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The Maxx Huraxdax ELS marks a brand new evolution of the Huraxdax EL FATFully that we've already tested several times. And that always left a smile – not only on our faces. Based on their already trail, race and cafè proven geometry the team of Maxx has applied latest electric propulsion technology and a fresh design to form what looks like an entirely new bike. The Huraxdax ELS is officially released during Eurobike 2019. But, luckily, we already had the chance for a thorough test. So… Read about the news today!
Maxx Huraxdax ELS – the not so boring facts
As said, take a look at the 2020 Maxx Huraxdax ELS and your brain immediately will start it's „Hey, man, that thing is NEW – lets have a look at it!!!“ program. Tell you what – your brain is right! Gone are these quirky S-bend top and down tubes used in its predecessor. And aren't that massive 5 inch tires squeezed into it? And then there is the overall design… A straight, nicely sloping top tube hitting a short seat tube. Looking sharp as never before! Interestingly the bikes geometry hasn't changed at all – a fact that we clearly appreciate!
To get an overview of all geometry data click on our „BIKE-IN-A-BOX“ section below:
All data below for an L size bike as tested
|Seat Angle (effective)
Slight changes to the rear end eventually allow to squeeze in bold 5 inch tires. Our test bike was equipped with Johnny 5 by Terene. We will test the fit of a Vee Tire Snow Shoe 2XL later.
The core, the heart, the spiritual center of any great bike is, no doubt, the frame. This holds true for the new Maxx Huraxdax ELS – or, to be precise, its newly designed main triangle that houses the new Brose Drive S system. Whereas the motor was updated to provide a more stable power output under heavy load, the battery was topped up with another 125Wh. Now you can press a whopping 625Wh into the battery without removing it from the frame. However, whereas the stored electricity itself doesn't add much weight and the motor itself lost some weight, the additional cells make the battery pack noticeably heavier.
Another Drive S feature is that the energy bar is now squeezed into the tube from underneath. Maxx faces the expected exposition to dirt and rocks with a custom made rubber shield – which will have to prove its effectiveness. On the other hand this finally allows to properly install a bottle cage. Not to mention the much cleaner look of the bike.
Overall the frame leaves an impression of great quality with its beautiful welds and rock solid powder coating. Only the rather small rear suspension main bearings seem to leave some major improvement potential.
An interesting option will be the upcoming 29 FAT wheels set. But cutting tire width combined with unchanged (or even slightly bigger) wheel diameter they are supposed to extends the bike's range of use towards long tours. If it works out this would remove the need to buy another tourbike. We'll test the concept shortly.
Equipment à la carte
Maxx is known for their individual bike solutions. That means within certain limits you can use their configurator to build your own bike following your very own needs. So it's a bit misleading to highlight our test bike build. But you may take it as an inspiration: Race Face bar and stem, dropper post by FOX, Fizik saddle, Sun Ringle Mulefüt 2 rims laced to DT Swiss 350 hubs and a Lupine SL headlight. A Fox Float DPX2 takes control over the rear kinematic (145mm of travel) and a brilliant Manitou Mastodon Pro EXT adds 150mm of travel to the front. Terene Johnny 5 tires are mounted at both ends, of course without medieval rubber tubes.
The mighty drivetrain is controlled by an equally mighty Magura MT7 brake. However its brute force may be a bit demanding to be controlled by less experienced riders. Go for a Shimano Deore XT brake in that case. Overall our ride sums up to nasty 27.7kg which may differ depending on you own build. Considering the billions of Dollars made out of eBikes globally we can only hope that Brose & Co. some day will invent systems that don't break our backs while we're taking our eBikes into the basement… Happy are those who can just roll their eBike into a shed!
