Last Spring Specialized introduced the Turbo, boasting that it was "too fast to be legal" in some markets, including the US, where federal regulations restrict moped speed. Now, Specialized is bringing the Turbo to North America with the same top speed of 27.9mph/44.9kph.
After much research, Specialized determined that the Turbo is an electric-assisted bicycle by federal law, although local regulations may restrict use of it on bike paths.
“For people who ride — maybe competitively, maybe aggressively, maybe recreationally — as part of their lifestyle, we think it will be a good opportunity to introduce them to cycle commuting,” Dan Quick, U.S. business specialist for Specialized, told Bicyle Retailer & Industry News. “And for people who already are cycle commuting, it may be a nice upgrade for them as well.”
The 50-pound (22.7kg) bike tucks the rechargeable battery and wires inside the frame, and front and rear thru-axles beef up stiffness.
A 28mph top assisted speed can be achieved for an hour on a charge
Using the rear-hub motor at full power, the Turbo can go for an hour on a charge. Simply pedaling along unassisted, of course, do not drain the battery. Also, braking recharges the battery. Recharging takes 2.5 hours, according to Specialized.
There are integrated front and rear LED lights, plus mounts for fenders and racks.
This 45kph boost doesn't come cheap, however. Suggested retail is $4,999.
A wireless console gives information on the assist level, battery level, speed, time and distance. A switch near the grip controls the motor.