new Bosch SX light EMTB
Canyon Neuron:ONfly Review

With an entry-level price of under €5000, the Canyon Neuron:ONfly is currently the most affordable full-suspension bike equipped with Bosch’s SX motor. For its first foray into the light e-MTB category, the direct-to-consumer brand doesn’t focus solely on extreme lightweight construction but aims to impress with other standout features.

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EMTBs face two major issues: they’re heavy, and they’re expensive. Canyon’s first light-EMTB has the potential to tackle both problems simultaneously. That’s because the most affordable bike in the Neuron:ON lineup is just €4,849, with a weight of 20.3 kg. The combination of price, motor, and weight is currently unmatched in the market. Is Canyon returning to its roots of exceptional value for money?

Canyon Neuron ONfly Test
Canyon's first light e-MTB isn't superlight. Can the Neuron:ONfly with Bosch's SX motor still impress?
Canyon Light E-MTB Review
With 140mm of travel, Canyon aims to differentiate from the radical downhill crowd. Yet, it doesn't quite want to give up on trail raiding.
Canyon Lightweight E-MTB Review
The Neuron aims to position itself as a touring partner. Uphill, the Bosch SX motor provides the necessary thrust.

Key Facts about the Canyon Neuron:ONfly

  • Engine: Bosch SX
  • Battery: 400 Wh (compatible with a 250 Wh Range Extender)
  • Travel: 140 / 140 mm
  • Frame Material: Carbon
  • Prices: 4 models ranging from €4,849 to €7,999
  • Weights: from 20.3 to 19.1 kilograms (top model)
  • Features: Steering stops, double-sealed pivots, efficient kinematics, unique design

Carbon Light E-MTB Full-Suspension under €5000 - that's unprecedented

Usually, a manufacturer highlights their flagship models during a product launch. But the icing on the cake in the lineup of 4 new Canyon Neuron:ONfly models is actually the most affordable bike. Because at a price of 4849 €, it stays under the magical 5000 € limit that many employers set for job bike leasing.

Canyon Neuron: On-The-Fly Test
For our test, we rode both the Neuron ON CF 9 priced at €6999 and the CF 7 model at €4849.

Canyon makes no compromises on the motor or frame. There’s no other bike on the market with such a well-designed carbon frame and Bosch’s SX motor at this price point. Considering the specs, even the top model at €7999 is significantly more affordable than comparable offerings from competitors. Our uniform bike check reveals that also the CF 9 version stands out markedly from its market environment.

At a glance

The most importanten ratings of the NEURON:ONfly CF 8 in comparison to the competitor bikes of following categorie: (5600) .

After Canyon has raised prices several times over the past few years, the complete lineup of Neuron:ONfly models is a bold statement in terms of pricing, designed to show its main competitor, the specialty brand Cube, where the real value-for-money deal is. This is because the comparable Cube AMS Hybrid models are slightly more expensive. Information about each bike in their respective price categories can be found on the detailed pages linked to these buttons.

The frame, a well-engineered masterpiece

Canyon has made design a cornerstone of their brand over the last decade. The Neuron:ONfly frame clearly demonstrates that design is more than just good looks. The designers have given the latest Neuron an aesthetic shape with many planar elements. But design also includes the integration of technical features.

Canyon Neuron ON Carbon Frame
The sleek carbon frame is the highlight of Canyon's first light e-MTB.

The spacers for the rear triangle (Washers) with integrated seals and a convex shape already convinced us with the Raaw Jibb and are now being used by Canyon for the first time. The additional seal extends the lifespan of the bearings, while the shape primarily makes mounting during a service more convenient.

The continuous carbon-laminated internal cable routing also significantly eases the replacement of a derailleur cable or dropper post cable. Installing a new brake system becomes a lot easier as well. Most notably, the cables are rattle-free inside the frame.

A steering stop limiter protects the frame from damage in case of a crash. Space is provided for the water bottle or optionally Bosch’s Range Extender in the usual downtube position. There is one compromise: the battery is not removable and is permanently fixed in the frame.

