Specialized Turbo Vado SL EQ

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Release Year
Charge Time
2.58 Hours
Maximum Range
80 Miles
Top Speed
28 mph
240 W
35 Nm
Volts and Amp Hours
48V 6.7Ah
Wheel Size
Number of Gears
Gearing Type
Brake Type
Frame Material

Summary of Reviews

We have read all expert and user reviews on the Specialized Turbo Vado SL EQ. In summary, this is what cyclists think.

19 reasons to buy

  • Reviewers appreciate the efficiency of this e-bike’s streamlined build.
  • Testers say these e-bikes are speedy, with a highly responsive motor.
  • Reviewers report a smooth and “seamless” delivery of assistance.
  • Reviewers appreciate the bike’s light 33-37.5 lb weight, both when riding and carrying it.
  • Testers say this e-bike is able to conquer most inclines, with adequate pedal input.
  • Testers find this e-bike comfortable to ride without power.
  • Reviewers describe the bike’s ride position as upright, comfortable and also “sporty”.
  • A rear rack, with a 33.07 lb capacity, is included.
  • Integrated front and rear lights are included. A tester deems them “highly effective”.
  • Full-coverage front and rear fenders are included. Testers say they are effective in the slop.
  • This e-bike is offered in both stepover and accessible low-step versions.
  • Each build is available in four sizes to fit riders 5’1” to 6’4”.
  • Testers say, with Tektro hydraulic disc brakes, this bike “can be pulled up in double-quick time”.
  • Testers report that the Turbo Vado SL EQ is both stable and agile.
  • Both 11 and 12-speed drivetrains provide a generous gear range.
  • Reviewers admire this bike’s understated yet attractive appearance.
  • The Turbo Vado SL EQ 5.0 is fitted with a carbon fiber fork.
  • Rough-road compliance is enhanced by Future Shock 1.5 micro-suspension on the 5.0 build.
  • Testers are pleased with the bevy of options available through Specialized’s Mission Control app.

4 reasons not to buy

  • Users and reviewers lament that the Turbo Vado SL EQ’s battery can’t be removed to charge it off-bike.
  • Reviewers describe all Turbo Vado SL EQ builds as relatively expensive.
  • Three testers describe the Specialized Bridge Sport saddle as “unforgiving” and “narrow”.
  • Two testers describe the bike’s display as “underwhelming” and hard to read, especially considering the SL EQ‘s price.

Bottom line

The Turbo Vado SL EQ is Specialized’s ‘equipped’ version of the Turbo Vado SL. This rig arrives ready for commuter duties; with front and rear lights, fenders and a rear rack. As with the rest of Specialized’s ‘SL’ options, this is a thoroughbred concept. The 320Wh battery and 240W motor are small, but the ‘Super Light’ build puts less demand on both. Testers are generally delighted with the bike’s performance, range, build and ride quality, but these qualities demand a high price. Some folk are peeved that the battery is non-removeable, which might frustrate apartment dwellers. However, most owners say it’s easy to carry (up those stairs). It’s a bonus for reviewers, that Specialized have a network of local service centers available.

Expert Reviews

89/100 based on 13 rated expert reviews

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 Review: One of the Best Electric Bikes for Zero-Effort Commuting

One of the best electric bikes you can buy, and a joy to ride. It is a LOT of fun, with sweat kept to a minimum.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL Review

Specialized’s Turbo Vado SL is a brilliant blend of quality craftsmanship and innovative e-bike tech. The app lets you squeeze even more from its stellar power unit while the bike itself is clearly built to last. Great fun and a sound investment.

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Tech Advisor

2021 Specialized Turbo Vado SL Review

Ultimately, this is a top-notch electric bike which should appeal to anyone who wants to ride for leisure or to commute. There’s no doubt that the 2021 Turbo Vado SL is on the expensive side. But it’s the same difference if you compared a Kia to a Mercedes: you can buy the cheaper car or you can opt for luxury.

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Review: Specialized Turbo Vado SL Equipped

Specialized’s lightweight commuter electric bike amazingly doesn’t feel like an e-bike at all.

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Camping with Style

Cycling the Monsal Trail on the Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ E-Bike – Review

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ e-bike is quite simply a stunning bike and an absolute joy to ride. It’s pricey, yes, but it’s so good that I have genuinely considered an e-bike as an alternative to my car commute.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ

The Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ is a great combination of lightweight sportiness, hill-climbing ability and loads of practical features, all of which makes it a fun and very useful bike. The price looks a little steep when compared to some more powerful mid-drive models. But it’s a high quality e-bike that should give many years of faithful service.

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Expert Reviews

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ Review: Blends Effective Motor Power With Great Economy and Weighs Only 17kg

If you like riding non-electric bikes that are sporty but have decided a bit of electric assist might also be useful, the Vado SL ticks all the boxes. A high-quality product with impressive gear, braking and connectivity spec, so it’s sophistication you’re paying for, rather than motor power and battery size.

