Perhaps One E-bike Can Do It All, according to the Specialized Turbo Vado?

The bicycle industry, in particular the high-end bicycle industry, is highly specialized. For instance, mountain bikes are not available. Instead, there are cross-countries, trails, enduros, and downhills. The variety of road and utility bikes is equal, and the more successfully and expensively! a bike fills a certain need, the more narrowly focused it is. But what if you only wanted one bike to do everything? How would a bike with unlimited capabilities even look? The Specialized Turbo Vado was created to provide an answer to that query.


Specialized Turbo Vado 5.0 Press Photo

According to Mattia Berardi, one of the Specialized product experts I had the opportunity to speak with about the Vado, the bike isn’t just for one specific type of rider. Whether you ride for transit, enjoyment, or health reasons, we feel it is for all life journeys.

According to Mattia, Turbo Vado users don’t just hop on their bikes and cruise around; rather, they ride with a purpose—or a number of purposes—and Specialized built the bike to meet their lifestyles and fulfill their varied needs.

He suggests that it is comparable to the auto industry. The crossover SUV has supplanted the traditional SUV in the market, and this shift has been fueled in part by the segment’s versatility in hauling a lot of cargo, transporting people and stuff in comfort, and navigating hazardous road and weather conditions.

One of the bike’s themes is utility, and the Specialized Turbo Vado’s product development was heavily influenced by the balance of capabilities that SUVs provide. The team examined the most pertinent use cases for regular riders and discovered that many of their target riders had already started to switch from solutions based on road bikes to bikes with more MTB influences.

This is one of the reasons the new Vado, which replaces the old model that was based on a road bike, has a geometry and feel that leans more MTB.

The new Vado’s slightly more upright geometry makes it more comfortable for daily use, and the more balloon-like 2.3 Pathfinder tires give it a softer ride that works well on pavement, gravel, and the kinds of dirt tracks you might come across on your urban weekend adventures. Instead of defining the bike’s experience, the motor in this case makes everything you select to throw at it a little bit simpler.

Specialized Turbo Vado

SPECIALIZED TECH SMART Speaking of themes, the Specialized Turbo Vado’s second major theme is a tech-smart user experience. While connected features and apps that track various aspects of the bike are becoming more and more common in the e-bike industry, Specialized places them closer to the company’s core values than most other e-bike manufacturers.

That’s because Specialized creates a lot of its own hardware, unlike practically every other e-bike manufacturer out there. also software Heck, the company even develops its own tires and tubes even went so far as to make sure that each of their bikes rode and handled just like their customers and product designers intended! expect.

The internal gear hub (IGH) shifter, for instance, feels a little better on the Specialized than some of the critics in the specialized bike rags would have you believe. This integration and tech-smart feel continues past the LCD display and smartphone app and into the more bike-y components of the bike. You must have faith in it for it to function.

I travel the same roads to work every day, claims Mattia. I don’t have to worry about my equipment with the IGH. I just concentrate on the traffic, the road, and my coffee. I can concentrate on the journey rather than the bike.

Now that I’ve seen how it performs in traffic, I can support that idea.

Specialized Langster London

: Information You Should Know

Before we get to the review proper, you should know something about me: I am a fan. Specialized recently sent me a brand-new Turbo Vado 5.0 e-bike to put through its paces (as much as a middle-aged desk pilot can, anyway).

The truth, When I was in my early twenties, I purchased my first Specialized bicycle. Freshly divorced, freshly out of the Air Force, and newly committed to improving both physical and mental fitness. It was a moment of fresh starts and joy for me, and my Specialized Roubaix road bike swiftly evolved into my new closest friend.

A few years later, I also purchased a Specialized as my next major bike purchase. This time, the Langster was a fixed gear sporting the Union Jack. The London-themed Langster was so lovely that it maintained a place of pride in the garage until I gave it to my neighbor’s adolescent, who appeared to be even more in love with the bike than I was. However, I never really got up to speed on that bike (new wives and new kids will do that to you).

To put it another way, I feel a strong emotional connection to the bikes and the company. Therefore, even while you may be justified in treating the Turbo Vado’s advantages with a grain of salt, you can bet on the disadvantages (what few there are).

Let’s get going.


Without a doubt, the new Specialized Turbo Vado is a high-end bicycle and it unquestionably has the style to match. This machine looks fantastic. I anticipated that the bike would feel a little awkward in person because the studio photos gave the impression that the top tube and seat stays were oddly disconnected. It isn’t. It looks good.

The bike is stunning in both White Mountains ivory and silver. I would have made the incorrect choice if I had ordered it in Red Tint.