Cable Routing Canyon Neuron ON Fly
The cables are routed through the headset. The prominent lines illustrate how seriously Canyon takes the matter of design.
Canyon neuron on fly frame
Chainstay, compression strut, rocker, and mainframe are generously sized. This lends the frame absolute stiffness.
Canyon neuron on fly frame
The industrial bearings in the rear triangle are generously sized to handle the stresses and strains of riding over time with ease.
Canyon neuron on fly frame
In addition to the sealing of the industrial bearings, every rear suspension linkage bolt is sealed with a small rubber lip on either the screw or the washer. Double protection for the win.
Canyon neuron on fly chargeport
The 400 Wh battery cannot be removed from the downtube; instead, it must be charged via the charging port in the seat tube.
Bosch Power more
On this rail, you can optionally clip in Bosch's Range Extender for an additional 250 Wh of juice, or a water bottle holder.

The frame features that impress on the Canyon Neuron: ONfly

  • double-sealed bearings
  • easy-to-install rear suspension setup
  • Complete Guiding of Internal Routing
  • many frame sizes (from XS to XL)
  • oversized bearings
  • Stiff rear triangle construction
  • Con: The battery is non-removable.

Noble frame brings some extra weight

The stylish and high-quality frame is slightly heavier than other models. Consequently, the Canyon is not a super light eMTB. It still has a good weight, especially if you look at the prices. However, other manufacturers are setting benchmarks for lightweight construction well below 19 kilos. With Canyon, the focus here is on durability.

Modell Wight Price
Canyon NEURON:ONfly CF 7 20,4 Kilo 4849 €
Canyon NEURON:ONfly CF 8 19,9 Kilo 5599 €
Canyon NEURON:ONfly CF 9 19,6 Kilo 6999 €
Canyon NEURON:ONfly CF LTD 19,1 Kilo 7999 €

The Core - The Bosch SX Motor

In the light eMTB sector, TQ and Fazua motors have been the frontrunners until now. However, Bosch is clawing back more market shares from the Bavarian manufacturers with its new SX unit. A key reason why Canyon is unveiling its first light eMTB with the Bosch motor isn’t due to the ride characteristics but because of the global service promise that Bosch offers.

For a direct-to-consumer brand like Canyon, this is a substantial argument to guarantee their customers minimal downtime in case of an issue. In line with that statement, customers will receive the Bosch Premium Service valued at 40 € per year for free. This package includes updates, theft protection, and other benefits.

Canyon neuron on fly test
Canyon relies on Bosch's SX motor, not least because of the robust service network.

The Bosch SX motor is shaking up the market.

The Bosch SX motor is about a kilo lighter than its full-power counterpart and has a slightly smaller build. Although it’s on par with competing motors from TQ and Fazua in terms of weight, the aesthetics of its rivals are considerably more subdued. The Bosch SX isn’t a motor that hides behind the chainring. It’s smaller than the Bosch CX, but it’s not tiny.

Bosch SX Motor
The Bosch SX motor is tucked away, shielded from dust and grime, beneath a plastic cover.
Bosch Control Center
The Neuron:ONfly comes stock without a display. Battery level and assistance mode are indicated by LEDs on the top tube.
Bosch mini Remote
The Mini-Remote from Bosch enables smooth transitions between riding modes even on the trails.

The soundscape is reminiscent of its bigger brother, with a clearly audible whirring as soon as you demand power from the motor. We had hoped that Bosch had tackled the gearbox clatter known from the Bosch CX and the Shimano EP8 with the SX model.

However, our field test dashed these hopes. When you ride down the trail with no tension on the chain, the motor’s freehub clatters quite audibly. The Bosch SX is no silent runner, but it has other qualities to offer.

