Test / E-MTB: The BH iLynx Trail Carbon is an exciting light E-MTB from Spain with its own drive system with a maximum of 65 Nm and an integrated 540 Wh battery. Thanks to 150 mm of travel and a weight of well under 20 kg, the bike should do well on a wide variety of trails. We tried it.
The iLynx platform celebrated its premiere at the Basques of BH at the beginning of 2021. The Spaniards entered the light E-MTB segment at a time when many other large manufacturers were still a long way off. A lot has happened since then, most recently even Bosch a light drive also for this segment. Light E-MTBs are very trendy and of course BH has not been idle in this regard either. Next to the original model iLynx Race the long-travel iLynx Trail version has also been available since the end of 2021 and the drive has also been tinkered with. In addition, cheaper model variants with aluminum frames have now been added to the extensive light portfolio.
Product news / E-MTB: The Spanish manufacturer BH Bikes is expanding its portfolio in the light e-bike sector. The BH iLynx Trail was launched a few months ago as a carbon version. Now there's an aluminum version for those on a tighter budget. The geometry, the suspension system and the aesthetics have of course remained the same. Light e-bikes are trendy – BH […]
BH iLynx Trail: key data and frame features
On paper, the BH iLynx Trail Carbon reads like a genuine trail bike: We have 150 mm of travel at the front and rear, a full carbon frame, 29-inch wheels and the equipment appropriate for this area of use - neither the spring elements nor the tires are available here too painful compromises were made in favor of low weight.
The slim carbon frame looks great and has some really nice features. These include, for example, the charging port integrated in a rear triangle bearing. The installation of the optional 180 Wh range extender is also a great solution. The connections for this are in the associated bottle holder, an extra cable such as the new Bosch PowerMore 250 is not necessary. In addition, the frame also comes with cable routing through the headset and even the spacers under the stem. Visually beautiful, but a game of patience when it comes to maintenance.
As for the rear end, BH has been using the so-called Split Pivot for a number of years, a VPP system that has always convinced us so far. The geometry of the bike reads a bit reserved considering the suspension travel and the equipment. The steering angle is relatively steep at 66°, the main frame is quite compact in all frame sizes. The bottom bracket, which is quite high by today's standards, is also noticeable.
Geometry Bra iLynx Trail
|Seat tube length||400||410||440||480|
|Head tube length||95||100||110||125|
|bottom bracket drop||339||339||339||339|
|top tube length||582||599||624||643|
|head tube angle||66||66||66||66|
|seat tube angle||75,5||75,5||75,5||75,5|
Own drive with impressive data
You really have to take your (imaginary) hat off to BH for venturing into the field of light e-bikes quite early on (the BH Core Gravelbike came out at the beginning of 2020!) and also relying on its own drive . On the one hand, this shows a certain foresight, on the other hand, it was a risky and courageous move. On paper, the drive, which is now in its second generation and goes by the name BH2EXMAG, is still fully convincing today: 1,9 kg weight, 65 Nm maximum torque, plus a large 540 Wh battery and an optional range extender another 180 Wh. Even current drives can rarely keep up - at least theoretically.
In view of these key data, the fixed integration of the battery in the down tube is also to be gotten over; Especially since the BH drive is one of the very few on the market that can only be operated with the range extender if the internal battery is completely empty. The drive system is modern when it comes to operation: The remote is very compact, can be operated intuitively and even confirms successful pressing of the buttons with a short vibration - great! On the other hand, the four integrated LEDs, which are supposed to provide information about the charge level of the battery, are not convincing. On the one hand, only four LEDs are a bit small in order to be able to estimate the remaining range, on the other hand, they are hardly visible even when the sky is overcast - a shame. After all, Garmin bike computers can be easily coupled via ANT+ and then display the most important information.
