Beaufort Monte Donne

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Suits you sir

The Beaufort Monte is very similar to many of the Dutch-style step through framed e-bikes on the market, but it stands out like a well suited gentleman at punk rock concert for one reason – and that is quality. If it’s not the well finished welding on the frame or the smooth paint, then it’s the attention to detail in the Velo® hand grips and comfort saddle. The swooping frame and clever adjustable handle bars are complemented by the blade-style front forks which give the Monte an air of elegance and sophistication; it wouldn’t look out of place parked next to a Maybech or Range Rover in London or at the front door of a stately home.

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Riding this bike is a wonderful place to be, sat aloft on this tall-wheeled bike. It’s not a small city nipper or a lightweight fold-up but a large well balanced pedelec with fantastic features. The mid-mounted 250w motor is near on silent and with the addition of the Max Drive system attached to a 36v 13Ah battery you’re never short of help if you request it (assistance levels range from 1 (a helpful nudge) up to five which whips you along 15.5mph). Gearing is via Shimano’s twist grip to their Nexus 7 speed internal hub gearing which never missed a beat, or felt clunky or stiff. The chain is encased making for a clean and mess free drive train. A colour-coded rear rack with pre-attached triple bungee strap (under which the battery is stored) is capable of carrying 25kg and an easy-to-understand digital interface tells you all you need to know (no fancy sat nav or heart rate gimmicks, just speed, distance and battery power). An automatic sensor registers the outside light and adjusts the displays brightness accordingly, nice. The brakes are no-nonsense; the front v-brake is easy to adjust and service with well-designed Tektro levers incorporating a grip panel for comfort and safety (no chance of your fingers slipping off even in wet conditions; and an internal drum-style rear brake. The LED rear light and brake light are built into the main battery (the brake light being activated by application of either the front or back brakes, great idea; a Spanninga Luceo front light makes sure you’re not only seen, but can see well at night. The tyres have a beed of reflective material on the sidewalls (something that’s being used more and more often in the cycling world to increase visibility to other road users).

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I’ve been putting in the miles on the Beaufort Monte Donne (not always wearing the ‘whistle and flute’ for my ‘Man at C&A’ photoshoot when it took place), as I wanted to be honest about the comfort and range, as the brochure states an impressive 40 to 85 miles (depending on use conditions). Now it’s not a huge morning commute to Morton Towers, but with a little detour and a return journey home for lunch each day I tried to run the battery flat. After the fourth day I wavered and put the battery on charge, as it was showing only a small amount of power left (now I’ll admit that I had the assist to the max for the first day as I was feeling particularly lazy and then dropped it down to two or three out of five for the rest). At what I’d call normal use, these totals aren’t far wrong; I’d err towards the lower end of the scale, but with such a clear digital display you’d have to be almost blind to not see when you need to plug the battery in.

Jonathan Schofield

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36v 13 Ah 468 Wh Smart BMS

Shimano Nexus 7 speed and Shimano grip shift

26.5 kg

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Cream – black – grey – pale blue

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