Canyon Torque:ON 9 is Canyon's newest electric mountain bike boasts both catlike agility and big travel… can it really balance both?

Product Overview

Canyon:Torque:ON 9


  • Big travel enduro e-bike, but with genuinely playful ride characteristics. Great geometry. The spec is excellent, and the price is great too. 


  • The EP8 feels underpowered next to Bosch, and the 504Wh battery isn’t big enough.


Canyon Torque:ON 9 first ride review


Price as reviewed:


Canyon had to wait for Shimano’s new EP8 motor to arrive before it could release its latest e-bike, the Canyon Torque:ON 9. Wedded to Shimano for its power units, the faithful Shimano E8000 motor simply didn’t fulfill the brief, being too big and too heavy to allow Canyon’s engineers to design the bike exactly how they wanted it. Now at last though, with EP8 circulating like a vaccine the Torque:ON is finally here, a 175mm travel bike with 27.5in wheels and geometry straight off a downhill bike. The big question though, was it worth the wait? Before I answer that, you’ll have to hold on once again while I run through the new bike’s details.

Canyon Torque:ON 9 need to know

  • Just like the regular Canyon Torque, this big travel bike has 175mm travel and a 180mm fork
  • It uses 27.5in wheels front and rear, an alloy frame and gravity components too
  • Powered by the new Shimano EP8 motor and a modest 504Wh internal battery
  • There is an extra battery option available though for another £500 from Canyon
  • You get two models to choose from, the 9 here has a Fox 38 a the 8 a RockShox Zeb fork
canyon torque:on 9

27.5in wheels, 175mm travel and long and low geometry make the Torque:ON a full on enduro bike or bikepark slayer

There’s no carbon option with the Canyon Torque:ON 9, the alloy frame helps keep the price down and is arguably more appropriate for a gravity bike that weighs 24kg. The shock in the Torque:ON is driven by a forged extender yoke that wraps around the stocky seat tube, but it mounts higher up the downtube than the regular Torque, squeezed in under a folded top tube with just millimetres to spare. The result is there’s now space for a waterbottle beneath it, something that’s a deal breaker for plenty of riders. There’s a subtler change afoot too, given that both bikes share the same 250x70mm size shock, as changing the shock mounting position in this way will inevitably reduce its progression. To compensate for that, and the extra weight, Canyon has increased the damping on the Fox X2 shock.

Tweaking the shock position so it mounts higher up the downtube leaves space for a waterbottle, while the shock has more damping to allow for the extra e-bike weight

The Canyon Torque:ON 9 frame is not beautiful, the skinny back end is at odds with the chunky front triangle, but it sure looks like the business. You get oversized angular contact bearings to help improve stiffness and a proprietary grease inside for improved durability. There’s all the usual Canyon touches to make living with a bike easier too: a big chainstay protector, quick release bolt through rear end, internal cable routing, and that little charging port just above the on button for your phone, lights or GoPro. There’s also a chain device and bash guard to protect the 34t chainring on this big hitter, while if you pop the battery out there’s something new to see – the cables and hoses are held snugly in place by hook-and-loop strips, the idea being you can manage them better.

The Fox 38 is the ideal fork for the Torque:ON with its more supportive chassis. Canyon has also specced the non-e-bike specific model for more damping

There are just two models in the range, the Canyon Torque:ON 8 at £4,499 and the Canyon Torque:ON 9 at £5,799. The former comes with a RockShox Super Deluxe Select R shock, the latter a Fox Factory X2. There’s no coil shock option and no space in there for anything aftermarket. On the front you get one of the new big-stanchioned beasts, the RockShox Zeb R or Fox 38 Factory. The bike will take a dual crown fork like the Fox 40 or RockShox Boxxer, but Canyon hasn’t gone down this heavy duty road. You can also get either model with an additional battery for £500 more, which is a ways cheaper than you’ll find scouring Google.

There’s a reason for that £500 upgrade option, though, and it’s probably something you’ll want to opt for because Canyon hasn’t specced the new Shimano 630Wh internal battery. No, they’ve gone for the old 504Wh version, with no space to retro fit the bigger battery, eschewing one of the biggest improvements Shimano has made to its e-bike line-up. It sounds like madness, but Canyon desperately wants to retain the lively feel of the Torque here, and feels that saving 600g is worth the sacrifice. That extra 600g would be in the worst possible place too, high up in the downtube, raising the bike’s centre of gravity. It’s the same reason YT opted for 540Wh on its own internal battery, rather than packing in the cells and adding weight.

