Mountain Bike Action Bike Test: KHS Sixfifty 6555+E Trail Bike
150mm of travel that is good for up to expert-level riders. The $5700 price point and generally lighter weight of the bike makes it an attractive option but at that price, it’s definitely intended for the more serious rider.
Firing up the system requires care. It’s actually better if you turn on the E8000 when you’re off the bike and holding the brake. The torque sensors zero out when you first start the system, so if you touch the pedals or cranks, or if the bike simply rolls a bit, you’ll get an error message, and the bike won’t get any power assist until you turn the system off and then turn it back on again and let the sensor zero out.
On our initial ride we headed to a climb that most bikes either loop out on or suffer from back-wheel slips. The KHS has great geometry that let us lean over the front end easily, and it climbed up the hill like a sprightly mountain goat! Helping that stability is the 438mm-long rear end and a moderate stack height. Even though the Kenda Havok tires have fairly small knobs, we ran lower air pressure because of the high volume of plus-sized tires, and that offered enormous grip.
Descending that same steep section, we weren’t sure how well the brakes were going to do. The rotors are 180mm and 160mm, where many e-MTBs these days run 200mm up front and 180–200mm rear. Our fears were unfounded, however, and thanks also to those tires, braking felt perfect.
We had carefully set sag to about 25–30 percent, ran the shock wide open, and that worked really well on even the bigger bumps and drops on the trail. Small bumps simply disappeared, the ride was plush and forgiving, and the bike felt planted when cornering hard.
With a relatively slack front end, the bike has snappy steering. It didn’t feel like we were steering a barge, and it was quite responsive. Point, pedal and you’re there. We looked forward to every ride with this bike, and it’s definitely a go-to for our local trails.
For a first-time effort, the KHS proved a really good bike. Of course, the brand has years of experience designing traditional mountain bikes. In this price range,…