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by James Huang
June 26, 2020
Photography by James Huang
Bosch’s mid-drive e-bike motor systems are already some of the most powerful (not to mention reliable) units in the segment, and thanks to a software update, many current users will now have even more oomph on tap just with a few new lines of code. Riders on Bosch’s Cargo Line, Cargo Line Speed, Performance Line Speed, and Performance Line CX — from model year 2020 and later — will see a jump in torque from the 75 Nm they have now, up to an even-healthier 85 Nm.
According to Bosch, the power increase will be most noticeable at lower cadences, and especially so from standing starts or when heavily loaded.
Interestingly, this increase in performance entails no hardware changes whatsoever. Much like how mainstream internal combustion automobile engines are often detuned at the factory from their maximum theoretical limits, it turns out that several of Bosch’s latest motor systems have already had this capability built-in; it’s just that the company’s engineers opted to play it safe with the initial roll-out.
“The Performance Line CX, Speed and Cargo drive units were engineered from the beginning with higher torque limits,” said Steven Sheffield, team leader for product management and business development at Bosch eBike Systems America. “It’s really a matter of adjusting and perfecting the software to deliver the best motor characteristics and, ultimately, ride quality. More isn’t always better, but after another year of testing, we felt we could increase the power by ten Newton-meters and deliver an even better, more natural-feeling ride. A lot of this has to do with our sensor technology and how we’re able to optimize the drive unit based on inputs from the rider.”
Despite the increase in torque, Bosch claims the impact on battery range will only be “nominal”, since that maximum torque will most likely only be used very occasionally during typical rides.
Software can be updated at any certified Bosch e-bike dealer.
More information can be found at bosch-ebike.com.