It’s possible you’ve heard of Diamondback Bicycles before and even seen one around the neighborhood. Heck, they’ve been around since 1977, initially hitting the market with BMX bikes. As time progressed, this team continued to focus on cycling components and bicycle design, eventually putting out machines that have won countless competitions worldwide.
Growing up, I remember this brand as one of those that offered a good bang-for-buck tradeoff. Time to see if they’re able to hold true to the ideologies that have kept them alive all these years.
One modern bike we can take into consideration when trying to figure out if Diamondback is the brand for you, is the Response, an urban or city-going e-bike with capabilities that seem to propel this under-the-radar cycling team alongside teams the likes of Giant, Scott, and Trek.
How does this happen? By Diamondback decking out the Response with top-shelf gear. Sure, this bike is shaped by hydroformed aluminum tubes, but the main attraction is Bosch, with its coverage of electrical components.
Under the down tube and integrated into the frame sits a Bosch PowerTube 500. How far will this battery carry you under the right conditions? Bosch states that you can even get a range of 70 mi (112.6 km).However, Diamondback states that the max range you’ll cover is up to 65 mi (104.6 km). Once drained, it’ll take a few hours to recharge, but you can be ready with another battery pack and double your range.
Part two of any electric drivetrain is the motor. Mounted center, Bosch strikes again with a Performance Line Speed that has a max torque output of 85 Nm (62.7 ft-lb) of torque and an assist up to 28 mph (45 mph). Think this may be a light setup? Don’t, as some e-MTB manufacturers use this same setup on bikes well into the $5,000 range.
Since I’m on the subject of cash, to own one of these puppies, you’ll need to dish out $4,100 (€3,454 at current exchange rates). While some people may find this as a rather high price for an aluminum bike, considering some carbon bikes are now found at around $2K, the remaining components do seem to balance out the books.
At the front of the Response, you’ll see a RockShox Judy Gold with 120 mm (4.72 in) of travel holding on to a 27.5-inch, tubeless-ready rims with Schwalbe Super Moto-X 2.8-inch-wide tires. For braking, Magura Fifty4 brakes with four pistons and 203 mm (8 in) front rotor and 180 mm (7.1 in) rear rotor should be able your forward momentum.
For the rest of the drivetrain, Shimano Deore M6000 shifter control a Deore derailleur with Shadow Plus and threaded by a KMC e-bike specific chain. All that’s that set up on a ten-speed Shimano HG500 11-42 T cassette. The single sprocket at the front is an FSA Forged Spider with 42 T and a chainguard.
While it would seem that the bicycle industry may not have much to do with cars, a number of autoevolution readers do happen to comment on articles we feature about bikes, and one recurring comment is that a 1X drivetrain won’t offer you the same downhill speeds you may sometimes want. But then again, this isn’t a downhill demon meant to handle off-road descents as if it were tuned to be an MTB. But the Response does look like it might handle a single-track quite well, depending on the difficulty.
Now, the Response seems to be just that, Diamondback’s response to a modern and shifting bicycle industry. And while it may not be the sort of bike to bomb down hills with, it is a vehicle to consider for your next e-bike purchase.