Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ Review – $3.5k Best Electric Bikes of 2020

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ Review – $3.5k Best Electric Bikes of 2020

https://electricbikereview.com/specialized/turbo-vado-sl-4-0-eq/ The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ is one of the best ebikes I’ve ever reviewed. Relatively light weight at 36.9lbs including integrated lights, a rear rack, and custom designed tubular fenders with extra long rubberized flaps to keep your feet dry. Reasonably priced for outstanding motor and battery technology. Class 3 speed-pedelec performance offers 28mph (45km/h) assisted speeds for fun, respect from automobiles, and overall faster commutes. Boost hub spacing provides sturdier spoke bracing angle, 12mm thru-axles provide stiffness and control at speed, excellent weight distribution (low, centered, balanced front to rear). Decent hydraulic disc brakes from Tektro with sturdy 160mm rotors. Practical Shimano drivetrain with 10-gears, wide 11-42 tooth cassette, stiff derailleur, and versatile shifter mechanism. Internal battery offers modest capacity but weighs under 4lbs and provides impressive range. Additional Range Extender bottle-shaped batteries are easy to use, quiet, and beautiful. The bike is satisfying to pedal, even without assist from the motor. Reflective stickers and accents on the fenders, frame, and tires help keep you safe. Two color options, comfortable saddle and grips, useful smartphone app and wireless heart rate monitor integration. Only available in a high-step frame at the moment, no step-thru. The range Extender 160wh battery pack costs extra and the primary battery is on the small side. Since the primary battery is not easily removable, you may need to store the entire bike inside, away from extreme heat or cold, and near a charging port. Kickstand pokes into soft terrain, no USB charging ports, limited readouts on the TCU display and the TCD costs extra, no suspension elements on the 4.0 version of this bike and the all-aluminum frame could be jarring at high speed with high tire pressure.

Readers Comments (50)

  1. Great video thank you. would you consider reviewing the Canyon Precede On?

  2. what is the computer you use on this video? did you add it ? curious as may purchase this soon but would like a computer for speed and simple stuff

  3. Just got my 4.0 turbo vado sl this week ! It is nice , fun and pretty fast ! At 58 years old I can get it up to 30 mph no problem

  4. Robert Underwood March 27, 2021 @ 10:47 pm

    I did a test run this afternoon. Loved it. I currently own a flyer emb which I love. But some days I just wanna fly. I did just that with this.

  5. how much worth is EQ version? if I buy without EQ version then add mudguard and rear, front light, and also the rear rack will it be okay? or do they add something more important accessories?

  6. Watch out for the seat post locking mechanism. Ive heard that if you remove the seat post the locking mechanism tends to fall into the seat tube and can get stuck above the motor.

  7. I took delivery of one of these a month ago. Great bike, though here in Europe it鈥檚 limited to 25km/h. Took it a little off road here at the weekend and it was a hoot flying up the hills! Would be great with som knobbley tires on for dirt tracks 馃檪

  8. Thanks for the reviews. I saw the Trek Allant one also. Are there any reasons to chose one bike over the other?

  9. ElectricBikeReview.com March 27, 2021 @ 10:54 pm

    Specialized SL 1.1 motor overview and stats at 1:10
    Internal battery and range extender 6:49, charger 15:47
    Integrated lights and reflective accents demo at 12:16
    Mission control app 13:47, Optional LCD 15:05, Operation 21:02
    Ride test begins 23:25, Closeup shots 25:39, neighborhood 30:24

  10. Fantastic.

  11. A very enjoyable review. Thank you.

  12. Its difficult to find a comparison for these two great bikes, so thank you for a brilliant video that is about the bikes and not about your production skills! I was really after a bike that you can detach the battery to recharge for security reasons. I would love the SL with a detachable battery, that would be perfect! You watching Specialized, any ideas? Thanks Jericho

  13. When someone loves you, the way they talk about you is different. You feel safe and comfortable.

  14. It’s pronounced

    [聽pan-yer, -ee-er ]

    a similar type of bag, usually one of a pair, fastened over a bicycle’s rear wheel.https://www.dictionary.com/browse/pannier?s=t

  15. Nice place to ride. Where is that?

  16. We have two Comos 4.0 versions ( his and hers) and they are amazing…you can enjoy riding almost anywhere whilst laughing at hills….

  17. Here’s a list that helped me out.
    In the end, I went with #3.


  18. If this had a removable battery it would tick all the buy boxes. Living in CO the idea of garage storage and the potential of damaging the battery is so concerning.

  19. Jennifer Horsman March 27, 2021 @ 11:02 pm

    Great review and very informational. I have an off-topic question. What brand of sunglasses are those and are they prescription? I want a pair!

  20. Looking to buy a very lightweight electric bike in the US.

    Considering these options and open to any alternatives


    Any advice will be appreciated!

  21. I just tried this bike and I am very disappointed! The motor was extremely weak. Why even bother putting such a tiny motor in a bike? If it would have had a strong motor, 75Nm of torque at a minimum, I would have bought it in the sport today. It looks amazing, is very light for an Ebike and it is very comfortable to ride. But that motor though. Such a pity….

  22. I want to ask a question about range, not sure if anyone knows the answer. The Vado SL spec is the same in the US as it is in the U.K. the only difference is the speed is 28mph in the US but restricted to 15.5mph in the U.K. So my question is why is the range exactly the same if the speed is different?