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Les Numériques

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ Step-Through Review: Lightweight Electrification in a High-End Bike [French]

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ perfectly fulfills its mission as a light and dynamic electric bike. This top-of-the-range model comes well-equipped for those looking for an e-bike for commuting. Be careful, however, the battery cannot be removed from the frame to be recharged…

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Pedelecs & E-Bikes

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ – Sporty Lower Entry E-City Bike in Review [German]

The steering head regularly touches the cables when the steering is turned sharply… This could possibly damage them over time. Otherwise, this light e-bike from Specialized presents itself as being of high quality, well thought-out and fun to ride. The model is ideal as a practical pedelec for the city, excursions to the surrounding area and, as a commuter e-bike.

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Turbo Vado SL – For Electric Cyclists With High Demands [Swedish]

We note that the engine works almost silently, that it responds very clearly and directly to the force you apply to the pedals, and that the engine power is phased out completely imperceptibly around 27 km/h. Just the way you want it.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ: Fast Lightweight [German]

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL closes the gap between bio and e-bikes. The handling is outstanding, the suitability for everyday use thanks to the low weight is great. There is a deduction for the permanently installed battery.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ: Almost Perfect Commuter [German]

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ is a near-perfect commuter bike. Light, agile, sporty, fast. This turns everyday routes into fun tours.

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[Test] Specialized Vado SL Electric Bike, Californian Luxury and Lightness [French]

To be honest, it’s hard to fault this Vado SL electric bike from Specialized. So why a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars? Well, because we can’t have the butter and the money for the butter…

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Electric Bike Review

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ Review

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ is one of the best e-bikes I’ve ever reviewed. Internal battery offers modest capacity but weighs under 4lbs and provides impressive range. The bike is satisfying to pedal, even without assist from the motor.

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David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 2021 Review – An E-Bike for Fitness, Leisure and Transport

You have the assistance from the motor to make hills and headwinds much easier… for running errands, commuting, going to work, go-to mudguards, the racks… just get on and ride. Yes, it’s an expensive bike, it’s a big investment, but it’s cheaper than a car and it’s cheaper than a season ticket for a tube or railway.

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Specialized Vado SL 5.0 – Light Weight Electric Bike!

I am not new to the electric bike market, but what I am new to is actual bike riding. It’s been such a long time since I actually rode a real bike as opposed to an electric bike with a throttle. It’s crazy because my legs hurt so I feel like I really got a workout just coming down to Santa Monica here.

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ROD’s Random Reviews #DUKE #work

E-Bike Review: Specialized Vado 4.0 2020 SL – Super Light ! 10% Tax Credit Too? Ask Your CPA WWE

It is pedal assist (obviously), so you have to do a lot of work (for me anyway), going uphill.

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Bike Exchange

2021 Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ E-Bike Review

It’s worth noting that while other super commuters include similar accessories as standard, the added extras on this steed are of excellent quality. Refined, rugged and designed to last as long as the bike will rather than just being slapped on as an afterthought, this truly is a ride that needs nothing more than a rider perched on its saddle.

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Review: Specialized Turbo Vado SL Is the Commuter E-bike for Cyclists (And Urbanites)

If you have to carry your bike up stairs, or want more of a workout, get the Vado SL. If you want more power and easier speed, get the regular Vado. Overall, the Specialized Vado bikes are a rock-solid choice for commuters.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ in Review

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ checks a lot of boxes if you want to ride sportily and on the flats. Both the modular battery concept, good vibration damping and successful motor integration all know how to impress. However, for hilly terrain and a completely sweat-free ride, the motor support of the SL 1.1 motor is too little…

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The Next Web

Review: Specialized’s Turbo Vado SL Is So Light, You’ll Almost Forget It’s an E-Bike

Certainly, there’s no e-bike I know of that looks so much like a regular bike, is from a reputable company with dealer support, has up to 120 mile range, provides assist to 28mph, comes with a buttery-smooth mid-drive motor, offers good components, packs actually-useful front suspension, and weighs in at just 35 pounds.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ on Test – Chilli Vanilli

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ is a progressive urban e-bike, making for a convincing package thanks to its digital features, high level of integration, low weight and refined looks. But if you prefer to be carried up steep inclines and put a lot of emphasis on comfort, then the Specialized Turbo Vado SL isn’t for you.

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Specialized Vado SL 4.0 EQ E-Bike Review: Gets Everything Right

Editor’s Choice. You can certainly find a similar style of e-bike for less money, but I’m confident when I say if you decide to spend the extra you get a better bike and riding experience.

