With the Solace eRIDE and the Solace Gravel eRIDE, SCOTT present two drop bar ebikes based on the same frame and a TQ motor. The e-system is so discreet that nobody will realise you’re “cheating” until you’ve passed them on the climbs. We’ll tell you who the bikes are for and whether the new Solace can bring the cheer it promises.
The big multisport brand SCOTT have plenty of expertise when it comes to ebikes. It’s predominantly the eMTBs of the Swiss brand that are on the rise, including the super light SCOTT Lumen eRIDE that was introduced by our sister magazine E-MOUNTAINBIKE. That said, SCOTT have already added an electric option to their drop bar portfolio, too, with the SCOTT Addict eRIDE. While the Addict eRIDE relies on a hub motor from MAHLE, the all-new SCOTT Solace models feature a mid-mounted motor supplied by German brand TQ. From our experience, mid-mounted motors have less of an impact on the handling compared to a hub motor, which increases the rear wheel’s rotating mass. Both systems fare well in terms of how well they’re hidden: the MAHLE hub motor is barely visible behind the cassette and the mid-mounted TQ motor is inconspicuously integrated into the bottom bracket.
SCOTT even opt against the use of a handlebar remote on the Solace in favour of cleaner integration. As such, the TQ system can only be operated via a button on the display in the top tube: double click to switch between the support modes, and a single click to turn the system on and off.
We tested whether the SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE can only perform on rough paths or whether it’s a viable option as an everyday commuter, highlighting who this new e-gravel bike and the all-road alternative are for.
The SCOTT Solace eRIDE in detail – An all-rounder in disguise?
The new SCOTT Solace eRIDE is available in a gravel and an all-road configuration, relying on a beautifully finished carbon frame and fork made with SCOTTs high-end HMX fibres, which promise to make for a somewhat lighter layup than the HMF fibres. The frame can accommodate two water bottles in the front triangle, and it has two mounting points on the top tube for a frame bag, allowing you to carry all your essentials on the bike, and thanks to the wide and flared drop bar, you also have the option of attaching a large bar bag for multi-day rides. Unfortunately, the thin chainstay protector on the gravel variant couldn’t keep the chain entirely quiet. The cockpit is nice and tidy with all cables routed internally throughout. Further underlining this is the lack of a remote on the handlebar, which also makes for fewer distractions while you ride. It’s only upon closer inspection that you’ll spot the motor hidden in the bottom bracket and discover that this is in fact an ebike. You’ll find two mounting points on the bottom of the handlebar/stem combination to attach a mount for your bike computer, or a dual-sided option for a bike computer and a headlight (powered by the on-board battery), which is great for commuters.
The speed sensor for the motor has been integrated into the frame to such an extent that it’s basically invisible, with its counterpart hidden in the axle. All models come equipped with an equally discreet mount for a kickstand on the bottom of the left chainstay. Combined with the mudguard mounts, the otherwise very sporty bike can be turned into a practical everyday vehicle. You can get a matching kickstand and mudguards from Syncros.
The motor integration on the 2023 SCOTT Solace eRIDE
Based near Munich, Germany, tech company TQ have been mixing up the ebike market since the start of this year. The TQ HPR 50 showed great potential from the moment it hit the market and immediately garnered interest from the bike industry, in particular with regard to light eMTBs. In the drop bar segment, the HPR 50 has, until now, been reserved for the TREK Domane+ and the BMC Roadmachine 01 AMP X. Thanks to its patented Harmonic Pin Ring technology, the TQ HPR 50 can combine the transmission and motor into one compact unit, doing away with the traditional cogs and planetary gears of classic transmissions. As a result, the unit is quieter and more efficient since it has fewer cogs, thereby reducing both friction and noise. Its 50 Nm nominal output doesn’t sound like much, but it’s enough to provide the rider with a decent amount of support.
The motor gets powered by a 360 Wh battery, which you can extend by another 160 Wh with the external Range Extender. On the 2023 SCOTT Solace eRIDE, the Range Extender gets attached to the down tube in place of the water bottle, using a clip mechanism that was developed in house. You can easily switch between the water bottle and the Range Extender by simply clipping in whichever option the tour calls for.
