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Giant Roam E+ Review

Last updated 
robb dorr
By
Robb Dorr,
Co-founder
Images from manufacturer's website

90 mi

RANGE

15.5 mph

TOP SPEED

4 hrs

CHARGE TIME

45 lbs

WEIGHT

Mid-drive

MOTOR TYPE

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Giant Roam E+ Review: Takeaway

This is a fun, powerful electric bike that can take on the urban jungle and light off-roading, too. Great for speeding through the city streets, this e-bike benefits from the Giant SyncDrive system that chooses the right power for you. This means a natural riding feel and a smooth e-bike experience for those new to these machines.

Ideal for...

Those new to electric bikes
Riders who don’t like changing power settings
City riding and commuting
Family rides in the countryside
Paths and gravel tracks
Mid-range rides involving mixed terrain and roads

E-Bike Overview

Ideal as an e-bike for getting about city streets with the odd adventure on a gravel track, the Giant Roam E+ is a comfortable all-rounder.
We love the Giant SyncDrive Core power system as a hassle-free means of riding an electric bike. This can impact range, however, as in Auto Mode, it will select power output for you according to the terrain. On manual, you can add range — up to an almost-unheard-of 93 miles in ideal conditions — by choosing a lower power setting. The 700C wheels and 63mm travel forks will give a comfortable ride on unpaved routes.
You can choose from two different models: the Roam E+ GTS and the Roam E+ STA. The GTA is a typical step-over, while the STA is a step-thru — more convenient for people with shorter legs.

Reasons to Buy

Riding an e-bike can have the added complexity of changing power settings on big hills and flat stretches. This is a thing of the past with SyncDrive Core motor and power unit, which allows you to simply get on and ride like an analog bike.

While Giant claims you can get up to 93 miles, a more realistic estimate is a 35-mile range with the 400 Watt-hour (Wh) battery. While this isn’t comparable to a leg of the Tour de France, most people won’t need a full battery’s riding range on a typical day’s use.

With a 63mm travel fork and 700C wheels, this e-bike can be fun on light trails, too. A 9-speed Shimano gear system will enable economical riding when range could be a challenge. Its Tektro hydraulic brakes will slow you down on a fast hill in wet weather, offering safety even in challenging conditions.

Things to Consider

Giant has been a bit over-enthusiastic in claiming the Roam E+ is an off-road machine. Take it on gravel and forest paths, but don’t try singletrack or a hardcore cross-country ride! The shocks, 9-speed gears, and 700C wheels just won’t handle harder terrain, and with the relatively meek 50Nm of torque, this won’t get you up a very nasty hill.

The SyncDrive power system can be power-hungry. We recommend only using the Auto mode when you aren’t planning big mileage. When you are planning to do a 30+ mile epic, keep the power setting in Manual and try to use Eco Mode as often as possible, as you could get 45+ miles.

Specs & Components

Motor
Giant SyncDrive Core, 50Nm
Battery
Giant EnergyPak 400Wh
Rear Derailleur
Shimano Alvio M3100 9-Speed
Brakes
Tektro M275 hydraulic with 180mm front disc and 160mm rear
Frame
ALUXX Aluminum, Overdrive 1½ - 1⅛" head tube, integrated KS18 kickstand mount
Tires
Giant Crosscut Gravel 2, 700x45c (622x45), Tubeless Ready W/O Reflex (GU: w/reflex)
Models
STA (step-thru) and GTS (step-over)

The specs above come from the manufacturer and may vary from what you’ve experienced. Notice something that needs correcting? Let us know.

Ratings

Power
3/5
3

Offering up to 50 Nm of torque or 300% of rider power (whichever is smaller), the Yamaha SyncDrive motor is great for most riding conditions. Riders in the hilly city of Nashville, Tennessee, say they haven’t had problems with the terrain.

The relatively narrow Giant Crosscut Gravel 2 tires offer low rolling resistance, which means more power will be translated as speed. You’ll accelerate quickly at junctions and even do hill starts with few problems.

Range
3.5/5
3.5

Giant claims you can get 93 miles per charge on the Roam E+. That would be a very good achievement for most riders! In all reality, using a mix of power settings on different terrains, you’ll get 40-45 miles per charge.

On a very hilly route with a heavier rider and cargo, the range will be far lower than a light rider on fairly flat terrain. Weather conditions and the type of track/road you’re on will impact range, too.

 

 

Comfort
3.5/5
3.5

You’ll be able to shift your weight to adjust to the terrain thanks to the trekking position of the Giant Roam E+. This can be a bit tiring on longer rides but suits occasional off-road routes. Your hands will be comfortable the whole time thanks to the ergonomically designed Giant Connect Riser handlebar with polymer and gel grips.

The bike’s 700c wheels and tires will be good for a longer ride on the road, and the 63mm travel front forks will absorb rough terrain without your arms getting too tired.

Get the right sized bike for your height and inseam — the STA comes in sizes S, M, and L, while the GTS also has an XL size.

Durability
4/5
4

You’ll get a great natural ride feeling from this machine compared to its throttle-assist rivals in the same price range. The price of that natural feel is that you’ll put more strain on the chain and cassette than with a throttle assist rear-hub machine. You’ll need to replace these every 750 miles or so. Keep an eye on the brake pads at about this mileage, too.

If properly maintained, the Giant Roam E+ should last you for 5,000 miles or more before the major components give out. As with cars, an annual service should stop problems from arising.

Style
4/5
4

As a basic, entry level mid-drive electric bike, the Giant Roam E+ wins no medals for appearance. It has fittings for fenders and a rack, and without them attached, it almost looks naked. As with Ford’s original Model Ts, you can have any color as you like as long as it’s black.

That said, with or without aftermarket rack and fenders, this is no ugly duckling. It may well be just the bike for you to meet your needs as a second-car-killer.

Our Research Methodology

We personally research and test every e-bike featured in our reviews and guides to provide accurate, data-driven recommendations. Learn how we review.

About Our Editorial Team

robb dorr
Written by Robb Dorr
Co-founder
Robb is a massive cycling enthusiast who has more than 20 years of non-motorized cycling experience. He started eBikes.org to lower the barrier of entry to cycling and reduce the intimidation people can experience when getting into the cycling world.

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