With its reconfigured E-Sommet, industrial designers and engineers at Vitus have created a slickly integrated e-MTB.
The company’s first e-MTBs were production mountain bike frames with bolt-on battery packs, and they looked a touch unsightly.
The new E-Sommet has a new frame shape that neatly integrates its battery pack into the downtube, like the best e-MTBs. Beyond the more pleasing appearance, there is also the benefit of superior battery protection from potential rock strikes or moisture.
Residing in the new frameset is a choice of two battery pack energy densities: 504- or 630Wh. These batteries can power either the Shimano E7000 or the new EP8 mid-drive motor. The decision to continue offering a model with the older E7000 Shimano drive technology was to deliver an affordable entry-point price to the new E-Sommet range.
Unlike the original E-Sommet, this new bike has a mixed wheel size configuration, with a 29-inch front wheel and 27.5-inch at the rear. This is a set-up that has been proven by the world’s fastest downhill racers, and seen great success in the broader e-MTB market.
All the travel you'll need on a single-crown bike
As a mullet e-MTB enduro bike, the new E-Sommet is aimed at riders who aren’t afraid of rushing the roughest or steepest trails. Designers and product planners at Vitus have shaped the bike with geometry numbers that work better, the steeper your descent becomes.
With a 64-degree head angle, 170mm fork and 167mm of rear suspension travel, the new Vitus E-Sommet is inarguably capable of rolling the most technical terrain with absolute confidence.
Although the E-Sommet range will extend to three variants by early 2021, Vitus is launching with the most affordable £3,599.99 VR ahead of the other models. It weighs 23.5kg and uses an X-Fusion Trace 36 RC 170mm fork.
The rear-wheel travel is managed by X-Fusion’s O2 Pro R shock and rolling you along are WTB ST Light i30 rims, laced to Vitus KT Hubs. Tire choice is the always dependable Maxxis combination of an Assegai Maxx Grip DD 29x2.5in upfront and High Roller II Maxx Terra DD 27.5x2.5in at the rear.
Shimano supplies the E7000 series mid-drive motors, a Deore 1x11 drivetrain and SLK brakes. Dropper seat posts for all four frame sizes are from X-Fusion, with stroke lengths varying from 125- to 170mm.
The E-Sommet VRX and VRS models are due to be released in early 2021. Both bikes get kitted out with Rockshox's beefy Zeb forks and Super Deluxe suspension, Shimano Drivetrain and DT Swiss wheelset, although the premium VRX gets an upgrade in all these departments over the VRS. Both are equipped with Shimano's EP8 motor and will retail for £5,499.99 for the VRX and £4,799.99 for the VRS.
Unfortunately for e-MTB riders in North America, the E-Sommet range won't be available. However, this may change as Vitus is working towards bringing its e-MTB bikes to the US market in early 2021.