Perhaps the most frustrating part of riding any pedal assist mountain bike is how much adjustment is required to ride like you would with a normal bike. Focus aims to change that, and to do so they’ve done two things: upgraded their FOLD suspension system and focused on keeping weight as low and minimal as possible.
FOLD suspension isn’t a new thing to Focus; instead, it has been revised for e-bike use. FOLD (FOCUS Optimized Linkage Design) is a multi-linkage suspension design that incorporates a regressive and progressive suspension kinematic. The entire rear triangle is one piece, and rigid, with no suspension affecting flex or pivots to add weight. Lower mass to move makes your suspension more sensitive to smaller bumps, but the progressive suspension part prevents the suspension from bottoming out. Throw in the additional weight of the motor, and traction is very high.
An oft-cited downside to pedal-assist bikes tends to be weight, and how much of it there is. As such, Focus worked on cutting weight with a smaller battery. Called TEC (Tailored Energy Concept), a 380Wh battery (compared to the typical 500Wh) is housed inside the down tube, and paired with a Shimano STEPS drive system. This not only looks neat, but lowers weight; because the battery is smaller, the down tube is can be smaller without sacrificing stiffness. The result is a bike that weighs on average of six pounds less than most of the competition. For bigger rides, Focus has developed an additional battery that slots atop the downtube. This boosts total battery life twice as much to 756Wh, at just an additional five pounds
The Focus Jam2 is offered in two wheel sizes (27.5”+ & 29”) with 140mm travel front and rear, while the Focus Sam2 is offered in just one model with 27.5” wheels and 170mm travel. Both have set out to redefine the pedal-assist mountain bike and it’s performance capabilities. With this level of integration and tech, they’re no doubt some of the best e-mountain bikes on the market.