Table of Contents

Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 Review (2023)

Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3

Table of Contents

The Trek Powerfly range comes in many guises.


The large series of Powerfly bikes include hardtail commuters, which can go bike touring and also take on the dirt, along with the Powerfly Full Suspension rides, which are geared up for more aggressive riding.


The standard Trek Powerfly hardtails stand somewhere in between, and that includes the Trek Powerfly 5, which we’re featuring in this review. Lighter and made to move speedily across multiple terrain types – from urban settings, as well as gravel trails and forest roads.


So, can the Powerfly 5 Gen 3 straddle these multiple worlds successfully? Or does it falter at the first hurdle?

Our Verdict


One of the best mixed terrain and commuter hardtails we’ve had the pleasure of riding.


Trek has created a wonderful versatile e-MTB, with long range, brilliant motor and at a very reasonable price. The bike ticks a heck of a lot of boxes and for a versatile commuter – it absolutely smashes it.


The display is the only real let down, but that’s an easy fix if you swap it out for another. Overall, it’s a real success and dare we say it – a bargain in the notoriously expensive e-MTB market.



Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3

Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 parts

Price: $4,546


The Trek Powerfly 5 has a strong aluminium frame, made out of the company’s Alpha Platinum aluminium compound. It’s a sturdy old bike, capable of soaking up lots of pressure – however, it means a little extra weight, with the bike coming in at 22.94kg in a size medium frame.


You get more than 2kg of weight saving though compared to the Powerfly 5 Equipped, which has a luggage cage over the back wheel and a longer frame. That weight saving makes the bike more nimble and it certainly feels it out on the trail.


You can choose between 5 frame sizes – extra small, small, medium, large and extra large.


The geometry of all the frame sizes allows for a good level of clearance to get up and over obstacles and you get a decent planted feeling through the back wheel – good for the speed you want in a versatile commuter and trail bike.


It isn’t ultra aggressive in its layout, but you can move at a fair lick and it feels fairly light to manipulate, despite the overall weight. The bike feels well grounded and it provides a comfortable riding experience.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 battery

The Trek Powerfly 5 has a big old Bosch PowerTube battery, which can kick out 625Wh. It’s a sizable partner for the bike and gives you a large old range, which takes away any real range anxiety.


We pumped out well over 100km on one charge, without ever having to feel nervous about the amount of battery we might have left. The bike is made for long distance riding and when you couple that with the comfortable geometry, you can happily spend hours upon hours in the saddle.


When you do run out of battery you aren’t waiting all day for it to juice back up again – you can get back up to full charge from dead in around 5 hours and it takes less than half of that to get up to 50% charge.


The battery is secured neatly into the downtube of that sturdy aluminium frame and it’s simple to click in and out for charging. Hassle free all around in the battery department – something we love to see.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 battery

You have power in the bike’s name and the Trek Powerfly 5 doesn’t disappoint in the motor department. It’s paired with the excellent Bosch Performance CX motor, which throws out a chunky 85Nm of torque.


That’s enough to make light work of any climb you put in its way and the respectable overall bike weight means it dances up the hills. Despite having a lot of torque in the tank the motor doesn’t feel aggressive in its output, it works intuitively to release in a natural way and it feels measured.


There’s no upsetting lag or overshoot as you release off the assistance, so you feel in control throughout. You get 4 modes of assist – Eco, Tour, Sport and Turbo – with the Turbo offering a seriously punchy level of assist for the toughest stretches of your day’s ride.

ℹ️ You don’t need to use the Turbo mode a great deal. It’s useful for the very trickiest inclines, but if you use it too much you’ll find it sapping your battery quite quickly. Use it sparingly.

We love the Bosch Performance CX and it’s a brilliant accompaniment to this bike.

Motor Display

Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 motor display

The Trek Powerfly 5 comes with the Bosch Purion display. It’s mounted on the handlebars and has an easy-to-use controller to flip between data.


There are pros and cons with the Purion; you get a range estimation in kilometres, which is certainly helpful while out on the trails. However, the actual percentage of battery left isn’t shown – a real oversight.


Instead, you get a series of lights which indicate a range of battery percentage left and it isn’t quite exact. Fortunately, the battery is a big old beast and you never really have to worry too much anyway, but we think an exact figure would be much better.


