Trek Verve+ Review (Updated 2020)

May 9, 2020

Trek Verve+ Review
Our Rating - 4.3/5
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 The Trek Verve+ is a hybrid electric bike that will boost your need for outdoor adventures! It is designed for commuting comfort, recreational cruises, and daily outings. It furthermore offers a slew of rider-friendly features. The best part of it all is that it is a very competitively priced electric bike!

Trek Verve - In-Depth Review

There are numerous electric bike models in the market to provide enthusiasts with a great introduction to the e-biking world. Trek is one of the biggest brands in the business with a wide range of high-performance electric bikes. 

The Verve+ is a recent release by the company that raised eyebrows with its affordable price, especially when compared to its predecessors!

For buyers, it doesn’t get better than acquiring a price-friendly bike from a big-name brand like Trek. But just what do you stand to get from the Verve+? In this post, we review the features on the Trek Verve+ to determine whether it is a hit or miss! 


Key Specs

Weight

51.5 lbs

Frame 

Alpha Gold Aluminum Alloy, Verve Solid Steel Fork

Tire Size

700x45c (45-622)

Motor

250W Bosch Active Line Cruise

Battery

400Wh Bosch PowerPack 400, Lithium-Ion

Range

20-100 miles/32-160 kilometers

Max Speed

20 miles per hour

Brakes

Shimano MT200 Hydraulic Disc With 160mm Rotors

Frame

Trek is one of those brands that designs sophisticated frames, guaranteed to be lightweight and durable. The Verve+ doesn’t fail with its Alpha Gold Aluminum frame, which will give you no trouble when you have to lift it. The strength of the frame is reinforced by a solid steel fork that features vibration dampening qualities.

There are three different frame sizes to choose from, starting from medium to extra large with a high-step or step-through design. The bike boasts a suspension seat post with around 30mm of travel that works wonders when it comes to rider comfort. The adjustable coil suspension allows you to tighten it up little if you’re a big rider.

I also like the slightly larger diameter of the seat, which improves the sturdiness when you're riding. You get a fully loaded frame with great accessories, including a rear rack, integrated lights, fenders, etc. which makes for an excellent commuter e-bike for city use.

My first ride on the Verve+ felt comfortable and relaxing! The suspension seat post absorbs shock on bumpy roads, and the solid steel fork greatly reduces vibrations. The ergonomic handlebar grips keep you in control of the ride, and you get to choose from three exciting frame color options. 

The only concern I have is that the steel frame, although sturdy, is prone to get scratched and eventually rust. So, if you happen to damage the fork, be sure to fix things up with touch-up paint before it's too late.

Engine

Just like any other decent commuter-bike, Trek decided to go with a mid-drive electric motor on the Verve+. The company has always used Bosh motors in its e-bikes. Keeping costs in mind, they opted for the entry-level Bosch Active Line, allowing clients to afford a bike with a Bosch motor.

The Verve+ is powered by a 250W Bosch Active Line motor that is still more powerful that a good percentage of all hub motors. 

Bosch Active Line engine at the black background

When it comes to power, the motor can only deliver 40Nm torque and reach top speeds of 20mph. The relatively low torque means you don’t get much power on steep hills, and you might have to labor with pedaling to complete the climb.

The Bosch Active Line motor is backed by a PowerPack 400 battery and controlled using a Purion controller. This combination works great on the Verve+ . It is designed for riders who don’t mind getting active without much assistance from the motor. The motor is also quite stealthy and will provide you with a decent range on Eco mode.

The Purion controller also features a Walk-Assist mode that enables you to push your way out of bike cellars and steep parking garages. However, I noticed that this feature did not work on my bike, not sure if the manufacturer disabled it!

Bosch PowerPack battery on the blue bike

Battery

The Verve+ is equipped with a 400Wh Bosch PowerPack Lithium-ion battery that will suffice for short commutes and level terrain rides. 

I would've wished that Trek used a 500Wh battery so that you didn’t have to worry about range, but then I guess affordability comes with a cost.

On my test ride, the battery could only manage a range of 40 miles while riding on Eco mode. But considering that I am a heavy rider, you might be able to squeeze a little more than the 40 miles if you are on the lighter side and riding on relatively flat ground. 

Luckily, the battery recharges fast! It is almost 50% full after 1.5 hours of charging and at maximum capacity after around 3.5 hours. Therefore, you won’t have to wait too long before you continue with your ride. Alternatively, you can always carry a spare battery if you don’t want your ride to be interrupted. 

Brakes

The Shimano MT200 hydraulic disc brakes on the Verve+ offer reliable all-weather braking power. 

They conveniently allow you to ride confidently in any kind of weather and will stop the bike on a dime even on wet surfaces.

