Moustache may not be a name you’re especially familiar with. The brand hails from France, makes exclusively ebikes and has overhauled its trail bike range for 2020. Can they upset the established order?
Moustache Samedi 27 Trail 8 frame
There’s no fancy carbon fibre here, but Moustache has neatly integrated the Bosch Performance Line CX motor and 625Wh PowerTube battery into the 6061 aluminium frame.
The four-bar Horst link suspension platform delivers 150mm of travel, which should be enough to handle most, if not all, trail-riding duties.
With a 66.9-degree head angle and 456mm reach on the large size, the Samedi Trail’s geometry numbers are more conservative than aggressive, compared to the latest non-motorised trail bikes.
However, they’re on-trend with competition such as the Canyon Neuron:ON or Merida eOne-Forty, and in line with Moustache’s ethos that the climbs should be enjoyed as much as the descents.
The 460mm chainstays are another indicator of this, helping to keep more weight on the front wheel on uphill sections.
It’s a shame the 200mm front rotor isn’t matched at the rear, but you do get four-pot calipers for extra power. Steve Behr / Immediate Media
While the bike comes with 650b wheels, a flip-chip lets you fit 29in wheels should you prefer, and it has a 29er-compatible fork too.
Internal routing minimises clutter, although the unsealed openings where the cables exit the down tube are an easy place for water and mud to penetrate the frame. This doesn’t affect the sealed motor, and any liquid drains out of the bash guard, but it’d be wise to not let too much muck build up in there.
Moustache Samedi 27 Trail 8 kit
The first thing to highlight here is that Moustache hasn’t relied on one of the big manufacturers to provide the Samedi’s shock. Instead, it’s developed its own Magic Grip Control damper, which is custom-tuned for the bike and has a two-position pedalling platform. It’s gone to Fox for the fork though – a 34 Float Factory model built for ebike use.
Moustache uses in-house products elsewhere too, providing both the 35mm-wide aluminium wheels and the dropper post, with travel ranging from 100mm on the small frame to 170mm on the extra-large.
It also includes its own saddle, 760 x 12mm carbon bar and relatively long 60mm alloy stem.
The Samedi Trail pairs 12-speed Shimano XT/SLX gearing with ebike-specific e*thirteen cranks. Steve Behr / Immediate Media
A Shimano XT 12-speed rear mech heads up the drivetrain, mixed with an SLX shifter and cassette, KMC chain and e.thirteen e*spec Plus cranks.
The brakes are also XT, with four-pot calipers and a 200mm front and 180mm rear rotor for when you need to drop the anchors.
Moustache has prioritised range over gram-counting with the large battery and powerful Bosch motor, which has 75Nm of torque.
Moustache Samedi 27 Trail 8 first ride impressions
Don’t be fooled into thinking that the mellowish, trail-friendly geometry of the Samedi can’t provide a ton of fun. If you aren’t seeking out the rowdiest descents or burliest terrain, it’s an engaging ride.
The bike’s definite highlight is its highly proficient climbing ability. Thanks in part to the longish 460mm chainstays, you can winch your way up surprisingly steep and technical terrain with ease – even for an ebike.
I was pleasantly surprised by the performance of the custom shock. Steve Behr / Immediate Media
I had to really challenge it riding up some steep, loose downhill tracks to find the limits, and rider skill let me down before the bike did. Trail centre climbs are an absolute blast on the Samedi, which encourages you to turn them into flow trails of their own.
The comfortable seated position lets you tick off the kilometres easily, which is clearly what Moustache has designed this bike for. While the ‘ebike optimised’, 150mm-travel Fox 34 fork is more than enough for trail riding, its FIT4 damper and 34mm-stanchion chassis start to become overwhelmed when pushed hard on the descents, as do the low-profile Maxxis Rekon rear tyre and the 180mm back brake rotor, which has the extra weight of an ebike to bring to a halt.
But that’s kind of besides the point of this bike. The 650b wheels keep the Samedi fairly agile, even with its 22kg+ weight. That heft provides stability, which helps ensure it’s no slouch on flowing descents.
So, how about that custom shock then? I was pleasantly surprised by its performance. In fact, in a blind test, I couldn’t have told you that it wasn’t a top-end shock from a big player.
It was supple enough off the top to provide plenty of traction and comfort, but still sufficiently supportive to keep the bike composed and trouble-free over bigger hits and through high-load turns.
Moustache Samedi 27 Trail 8 early verdict
If you’re after a mile-munching, engaging ride and don’t intend to blast the gnarliest descents, the Samedi’s climbing prowess is tough to beat.
Moustache Samedi 27 Trail 8 geometry
Sizes (* tested): S, M, L*, XL
Seat angle: 75.4 degrees
Head angle: 66.9 degrees
Chainstay: 46cm / 18.11in
Seat tube: 46cm / 18.11in
Top tube: 62.5cm / 24.61in
Head tube: 13cm / 5.12in
Wheelbase: 1,236mm / 48.66in
Stack: 62.5cm / 24.61in
Reach: 45.6cm / 17.95in