Well known to sports bike enthusiasts, Lapierre, who celebrated his 75e anniversary in 2021, also offers a city range. This includes classic bikes, but also, quite logically, electrically assisted models. Let’s discover together the E-Urban 6.5 which is placed more in the high end with a price around 3,000 €.
Test carried out by Emmanuel Armanet
Whether Stone is best known for its sports bikes, the Dijon brand thus equipping several Tour de France riders, the manufacturer obviously cannot ignore urban cyclists. Several models have appeared including the E-Urban 6.5, an electrically assisted bicycle with meticulous details.
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The brand’s engineers opted for a open frame, an architecture long reserved for a female target, but which in our opinion is perfectly suited to all city cyclists. Indeed, the very frequent ascents and descents in town are greatly facilitated. A little more for the comfort of use and which often reassures people who are a little less comfortable. Unlike most of the new brands that have appeared in recent years, the E-Urban 6.5 is available in several sizes (XS, S, M and L) which in theory make it possible to offer a bike perfectly adapted to its future owner. In theory, because like the whole sector, Lapierre suffers from tension on its production lines and it will not always be easy to find the desired size at your favorite retailer.
The frame is made of aluminum with a beautiful white paint, a color not so common after all. The welds are regular if not smooth. The bike has at the front aRST suspension fork with 50mm of travel, a sufficient figure in town. This is a fairly basic suspension based on a coil spring whose preload can be adjusted to adapt its hardness to your weight. To do this, a wheel to the right of the fork crown turns.
Do not neglect this operation, it only takes a few minutes, because it allows you to obtain the best compromise between comfort and performance. If the setting is too soft, the bike will be all soft and will stick to the road with a suspension that will come to a stop too quickly. The rear therefore does without suspension, but if you really appreciate your little comfort, it is always possible to add a suspended seat post later instead of the rigid aluminum model.
The E-Urban 6.5 is based on 27.5 inch wheels, a very coherent choice offering an excellent compromise between maneuverability and stability. The tires are relatively wide Continental Contact Urban, 2.2 inches, which should provide a little extra comfort. The tread is devoid of studs. They simply have grooves that will evacuate water. No doubt, therefore, about the urban and road vocation of this bike. Note in passing the presence on the sidewalls of the tires of a very effective reflective border.
To drive its E-Urban 6.5, Lapierre opted for a central Bosch Performance Line motor presented as versatile and easy. For this new engine, Bosch puts a lot of emphasis on its silent operation, a quality that we will confirm… or not, during our road test, as well as great flexibility with pedaling sensations close to natural. The Performance Line of course meets French laws with a nominal power of 250 W and assistance that cuts off once 25 km/h has been reached. It can distill a maximum torque of 65 Nm and a maximum assistance of 340%.
This motor is powered by a Bosch PowerTube battery with a capacity of 500 Wh. It slides from above into the main beam of the frame. It is hidden behind a black plastic cover, it is quite basic compared to, for example, a Mustache Lundi 27 whose cover is painted the same color as the frame. However, the contrast between black and white is not unpleasant. After all, it’s a matter of taste.
The engine is controlled through the Bosch Purion console which incorporates a very readable monochrome screen and various buttons. They allow you to switch on the system and the lighting as well as change the assistance mode (OFF, ECO, TOUR, SPORT AND TURBO). The integration is quite good with, for example, a routing of most cables inside the frame through a removable part in the steering tube.
Complete equipment designed for the city
The Lapierre E-Urban 6.5 is equipped witha 9-speed Shimano drivetrain with a rear derailleur from the Altus series of the Japanese brand. We are more in the entry level, we could have expected a little better on a model sold for €3,000. The chain takes place in a plastic fairing to avoid soiling the bottom of your pants. Braking is also provided by Shimano with MT200 hydraulic discs (180mm front and 160mm rear).
The cyclist is welcomed by a generous Royale Wave saddle, a very widespread wide model. The curved handlebar is quite wide, 640 mm. It is fixed on a special stem which has an angle adjustment between 0 and 70°.
