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Whyte Bikes has been around since 1999, but two years ago, they got a little boost. That boost came in the form of a new “strategic partnership” and investment from the UK investment firm Cairngorm Capital Partners LLP.
That investment has also given a boost to their bicycle development, which is being shown in the form of their new prototype eMTB. According to Whyte Bikes, this is the first bike developed end to end under the new ownership, and they’re coming out swinging.
While the brand is no stranger to eBikes, this is their take on the light weight, mid-torque, full power trail ebike. Built around the new Bosch SX motor system, expect 55Nm of torque, and around 600w of peak power. Complete bikes will include a 400 Wh internal battery, and an optional range extender will push that to 650 Wh. The prototype above weighs in at 16.9kg, but Whyte tells us the production models will be a bit lighter thanks to a mostly UD carbon finish.
This bike will be built around a 140mm suspension fork with 130mm travel at the rear, while a more burly 150/140mm version is also in the cards. The lower shock mount hides a geometry adjustment allowing you to run high or low BB settings. There’s also an aftermarket shock link if you want to run mixed wheel sizes – the bike is built around 29/29″, but with the link swap you can run 29/27.5″.
Being a British company, Whyte Bikes need to survive properly wet conditions and this bike will be no different. We’re told that everything is sealed – from the seat tube, to the head tube, to the charging port which is positioned inside the frame on the front of the seat tube to protect from spray. All of the bearings are phosphate coated and packed with marine grease, and they’re also covered bike a lifetime pivot bearing warranty.
The cable routing is another interesting feature. Production bikes will come shipped with the rear brake line routed through the headset (with ports on either side depending on your brake orientation). But what if you don’t want headset routed hoses? The frame also has internal routing ports on either side of the headtube that are sealed from the factory with rubber plugs. If you want to use them, you can open the correct plug and then switch out the headset cover for a sealed version. It will still take some work to reroute it, but once it’s done you will have your preferred routing.
Expect complete bikes to be built with full length dropper posts, four piston brakes, and 800mm bars. Expect to see limited quantities of the bike available for sale this December, with full availability expected in early Spring 2024.