You can also flip between a few other data options, including speed and the distance you’ve ridden so far.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 front fork

The Trek Powerfly 5 is a hardtail, so doesn’t have any rear shocks, it only has a travel at the front end. Depending on the frame size you go for will dictate how much travel you get in the forks, which are supplied by RockShox, with their Recon Silver RLs fitted.


The extra small frame comes with 80mm of travel, whilst the small, medium, large and extra large options come with 120mm of travel. This bike isn’t made for the wild drops and monster descents, so don’t expect it to – it’s made for longer distance, multi-terrain riding, on flatter land and it has a setup capable of exactly that.


The hardtail means you always have a good level of traction at the back end to pick up speed and it doesn’t bounce around. The minimal travel in forks allows you to take a few lumps and bumps, without any worry, but it isn’t made for the seriously chunky stuff.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 rims
Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 wheels

The Powerfly 5 comes with varying wheel sizes depending on the frame size you choose. The extra small and small comes with 27.5in, meanwhile the medium, large and extra large come with 29inchers at both the front and the rear.


The wheels are Bontrager Kovee Comps, with Bontrager XR3 Comp tyres. They’re a sturdy pairing, which offer strength and stability, capable of long distances and feeling comfortable throughout.


You also have some toothy tyres, which can offer the traction you need for the speed you want to pick up – but you don’t feel weighed down, the tyres offer decent dirt shedding on the hard packed bits.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 brakes
Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 brake rotor

The Trek Powerfly 5 comes with Shimano MT4100, 4-piston hydraulic disc brakes.


These aren’t the most powerful Shimano components out there, but they offer enough stopping power for the style of riding the bike is made for – let’s be honest, this isn’t made for super-sendy drops and lines.


Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 drivetrain

The Trek Powerfly 5 is fitted with a 12-speed Shimano Deore M6100 drivetrain – a solid accompaniment, which offers reliability and ease of use. Quick and smooth shifting – exactly what you want over long distances.

Price: $4,546

A fairly priced e-MTB. The Trek Powerfly has outstanding electrical components and offers a brilliant ride experience. It’s pitched fairly in the market.

Trek Powerfly 5 Gen 3 Facts & Figures

Size Configurations

XS137 – 155 cm
4'6″ – 5'1″
64 – 73 cm
25″ – 29″
S153 – 167 cm
5'0″ – 5'6″
72 – 79 cm
28″ – 31″
M161 – 175 cm
5'3″ – 5'9″
76 – 82 cm
30″ – 32″
L174 – 188 cm
5'9″ – 6'2″
82 – 88 cm
32″ – 35″
XL186 – 196 cm
6'1″ – 6'5″
87 – 92 cm
34″ – 36″
FRAME SIZE NUMBER15.517.519.521.5
WHEEL SIZE27.5″29″29″29″
SEAT TUBE39.441.94752.1
EFFECTIVE SEAT TUBE ANGLE71.5°71.7°71.7°71.7°
HEAD ANGLE67.6°67.7°67.7°67.7°
EFFECTIVE TOP TUBE59.861.764.167.2
CHAINSTAY LENGTH45.545.545.545.5
FRAME REACH3940.642.745.2
FRAME STACK62.363.964.866.7

* All measurements provided in cm unless otherwise stated.