  23. I don’t get some of the negative comments about this bike. It is 37 pounds and has some great features. The 2021 model without the fenders and rear rack is even lighter and costs $3600. To get a bike that is this light with a more powerful battery you are going to pay over $5000. Some of the other bike brands that people are throwing out there are way more expensive and weigh 10 to 25 pounds more or are limited to 20mph. I think that this is a great bike if you are not going to be riding in an area with a lot of steep hills. For me, this bike is great. I don’t care to lug a 55 pound bike around and I want to be able to keep up with friends riding road bikes.
    Add a carbon seatpost, carbon handlebars and pair of 32c tires and you can drop another 2 pounds off of it.

  24. Excellent review

  25. Jonathan Mellish March 27, 2021 @ 11:15 pm

    The motor drive sounds quite loud to me. Is this usual with e bikes ?

  26. Dutch Van Helsing March 27, 2021 @ 11:16 pm

    Weight of bike = 40 pound + two Kryptonite " fuggitabout it " D-locks at least 15 extra pounds and we are up to 60+. . The stress of worrying about bike theft here in Oxford is nil at the moment. The last new bike I bought in 2007 was stolen 2 days after so now I don’t have that worry with my current bike. I have made it look like shit in order for the Scumbags to find another bike to nick. I had a bike that was the shittiest thing you ever saw…..and that was stolen too. I have been here since 03 and I am on my 7th bike. . I really want an electric bike as I am down sizing. Sold my 2 cars and one of the 2 motorcycles I had. I really want one but the stress is too much due to theft….anyone have a bike to recommend ? ……….Cheers.

  27. Exactly what I鈥檓 looking for- unfortunately it鈥檚 hard to find for purchase in western Canada. Is it too new and hard for suppliers to keep in stock or not in stores yet? Edit- are websites no updated with this beauty on it? grrrr

  28. You do great reviews and I have seen quite a few. My only recommendation would be if you could somehow do an "executive summary" at the front of your reviews. For example, I wanted to know on this bike if there is a thumb throttle. Perhaps you could talk about several factors of what you think are key items in a bike; mid vs rear hub, speed, motor wattage, etc. Your technical knowledge is terrific but for many first time viewers, a little more general overview would be helpful.

  29. Great review, thank you! THIS is my next bike.

  30. Christoph Altmann March 27, 2021 @ 11:19 pm

    Nice review 馃憤

  31. Love you.

  32. That was a very good joke when you said you guys try to be independent………lolol……i have watched quite a few of your reviews and in most of them there are all kinds of things that are glaringly obvious crappy things that you guys should mention, yet you leave them out. You guys are almost like the shopping channel of ebike reviews.

  33. Kinda worthless to advertise a Bike in America that you have no hopes of getting until 2021 : Why Bother : Specialized won’t even give you a decent answer on when they will be available : Nor can you buy one from another state then where you live : Nice BiKe But Obviously Marketing dropped teh Ball on demand :

  34. Thanks for the good review. How does this bike compare to the cannondale quick neo SL , Also a fitness bike ?

  35. Mario Georgatsellos March 27, 2021 @ 11:24 pm

    I love your reviews thank you 馃檹

  36. What does the power feel like on this bike? As someone who has never had an ebike before I don’t really have a frame of reference. I know Specialized simplify it as "2x You" but is that powerful enough to take the bite out of a strong headwind? I’m wanting one as a commuter/trekking bike and I don’t know whether to go for the Vado SL that is nice and light and nimble or a Levo HT that has more power and a front shock but is considerably heavier and has chunky mtb tires.

  37. I purchased this bike this weekend. It is a well engineered bike. I have a relationship with biking since I was a kid and I am now in my early 60s. The last few years i have not ventured out on the road because of the amount of traffic (So I stayed on my Peloton to get my cycle exercise). With the assist I feel more at ease on the road. My wife want to start biking and she got the Specialized Como – as she felt this was more comfortable for her. The Vado assist is mostly transparent and gives just the right amount of power. The motor does whine a bit – but while I am noise sensitive the whine was not bothersome – in the review it seemed louder than in "real life." I was concerned that I would not get a sufficient workout with the assist but this is not true – the balance between pedaling and assist is perfect for me. The Vado is comfortable and quick even without the assist. The only negative is the not including the Turbo Connect Display – although the mount is installed on the bike and the option to allow the lights to flash. Note the rack is part of the snap it racktime system – https://www.racktime.com/en/racktime-products. Very thorough review.

  38. The fenders are lame. Bike 馃毑 is dope as F.

  39. In EU there is speed limit 25 km/h. Is it possible to unlock it?

  40. ROD鈥檚 Random Reviews #DUKE March 27, 2021 @ 11:29 pm

    Another take on it: https://youtu.be/qxI-d-g8agE

  41. no dropbar means no comfort 馃檨

  42. A midrive can leave you stranded a hub drive with nx 12sp is way better

  43. I just found a 5.0! Can’t wait to pick it up next week! Thanks as always for the detailed review.

  44. PC and the Hounds March 27, 2021 @ 11:36 pm

    Great review!

  45. No step through. Won’t work for most seniors. Too bad.

  46. Knowledgable, comprehensive review and reviewer. Plus a very well crafted video. As a fellow professional, can you tell me what camera and stabilizer you used? thanks.

  47. Clifford Holliday March 27, 2021 @ 11:40 pm

    I pick my 5.0 EQ Sl up this week :))

  48. The adventures of Taco March 27, 2021 @ 11:41 pm

    1500 watt ekit $400
    Battery $400

  49. I love my Specialized! My next bike will be a Specialized as well! Great company!

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