Table of Contents

YT Decoy Core 2 MX Review (2023)

YT Decoy Core 2 MX

Table of Contents

The YT Decoy Core 2 MX is the entry-level bike in the YT Decoy Core range. The manufacturer isn’t one of the most well-known names out there, but it's looking to swoop in for people’s custom by creating a gnarly e-MTB under the price point of some of the other household names.


The YT Decoy range offers long travel enduro bikes, which are designed to take some punishment out on trails. At $7,000, the Decoy Core 2 MX comes in cheaper than some of its competitors, but does that mean the bike has something missing? Or is the YT Decoy Core 2 a genuine bargain? Let’s find out in our review!

Our Verdict


The YT Decoy Core 2 is a pleasant bike to ride, but there’s definitely room for improvement. The suspension is a real highlight, offering the ability to take on some seriously gnarly terrain, but the geometry also offers a layer of comfort too.


The brakes have great stopping power and you can have a lot of fun through the fast and twisty sections. However, the motor is a real let down, it’s very battery thirsty and the display is a big letdown.


Not a bad bike, but we would shop around elsewhere at that price point.



YT Decoy Core 2 MX Review

YT Decoy Core 2 MX parts

Price: $6,733


YT Decoy Core 2 MX frame

The YT Decoy Core 2 has a carbon main frame and aluminium rear triangle, and comes in at 23kg overall. The carbon main frame keeps the weight down, allowing the bike to feel playful out on the trail, with an ease of handling.


Meanwhile, the robust aluminium rear end is made for big impacts and offers a lot of stability. Due to the mixed compound frame elements, the YT Decoy Core 2 is heavier than the more expensive YT Decoy Core 3 and 4.

Frame Size

The bike comes in 5 frame sizes – small, medium, large, extra-large and double XL. The geometry of all the bikes in the YT Decoy 2 range are the same – offering a level of comfortability, but with a little extra playfulness in there too.


It’s definitely not ultra-aggressive in its layout, but you can still attack corners and feel composed. Some descent-focused bikes can feel uncomfortable after being ridden for a while, but the YT Decoy 2 MX isn’t one of them; you can spend hours in the saddle, thanks to the overall balance of the bike.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX battery

Like the YT Decoy Core 3 and 4, the YT Decoy Core 2 comes with a custom 540Wh battery – you can also buy a separate 720Wh, but it does come at extra cost. The choice of battery size is an odd one – it places the bike in a no man’s land, with a modest sized battery, but still a fairly heavy overall weight.


Usually you lose weight by shaving down the size of the battery or you have a heavier bike with a big old battery – the YT Decoy Core 2 sits somewhere in the middle. You can eke out around 100km on a single charge, but only if you really play it safely with the electrical assistance. Rely on it too much and you’ll soon find the battery sapped of juice.


It’s located in the bike’s downtube and it’s easy to clip in and out, particularly useful if you want to upscale to the 720Wh battery, which certainly offers you a much greater range.

ℹ️ Unfortunately, the 720Wh battery isn’t compatible with the small frame size – if you’re one of the smaller riders, you’re stuck with the 540Wh.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX motor

The YT Decoy Core 2 comes with the Shimano EP8 motor.


It isn’t our favourite motor by any stretch of the imagination – there are certain aspects we admire, such as the ferocious power, which can emit up to 85Nm of torque. And we can’t dispute its ability to scamper up the climbs, making lightwork of anything you put in its way.


However, that’s where the plaudits end – first the EP8 makes a hideous rattling noise, which really grinds on your ears. The EP8 also has a very awkward relationship with the battery and is incredibly power thirsty.


You have 3 modes of assistance – Eco, Trail and Boost – but using the boost too liberally can really catch you out. It absolutely sucks the life out of it. The motor has pros and cons, unfortunately the cons outweigh the pros for us.

Motor Display

YT Decoy Core 2 MX motor display

The motor display on the EP8 is another point of real pain with this YT electric mountain bike. The display only shows the amount of battery you have left as 5 LED lights, which is a pretty useless way to gauge how much battery you have left.


You can be caught out very easily with the 20% increments and we found ourselves having constant range anxiety. The display also doesn’t offer much more – simplicity is great in some cases, but in the age where some displays offer countless, customisable data options, the EP8 stands out as being somewhat dated.


