, integrating all wires and brake hoses inside the bar, stem and frame. The full integration continues with the use of Shimano’s EP801 drive system with 504Wh battery and a mix of Ultegra Di2 levers and brakes with a big 47-tooth front chainring and LinkGlide 11-speed derailleur, chain, and wide range 11-50 cassette.

The right hand shifter buttons change gears like normal, but the left hand buttons cycle through the assist modes, eliminating the need for a separate switch or dial.

closeup details of moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike

This keeps it all very clean, with the usual small display sitting next to the stem and the main power button nestled into the top tube. Shift like normal, or turn on Autoshift and let the bike do it for you based on pedaling torque and cadence.

It gets the new GRX carbon gravel wheels shod with Panaracer 700×50 Gravel King SK tires, a custom WTB Gravelero saddle, and Moots carbon seatpost, too.

Design & Geometry – Why not Titanium?

moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike shown from rear angle

The obvious question is “Why not make it out of titanium?” Because they wouldn’t have been able to get the flowing shapes or low weight they wanted with metal.

The frame has a sloping top tube, which has standover benefits and gives it a laid back appearance, but is all but a necessity thanks to the taller front end. A taller-than-normal fork makes the bike compatible with suspension forks, letting you add boing without messing up the geometry or handling.

The headtube is relatively tall, too. The goal is to keep the rider in a more comfortable upright riding position so you see the world ahead.

closeup details of moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike shimano motor

They wanted to keep it light, and the bike has a claimed weight of just 33lbs in size medium. That’s achieved with the carbon fiber frame and fork plus high-end components, but also by using a smaller battery. Shimano offers a larger 630Wh battery, but Moots specs the 504Wh part.

Yet they’re claiming a 100 mile range, so how do they do that? By detuning Shimano’s 85Nm EP801 motor down to 60Nm of output. It’s still Class 3, assisting up to 28mph, but it should feel more natural. And since it’s not using as much power, the battery lasts longer.

moots express carbon fiber e-gravel bike shown from side
Even with two bottle cages, there’s still plenty of room for a full-length frame bag.

The Express is made for the rider that wants the authentic gravel experience along with the ability to ride faster and further. Two bottle cages and accessory cage mounts on the fork legs let you bring enough fuel to do so. Hidden fender mounts let you get out there on rainy days, too.

Bike’s start at $9,999 and are available in S, M, L, and XL sizes.

Moots.com

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56 Comments
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Robin
Robin
8 months ago

That is not an attractive bike. Not even close.

Antonio
Antonio
8 months ago

I’m a huge moots fan but this makes me consider selling my Routt before the rest of the brand gets devalued. Sad day.

Chader
Chader
8 months ago
Reply to  Antonio

I understand the basic sentiment, but would you seriously sell a bike you own and presumably like just because the brand sells a model you don’t like? Are you fixated on the some “value” over the very real functionality it gives you right now and into the future? Where the rubber meets the (gravel) road here is exactly the same now as it was before this bike came to light.

Antonio
Antonio
8 months ago
Reply to  Chader

I bought into the ethos of American made, hand built in Colorado. This product is the opposite of that. I used to own multiple independent fabrication bikes until that company imploded by getting away from their core audience. The ride doesn’t change, but the culture does with this product.

Chader
Chader
8 months ago
Reply to  Antonio

Sure, I get that overall. In a funny way, if Moots continues down this road and ruins the brand further… the existing goodness of the old bikes will sort of gain value as they become “classics” of a time long gone.

It’s never fun to see a brand of interest swing in such a negative direction, so I sympathize for any Moots devotees. But for those lucky ones that actually have the ti beauties, I say keep enjoying them for everything great they are, even if the brand sinks itself.

Oomgawa
Oomgawa
7 months ago
Reply to  Antonio

If bikes have always had terrible tire clearance clarance. 29*2.6 or bust!

Fig Ciocc
Fig Ciocc
7 months ago
Reply to  Antonio

You already gave them your money my dude. This is like when France didn’t want to give Dick Cheney money for a superfluous war and goofballs smashed French wine in the streets as some sort of protest. I recall Stephen Colbert saying “men named Rene are laughing at you”.

will
will
7 months ago
Reply to  Fig Ciocc

he’s correct that value will go down if they go this route though, so if he doesn’t plan on keeping it forever selling isn’t a bad idea

Oomgawa
Oomgawa
7 months ago
Reply to  Antonio

Really?

Marcel
Marcel
8 months ago

What an interesting direction Moots is going…. Downhil. Fast.

SteveT
SteveT
8 months ago
Reply to  Marcel

Moots went downhill the moment Kent Erickson left the company and they started charging custom frameset prices for batch built stock framesets. Then they continued the downhill slide when they started doing things like their FUGLY 3D printed flat mount dropouts so they could save a few more bucks in welding and cutting costs, while still charging insane prices for a batch built stock framesets.

Acme
Acme
8 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

So true! BTW: Eriksen!

Marcel
Marcel
8 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

I fully agree! And because I was so happy with my “old” Moots frame, when I decided to get a gravelbike, I went for a BinghamBuilt. Such a craftsmanship, it’s perfect.