The bracket on the Range Extender is compact and bombproof. With the Range Extender plugged in, the display indicates a total battery capacity of 150 %. The discharge sequence is set so that the Range Extender always gets drained first, followed by the internal battery. When the Range Extender nears the end of its charge, the SCOTT Solace doesn’t stop. Instead, the motor keeps assisting without flinching as its power source transitions seamlessly from the auxiliary to the main battery. You can charge the bike with the Range Extender plugged in. In that case, the discharging sequence is reversed, first charging the internal battery and then the auxiliary. The 160 Wh TQ Range Extender weighs 900 g.
In the e-road bike market, the TQ HPR 50 faces its biggest competition from hub motors made by brands such as MAHLE. There’s the MAHLE X20 in the BMC Roadmachine AMP ONE, for example. Hub motors are more widely spread in the road segment than on gravel bikes. In general, however, the selection of electric drop bar bikes on the market is rather limited.
Road and gravel – The different model variants of the SCOTT Solace
The all-road and gravel variants of the bike are based on the same frame and fork combination as well as the same wheels. Theoretically, that means you could fit 50 mm wide gravel tires to the all-road version and head off-road. The only differences are the handlebar and groupset.
There are two different models of the 2023 SCOTT Solace eRIDE all-road variant available: the flagship Solace eRIDE 10 and the more affordable Solace eRIDE 20. Both come equipped with a Shimano groupset and extra wide 38C Pro ONE EVO tires from Schwalbe. With clearances for up to 50 mm tires, skinnier tires would look somewhat lost in the frame.
SCOTT Solace eRIDE 10 & 20 – The components of the e-all-roaders
The top-end SCOTT Solace eRIDE 10 features Shimano’s DURA-ACE Di2 groupset and high-end Zipp 303 wheels. For € 11,999, the Range Extender comes as standard on this model. As is, the bike tips the scales at 11.75 kg, excluding the Range Extender.
The second all-road model, the SCOTT Solace eRIDE 20, also relies on electronic shifting thanks to the Shimano ULTEGRA Di2 groupset and, together with the Syncros Capital wheels, it will set you back by € 7,999. According to the manufacturer, it weighs 12.45 kg.
SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE 10, 20, 30 & CONTESSA – The spec of the e-gravel machine
There are four models of the SCOTT Solace e-gravel bike available. All of them come with a SRAM groupset and super wide 50 mm Schwalbe G-ONE Overland tires. The SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE 10 is the top of the line and, like the premium all-road model, it rolls on Zipp 303 wheels and comes with the Range Extender as standard. SRAM’s Force XPLR AXS groupset takes care of the gears. Despite the 1×12 gearing, it offers a decent gear range. In this guise, the size M bike weighs 12.6 kg. The SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE 20 features the SRAM Rival AXS groupset. In this case, the lower-end electric model in the SRAM portfolio also relies on a 1x setup, as is typical for gravel bikes. The Solace Gravel eRIDE 20 is priced at €7,599 and weighs in at 13.35 kg, according to SCOTT. Along with that, there’s the Solace Gravel eRIDE 30 and the women’s specific CONTESSA edition. The only difference between these two is the colour. For the gears, you’ve got to make do with the mechanical SRAM Rival 1×11 drivetrain, offering a smaller range and bigger jumps between gears. Both models are priced at € 5,999 and weigh 13.5 kg according to the manufacturer’s specs.
SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE
Motor TQ HPR 50 50 Nm
Battery TQ HPR Battery V01 360 Wh
Display TQ 0-LED
Seatpost Syncros Duncan SL Aero
Brakes SRAM Force 160/160 mm
Drivetrain SRAM Force AXS 1x12
Stem Syncros integrated 100 mm
Handlebar Syncros Creston iC SL 400 mm
Wheelset Zipp 303 700C
Tires Schwalbe G-ONE Overland 50 mm
Size XS S M L XL
Weight 12.6 kg
The geometry of the SCOTT Solace eRIDE – An eAddict or what?
