(Pocket-lint) – Ebikes span a wide range of pricepoints, but it’s fair to say that many people still see them as luxury goods, despite the widespread availability of affordable options. Still, there are some very pricey, very high-quality bikes out there, too.
One such bike is the Canyon Commuter:On 7, which comes in at £3,199 – but can it justify that lofty price tag?
The Commuter:On 7 is a seriously great ebike, albeit one with a chunky price tag attached – it’s got solid range but more importantly it rides like a dream, and has three great assistance levels to choose from.
There are no unnecessary bells and whistles here, meaning you don’t have to mess around with a mediocre app or anything, instead keeping things nice and simple. A removable battery is a cherry on top, making this practical even for those living in flats up some stairs.
Canyon Commuter:On 7
4.5 stars – Pocket-lint recommended
- Sleek frame
- Lightweight for an ebike
- Great assist options
- Simple to operate
- Removeable battery
- Getting the battery in and out is clunky
- Weighs 17.60 kg
- Available in dark blue or beige
- Built-in lights
Canyon’s done a great job with the Commuter:On 7 from a design point of view – this is a sleek-looking bike, nice and understated but with a clean look that should stand the test of time. Our model was theoretically blue, although it looks grey in most lighting.
The bike has some subtle logos on it, but nothing shouty, and the black removable battery contrasts a little with the rest of the frame. This would be more eye-catching on the beige version, but we like how it looks here.
The bike also doesn’t scream about its electrification – the motor is all housed around the pedals themselves, which means neither wheel is sporting an obvious motor, something that can sometimes be a magnet to bike thieves.
At 17.60 kg this isn’t the lightest ebike we’ve ever tested, but it’s still just about light enough to carry up a flight of stairs without breaking your back. However, that removable battery means you hopefully shouldn’t have to.
You have to unlock this using a keyhole in the frame before levering it out using a small latch, and it’s honestly a bit of a hassle, with the front wheel getting in the way and a surprisingly stiff mechanism. It’s more than worth it to be able to charge it more easily, but we’ve tested many easier systems.
There are lights on the front and rear of the bike that are both powered by the battery for peace of mind, and the electrification is turned on and off, or changed, by using a small button under the bike’s crossbar. This is another odd note – it works fine and is easy to use, but not when you’re riding. That might be deliberate, but if you want to change assist levels during a ride you basically have to stop or you risk overbalancing.
Overall, though, this is a really nice-looking bike that doesn’t draw the eye too much, letting you concentrate on what it’s like to actually ride it.
Assistance and ride
- Three assist levels
- Assistance up to 25km/h
- On/off button located under the crossbar
That’s another area where Canyon has hit the nail on the head – riding the Commuter:On 7 is a real pleasure, in a variety of settings and contexts.
You power the bike on by holding down the button mentioned above, and then you get a stack of LED lights to tell you its battery level. These are colour coded according to what assist level you’re on out of three.
Green is the lightest, blue is medium, and purple-red is the highest level of assistance, with a really noticeable difference between each of the three.
The bike has excellent traditional Shimano gears for fine control, but it’s the assistance that’s really key, and we loved all three levels. Green gave us a gentle push but really still felt like light exercise, described as a “tailwind” by the drivetrain maker, Fazua.
Blue, meanwhile, is a lot punchier and was our default mode, with a nice kick as we started pedalling and enough help to get us up to 25 km/h really quite quickly. Finally, the highest level was a blast, zippy and almost like riding a throttle-controlled bike at times.
In truth, it was sometimes a little too responsive, hence our sticking to the middle ground most of the time, but if we were at a crowded junction and wanted to kick off nice and quickly for some breathing room away from buses, it’s great to have such a powerful option.
The fact that you can’t easily swap between them on the move is a little bit of a bummer, but hardly a deal-breaker since you can easily see the point of the button’s location from a safety perspective.
Part of what explains the high cost of the Commuter:On 7 is the motor system it uses, which is housed in the pedal unit as previously mentioned – this means that the bike is nicely balanced for where you’re riding, without a heavy front or rear wheel.
It also means that the assistance picks up in a way that doesn’t mess with your head at all, and is something that costs more to implement. It’s worked nicely here, making for a really smooth ride that will have you zipping past those cycling manually with just a hint of smugness.
Features and range
- 120km range in the lowest assist mode
- Removable battery with charger
The Commuter:On 7 has a very respectable battery life (or range, depending on how you look at) – 120km of riding on the lowest assist setting, and lower distances if you step up to higher assists.
This will obviously be more than enough for almost any one-off ride you might need, but it does mean that depending on how often you use it you could find yourself wanting to charge up pretty regularly.
While it might be a little clunky to do so, being able to remove the battery is key in this regard and makes things more than easy. It’s a really heavy cylinder once it’s out of the bike, mind you, but still miles easier to cart around to a power source than the bike itself.
There are no smart features here – the bike doesn’t have a connected app or any GPS features, leaving it to you to use your phone or a bike computer if that’s what you’re looking for. Honestly, we prefer it this way, since bike software can be unreliable, and we’d rather trust some heavy D-locks over anti-theft systems regardless.
That means once you’ve managed to turn the bike on there’s nothing else to it, really, letting you get on with whatever rides you’ve got planned.
This is an excellent ebike from Canyon, with assist levels to suit all riders and all moods, and is a great pairing with city cycling. It’s relatively light, but a removeable battery makes charging easy, and commuting is something we could very easily see ourselves loving if we had one to keep.
Writing by Max Freeman-Mills. Editing by Verity Burns.