Bosch SX Fazua Ride 60 TQ HPR 50
Leistung (Spitze) bis zu 600 Watt bis zu 450 Watt bis zu 300 Watt
Drehmoment 55 NM 60 NM 50 NM
Fahrgeräusch deutlich hörbar leise kaum zu hören
Getrieberasseln Getriebe klappert im trail weniger als beim Bosch CX aber klappert dennoch deutlich hörbar. Der Freilauf des Motors klappert weniger als beim Bosch SX, aber er klappert dennoch leise. Die Ping-Ring Technologie ist auf Trail absolut leise.
Akkusysteme wird meist mit Boschs Powertube 400 (Wh) + Option auf 250 Wh Range Extender verbaut 430 Wh Akku ohne Option auf Range Extender 360 Wh Akku + Option auf Range Extender
Kurzcharakteristik Leistungsstarker Sportler, der bei hoher Trittfrequenz und entsprechender Eigenleistung fast schiebt wie ein Fullpower Motor. Schiebt, auch bei geringer Trittfrequenz kräftig an und wendet sich mit seiner Boost Funktion an sportliche User.b Stärker als TQ, dezenter als Bosch. Optisch, geräuschtechnisch und von der Unterstützungscharakteristik her ist er der dezenteste EMTB Motor auf dem Markt. Sehr natürliches fahrgefühl.
Links zu den Bikes Alle Bikes mit Bosch SX Alle Bikes mit Fazua Ride 60 Alle Bikes mit TQ HPR 50

The Bosch SX – More of a Training Partner Than a Shuttle Substitute

The Bosch SX motor delivers a torque of 55 Nm, placing it squarely between the competitors from Fazua (60 Nm) and TQ (50 Nm). Full power motors from Bosch and Shimano produce 85 Nm. What’s astonishing is that despite its smaller size, the SX still manages to hit a peak output of 600 watts, almost matching the performance.

On the trail, the Bosch SX indeed provides powerful assistance, particularly when the cadence is right. While the Bosch CX, the full power model, pulls its full power across a wide rpm range starting from around 50 rpm, there’s relatively little happening with the SX at a lower cadence.

It’s not until 90 revolutions per minute and above that the Bosch SX motor unleashes its full power. If a rider can maintain that, the motor impresses with a sporty character and strong support. Just hopping on the saddle and letting your legs drop onto the pedals is not enough to get the Bosch SX motor into the desired performance zone. To truly feel the full power of this motor, you need to be prepared to break a sweat or two.

To unlock the full power of the Bosch SX, you need to spin the cranks at a minimum of 100 RPM. Achieving such a high cadence is feasible only when seated and riding on flat terrain like asphalt or gravel.
Downhill, the drivetrain of the Bosch SX rattles noticeably. The noise is quieter than both the Bosch CX and the Shimano EP8, but it's still audible.

Range Matters: How Far Can You Go on 400Wh?

The integrated 400 watt-hour battery isn’t built for endurance. Riders who push the motor to full output in Turbo mode with a high cadence will be surprised at how quickly the battery level depletes.

We’ve done several rides with the bike with a body weight just over 70 kilograms, covering close to 1200 vertical meters, and managed to complete them on a single charge, despite heavy use of “Turbo mode.” However, the jersey was significantly sweat-drenched afterwards, and our riding style was accordingly aggressive.

Unfortunately, there is no option to remove or swap the battery mid-tour. However, the Canyon is ready to incorporate the Bosch Range Extender with 250 Wh. Those who need more range should take a look at the Full Power model of the Canyon Neuron:ON. Our comparison feature clearly highlights the strengths and weaknesses of both options.

Canyon neuron on fly test
With the 400 Wh battery, the Canyon Neuron:On is definitely not a range beast. Those planning long day rides should definitely consider the optional range extender as an upgrade. Otherwise, for those pure turbo mode riders, it's game over after about 1000 meters of vertical climb.

Ride Characteristics Beyond the Motor

We didn’t just put the CF9 model through its paces on the trails in the Koblenz City Forest, but we also thoroughly tested the more affordable Canyon Neuron:ONfly 7. For this purpose, we hit the legendary trails in Latsch. This allowed us to gather a wide range of impressions and achieve more than just a fleeting sense of ride quality.

