More and more ‘e-bike specific’ parts are coming onto the market, but one thing adding a motor really has an effect on is wheel durability. DT Swiss has sweated the details on its new Hybrid range to create a tough but sweet-riding wheelset for battery-toting or just plain big riders.
- Christmas gifts for the gadget-obsessed cyclist
- Best electric bikes 2018: road, mountain, commuting and cheap e-bikes
At 987g front and 1,178g rear for the 35mm (internal) wide versions tested, the HX 1501s are 300g heavier than the regular EX 1501s, but that weight is invested where it matters.
The rim bed and hub flanges where the spokes attach are thicker, and the spokes are heavy-duty, triple-butted, stainless-steel numbers with reinforced heads.
Meanwhile, the hub shells are beefier, with an e-specific steel freehub body and steel ratchets at the rear. Even the axles are designed to take higher loads and run on larger bearings.
It’s easy to fit tyres and get them to seal, and, despite all this reinforcing and the freehub’s relatively slow 24-tooth pick-up, the bearings are so smooth that you’ll feel like you need a gear up from normal on your first ride.
My test wheels still feel that way months later and got me home without buckling when I put a rear mech into the spokes. The finish is tough too, making these the best e-bike/power-rider wheels I’ve used and well worth the premium price.