affordable light EMTB
The Focus Jam² SL review

The lightweight E-MTB segment is definitely trending, but it also comes across as quite elitist. Anyone desiring an e-mountain bike under 20 kilograms often has to shell out upwards of €10,000. The entry-level Focus Jam² SL comes in at €6,399, making it one of the most budget-friendly lightweight E-MTBs for serious off-road use. In our review, we’ll determine if it can still deliver the thrills, or if the compromises are too significant at this price point.

Youtube Video

They look like normal mountain bikes. The handling on the trail is significantly more intuitive than with conventional EMTBs and they are quiet to boot. Light EMTBs have strong arguments up their sleeve.

There’s just one problem: If you want a lightweight e-bike, you’ll need a hefty wallet. With all the hype generated by the media, the price often gets forgotten. €8,000 and more are not the exception in this segment, but the norm.

With the low weight and the low prices, it’s like two magnet ends with the same polarity. The two arguments seem to repel each other. Focus has recognized this gap in the market and is trying to bridge it with its Focus Jam² SL models.

Has Focus found a way to offer a high-quality Light EMTB at a good price starting at €6,399 or is the Focus Jam² SL in the end a half-baked compromise?

Facts about the Focus Jam² SL

  • Price: €6,199 - €11,499 (4 models)
  • Weight: 19.7 kilograms (Focus Jam² SL 8.8 for €6,899)
  • Front Suspension Travel: 160 millimeters
  • Rear Suspension Travel: 150 millimeters
  • Engine: Fazua Ride 60
  • Battery Capacity: 430 watt-hours
  • Wheel Size: 29-inch
Focus Jam² SL 8.8 Review
The Focus Jam² SL is the most affordable bike equipped with the Fazua Ride 60 motor. Our test bike is priced at €6,899, weighs 19.7 kilograms in size M, and boasts 160 millimeters of travel on the fork.
Fazua Ride 60 Review
Climb ahead! The Fazua Ride 60 motor delivers more boost than one would expect from a lightweight e-MTB motor.
Focus Jam² SL 8.8 Review
During the test, it becomes apparent: The Focus Jam² SL isn't an unforgiving shred sled, but rather a lightweight, practical trail bike for use in challenging terrain.

Full-Power vs. Light E-MTB – Focus Provides All Options

Focus is one of the manufacturers with the widest range of models in the EMTB segment. The Cloppenburg-based company doesn’t just cover all price ranges, but also a variety of suspension travel classes.

In the case of the Jam E-Bike models, riders also have the choice between a Light or a Full-Power EMTB. The Focus Jam models without the “SL” suffix come equipped with Bosch’s CX unit, delivering 85 Newton meters of torque and a hefty 750-watt-hour battery. Our comparison feature reveals that the geometry and specs vary only minimally at the same price point. However, a significant difference becomes apparent when looking at the weight.

The Full-Power version of the Focus Jam² weighs nearly 5 kilos more. Extra battery cells for an additional 320 watt-hours of capacity, an aluminum rear triangle, and the hefty motor add to the scales. Of course, a 320-watt-hour larger battery inevitably means more range. But the bike’s handling on the trail suffers from the extra weight. If you enjoy a sporty ride and maybe even a playful riding style on the trail, you’ll be happier with the Light EMTB.

If your goal is to reach the summit as quickly as possible and trail fun is secondary, then the Full-Power EMTB is the right choice. The good thing is: Focus doesn’t dictate this decision to their customers but instead offers them the freedom of choice.

Fazua Ride 60 Motor
Fazua's Ride 60 motor weighs under 2 kilograms and is invisibly concealed in the bottom bracket area. It delivers 60 Newton meters of torque. With the Boost function, it provides a short-term push as strong as a full-power e-MTB motor.

The Fazua Ride 60 Motor Review

The light-EMTB segment is currently resonating with excitement. Following Bosch’s recent launch of its new SX motor, many fresh models have hit the market. However, unlike the full-power motors, motor manufacturer Bosch is not setting the pace in the light-EMTB niche.

Munich-based companies TQ and Fazua have significantly shaped the market for lightweight electric mountain bikes and are currently the top picks in this sector. In our tests of bikes equipped with the TQ motor, we consistently notice how quiet and subtle its assistance is. Even though the Fazua Ride 60, integrated into the Focus Jam² SL, delivers a nominal 60 Newton meters of torque, its support feels much more pronounced.