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The New Lightweight Commuter-Bike Specialized Vado SL 4.0 EQ

An attractive alternative to the regular Vado. The SL is noticeably lighter… Good build quality, good components… it is always ready for urban everyday life… sensitive response and an extremely smooth freewheel above 25 km/h. The bike appeals in particular to sporty riders who like to cycle even without an e-drive… The relatively loud motor noise under load must be accepted.

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Bike Hugger

Turbo Vado SL Ride Report

The Turbo Vado SL is nimble, well mannered, and inspired me to get out of the saddle and charge up hills which no e-bike has done before. The ride feels harsh and unrefined.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ Test: A New Era [Spanish]

After three weeks of very, very intensive use, this bike can only be praised. The price? To many it will seem very high, but for someone who is going to use it 365 days a year, who wants to enjoy every meter covered in very different terrains and who wants to use an unbeatable bike almost non-stop, it will seem reasonable.

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The Best E-Bike We’ve Tested So Far! [Dutch]

This is the best bike I have ever tested. It is very versatile. It is ideally suited to being a city bike; nice for commuting, to do some shopping, but at the same time it is also light enough to lift.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 (2022) [French]

I have rarely taken so much pleasure in pedaling, as with this Specialized, in addition to its ride comfort.

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The Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ 2020 in Review [German]

The bike is fully equipped – right down to the particularly low fenders! – and therefore very suitable for all job commuters. The Future Shock system is also installed in the Vado. It brings comfort and safety on bumps.

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Bici Da Strada

Test – Specialized Turbo Vado SL: Lightness, Efficiency and Style for Those Who Move Around the City [Italian]

It’s light, efficient and stylish. It’s a city e-bike that also allows you to do some cardio… Downhill, braking and cornering it is stable and safe …there are no annoying vibrations.

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Top Cycling

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ | Test [Portuguese]

It is a well-thought-out, high-quality product, of which I highlight the comfort (position, handling and future shock), adaptability to pedaling with casual clothes (mudguards and chain protection) and the low weight that proves to be important when handling the bike.

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Full Outdoor

TEST Turbo Vado SL | Specialized Urban E-Bike [Spanish]

The brakes are hydraulic and give great, great, great, security. They are very powerful.

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Test of the Specialized Turbo Vado SL [Spanish]

I think the minimalist theme is special and I like it a lot.

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Test :: Specialized Turbo Vado SL [Spanish]

It should be noted that I rode 800km on this bike and I did not have any mechanical problems, not even a puncture.

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充電生活 Charged Life

Electric Bicycle (Specialized Vado SL 4.0) What I Learned After Riding for a Year and a Half | E-Bike [Chinese]

About a month after purchase my wrists and buttocks hurt from vibration. I usually use it for commuting. Round trip about 10km. You don’t sweat, even in the summer. The battery is built in, so it may not be suitable for people living in apartments.

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A Different Kind of Riding Pleasure – Specialized Turbo Vado SL 5.0 EQ Review [Chinese]

The tuned motor can provide continuous and strong assist in a wide range of cadence, and has a very natural pedaling feeling.

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Lightning’s Art of Exquisite Balance – Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ Electric Assist Review [Chinese]

Overall, the smooth power output of the Turbo Vado SL creates a light and comfortable riding experience, especially suitable for daily commuting, comfortable outings and other urban riding… If you want to go very fast, you have to rely entirely on your own leg strength…

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Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 – Review [Dutch]

Are the Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ’s small motor and battery a step back or a step forward? The support and range are more than sufficient under normal circumstances. And then of course there’s the bike itself, with its sleek aluminum frame, well thought-out equipment and efficient yet comfortable riding position. In short: highly recommended.

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GPS Radler

Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0 EQ as a Test Bike [German]

On the flat and in slightly hilly terrain, weak or medium support is enough to quickly bring the light trekking bike to the 25 km/h limit. Even beyond that, the engine can still be pedaled well. Decoupling occurs harmonically and the additional resistance is low.

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Light and Chic: Specialized Turbo Vado SL [German]

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL appeals, above all, to riders who do not value maximum motor support, but are looking for a pedelec with a harmonious drive and a natural riding experience that is close to that of a classic bike. A mix of Shimano’s SLX and XT group – shifts crisply, and the Tektro disc brakes also work reliably.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL Review: The Lotus Elise of Urban Electric Bikes [French]

This SL 1.1 motor lacks a bit of progressiveness. Depending on the effort you provide, it may happen that you are right in the “zone” of motor triggering, which then causes unpleasant jerks in the most powerful modes. Finer management with a progressive ramp start would be welcome.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL, Is an Urban Electric Bike Worth It? [Spanish]

After testing the bike, the standard battery is enough to keep you riding around town or neighborhood all day.

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User Ratings

92/100 based on 83 ratings
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Bike Comparison

Specialized Turbo Vado SL EQ in comparison to averages
Specialized Turbo Vado SL EQ

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