The geometry of the SCOTT Solace eRIDE leans heavily on that of the aggressive SCOTT Addict Gravel. It’s meant to be fast, which is why it relies on the same head and seat tube angles as well as the same reach measurement as the Addict. It’s only the chainstay length that differs on the e-gravel bike, which is 1 cm longer and probably due to the motor. Whether this will allow you to set record times, you’ll find out in the first ride review below. The bike is available in five sizes, ranging from 49 to 58 cm. The CONTESSA variant for women relies on the same geometry, though the biggest size available is 56 cm.
|BB Height Road/Gravel
Riding the SCOTT Solace Gravel eRIDE 10 and its all-road pendant
The SCOTT Solace eRIDE isn’t just hard to distinguish from an analogue road bike, the support it offers is very inconspicuous, too. The engagement and disengagement of the motor is hardly perceptible even in the highest support mode, though it offers a decent amount of assistance with a maximum support of 50 Nm. It certainly takes a load off on the climbs, making you feel like you’ve had a nutritious breakfast and your legs have been well rested. If the highest support mode feels like a little too much, you can try one of the two lower support modes, or no support at all. While you can ride without support, you can’t ride with the system switched off, at least not with the electronic SRAM drivetrain since it gets powered by the on-board battery. However, there’s no need to worry about getting stranded when the battery runs out since it always keeps a reserve charge, enough to shift 300 times. With the support deactivated, the motor produces no noticeable drag when pedalling, barring the fact that you’ve got to pedal a 12.5 kg bike. You’ll hardly notice when you cross the 25 km/h threshold either, which is a common occurrence on drop bar ebikes. When riding above the 25 km/h limit, the motor cuts out smoothly, saving the battery and thereby increasing your range. So, you better keep up the pace ;).
Now let’s get to the Gravel counterpart: riding it on bumpy terrain, the 50 mm wide tires have a significant effect. Thanks to their high volume, you can run them at low pressures without having to fear for the rims. Doing so adds comfort and grip. On loose and dusty gravel, however, the wheels can still spin out when you put the hammer down and you underestimate the power of the motor. The bike can do with the added comfort of high-volume tires since the one-piece stem and handlebar combination together with the burly fork are on the stiffer end of the spectrum, again resembling the Addict’s sporty character. It’s only by getting into the drops that you get some level of compliance from the otherwise stiff and precise front end.
Tuning-Tipp: knobby tires on the all-road variant for improved off-road capability on the way home
Overall, the bike’s handling feels very well-adjusted, offering a nicely balanced riding position that strikes a good compromise between long-distance suitability and performance. The added weight of the motor doesn’t affect the handling negatively due to its low centre of gravity. Both the Gravel and the all-road model implement the rider’s steering input willingly and without delay, and the rear wheel follows suit. We were particularly impressed with the 38 mm tires on the all-road model, which were developed exclusively for SCOTT together with Schwalbe. They feel very planted on the road and generate plenty of comfort without giving the impression that riding into a headwind. On the descents, they offer enough cornering grip to make you feel like you’re riding a MotoGP bike – as long as you resist the temptation to stick your knee out and slide it on the ground. The Shimano DURA-ACE groupset functions flawlessly, providing top notch ergonomics on the hoods.
Who is the new SCOTT Solace (Gravel) eRIDE for?
SCOTT market the Solace as a bike for all Addict fans that are new to the scene. Indeed, newcomers who want to keep up with fitter, more seasoned riders could be one potential target group. In case that’s you, you’ve got to be careful not to overestimate your riding skill just cause the motor makes you feel unstoppable. We can also imagine the bike as a good option for everyday commuters. The options to mount a kickstand, an integrated headlight, and mudguards increase the bike’s versatility and practicality enormously, and together with the frame and/or handlebar bag, you’ve also got added luggage carrying capacity. You could ride to work in the mornings without breaking a sweat thanks to the motor, getting in some cardio on the way back home in the evenings – both the Solace Gravel and the all-road version would fare brilliantly doing so.
Our conclusion on the new 2023 SCOTT Solace (Gravel) eRIDE
With the 2023 SCOTT Solace (Gravel) eRIDE, SCOTT present two successful interpretations of a drop bar ebike featuring a high level of integration, as you’d expect from the Swiss brand. It’s an incredibly inconspicuous ebike with a lot of standout features. Both the all-road and Gravel variants are well-specced with components that are fit for purpose. If needed, they can be equipped with a range of practical everyday accessories for commuting, too, making the most of the electric support.
- high level of integration
- purpose specced components
- high-quality workmanship
- no standard commuter variant available
For more information visit scott-sports.com.
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Words: Julian Schwede Photos: Michal Červený, Julian Schwede