Before Triumph even started producing motorbikes at the turn of the 20th century, it was already making push bikes. But that was nearly 150 years ago (1884 in fact) and a lot has changed since then.
The Trekker GT is the company’s first pedal-assisted electric bike, and it’s not a bad effort at all. It’s beautifully designed with a classy grey and black matt finish and rides well. Triumph has turned to well-respected Japanese component manufacturer Shimano for the electronics and the end result is an e-bike boasting a solid, if not spectacular, performance.
Admittedly, it’s not the most powerful e-bike in the world, but it does offer an excellent range – certainly around 100 miles if ridden in eco-mode (there are also ‘normal’ and ‘high modes’ if you want an even bigger boost when you’re cycling up hill).
It’s also a nice quiet ride so you will sail past other cyclists who will have no idea you are being assisted by a motor! But there’s just one problem. It’s really quite expensive for what it is. If you love the Triumph brand, then you will probably adore this e-bike. If you’re not a big fan, then you can probably get a better and cheaper alternative elsewhere.
Price and release date
Launched in June 2020, The Trekker GT is available in the UK, United States and in Europe (with the exception of Germany and Austria), with a recommended retail price of £2,950 (about $4,000 / AU$5,500).
There’s no getting round the fact that even the best electric bikes are heavy and this one is no exception. Three different frame sizes are available to buy – small (450mm) for riders between 155 and 165cm tall, medium (500mm) for those 165cm to 180cm tall and large (550mm) for 180cm and above.
For those opting for the medium frame, the e-bike weighs around 24kg including the lithium ion battery, with the Shimano motor itself accounting for nearly 3kg (which is actually a lot less than the company’s older style motors).
That sounds like a lot, but the Triumph Trekker GT isn’t actually very much heavier than many of the other e-bikes we’ve tested, and it looks a lot lighter than it is thanks to its sleek design.
At first glance, you wouldn’t even know it was an electric model as the battery is neatly integrated into the aluminium frame (a key is supplied if you need to remove it). A twin paint scheme – matt silver ice and matt jet black – gives the Trekker GT a really classy feel as does the Triumph branding, including the Union Jack-inspired badge on the front.
While you wouldn’t call the Trekker a racing bike (it looks more like an elegant tourer) it does come with quite a sporty looking Selle-Royal Vivo saddle (which is thankfully more comfortable than it looks).
Less sporty, but perhaps more practical, is the blacked-out pannier rack on the back for putting your shopping on while other useful features include integrated Abus Pro Shield security lock, full length mud guards, a kick stand, LED lighting both front and back and an old-fashioned bell! In summary, the overall feel is of an extremely elegant e-bike which you might expect from one of the Britain’s finest manufacturers of motorcycles.
While at first glance the Triumph Trekker GT may look an ordinary pedal bike with a fairly standard 10 gear Shimano cassette, obviously nothing could be further from the truth. Helping to power this e-bike is the Shimano Steps DU-E6100 mid-drive motor with power provided courtesy of Shimano’s BT-8035 504Wh battery.
To charge the e-bike you simply connect the bulky AC charger provided to a socket located at the top of the pedals. Alternatively, the battery can be removed for charging using the key provided though that’s obviously a little more fiddly.
Charging the bike for a few hours gives you enough charge for up to around 100 miles of assisted pedalling, although just how much depends on the mode you are riding in, your weight etc. Three levels of assist are provided including ‘high’ (full power for maximum support), ‘normal’ (for gradual support) and eco (less support for longer journeys).
Choosing the level of support you want is simply a case of pressing the up and down buttons on the controls of the left handlebar. Pressing the centre button on these controls changes the black and white display in the centre of the bike to change the Shimano head-up display. Here you can find a number of options including speed, distance, trip time, clock, gear and battery levels. The display can also be used to switch the bike’s power and lights on or off.
Complementing the bike’s electronics is a 10 gear system which can be controlled using the up and down levers on the right hand side handlebar. Here you can also find the rather natty bell which you can use to tell people to get out of your way!
In terms of performance, the Triumph Trekker GT is decent rather than outstanding. What’s great about it is that it doesn’t take more than a few hours to charge fully and even after riding around for a few hours the battery doesn’t drain that much. However, on the downside it’s certainly not the most powerful e-bike we’ve ever ridden.
While eco mode is fine for cycling on flattish land, if you are going up hill or you want to get away quickly at the lights to avoid motorists then you will need to use the normal or high modes for additional power. That’s because the Shimano motor only produces a fairly modest amount of ‘torque’ (60Nm) compared to some much more powerful e-bikes we’ve looked at.
That said, unless you’re riding up and down mountains regularly, it’s probably more than enough. It’s also a more comfortable ride than you might expect from a quite narrow, sporty-looking saddle.
For those who like the Triumph brand and want an e-bike that looks good and performs reasonably well then we would definitely recommend the Trekker GT. However for those on a budget or who are looking for really high levels of performance then it’s probably best to steer clear.
Buy it if
Money is no object
This definitely isn’t the cheapest e-bike we’ve tested, and it’s tough to justify such a high price.
You want a silent bike
The Trekker GT has one of the quietest motors around; there’s almost no noise to give away the motor.
You want to look cool
The Triumph brand and styling combine to produce a seriously classy e-bike.
Don’t buy it if
You’re on a budget
There are much better value for money e-bikes out there.
You want to tackle hilly terrain
The Trekker GT isn’t the most powerful e-bike, and its weight doesn’t help matters either.
You’re after a lightweight e-bike
Tipping the scales at around 24kg, this is quite a heavy model. You won’t want to be carrying it too far.