These hydraulic disc brakes are also user-friendly as they need little pressure on the brake levers to engage, giving you all the confidence required. The adjustable levers are also handy for users with smaller hands. 

Brakes on the Trek Verve

Rims

The Bontrager double-wall wheels on the Verve+ provide good traction on the road and the alloy material is strong enough to deliver durable performance on the road. The wheels pair great with the H5 tires for a comfortable and confident ride in all kinds of weather.

black tires of the Verve+

Tires

The Bontrager H5s on the Verve+ come with a hybrid tread pattern that’s smooth in the middle and more grippy on the edges for improved traction and stability when negotiating corners. A Hardcase Ultimate puncture protective layer on the tires ensures that you won’t have to experience flat tires during your commutes.

I should also note that the firm and wide tires tend to remain hard even when the pressure is low!


What Do We Like About Trek Verve+?

One of my favorite aspects of the Verve+ is the inclusion of numerous accessories that make the bike perfect for an everyday commute. Included are front and rear lights to help you ride in the dark, fenders for when the weather gets wet, and even a rear rack if you have groceries to carry. It is just perfect for the ordinary city dweller!

The bike has a comfortable geometry with ergonomic grips and an adjustable suspension seat post that serves to absorb shock on bumpy rides. The solid steel fork also reduces vibrations and this ensures that you enjoy a comfortable ride with no fatigue after the session.

The Shimano hydraulic disc brakes provide you with tremendous braking power in all kinds of weather conditions. This braking power ensures that you can confidently ride on wet surfaces, as well as descend steep hills without worry. The two-finger brake levers are also easy to operate, even for riders with small hands. 

The Bontrager H5 tires provide you with the perfect protection against flat tires on the trail. This is thanks to the Hardcase Ultimate puncture protection feature, which complements the hybrid tread pattern that offers a smooth, efficient and stable handling of the bike.

The mid-drive placement of the motor provides a significant weight balance for better control and handling of the bike. The Bosch Active Line may not be the most powerful out there, but it offers decent power that will see you scale short climbs with relative ease. 

The slanting high-step and step-through design of the frames make it easy to get on and off the bike. This makes them suitable for shorter individuals, plus you also get to choose from three exciting frame colors!

Back of the Trek Verve+ on the black background

I especially like the pricing of the Verve+, which considers the budget e-bike buyer. The fact that you’re getting it from a big-name brand like Trek means there are very few manufacturers that can match the kind of service you can expect from Trek. Ultimately, the Verve+ offers a great bang for your buck!

PROS

  • Powerful disc brakes
  • Mid-drive motor and great geometry
  • Suspension seat post and puncture-resistant tires     
  • Lightweight aluminum frame
  • Affordable price

What Don’t We Like About Trek Verve+?

The Bosch Active Line motor is not the most powerful and will see you laboring to scale long and steep hills. The bike is, therefore, not ideal for long rides on treacherous terrains.

The steel fork used on the Verve+ is susceptible to rust when scratched, which may end up compromising the integrity of the frame. As such, you should always watch out for possible damage on the fork and make the necessary repairs.

Cons

  • Shorter range
  • Not very powerful motor
  • Steel fork can easily rust


Trek Verve E-bike Series

The Trek Verve series consists of two models, the Verve 2 and Verve 3, which comes with a couple of differences. For instance, the Verve 3 features a Removable Integrated Battery with 500Wh, 50Nm motor torque, and runs on 700 by 50c Bontrager E6 tires. On the other hand, the Verve 2 uses an exposed 400Wh battery, 40Nm torque, and runs on 700 by 45c Bontrager H5 tires.


Advice to Buyers

The Verve+ is the cheapest electric bike produced by Trek. Despite this, it offers high-quality specs that are found on its higher-priced siblings, including the Bosch Line accessories. If you’re looking to buy an affordable bike from a reputable brand, the Trek Verve+ is one of the most obvious choices out there.

It will cost you just under $2500 and the performance you get, as well as the service from the manufacturer, is worth your money!


Conclusion

The Trek Verve+ is a wonderful and versatile hybrid bike that offers comfort and multiple high-quality features. It is a excellent choice for a range of recreational riders, from everyday city commuters and first-time e-bike riders to weekend cruisers and senior citizens looking to get back on a bike.

The bike boasts a comfortable geometry, descent motor and battery power, reliable braking system, as well as a formidable set of tires. If you are a fan of leisurely rides every once in a while, the Trek Verve+ is an exciting hybrid electric bike that will get you out riding more often!

About the author

Emma was born and raised in the UK, studied in Amsterdam (where she discovered her passion for biking), and is currently living in Ohio. Her main passion is cycling, that's why she is always looking for an amazing new e-bike to make her journey even more unforgettable!