The modulation of power is well-managed by the Munich powerhouse. Neither jerky starts nor excessive after-drive are an issue with the Fazua Ride 60. When switching from the gentle Breeze or River support levels to the Rocket mode (the highest sustained assistance level), there’s a hefty amount of power on the drivetrain.
With its sporty handling and significant power for a light motor, the Fazua Ride 60 positions itself between worlds. It offers more support than TQ’s HPR 50 but doesn’t deliver the relentless punch of Bosch’s CX motors. At least not continuously.

Fazua Remote Fx
The ring switch for changing between ride modes or activating the boost feature sports a subtle design. However, the tactile feel and build quality could be improved for use on an E-MTB.

Fazua's Boost Feature

Holding down the ring switch for a longer period activates the motor’s temporary Boost mode, delivering significantly more power than the Rocket assist for 12 seconds. This is particularly useful when faced with steep inclines.

This feature also proves to be a great asset on technical climbs. It allows you to build up momentum beforehand, so you can skip a pedal stroke or two within the section to avoid striking the crank on the ground. The Boost mode can also be engaged from a standstill and will unleash its power as soon as you start pedaling. This can be incredibly beneficial when starting on sharp ascents.

The ring switch doesn’t need to be continuously pressed for the Boost function to work – just a two-second hold is enough. However, the ring switch, which controls the whole system, doesn’t feel quite as high-quality as the rest of the Fazua system.

Operating the drive system is straightforward, but it’s a pity that the Munich-based motor manufacturer decided to cut corners on the control element, the interface between human and machine.

Strengths of the Fazua Ride 60 System

  • Weight: under 2 kilograms (lightweight)
  • Look: Tucked away in the bottom bracket area
  • Power Dwarf: delivers significantly more power than the TQ HPR 50
  • Boost Function: provides a short-term extra boost
  • Battery Size: 430 Watt-hours (17% more than TQ)

Weaknesses of the Fazua Ride 60 Motor

  • Trigger Shifter: feels low-quality
  • Volume: Quieter than Bosch's CX or Shimano's EP8, but louder than the TQ HPR50.
Focus Jam² SL Battery Removal
The battery on the Focus Jam² SL can be removed with a single move downwards from the downtube. Prerequisite: The cover must first be unlocked with a quarter turn of a 6mm Allen bolt.
Fazua Ride 60 Display
The Fazua Ride 60 motor comes stock without a display. The LED lights in the top tube provide information on the current battery level and the assistance mode. However, the motor can also be paired with GPS bike computers to display the remaining range or the exact level of assistance.
Fazua 430 Wh Battery
The battery in the Focus Jam² SL is supplied by Fazua and boasts a generous capacity of 430 watt-hours for light-eMTB standards. It must be removed from the frame to charge.

No external charging port, no onboard computer

On the Focus Jam² SL, there are two things you’ll have to forego. The external charging port has been sacrificed for the sake of weight reduction. To recharge the 430-watt-hour battery, it must be removed from the downtube. This is incredibly straightforward and can be done with just two quick moves.

Simply use a mini-tool to turn the cap’s screw 90 degrees and then draw the battery from its mount with a single motion. And just like that, you have the 430-watt-hour power pack in hand, ready to be charged at any standard outlet.

The second item not included standard is an onboard computer to display speed or assistance levels. Information regarding battery level and selected support mode is conveyed through the number and color of LEDs on the top tube. For those seeking more data, the Fazua system can be linked with modern GPS cycle computers, providing all the details on an external device. We think:

A smart move, as this avoids multiple displays vying for the rider’s attention at the handlebars. Plus, it keeps the cockpit tidy and reduces the cable clutter by one.

Focus Jam² SL Hits the Trail
On forested singletrack, the Focus Jam² SL really comes into its own.

The Focus Jam² SL is a thoughtfully designed trail bike, but it's no shuttle beast

Besides the motor, the all-important question naturally is: How does the Focus Jam² SL ride on singletrack? The answer: Unobtrusively, especially if you’re used to a traditional mountain bike without a motor. Of course, bio bikes with the same travel, like the YT Jeffsy, weigh around 4-5 kilograms lighter. But still, the handling on the trail is intuitive right from the get-go. It’s not just the low weight for an e-bike that plays a role here.

The geometry, too, does not blindly follow the current Longer-Slacker trend. Focus has nailed the geometry numbers with finesse. A head angle of 65.5 degrees is slack, yet doesn’t veer into extremes, maintaining the bike’s lively character. This is especially rare among e-bikes. Tight turns, small bunny-hops, or spontaneous manuals are no issue for those with the skills.

Fox E-MTB Suspension
With its 160 millimeters of front suspension travel and 150 millimeters of rear wheel travel, the Jam² SL can handle even the roughest rock gardens with ease.
Focus Jam² SL Trail Action
The bike's minimal weight ensures a thrilling ride even on flat trails. Here, the lightweight e-MTB plays its ace against the full-power versions.

