Yamaha continues to expand its pedal-assist electric bicycle range with the new YDX-Moro and YDX-Moro Pro. Both are designed as off-road capable two-wheelers that use both electricity and human pedaling power. Here’s what you need to know about these revolutionary pedal-assist e-MTBs. 1. The Yamaha YDX-Moro features a new PW-X2 electric motor. The brushless DC 500-watt motor puts out 50 ft-lbs of torque as it has an assist range from 0 to just under 20 mph. The maximum cadence is 170 rpm. It weighs 6.8 pounds, sans spider. Helical gears are used for the driven and middle driven gears to reduce noise.
Software is the magic that makes pedal-assist e-bikes work, and the YDX-Moro has six power modes, including a new Automatic and MTB modes:
MTB. The MTB mode matches the assist to the rider’s pedaling force. This provides a consistent and predictable level of power to the rear wheel. Yamaha suggests MTB mode for the tightest and narrowest off-road trails. The maximum assistance is 360 percent of the rider’s input, with a maximum cadence of 170 rpm.
Automatic. As the name implies, you select this mode and just ride. It transparently adds the needed power depending on the terrain and challenge. Sensors (including one integrated into the rear hub) measure pedaling torque, cadence, and rolling speed of the bicycle to make the Automatic mode possible. The Automatic mode accomplishes this by switching between three existing modes—High, Standard, and Eco.
High. The High mode gives as much as 280 percent assistance, up to 155 rpm.
Standard. In the standard (STD) mode, the assistance is 170 percent of the rider’s pedaling power, with a 155-rpm ceiling.
Eco. To increase range, the Eco mode adds just 50 percent to the rider’s input, with the same 155-rpm redline.
Extra Power Mode. The Extra Power Mode (EXPW) gives you full power and maximum pedaling speed—360 percent support and 170 rpm maximum cadence.
In all modes, the maximum assist power is 20 mph. EXPW and MTB are the full-power modes, while the others top out at 52 ft-lbs of torque and a 155-rpm cadence maximum.
There is also a new Push Assist Mode that is pedal-free. If you can’t pedal through a tough section, the Push Assist Mode saves the day (it’s also called Walk Assist). It is intended for short-distance use over difficult terrain, as you have to hold the Push Assist mode button on the left handlebar in for it to work. Once you start pedaling, it shuts off.
The new battery pack is a 500 Wh unit, with a charging time of four hours, weighs in at 6.6 pounds. The 40-cell unit cranks out 36 volts.
Yamaha also introduces a revolutionary Dual Twin Frame with the YDX-Moro. Both the top and down tubes split, which Yamaha claims is a first—there is a patent pending to back that up. According to Yamaha, the Dual Twin Frame design “for a reduced saddle height and standover height, the unique design ensures frame rigidity while optimizing weight balance.”
The Dual Twin Frame provides protection for the battery, which is easily swapped out. Both the batter and shock get the benefit of frame rail protection. Yamaha has this keeps the center of gravity low, and reduces conflicts between the rider and the rear suspension.
The drive unit on the Yamaha YDX-Moro also reaps benefits from the Dual Twin Frame. Yamaha explains: “The drive unit is rotated in alignment with the downtube angle, better aligned with the axel path and the ground. The drive unit simply fits better within the frame than competing models. Placed more vertically in the frame, flex is decreased, clearance is increased, and the rear center measurement is shortened, keeping the chainstay short. Because the drive unit is in a fixed position in the frame, it is tucked in and tracks with the frame while cornering.”
The YDX-Moro is Yamaha’s first fully suspended e-MTB. A Horst link suspension is used in the rear with a Deluxe Select+ shock, along with traditional RockShox Revelation RC fork. This keeps the tires on the ground for traction as much as possible.
There is also a YDX-Moro Pro version. That bumps the front suspension up to the Yari RC fork and Super Deluxe Select+ shock. The YDX-Moro Pro as gets an upgraded Shimano 11-speed drive train package, a four-piston rear brake caliper (two-piston on the standard), and Maxxis High Roller II tires (CST BFT front and Patrol rear on the standard YDX-Moro).
Here is Yamaha’s reasoning behind these two new bicycles: “The all-new YDX-Moro models represent the forward-thinking, design capability, legendary performance, and manufacturing quality the Yamaha brand is known for delivering across multiple outdoor recreation segments in the U.S. and around the world,” according to Rob Trester, leader of the Yamaha Power Assist Bicycle group in the United States. “The all-mountain category is one of the fastest-growing segments in e-bikes, and the YDX-Moro and YDX-Moro Pro are ready to capture the excitement and passion of riders and Yamaha’s bicycle retail partners.”
The Yamaha YDX-Moro comes in Desert Yellow. Step up to the YDX-Moro Pro for Podium/Blue Nickle paint.
The Yamaha YDX-Moro hits the showroom floors in September with a $4499 MSRP. If you want the YDX-Moro Pro will run you an additional $1k.