Paul
Paul
6 months ago
Reply to  Marcel

I disagree. Looking at pictures of Bingham built bikes and my Moots RCS I confidently say my welds and craftsmanship are better. I can sends you comparison pictures to prove it. Lager bike builder can afford higher priced machinery to produce bikes.

MrCharlie
MrCharlie
8 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

Love my Brad-owned-era Eriksen just a little more today.

Keep in mind that Moots has been making carbon forks for nearly two decades.”

My Moots fork cracked at the dropout after a year, and they refused to warranty it. No thanks.

Dinger
Dinger
8 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

Unfortunately for Ti lovers, the material never achieved price reduction through scale and carbon fiber quickly ate its lunch. Costs to operate almost never shrink or stay static, they always rise.

I have a late 90’s Litespeed ti bike that I’d bet nobody could manufacture at anywhere near an acceptable price today. What was possible back then is not longer possible now.

Brandon
Brandon
7 months ago
Reply to  Dinger

I completely agree. Some of these high end Ti frames made in the USA are >$6K. Let’s be honest, it can’t perform like good ole carbon does. Moots’ high end loaded road bike is close to $20K. I don’t understand how they keep going up in price when demand seems to be lower. Maybe it’s Ti raw material costs. It’s a shame.

Oomgawa
Oomgawa
7 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

Moots is the “yet” of ti hardtails. In fact, mostly, ti hardtails are the “yeti” of hardtails.

Paul
Paul
6 months ago
Reply to  SteveT

I disagree with you analysis of 3d dropouts. It is actually a brilliant idea. Anytime metal is welded you have to consider warpage. Also, anytime you can minimize welding in a critical area you will achieve higher tolerances. 3d printing of bikes is coming to the market very soon.

SteveT
SteveT
8 months ago

Let me guess, this frameset just like the Enve Mog is outsourced from the Far East, but the price is that of a custom boutique built frameset. Next they come out with a non-e bike outsourced frameset that will sell for $6,000+. New suckers born every day. LOL 🙂

Tony
Tony
8 months ago

I have a BMC Alpenchallenge AMP carbon and it’s the same concept. It was a good deal and got it for 2.990 €. This one is a bit nicer with the EP8, the integrated battery and bigger tire clearence, but 10K is crazy.

Steven
Steven
8 months ago

Well, how the mighty has fallen? Or has Moots realized that Ebikes are part of a healthy business model. Like it or not Moots is actually a business that must either respond to the market or make the market. They are reacting to the market by adding a item that is clearly in demand. A titanium Ebike would have looked not very palatable so this is what they are doing. I assume they have labored over this decision.

Fig Ciocc
Fig Ciocc
8 months ago
Reply to  Steven

This is a pretty generic Taiwanese frameset for an outrageous price. A good business understands when/if their name can scale to just re-badging imported stuff or if they need to attack a larger market with a more nuanced approach that aligns with their brand. Moots’ brand value is centered around where the product is made and to an extent customizability and material. This is like if when Aston Martin made the Cygnet (which was just made to appease emissions regulations) as a serious car intended to be the future of the company.

Jay Ess
Jay Ess
8 months ago
Reply to  Steven

Except they are not. Industry friends say sales have stalled and look at any manufacturer website almost all e-mountainbikes are on sale. eBikes are not being bought by cyclists, by that I mean lifers who are a continuous revenue stream for decades. eBikes blew up during the pandemic, those buyers have moved on to pickleball.

tireburp
tireburp
8 months ago

So what’s the price?

Knowing moots something crazy like > $15,000. Who are buying these things anyways.

Fig Ciocc
Fig Ciocc
8 months ago
Reply to  tireburp

Bikes like this are bought by wealthy old people who have a summer house in Aspen. They put the bikes in their garage and ride them a couple of times a year into town for lunch.

Jay Ess
Jay Ess
8 months ago
Reply to  Fig Ciocc

Hahaha, that was exactly what I pictured when I saw this bike.

Syn
Syn
7 months ago
Reply to  Fig Ciocc

I bought a gravel e-bike made by Pivot, I’m an older woman with medical issues, not wealthy, no house in Aspen.. I ride nearly every day on as many gravel roads as possible, I love riding & adventuring but it would not be possible for me without the bike I have now.

tickle
tickle
7 months ago
Reply to  Syn

How dare you make so much sense, this bike is for rich fat people period! 😉

I own an eMTB and a Salsa gravel style bike and think this looks like a well executed bike, other than the tall headtube that’s just marketing BS IMO. Yes Ti is way more elegant and retro grouch approved but the E haters are comical these days it was the same back in the day with suspension and disc brakes.

will
will
7 months ago
Reply to  Syn

if you didn’t get the house in Aspen with the bike I’m sorry but you got ripped off!

Oomgawa
Oomgawa
7 months ago
Reply to  Fig Ciocc

Homes, I’d love to be in their position.

Seraph
Seraph
8 months ago
Reply to  tireburp

$10k allegedly.

Sam
Sam
8 months ago

i had to check the calendar. thought it was April First.. And now Moots are like Yeti a brand that was something special, Sell outs .. Kinda like Ferrari building an SUV.

