Earlier this year Sam Pilgrim, the man best known for back-flipping chunky Haibike e-mountain bikes in front of his 1.88 million YouTube subscribers, made the bold move to ride Canyon bikes. We caught up with him to take a look at his latest e-MTB, the Torque:ON CF 9.
For anyone who has spent any time trawling for mountain bike content on YouTube, you'll no doubt have come across the name 'Sam Pilgrim'. The rider, now known for hitting Bike Park Wale's Vanta Line with a steering wheel instead of handlebars first cut his teeth (almost literally) on the freeride scene, winning the FMB World Tour in 2013 to name just one of his many wins.
Now, Sam is riding Canyon bikes having picked the Torque:ON CF 9 as his e-mountain bike of choice and with good reason. It's an e-bike designed especially for freeride mountain biking. To help get the job done this bike gets 175mm of travel at the rear wheel which complements 180mm of squish at the front. Then to keep the fun factor high, the bike rolls on a mullet wheel set-up. For more on this bike, check out our Canyon Torque:ON CF 9 first ride review.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon fork.jpg, by Liam Mercer
Quite a lot of Sam's bike is the very same as it was when it was pulled out of the box, so handling the front suspension is a Fox 38 Factory GRIP2 fork which is paired with a Fox X2 Factory Shock. These both come as no surprise, as in recent years they've become mainstays of the gravity-riding components circles.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon shock.jpg, by Liam Mercer
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon bottle.jpg, by Liam Mercer
One of the most unique features included on the Torque:ON is its water bottle placement. Canyon decided to build a specific water bottle for this bike as the brand wanted to keep the bike's centre of gravity as low as possible, including the linkage. Therefore, it's housed on the top tube. While it's fairly secure without, there's a handy strap to make damn sure the bottle stays in place, something I'm sure Sam would appreciate.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon front tyre.jpg, by Liam Mercer
Moving on and this bike is rocking more kit from Sam's sponsors. Here, we've got Goodyear's latest front-specific tyre, the Newton MTF in the Enduro casing and 2.5in width.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon rear tyre.jpg, by Liam Mercer
Then at the rear, there's the rear-specific Goodyear Newton MTR, also in the Enduro casing but this one's slightly fatter at 2.6in in width.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon wheel.jpg, by Liam Mercer
Those tyres are then wrapped around a pair of Halo Gravitas wheels. This wheelset dons 27.5in internal widths and Halo's most recent 6061 T-10 heat-treated aluminium rims, so it's designed to be mega strong. These wheels also use the brand's asymmetric design that allows for equalised spoke tensions which helps reduce weight by adding strength to other parts of the wheel.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon saddle.jpg, by Liam Mercer
As for the finishing kit, there is more sponsor kit, such as this Ergon SM-E Mountain Pro Team Men's saddle. This one's purpose-built for experienced e-mountain bikers and it's tuned for an athletic and firm feel, says Ergon. What's special though is the upturned and wider rear ramp, which should offer a chunk of support when wrenching up steep climbs.
2023 sam pilgrim canyon torqueon grips.jpg, by Liam Mercer
Finally, and unsurprisingly, Sam's Torque:ON is built with a set of his signature grips, the Pilgrips.
You might also like: