Buying the Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ was a multipurpose venture for me. I care about the environment, my health, and economy.
This bike is very expensive for most people buying a bike, and in the E-bike world it is the middle to upper end. There are things I really like, features that should be on the EQ model, and what to look for in the bicycle shop where you purchase it.
Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ heralded as one of the best E-bikes on the market today by multiple reviews. Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ features are congruent with the price, and after 320 miles of commuting, I can agree this is one sweet machine. It does not disappoint and is a joy to ride once it is fit to the rider. I made several modifications to mine to achieve comfort and stability over the stock setup.
The ride quality is everything one would expect from an established manufacturer like Specialized. The power from the motor is delivered so smoothly it is difficult to know if there is assistance, but when you turn it down or off, it is easy to realize just how much it does. Two times you Turbo mode is amazing, and I am not sure why you would want more. I still wanted a workout, so the 2 times me seemed to be enough, and it is.
Mission Control is an App that connects directly to the Turbo Vado, allowing a wide variety of functions. It provides ride tracking, bike tuning, diagnostics, ride history, and account/other settings. I highly recommend using this app for the tuning capability alone.
The EQ package is great if you are going to commute on this bicycle. It has fenders, a rack, lighting, and a TCD Display included. The fenders are fitted with flaps that extend well below where most stop, and they work great at keeping the water off of the rider. The rack is substantial and integrated with the fenders. Lighting is good, as I ride a lot of dark road on the way to work, and this unit lights the road up just fine. The TCD is a nice unit, but I wish it had a cadence counter built in with the bike.
I really hate to say this but don’t put too much faith in the bike shop you buy from, as they are usually staffed by folks that are lacking knowledge. I build most of the bikes I ride and have become very meticulous about set up, and strictly following torque specifications. Even though I was told I couldn’t have the bicycle shipped to me because it had to be professionally set up, I found that sadly lacking when I picked it up. I didn’t really care because I fine tune every bike I have, but if I had been a novice, they didn’t even do a cursory seat height adjustment. The guy who gave me instructions on the bike didn’t even know how the controls worked, and he owned one. Once I started personalizing the adjustments, I found many fasteners throughout the bike either too tight or loose, and the spring wasn’t even installed in the shock. When I drop 5k on something, I expect there to be more to it that taking my money.
That said, I am sure there are some shops with superb set up knowledge and application. My experience is they all talk a great game, but do not practice what they preach. It is important for you as the customer to know what size bike is going to fit, and what adjustments are important for the best riding experience.
This really is a five-star bicycle for a commuter. It makes average speeds of 20mph and above easily attainable for an avid cyclist and will get you to work without drenching you in sweat. Handling is precise with good shock absorption from the Future Shock. Throw some panniers on the rack and save the world one ride at a time. Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ is definitely not for everyone, but if you have the budget and the legs to power it, this is a great choice.