Doc Sarvis
Doc Sarvis
8 months ago

Hard to weld carbon.

Fig Ciocc
Fig Ciocc
8 months ago

Will this work on regular gravel or only carbon e-gravel?

Lucas
Lucas
8 months ago

Wait, 12spd 8170 shifters to an 11spd link glide drivetrain?!?! Shimano told the world that isn’t possible….

Klarf
Klarf
7 months ago
Reply to  Lucas

It’s possible with di2 shifting and the new xt di2 rear derailleur.

Jason DW
Jason DW
8 months ago

Ya sold out Moots

Spencer Anderson
Spencer Anderson
8 months ago

I think it looks pretty clean and cool. If I’m gonna buy a moots though its gonna be a titanium bike. Dont think I’d ever consider getting an electric gravel grinder… but if I did I would go with Alchemy instead.

Shafty
Shafty
8 months ago

This release is confusing. Not really sure where their heads are at, but this is a weird departure for a custom bike brand. I don’t like it. They probably couldn’t economically produce it from titanium, but I don’t see how this will sell. Is this because their customer base has aged and wants ebikes now?

threeringcircus
threeringcircus
7 months ago
Reply to  Shafty

I suspect the baby boom demographic is the precise target–particularly the cycling enthusiasts who still want a high end brand, but don’t see the practicality of plunking down for a leg-powered machine at this point. They’re going to buy something like this, and Moots figures the might get the high end of that. The long-term risk to the brand seems great, though. But maybe they don’t see a long-term future in made-in-Steamboat titanium bikes.

WhateverBikes
8 months ago

Well, it’s their brand, so it’s their right to do this I guess.
But it’s also our right to shun it for the ugly pos that it is.

Exodux
7 months ago

I guess most manufacturers have to jump on the ebike bandwagon to stay afloat, but personally, I hate this segment. I never believed for a second that it’s going to improve or grow the industry away from ebikes to “un-ebikes. I think what the thought is that people would ride an ebike and realize how cool it is to be out there doing something that for some reason they didn’t do before(because it is hard), then they would get hooked and get fitter then graduate to a mountain, gravel or road bike. I say BS. Most of these riders would realize how hard it is to ride an un-motorized bike and stick to an ebike or quit the sport completely.
I know this segment is going to get only more popular but I wish it would go away!

Exodux
7 months ago
Reply to  Exodux

Reply to my own comment….I realize that there are people maybe with an injury or disability that would not allow them to ride otherwise, I get that, but most of the ebikes I see don’t seem to fit this demographic.

Syn
Syn
7 months ago
Reply to  Exodux

i was extremely sad to have to sell my “normal “ bike , i’ve ridden my whole life, now the only way that i can continue to ride is with an e-bike.. don’t know what i’d do without it, i know i’d be very depressed..

Fig Ciocc
Fig Ciocc
7 months ago
Reply to  Exodux

Okay but there out there riding around as opposed to not so who cares? The more people out there the more resources we get for trail building, cycling infrastructure, youth cycling programs, and people who don’t see bicyclists as just a nuisance on the road since they also ride bicycles.

Car Bon
Car Bon
7 months ago

“five differnet titanium gravel models”

Bantam
Bantam
7 months ago

Random thoughts on this,

Not every brand needs to make an e-bike.
I get not pinning it all to the ‘titanium’ thing but could Moots have gotten into making steel frames if they wanted more sales using most existing skills? I get how labour cost is justifiably high there but high-end steel fetches good $
The sales gain here against sales loss elsewhere because of it seems risky, they’ll have discussed that at length I’m sure.

But more than that, remember when drop bar bikes were simple, elegant things? Some still are but do I miss those days.

WhateverBikes
7 months ago
Reply to  Bantam

This. You don’t ‘have’ to follow suit, just because ‘everybody’ is doing it.
I think it is never a good idea to compete in a certain field if your heart isn’t in it, if it is not your field of experience, Others will simply be better at it, and more believable.
If you are a small(er) company, it’s better to operate in a dedicated niche, where people know what you do and what you stand for.
There will be people who want simple, elegant, quality bikes, so I would say try to be their best option.

nooner
nooner
7 months ago

Moots,,, Rest In Peace 1981-2023

Björn
Björn
7 months ago

Its never fun to see a public self-mutilation.

carbonnation
carbonnation
7 months ago

Haha, bad moove, I know…my point is moot.

Tony
Tony
7 months ago

There is an option to keep everyone happy, and it’s very very simple… Moots could have created a second brand and sell carbon bikes and ebikes, just like BMC and Scor for example. If the bikes are good, they still get the money, if not, they can swept it under the rug..

Dirty Mike
Dirty Mike
7 months ago

I hate this like poison…

Doc Sarvis
Doc Sarvis
7 months ago

Maybe a hail Mary to stay alive? Speaking from experience once you get caught on the wrong side of the market you deploy anything you can to survive. The ti frame market cant be very robust right now.

Hamjam
Hamjam
7 months ago

Couldnt they make a beautiful ti bike a Mahle hub drive system?

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