The Fox suspension gobbles up bumps on the trail without any fuss. The fact that the shock lacks a piggyback reservoir is not noticeable on shorter descents of up to 200 vertical meters. It does exactly what you expect it to do in the rear. It smooths out impacts and still gives the suspension the necessary pop for catching air off trail features.

There’s no doughy sinking into the travel here. It’s only on longer, full-throttle descents that shocks with piggyback reservoirs play their ace, thanks to better heat management. This keeps their compression and rebound damping more consistent throughout the entire descent.

Magura MT5
Magura's MT5 brakes are among the most potent anchors on the market. Especially when paired with 200mm rotors, they provide incredibly precise modulation.
Fox Shocks without a Reservoir
The Fox Float shock is missing a piggyback reservoir, which is typically standard in this travel class. For short descents, this isn't much of an issue. However, during rapid riding on trails with 400 meters of elevation or more, the rebound damping suffers.

The Magura brakes deliver flawless stopping power when decelerating. For more aggressive riding, which the bike could easily handle, skilled riders would need to mount tires with extra puncture protection.

However, the Maxxis tire combo is perfect for touring. The relaxed seating position also complements the playful nature of this trail-touring bike well. And with 430 watt-hours in the battery, even longer rides are no obstacle when adopting an active, sporty riding style.

Focus Jam² SL Rear Suspension Tuning
By utilizing a second flip chip on the upper linkage, Focus ensures that the rear suspension kinematics remain consistently effective, regardless of the chainstay length setting.
Focus Jam² SL Chainstay Length
By adjusting the flip chip, you can tweak the chainstay length. This is especially beneficial for maintaining even load distribution across all frame sizes.

Many Adjustment Options on the Focus Jam2 SL

Tech-savvy riders will find that FOCUS offers plenty of options to adjust the geometry to their personal preferences. With the installed Acros headset, the head angle can be slackened by one degree using a mini-tool. The chainstays’ length can also be adjusted via two flip chips.

The two flip chip system has the advantage of allowing riders to adjust the chainstays independently, without affecting the suspension kinematics or other geometry dimensions. These adjustments are not something you would do every day. However, tweaking the chainstay length is excellent for growing the rear center length with the wheel size. This ensures that the load distribution between the front and rear wheels remains consistent across all frame sizes.

Focus Test Ride Center
Our test bike came from the E-Motion E-Bike World in Nuremberg, where through the Test Ride Center Program, everyone can rent specific FOCUS models.

Focus Test Ride Center: Everyone Can Demo the Focus Jam² SL

Our mission at emtb-test.com is to bring you the hottest e-mountain bikes on the market. But nothing beats a personal field test. Those who want to test ride can book a slot via the app at FOCUS’s Test Ride Centers. And by test ride, we don’t mean just a quick loop around the parking lot.

Extra-long demo rides can last up to two hours, allowing you to thoroughly test the bikes in real trails and terrain. This service is completely free of charge and currently available at nearly 20 dealers in German-speaking areas, with plans to expand further.

All the latest Focus Jam² SL models at a glance, including prices and availability:

The bike comes in four different build options starting at 6,199 euros. All models feature a full carbon frame. The flagship model is priced just under 12,000 euros and weighs under 18 kilograms. With this range, Focus covers everything from an affordable entry into the light E-MTB scene to the ultimate luxury product.

Unlike any other outlet, our innovative and absolutely objective testing system allows us to provide you with information on the complete model family. Here you can find the right Focus Jam² SL to suit your budget. General buying advice on Light EMTBs can be found here.

All Current FOCUS JAM² SL Models at a Glance

Verdict on the Focus Jam² SL

In the light e-MTB market, most manufacturers are drifting into absolutely elite pricing territories. FOCUS remains grounded, and their engineers and product managers clearly know their game.

They’ve strategically shaved weight off the right areas to strike a unique harmony of 160 mm travel, a sub-20 kg weight, and an attractive price point. The Focus Jam² SL stands out as a solid touring bike for the athletic and, above all, trail-enthusiast riders.

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.

Recommended for you

The Focus Jam² SL review

The light EMTB segment is trendy, but also very elitist. If you want an e-mountain bike...

The emtb-test.com team

We are a young start-up company with a clearly formulated mission: We want to help all...

Rose Bonero Plus Review

The new Rose Bonero refuses to be pigeonholed as an entry-level E-MTB hardtail. Who is ...

Specialized Turbo Levo SL S-Works Review

Specialized carves a niche between muscle-powered bikes and e-bikes. The result is heav...