Lacquered black plastic mudguards are of course present, as are front and rear lighting. The aluminum luggage rack has MIK standard quick-release fasteners and can support a load of 25 kg. A side stand completes the whole thing.
A comfortable position
Before leaving for a first trip in the streets of Paris, an essential step, we adjust the height of the saddle. An Allen key is enough, Lapierre having chosen not to offer a quick system that allows the seat post to be removed very quickly, including by thieves. The handlebars naturally fall under our hands, which appreciate comfortable grips.
We didn’t need to change the stem angle to feel great on this bike. Size M is perfect for our height, 1.75 m. The position seems perfectly suited to the vocation of the bike. The torso is straight with therefore excellent vision of the road and potential dangers. The lower back is spared, so perfect for people who are less sporty or used to a more sporty position, with their head in the handlebars. This geometry also makes it possible to avoid having the lower back exposed to the cold, to the rain and possibly to certain looks. The E-Urban 6.5 is thus perfectly compatible with use with everyday clothing, whether by men or women. Obviously, its architecture based on an open frame is very practical during stops, but also in the event of immediate danger.
The fork does a decent job with good sensitivity on small shocks. It requires less maintenance than more complex products, but in return the adjustments are less fine. The 50 mm of travel will suffice in most cases even if you cannot escape a tailgating when going down a sidewalk while driving, for example. The saddle is not bad in itself, but its design is a little wide for our taste. Fans of maximum comfort will certainly regret the absence of a suspension seat post, because the Continental tires seemed to us to be quite stiff. To the eye, they are relatively narrow compared to their announced width.
An efficient engine
The engine displays impressive discretion, including when the most powerful assistance modes are activated. This is rather appreciable on journeys made in peace or outside of rush hour, because in a city like Paris the noise of the traffic always covers the noisiest of the motors of VAE.
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Autonomy is as always very difficult to assess, because it depends on a lot of factors: from your state of form to the profile of your routes through your mastery of some subtleties specific to the use of an electrically assisted bicycle. In one week of use in the streets of Paris, mainly in Tour mode, we were able to exceed 70 km without recharginge. Recharging, which can be done directly on the bike, remains long on Bosch VAEs since it takes around 5 hours to find 100% charge with the supplied mains unit.
We found the assistance particularly soft and pleasant while still being able to show power when you want to have a little more feeling when playing with the most sporty modes. The engine also responds to the famous climbs of Montmartre, but then it was the transmission that gave us a little more trouble. Its operation is a little less fluid than that offered by more high-end components.
You have to unload the transmission well to obtain a smooth gear change. This can sometimes be a little difficult when you are surprised by a steep slope. Another downside, the cassette does not go beyond 36 teeth. If it’s more than enough on the flat and on most climbs, it doesn’t offer much margin for steeper slopes, especially when the bike is loaded. A cassette climbing up to 40 teeth would have improved things. But be careful, don’t make us say what we haven’t said. The E-Urban 6.5 will allow you to emerge victorious from most challenges.
When the grades turn negative, we appreciated progressive braking while providing the power to come to a stop very quickly.
Overall, the bike offers a wise and reassuring behavior with great stability induced in particular by the rather long rear chainstays. It’s also not a difficult tank to maneuver, including at low speeds or pushing the bike. This one has the bonus of the Walk Assist, a little assistance that comes to help you when you push the bike while walking next to it.
In rather wintry conditions, we made particular use of certain peripherals of the Lapierre E-Urban 6.5. Let’s start with the lighting. At the front, we find an entry-level plastic Herrmans MR GO headlight capable of delivering a light output of 120 lumens. In fact, it lacks a little power when it comes to facing poorly lit roads. It also has a white reflector.
The Axa Juno rear light shows good efficiency. Other important equipment in the rainy period that we faced with this VAE Lapierre, the mudguards. If the plastic used is deceptive, they seemed a little narrow to us in view of the width of the tires. They were overwhelmed when it was necessary to cross puddles and they could not contain the muddy splashes during a few kilometers traveled on a forest path, despite the presence of a mini flap at the bottom of the mudguards. Its kickstand works very well and its luggage rack seemed particularly robust to us.