It’s a constant grumble of ours and the sooner Shimano sorts out the EP8’s flaws, the better. Sadly, the display spoils the overall ride experience.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX shock
YT Decoy Core 2 MX front fork

The YT Decoy Core 2 comes with 170mm travel at the front and 165mm at the rear. The forks and shocks are provided by RockShox – with Zeb Charger R forks at the front and Super Deluxe Select shocks.


The set-up is slightly downgraded from the FOX suspension on the YT Decoy 3, but then you’re saving just under $1,000 on the overall price and the suspension comes into that. You still get the same amount of travel though and it’s still set up to take some big old hits out on the trails.


It doesn’t quite offer the same level of seamless descending experience as the YT Decoy Core 3 MX. However, it’s capable of taking on some punishment for sure. It’s a fun bike to ride and has enough give to negotiate some drops and tricky lines without sending shockwaves through your body.


The suspension is very much a strong point on the YT Decoy Core 2.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX rims
YT Decoy Core 2 MX tyres

The YT Decoy Core 2 comes with a mullet style setup, with a 29in wheel at the front and a 27.5in at the rear. The mullet setup is becoming much more common in the world of enduro and on aggressive e-MTBs.


The larger 29in front wheel offers you stability out on the trail, you have a strong planted feeling and a large amount of traction. Meanwhile, the smaller 27.5in rear wheel offers a real level of playfulness, so you can duck, dive and weave through the trees with ease.


Crankbrothers provide the wheels, with their synthesis aluminium model, which are made to cope with big hits out on the trails. There are Maxxis Assegai tyres at the front end and Maxxis Minion DHR II tyres at the rear. A solid pairing, which offers enough bite and grip to move at pace through the corners.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX hydraulic disc brake
YT Decoy Core 2 MX disc brake

The YT Decoy Core 2 comes with SRAM Code R brakes; we love SRAM products and the Code Rs offer exactly what you need from an aggressive bike. They’re reliable and can bring your ride to a halt without any difficulty. The perfect pairing for this sort of e-MTB.


YT Decoy Core 2 MX drivetrain

The YT Decoy 29 Core 3 drivetrain is supplied by Shimano, with an SLX cassette and SLX rear derailleur, it also comes with a Shimano EM600 crank set. It’s a downgrade from the Shimano XT set-up on the YT Decoy 29 Core 4, but it does the job needed. The 12-speed set-up offers pacy shifting and manages the power of the motor well.

Price: $6,733

The YT Decoy 29 Core 3 has been recently discounted on the YT website and usually comes in at more than $6,200. The current price seems fair for the quality of bike you’re getting.


You have a fun and versatile bike, which is capable of riding over varied terrain – both climbing and descending. It’s playful, nimble and well balanced, but isn’t without its flaws in the electrics department – the price seems fair.

YT Decoy Core 2 MX Review Facts & Figures

Size Configurations

rider height
S154 cm – 165 cm
5'1″ – 5'5″
M163 cm – 173 cm
5'4″ – 5'8″
L172 cm – 182 cm
5'7″ – 5'11.5″
XL181 cm – 191 cm
5'11” – 6'3″
XXL190cm – 200cm
6'2.5″ – 6'7″

This size table is only a suggestion. The optimal frame size depends also on your personal riding style.

TOPTUBE569 mm591 mm612 mm635 mm658 mm
REACH409 mm429 mm449 mm469 mm489 mm
STACK624 mm629 mm633 mm643 mm652 mm
SEATTUBE400 mm420 mm445 mm470 mm495 mm
CHAINSTAY442 mm442 mm442 mm442 mm442 mm
HEADTUBE ANGLE64.5° / 65°64.5° / 65°64.5° / 65°64.5° / 65°64.5° / 65°
SEATTUBE ANGLE (EFF)75.5° / 765°75.5° / 765°75.5° / 765°75.5° / 765°75.5° / 765°
BB DROPF32/R16 mm/
F24/R8 mm
F32/R16 mm/
F24/R8 mm
F32/R16 mm/
F24/R8 mm
F32/R16 mm/
F24/R8 mm
F32/R16 mm/
F24/R8 mm
WHEELBASE1191 mm1216 mm1235 mm1259 mm1284 mm
HEADTUBE95 mm100 mm105 mm115 mm125 mm
BB HEIGHT344 / 352 mm344 / 352 mm344 / 352 mm344 / 352 mm344 / 352 mm
STANDOVER HEIGHT752 mm738 mm724 mm714 mm702 mm