The torque:ON is super capable on steep descents, thesilky suspension is delicate yet supportive too

How it rides

Was EP8 worth the wait? The honest answer is no. And yes. In my experience EP8 is a strange beast. I love the natural feel of the motor, it really does mimic the power you get from your own legs more than any other system I’ve tried and there’s no cheating it into doing the work for you like you can with the E8000. And that’s rather the point for me, sometimes I do want it to take the load for me but it doesn’t have the power. Riding with so-called friends on their Bosch and Yamaha motors is dispiriting as they power away from you on the climbs, while I even suspect a rider on a YT Decoy and its old E8000 motor would do the same.

That said, the EP8 motor is extremely compact at around 30 per cent smaller than the E8000 and Canyon says it just wouldn’t have been able to squeeze in the geometry it wanted without it. It’s also 300g or so lighter, and when you add that to the 600g battery saving things are really starting to add up. I don’t ride bikes for the joy of tearing up fireroads either, and I certainly don’t ride the Torque:ON for the thrill of flat singletrack, so perhaps it really is less of an issue.

canyon torque:on 9

A meagure 504Wh battery saves weight, but at the expense of range and time on the bike

I’m also not thrilled about heading out on a meagre 504Wh battery any more, especially when you’re dragging around a MaxxGrip front tyre in the reinforced Double Down casing (production bikes ship with the lighter EXO+ casing front tyre). I ran out of juice on a 25km ride, with some 1,000m of descending, despite having the bike in Eco mode most of the time. Yes, it was muddy and cold, but I’ve done the ride in similar conditions on Bosch bikes and on the YT Decoy without getting stranded. I’d really have liked Canyon to build their own battery, the way YT did, boosting it to around 550Wh. With the right software letting you rinse all that energy would be a great advantage for just a few hundred grams more weight.

The Torque on is surprisingly playful and keen to leave the ground for such a big bike

But they didn’t, and before this first ride turns into a total beat down on the Canyon Torque:ON 9 I should explain that it’s actually a great bike, and no amount of battery or motor woes can detract from that. I was expecting a ride like the Specialized Kenevo – confident, capable and sure footed. It is certainly that, but it’s got something else going on too, it pops. This is not a ground hugging tractor of a bike, it’s playful and exciting, rewarding your efforts to push it into the trail with joyful bouts of airtime.

Root rakingly low bottom bracket helps you corner well

The suspension has the same liquid feel as the regular Torque, only with more grip and more poise, probably thanks to the extra weight pushing your tyres into the ground. It’s not light, the Santa Cruz Bullit has the same kind of travel but weighs nearly 3kg less (but costs nearly £5k more), but it doesn’t feel heavy when you’re on steep terrain. It corners well too, the literally bonkers low BB will have you clipping pedals here and there but it’s a good trade-off for the bike’s ground hugging ability.


Before riding the Torque:ON I wondered whether Canyon had made the right decision speccing 27.5in wheels front and rear: perhaps a mullet option would have been better. After three rides I think they made a smart choice, I’m usually more confident on a 29in bike but I honestly can’t imagine wanting more stability. What I do want more of, is time on this addictive bike, although I might just have to find myself a second battery first. 


Frame :Aluminium, 175mm travel (170mm measured)
Shock :Fox Float X2 Factory
Fork :Fox 38 Factory Grip2, 180mm travel
Motor :Shimano EP8 85Nm, 250W Battery Shimano 504Wh Display E7000 monochrome
Wheels :DT Swiss H1700, Maxxis Minion DHF MaxxGrip Exo+ / DHR II MaxxTerra Exo+ 27.5x2.5/2.6in tyres
Drivetrain :Shimano STEPS e-MTB 160mm cranks, Canyon:ON 34T chainring, SRAM GX Eagle r-mech and GX 12sp shifter
Brakes :SRAM Code RSC 4-piston, 220/203mm
Components :Canyon:ON 780mm bar, Canyon:ON 40mm stem, Canyon Iridium 150mm post, Canyon SD:ON saddle
Sizes :S, M, L, XL
Weight :24.3kg (53.5lb)
Size tested :XL
Rider Height :6ft 1in
Head angle :62.8°
Seat angle :69.0°
Effective seat angle :76.6°
BB height :342mm
Chainstay :431mm
Front centre :874mm
Wheelbase :1,305mm
Down tube :772mm
Top tube :694mm
Reach :510mm