2022 Yamaha Wabash RT Gravel Bike Review

We take a ride on Yamaha Bicycles dual-sport like Wabash RT pedal-assist gravel bike. (Joseph Agustin/)

Introduced earlier in the year is Yamaha Bicycles’ new and improved 2022 Wabash RT gravel bike ($4,199). This is a dual sport–style pedal-assist 700c wheel equipped electric bike from the Tuning Fork brand. This bike is designed for riders who want a road bike that they can ride on pavement and off-highway, on light-duty trails.

Editor’s note: We operated Yamaha’s ebikes during the 2022 Yamaha CrossCore RC and Wabash RT Review article and video. We’ve also reported on these ebikes in the 2022 Yamaha Wabash RT Electric Bicycle First Look

It is powered by Yamaha’s proprietary PW generation electric motor. This motor is good for right around 59 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s more than gasoline-powered new motorcycles like Yamaha’s MT-07 and YZF-R7 duo.

The Wabash RT has the same series of modifications as its sister bike, the CrossCore RC (do-it-all, urban pedal-assist bicycle) which we tested during the 2022 Yamaha CrossCore RC MC Commute Review. This particular bike is endowed with a set of flared drop bars, oversize 700c Maxxis tires, and a handy dropper seat which also serves as a type of suspension. For example, say you traverse a big bump. The seat automatically gives a bit of suspension cushion.

For this test we operated a large (60cm) Wabash RT, which has added length in terms of its dropper post height versus size small (54cm) frames. For the majority of our test ride we rode in the Automatic power setting. This automatically adjusts the power level based on cadence, load, and terrain incline/decline. It removes the worry of being in the right power mode based on terrain or the environment you are operating in.

The neat thing about these Yamaha pedal-assist bicycles is that they are relatively affordable and easy to ride. You get to experience the thrill and excitement of cycling outdoors, but don’t have to be in top physical condition. You can still haul butt but without having to worry about your lungs exploding or leg muscles feeling like they are on fire. No doubt cycling purists could call you a weakling for operating this type of vehicle. Realistically, however, if you are a good cyclist, this bike will allow you to travel even farther.

In its lowest power setting, the RT has a range of right around 100 miles. The battery is charged via Yamaha’s proprietary charging adapter. It takes four hours to charge the battery from zero percent.

For this 2022 MY, Yamaha has fitted a larger 11-speed cassette (one speed up from the previous design). The awesome thing about this gravel bike is you can ride it in all sorts of terrain. The only caveat is you can’t really ride these things on super-gnarly terrain, because they don’t have the suspension travel nor the optimum wheel setup. But you can certainly ride off the beaten path and explore your neighborhood beyond where the pavement lies.

We certainly value the extra width and extra sidewall of these Maxxis tires. They’re almost like a trials motorcycle tire, which typically employs a gummy compound. The tread knobs are fine, like a fine-toothed comb. This affords surprising grip over loose, dry terrain. These shoes make precarious terrain more passable. We like how seamlessly it transitions on and off pavement.

In typical form, the Wabash RT employs more aggressive road-bike-style ergonomics. We like it because it keeps our back nice and straight, but still, it could be an unusual position for some. It also pedals nicely without a lot of mechanical drag through the cranks. Still, at 46.7 pounds (size large) it isn’t light. It isn’t nearly as heavy as the CrossCore RC, and it pedals well even with the power off in a straight line.

The Wabash RT has a top speed of 28 mph with pedal assist. Above that speed the vehicle operates like a traditional pedal bike. We recorded a 38 mph top speed. The hydraulic disc brakes do a marvelous job of shedding speed with pleasing lever feel.

If you couldn’t tell, we had a good time riding Yamaha Bicycles Wabash RT pedal-assist gravel bike. It’s the dual sport equivalent of a road bike. You can cover some serious mileage on or off-road, and see the sights and sounds of your town in a really fun way. It’s definitely a good addition to the garage for the avid powersport enthusiast.

2022 Yamaha Wabash RT Electric Bicycle Technical Specifications and Price

Price:$4,199Battery:Yamaha lithium-ion 500Wh, 36V, 13.4AhDrive Unit:Yamaha PWSeries ST 3-bolt mountShifter:Shimano GRX 11-speed RX600Rear Derailleur:Shimano GRX

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By: Adam Waheed
Title: 2022 Yamaha Wabash RT Gravel Bike Review
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Published Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2022 21:40:54 +0000


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