What stands out both on the climbs and the descents is that the Canyon is a rock-solid bike with very high steering precision. Riders can be confident that every steering input is precisely translated into the desired change in direction. This is often a point of criticism, especially with bikes that have minimal suspension travel. The not-too-slack head angle also supports this direct steering feel.

SIZE XXS XS S M L XL XXL
Sizing of Manufacturer
-
xs
s
m
l
xl
-
Wheelsize
-
29
29
29
29
29
-
Stack
-
608
626
635
644
652
-
Reach
-
410
435
460
485
510
-
Top Tube Length
-
556
585
612
640
667
-
Seat Tube Length
-
392
405
415
445
455
-
Seat Tube Angle
-
76,5
76,5
76,5
76,5
76,5
-
Head Tube Length
-
110
120
130
140
150
-
Head Tube Angle
-
64,5
64,5
64,5
64,5
64,5
-
Bottom Bracket Drop
-
35,5
35,5
35,5
35,5
35,5
-
Bottom Bracket Height (absolut)
-
-
340
340
340
340
-
Chainstay Length
-
450
450
450
450
450
-
Wheelbase
-
-
1213
1242
1271
1301
-
Standover Height
-
757
768
772
776
779
-

The athletic riding position complements the vibe the motor delivers. The Neuron isn’t your leisurely beer garden cruiser, it’s a sporty sparring partner for that power-hour session post-work.

The Canyon Neuron:ON really came into its own on flowy trails.
Canyon neuron on fly test
Especially in berms, you'll notice the frame's minimal torsion. It rides more precisely here than other E-MTBs.
Canyon neuron on fly test
We took the bike for a spin through the Vinschgau Valley, the Altmühl Valley, and the Koblenz City Forest.

Suspension Travel: 140 mm remains 140 mm

Descending is a joy on flat, flowy trails thanks to its low weight and the factory-equipped tires that roll well. Here, 160mm full-power EMTBs often get bogged down by their own heft. The 140mm bike is right at home on trails with minimal roots and rocks.

However, as the terrain becomes rougher or the descent steeper, the tires quickly reach their limit. For testing, we’ve outfitted the bike with rugged Schwalbe Super Gravity tires. With a Magic Mary tread up front and Hans Dampf at the rear, the bike gains a bit more confidence, managing even the occasional aggressive detour on the trail. But 140mm of travel is still 140mm of travel.

Typical Canyon: The rear suspension is very responsive and provides good resistance after the first third of travel. The suspension works really well, even on the most budget-friendly model. However, even with beefier tires, there’s only so much you can do with 140mm of travel. The Neuron:ONfly isn’t a full-throttle hammer for the bike park, but rather a touring bike for fun trail rides, and it should be ridden accordingly.

Canyon neuron on fly test
The Neuron:ONfly can handle the occasional foray into alpine terrain, but then calls for an adjusted riding style.
Loose scree pushes the stock Schwalbe tires to their limit. On bigger jumps, the suspension bottoms out.
The Canyon Neuron:ONfly is a sporty touring bike that feels most at home on mellow trails.

Conclusion on the Canyon Neuron:ONfly

Canyon manages to deliver a high-end bike at a competitive price. The Neuron:ONfly, priced below €5000, impressed us on the trails. Particularly noteworthy is the well-thought-out and sleek carbon frame, which makes a great impression and proves that premium quality can indeed be found well below the €10,000 mark. Bosch’s SX motor is anything but quiet, and it’s tailored for the sportive riders. Weighing in at 20.3 kg with a plush 140mm of travel, Canyon’s first light e-MTB excels on extended rides.

About the author

Ludwig

... hat mehr als 100.000 Kilometer im Sattel von über 1000 unterschiedlichen Mountainbikes verbracht. Die Quintessenz aus vielen Stunden auf dem Trail: Mountainbikes sind geil, wenn sie zu den persönlichen Vorlieben passen! Mit dieser Erkenntnis hat er bike-test.com gegründet, um Bikern zu helfen, ein ganz persönliches Traumbike zu finden.

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