Full Specs

Front: Aluminum Rim 29“ | Inner Width 31,5 mm | Front Hub 110 x 15 mm
Rear: Aluminum Rim 27.5“ | Inner Width 31.5 mm | Rear Hub 148 x 12 mm
Front: Tire Size 29“ x 2.5 WT | EXO Casing | 3C MaxxTerra Compound | Tubeless Ready

Rear: Tire Size 27.5“ x 2.6 WT | EXO+ Casing | 3C MaxxTerra Compound | Tubeless Ready
29“ | 170 mm | GRIP | 15mm QR x110mm | 51mm Offset
Shock Length: 230 mm | Shock Stroke: 65 mm ≙ 165 mm Travel | 2 pos-Adjust | Custom Tune | 0.3 Spacer
Crank Arm Length 160 mm
M6100 | 10-51T | 12-speed I Hyperglide+
M6100 | Shadow Plus | 12-fach
Monochrome I 35 m
M6100 I 12-speed I 2-Way-Release
Torque 85 NM | Power 250 W I E-TUBE PROJECT APP
Removable | 540 Wh Capacity | 36 V
Block Lock I High Cap I 2 Spacer 5 mm I Flatcapset
Length 50 mm | 35 mm Clamp | Rise 0° | 6061 AL
Rise 35 mm | Width 800 mm | 9° Back Sweep | 5° Up Sweep | 6061 AL
Lock On
Rotor CENTERLINE Ø front 200 mm / rear 200 mm
Ø 31.6 mm | 125 mm Drop (Frame Size S) | 150 mm Drop (Frame Size M) | 170 mm Drop (Frame Size L-XXL) | Standard-Remote
YT Custom | Width 140 mm I Lux-Alloy Rail
WEIGHT23.9 KG / 52.69 LBS

How Does it Compare?

We compared the YT Decoy Core 3 to the Canyon Torque:ON 7 and we’re going to do the same here. Both are geared up for enduro riding and are targeting around the same area of the market.

Canyon Torque:ON 7

The Canyon Torque:ON 7 comes in at $5,100 – that’s $1,600 cheaper than the YT Decoy Core 2. The Canyon has a slightly smaller battery, but also sits in this odd area of e-MTBing – weighing in at 23.3kg, but with only a 504Wh battery.


Both bikes use the Shimano EP8 motor, which we’ve already highlighted is littered with issues and they have the same display problems. The Canyon offers more travel, though, with 180mm at the front and 175mm at the rear – it’s well geared up for some serious hits and full on descending – capable of actually taking on more of the gnarly stuff than our YT.


It doesn’t perform quite as well on the flats though. Our YT e-bike is better in the brakes department, with our SRAM components trumping the Shimano Deore on the Canyon, but both have similar standard Shimano drive trains.


It’s a tough comparison here, but price has to play a part in the decision making. Our YT Decoy rides better overall, but there is absolutely no reason it should cost $1,600 more than the Canyon. If you have the budget go for the YT, if you have a little less – go for the Canyon and you won’t be missing out on much.

Final Thoughts

The YT Decoy Core 2 is a fun bike to ride and it certainly has a number of positives. The suspension is geared up for war on the trails and the geometry feels both comfortable and a little exciting.


You also have a strong pair of brakes and enough power in the motor to shoot up the climbs. The bike does have issues, though. The motor is very battery thirsty, it also rattles and the display is a major let-down.


It isn’t an unpleasant bike to ride, but you feel like something is missing or you get a niggly annoyance every so often, which spoils the overall experience.


YT hasn't done poorly with the Decoy Core 2 – farm from it, it’s a perfectly solid bike with some definite highlights – but there’s certainly room for improvement. That’s where we stand, now get out there and give her a whirl yourselves.

“If you enjoyed this review then make sure to check out our other YT e-MTB reviews: