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There are E-MTBs that are reminiscent of conventional bikes, and then there is the NICOLAI ION-G16 EBOXX, which is, quite frankly, more akin to a high-tech stealth bomber. Wholly distinctive, it’s built around radical GeoMetron geometry that’s super-long and slack, allowing you ample space to throw yourself around on the bike. The result of the long reach, slack head angle, and long chainstays is never-before-experienced levels of confidence. The EBOXX shines on gnarly terrain, and it’s capable of crushing down everything. However, before you write off the EBOXX as just for adrenaline junkies, realize that this same long geometry has such stability that it lends itself superbly to newbies as well. A bike for growing into and learning with, if you like. What’s more, this bike demonstrates fine manufacturing and proudly bears its Made in Germany seal. Complexly engineered, the magnesium downtube lends the bike an unusual silhouette, and those welds will make any engineering aficionado froth at the mouth.

Weight: 24.85 kg | Price: € 6,499

About the Award

The Design & Innovation Award is both a seal of approval and the benchmark achievement for the bike industry’s highest-performing products. The Design & Innovation Award is more than just a title-giver or a round of applause for brands. It’s the definitive award that decisively tests products in the real world, assessing them in their entirety and reaching considered verdicts. This year once again saw select international journalists, professional test riders, and industry experts invest more than 6,000 hours of their time to partake in the DI.A process.