With the power to blast lap after lap, the Cannondale Moterra SE could well be the ultimate bike park brawler

With the power to blast lap after lap, and dual crown fork up front, the Cannondale Moterra Neo SE could well be the ultimate bike park brawler.

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Need to know

  • New model tears up the rule book and the trails
  • 29in wheels (27.5in on size small) and 180mm travel steamrolls all in its path
  • RockShox Boxxer Select dual-crown fork blurs the line between mtb and moto
  • Hidden internal battery for sleek looks
  • Four-bike range starts at £4,500

Take a virtual tour through Cannondale’s archive of bikes, and it quickly becomes clear the brand has never been shy of taking risks when it comes to design and engineering. If we zero in on its downhill-orientated mountain bikes, we’d probably stop first at the 1997 Super V DH4000 with its inverted, dual-crown forks, disc brakes and integrated chainguide. This evolved into the outlandish 1998 Cannondale Fulcrum downhill bike – a bike that had, not one, but three chains driving the rear wheel through a complex jackshaft drivetrain. Massive dual-crown forks with bright yellow gators and a rotor guard for the front disc meant this bike grabbed attention wherever it went – even more so when extrovert team rider Cedric Gracia was aboard. So gung-ho has been Cannondale’s attitude to innovation over the years that, at one point, the brand even designed and built its own motocross bike.

It’s fair to say the spirit of those remarkable bikes lives on in the new Moterra Neo SE – an e-bike that manages to turn heads standing still. At the heart of the Moterra is the new Bosch Performance Line CX motor and internal PowerTube 625Wh battery. For its new flagship power unit, Bosch has carved chunks of weight from the motor, halved the overall size and ditched the miniscule driver cog for a standard chainring. As a result, bikes that it’s attached to – like the Moterra – enjoy better suspension and geometry, and are easier to throw around, which makes them way more exciting to ride.

Bosch has also increased the power, and by extending the capacity of its internal battery to 625Wh, given you the range to ride further and faster. Allied to its smart eMTB mode, you can let the electronics work out the optimum assistance and (in our experience) still get over 1,500m of climbing out of a single charge.

Cannondale’s legacy of innovation endures in features such as its clever Proportional Response concept. Utilising state-of-the-art data-logging equipment and slow-motion video, its engineers have studied how riders of different height and weight interact with the suspension under pedalling and braking. This has led Cannondale to come up with unique kinematics for each frame size to ensure that the handling is the same for everyone.

And it doesn’t stop there. Cannondale has also engineered its own System Integration motor mount, to keep it as low as possible, then wrapped it in a chunky skid plate to protect it from damage. To maximise tyre clearance and strengthen the rear wheel, the Moterra gets an offset Ai swingarm, and for ultimate peace of mind, the BallisTec carbon frame is covered by a lifetime warranty.

Just like its forebears – the Super V DH4000 and Fulcrum – the Moterra Neo SE’s spec is dominated by its aggressive dual-crown fork. This RockShox Boxxer gets a whopping 180mm of travel, while four-piston brakes clamp a huge 220mm rotor up front and 200mm out back to make sure you can keep all that pace in check. These key component choices should leave you in no doubt about this bike’s intentions – crushing the gnarliest of tracks and dominating bike parks across the globe.

Cannondale Moterra Neo SE £6,200

  • Battery 625Wh interna
  • Motor Bosch Performance Line CX
  • Power 250W
  • Torque 75Nm
  • Frame BallisTec Carbon front, C1 alloy rear, 160mm travel
  • Shock RockShox Super Deluxe Select
  • Fork RockShox Boxxer Select Charger RC, 180mm travel
  • Battery Bosch PowerTube 625Wh
  • Motor Bosch Performance Line CX
  • Display Bosch Purion
  • Wheels Formula/SRAM hubs, Stan’s No Tubes Flow S1 rims, Maxxis Assegai front and rear 29×2.5in tyres
  • Drivetrain Bosch Gen 4 Ai chainset, 34t, SRAM GX r-mech and NX shifter
  • Brakes SRAM Code R, four-piston, 220mm/200mm
  • Components Cannondale 3 stem and handlebar 780mm, Cannondale DownLow dropper seatpost 
and Fabric Scoop Shallow
  • Sport saddle
  • Sizes S, M, L, XL
  • Weight 24kg (52.91b)