The BH 2EXMAG Gen2 on the test bench
We determined the performance data of the engine in a test bench test. Here, the really compact drive delivered a maximum power at the rear wheel of 250 W with an input power of 488 W. This places it slightly ahead of drives such as the TQ HPR50 and the older Fazua Ride 50, but has to admit defeat to the Ride 60 or the Bosch SX. What is interesting is the small drop in performance when you reduce the input power to just 100 W. Here, too, more than 330 W arrive on the ground. A good drive for those who want a lot of support even with less personal effort.
In terms of consumption, the BH2EXMAG Gen 2 shows two faces: While it is one of the most energy-hungry drives in our test on the flat with over 6 Wh/km, it looks different on the mountain and with just over 30 Wh/km you can see each other here look forward to considerable reach, especially in connection with the 180 Wh range extender.
Equipment of our test bike
In terms of equipment, our test bike largely corresponded to the top model BH iLynx Trail Carbon 8.9. Only in the gearshift were XTR components installed on our bike for the shifter and rear derailleur instead of the standard XT components. However, this small change does not make any decisive difference in terms of weight or performance. Speaking of weight: Without the range extender, but already with the appropriate bottle cage, the bike in frame size M and without pedals weighed in at a decent 19,6 kg. In view of the 540 Wh battery and the quite robust equipment, this is a good value.
|frame||Bra iLynx Carbon|
|suspension fork||Fox 36 Factory FiT4|
|Power Type||BH2EXMAG Gen2|
|Suspension shocks||Fox Float X Factory|
|Wheels||Race Face Turbine 30 TR|
|Tire VR||Maxxis Minion DHF Exo+|
|Tire HR||Maxxis High Roller II Exo+|
|derailleur||Shimano XT 12-speed|
|Gear levers||Shimano XT 12-speed|
|Brake||Shimano XT BR M8120|
|Brake discs||Shimano XT 203/203mm|
|Seat post||Fox Transfer Factory 150mm|
|Saddle||Prologue Proxim W450|
|Stem||Bra Evo 35 fit|
|Links||Race Face Aeffect risers|
The rest of the component package is quite convincing given the current retail price of 8.399 euros: This applies to the Fox Factory chassis with 36 mm at the front and Float X at the rear, as well as to the 4-piston XT brakes. The fact that carbon wheels are not used is always tolerable. The tire choice from Maxxis is good, with the proven DHF at the front and the High Roller II at the rear, both in the robust Exo+ carcass. In the front, the slightly more grippy MaxxGrip rubber might be a better choice, but that also depends on the individual riding profile.
The BH iLynx Trail Carbon on the trail
In trail practice, the first thing that catches the eye is the really pleasant background noise of the drive. Together with the TQ HPR50, it is one of the quietest drives on the market by far and never emits more than a restrained hum, even at its highest support level. If you are driving on gravel, the engine noise is almost completely lost - great! We also have little to complain about in terms of power, although the small deficit compared to the more current Light Assist motors is noticeable on very steep passages. On the other hand, it is positive that the small BH motor can pack a punch even at a low cadence.
Unfortunately, the drive cannot confirm this positive first impression in terms of sensors and software. Unfortunately, the start-up behavior is quite unpredictable: sometimes the motor needs several seconds or more than one turn of the crank until the support kicks in. This is a fun killer in technical terrain or when starting off on a steep uphill. The same applies to the switch-off behavior: sometimes the engine still pushes significantly, in other cases it stops quite abruptly. However, these disadvantages do not have to play a role for every e-mountain biker: If you simply want to ride the BH iLynx Trail comfortably on forest paths or simply use the motor as a replacement for a shuttle or lift, you should be fine and satisfied with the good performance and low background noise and enjoy the large battery.
On the descent, the iLynx Trail proves to be a good all-rounder, where the very good components of our test bike and the good-natured rear end are particularly impressive. Even steep terrain is easy to master, the chassis absorbs bumps reliably and the combination of powerful brakes and non-slip tires conveys a lot of security. At higher speeds and quick changes of direction, however, the bike starts to sweat and gets a little restless. This is probably partly due to the geometry, which is a bit too tame for our taste and could slow down the riding fun a bit, especially for active bikers.