If I had to find something, I would say that the small headlight does not seem to be as well incorporated into the general design as I have seen on other bikes, but that would be seeking for a fault. You will receive nothing but compliments on the bike’s appearance.

– ON THE ROAD There is a lot of bike in the Turbo Vado 5.0. On a lonesome, early-morning journey, my initial thought is that the vehicle is too fast, too assisted, and just too much for my small Chicago neighborhood with its many stops and 25 mph speed limits, but that’s the incorrect way to use it.

Keep in mind that, as enjoyable as it may be, this bike was designed for riders with a purpose! Jumping on a pricey e-bike and giving it a spin isn’t sufficiently purposeful.

Thus, fair. I loaded the 17L Specialized Tailwind pannier with laptops, headphones, and other gear before mounting it to the Vado and riding to the Buzz Cafe to perform some tippy-typing. And the bike performed as expected there in the jam-packed traffic.

a stop sign It shifts into gear thanks to the IGH. Roadside debris? A slight weaving is all that is required because the bike is agile and well-balanced. ahead, the road widens? Get off of the saddle and use the brakes. The Turbo Full Power 2.2 motor has good torque, is quiet, and increases the pedal load as you pedal harder. The electronically-limited top speed of 28 mph comes on rapidly despite the lack of a throttle (the bike is pedelec exclusively, giving it a more authentic cycling sensation), and it appears to be reachable in each of the bike’s three aid modes.

The Specialized is exactly as lenient on a set of lungs in their forties as an ICE moped, and is (pardon me) absolutely specialized for handling metropolitan traffic. Again, if I were looking for something to criticize, I would say that the Vado can become a little unsteady at 25 MPH on heavily topped roads, but this is nothing you wouldn’t experience on a Tomos or Puch at full, 2-stroke boogey.

The Specialized is highly forgiving on asphalt roads that are uneven and pitted as well. The RockShox front suspension gracefully absorbs potholes and ridges in the road, and I also found the spring-suspension seat post (with roughly 40 mm of travel) to be more than capable of delivering me from point A to point B in comfort.


And the bike can start to shine when point B is a little further away than normal. Recall how I thought the Turbo Vado 5.0’s 25 mph speed limitations were too much for my neighborhood? You may recall that too much isn’t always a bad thing when you travel east into Chicago proper on multilane roads with 35 and 40 mph speed limits. At this point, the Specialized really starts to shine.

That, in my opinion, was the secret to enjoying the Turbo Vado to its fullest. I had to give it my all, bombing down Chicago, Ashland, or Western with my pulse racing and lungs on fire while feeling well rewarded. The only electric bicycle I have ever ridden that I would prefer to do the same trick on is a Creo, which is also a Specialized.


So, who ought to purchase this Specialized bicycle? Possibly the least specialized bike to ever sport the recognizable S?

It might seem difficult to respond because there is virtually endless competition in the active e-bike category for riders who want to use one bike for commuting, getting around on the weekends, and leading a healthier (indeed, more active) lifestyle, but it isn’t. This bike is for anyone who is prepared to switch to an electric bike as their primary mode of transportation.

You commute by bike? Slip on your ultra-fashionable Specialized Mode helmet while getting in your Turbo Vado. Are you visiting the farmers market? Replace the Tailwind with two Coolcave pannier baskets, then pack them. Going to a bar with a date? The people at Kettlestrings Grove will stare at the Vado. After a long day at work, are you picking up takeout on your way home? Go to Betty’s, tie a pie down to Specializeds world famous pizza rack , increase the help level, and ride back without worrying.

Even shifting is handled for you by the Turbo Vados IGH.

Therefore, the brand-new Specialized Turbo Vado is a stylish, high-end, and ridiculously fast (28 mph) e-bike that, if you learn to trust the IGH, might just offer you the ride you’re seeking for without torturing you every other day of the week. And in a market crowded with bikes that are hyper-focused and have little features that set them apart, a good-quality bike that can almost serve all purposes might fare extraordinarily well.

And if you like the concept of using just one bike for everything, I can’t think of anything better. Purchase one in White Mountain/Black Reflective paint (to look mature) or Red Tint/Silver (to look like the Ferrari-obsessed man-child I am), rely on the enviolo AUTOMATiQ Pro shifting interface to keep you in the proper gear, and pedal your little heart out.

Specialized has provided assistance for this article.

PS You can always get a Specialized Turbo Vado with an SRAM 11-speed if you definitely, positively, and stubbornly refuse to learn how to trust the IGH with the same confidence as you trust the automatic transmission that I know is in your car.

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