The force that IS with you
So, how does it feel then to ride the beast? Massive – in a positive way. Combined with the power of your own legs the new Brose Drive S develops some pretty serious thrust. It easily overcompensates the system weight and places you right on a fairly nimble rocket. Using the „Eco“ mode it nicely compensates the heavy weight beast and puts you right in the middle of all your lycra-coated-shaved-legged-energy-bar-munching XC racing buddies. „Tour“ makes you fast, „Sport“ even faster. And then, at the top notch, there is „BoostFX“ which we think is made for „Wow!“. BoostFX stands for brute force and aggressive response and it's an amazing example of what „fun“ means on a bike with electric propulsion.
Unfortunately, to be road legal the excitement suddenly stops at 25km/h (say goodby to your XC race friends) BUT you can do crazy stuff uphill! And this is not only because of the no-mercy engine but also the progressive chassis that eliminates unwanted pedal-to-ground contact to a very high extent.
And also Terene's Johnny 5 tires contribute a lot. Being as vicious as a Pitbull they nicely team up with the motor. Made of soft rubber and featuring an aggressive profile Johnny 5 gives a maximum of traction. No matter whether on rock surfaces or in knee-deep mud – just keep going. Imagine to race your favorite downhill in a whole new way: reversely.
On the downside, however…
…we feel that under load the new Brose Drive S has become noticeably louder than the old one. Nothing to really complain about as under normal load it's still nicely quiet and far ahead of most other systems. But it's a development that we personally don't like very much – simply because the noise is terribly nagging.
Also the new Brose „Display Allround“ Headunit has nice and idiot proof graphics as well as a pretty complete set of functions (including a WALK button). But the +/- buttons are small, hidden and placed on one rocker that provides a rather wimpy feedback. Though it's not rocket science to remember where they are and how to use them it's nearly impossible to sense them while wearing a glove – as bikers typically do. We accidentally hit the wrong one a bit too often. Just imaging thick winter gloves… We'd definitely prefer a bolder layout. In particular as Brose, unlike Bosch, does not offer an automatic mode.
The high performance sofa
The Huraxdax ELS literally soaks up roots, rocks or whatever the trail throws at you. But in general we think that a FATFully should be more than just an ultra plush and wobbly ride. It should also be able to perform where it counts. So we took out the Maxx Huraxdax ELS to ride our favorite trails to find out. Very first impression: Johnny 5 + 68° steering angle + 51mm fork offset are a perfect match proven by the fact that the bikes shows little to now self steering tendencies.
It goes without saying that rolling to your favorite cafe or swimming lake is a pleasure on a bike like that. But for those who demand more there is also a reliable trail package. The kinematics are tuned to control any motion and ensure a planted ride under all conditions. Thanks to the extremely tacky tires and the solid weight this thing runs as stable downhill as a freight train. And even cornering is superb – though the heavy weight may not be your best friend on blocked single tracks. However that bike is not a surgery knife – it's a sledgehammer. And that's how it rides: supple, reliable, confident yet unexpectedly nimble.
An important precondition, however, is a proper suspension setup. We are currently working on a workshop how to tune this bike for various situations. Bear with us, there will be a tune for your intentions, too!
The Maxx Huraxdax ELS is unique. Even within its very small peer group of eFATFullies there is no other like this one. Its size, weight and power place it somewhere between a conventional MTB and a Motocross machine. That also also true for its intended use. We spent a lot of time thinking about how to describe it best. So let's put it that way: the Maxx Huraxdax ELS is like a Teddybear you can ride on. It's cozy, it's plush, it makes you feel good. But this Teddybear hides the Grizzly underneath. Aggressive, responsive, waiting to attack and munch some prey. Uhm, sorry, trails.
A great bike, well thought out and nicely made. And in its 3rd generation also very much matured.
The brand new Maxx Huraxdax ELS can be ordered starting from now at a base price of 6,299.00 Euros. Sounds a lot, but considering equally made high end eMTB plus the custom bike approach puts it into perspective. For all who don't require the latest technology the former model Huraxdax EL will remain available at a lower price tag until further notice.