Full Specs

*FRAMESize: XS , S
Alpha Platinum Aluminium, curved top tube, Removable Integrated Battery (RIB), tapered head tube, Control Freak internal routing, Motor Armour, Boost148, 12 mm thru axle
 Size: M , L , XL
Alpha Platinum Aluminium, Removable Integrated Battery (RIB), tapered head tube, Control Freak internal routing, Motor Armor, Boost148
RockShox Recon Silver RL, Solo Air spring, Motion Control damper, lockout, tapered steerer, 46 mm offset, Boost110, Maxle Stealth, 80 mm travel
 Size: S
RockShox Recon Silver RL, Solo Air spring, Motion Control damper, lockout, tapered steerer, 46 mm offset, Boost110, Maxle Stealth, 120 mm travel
 Size: S , M , L , XL
RockShox Recon Silver RL, Solo Air spring, Motion Control damper, lockout, tapered steerer, 42 mm offset, Boost110, Maxle Stealth, 120 mm travel
HUB FRONTBontrager alloy, sealed bearing, alloy axle, 6-bolt, Boost110, 15 mm thru axle
SKEWER REARBontrager Switch thru-axle, removable lever
RIMBontrager Kovee Comp, double-wall, Tubeless Ready, 28-hole, 23 mm width, Presta valve
TYREBontrager XR3 Comp, wire bead, 30 tpi, 29×2.30″
MAX TYRE SIZEFrame: 29×2.60″ or 27.5×2.80″ (XS & S: 27.5×2.60″), Fork: See manufacturer
SHIFTERShimano Deore M6100, 12-speed
REAR DERAILLEURShimano XT M8100, long cage
CRANKE*thirteen E*spec Plus, 165 mm length
CHAINRINGE*thirteen, 36T, steel
CASSETTEShimano Deore M6100, 10-51, 12-speed
CHAINShimano Deore M6100, 12-speed
PEDALVP-536 nylon platform
SADDLEBontrager Commuter Comp
Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 330 mm length
 Size: M
Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 360 mm length
 Size: L , XL
Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 400 mm length
Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, 15 mm rise, 720 mm width
 Size: M , L , XL
Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, 15 mm rise, 750 mm width
GRIPSBontrager XR Endurance Comp, lock-on
Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 50 mm length
 Size: S , M
Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 60 mm length
 Size: L , XL
Bontrager Comp, 31.8 mm, Blendr compatible, 7-degree, 70 mm length
HEAD SETFSA IS-2, 1-1/8″ top, 1.5″ bottom
BRAKEShimano 4-piston hydraulic disc, MT4100 lever, MT420 calliper
Shimano RT66, 6-bolt, 180 mm
 Size: XS , S , M , L , XL
Shimano RT66, 6-bolt, 203 mm
BATTERYBosch PowerTube, 625 Wh
CHARGERBosch compact 2A, 100–240V
COMPUTERBosch Purion
MOTORBosch Performance CX, magnesium motor body, 250 watt, 85 Nm, 25 km/h max assist
WEIGHTM – 22.94 kg/50.58 lb
WEIGHT LIMITThis bike has a maximum total weight limit (combined weight of bicycle, rider and cargo) of 136 kg (300 lb).

* Please note – spec applies to all sizes unless listed separately

How Does it Compare?

Another challenger in the electric hardtail market is Specialized’s Turbo Tero 5.0.

Specialized Turbo Tero 5.0

Our Trek Powerfly 5 is 0.2kg heavier, so very similar, but offers a slightly smaller battery – with the Specialized coming in at 700Wh over our 625Wh.


Specialized has their custom 2.2 motor fitted, which offers 90Nm of torque – 5Nm more than our Bosch battery. However, the Bosch electrical components and their relationship between each other are superior in quality and ride experience.


The Specialized motor display is far more advanced than our Bosch Purion display – which could be fixed if Trek go for one of the other displays in Bosch’s armoury.


You get 110mm of travel on all frame sizes on the Turbo Tero 5.0, which is more consistent than the varying amounts of travel on our Trek bike – with both choosing RockShox as their partner in this department. Both setups do the trick.


Both drivetrain and brake setups also work we;, with Specialized choosing SRAM components and Trek gunning for SRAM. Price is a big factor in this comparison – the Trek Powerfly 5 comes in $1,600 cheaper – which for us puts it in pole position in this comparison.


The bikes aren’t too dissimilar, but you have a huge saving.

Final Thoughts

We’re big fans of the Trek Powerfly 5 and very impressed by its price. You don’t often get many bargains in the e-MTB world, but we think Trek has successfully managed to offer a bargain here.


It’s a big range and versatile bike, which offers an excellent ride experience and some top components, but at a fraction of the price to some of its competitors. For a bike which is designed for long distance, you want to feel comfortable up top and this bike offers it.


The electrical components are outstanding and the other aspects are solid – it’s only let down by the display. That’s an easy fix, though, by replacing the display for one of the other top Bosch displays. And in any case, it’s still by no means the worst display in the world.


A big congrats to the team at Trek – we think this is right up there among the best e-MTB hardtails for mixed terrain and commuting. Now give it a spin.

If you enjoyed this review then make sure to check out our other Trek reviews.