Despite the understated, all-black finish, the Jam² SL 9.9 is distinctly recognisable as a FOCUS. Although the similarity with other models is uncanny, the Jam² employs a brand new rear suspension system. How does it affect its performance on the trail? And can the affordable Jam² keep up with the big guns in this test?

Focus Jam² SL 9.9 | FAZUA Ride 60/430 Wh | 160/150 mm (f/r)
29″ | 19.4 kg in size L | € 8,499 | Manufacturer’s website

The FOCUS Jam² SL is the German manufacturer’s first Light-eMTB. While at first glance, it shares the same distinctive look as many other Focus models, it employs the new F.O.L.D. 3.0 four-bar linkage rear suspension system to generate 150 mm of travel, paired with a 160 mm fork. Retailing at € 8,499, the Jam² SL is by far the cheapest bike in this test but, at 19.4 kg, also one of the heaviest.

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best Light-E-MTB 2023 – 8 bikes in review

The Light-eMTB FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 2023 in detail

With the Jam² SL 9.9, FOCUS opted for a discreet, understated look with minimal branding. However, compared to other competitors like the TQ bikes, the frame silhouette is slightly beefier, which is typical of bikes with the FAZUA Ride 60 motor. The latter is integrated longitudinally into the down tube, and draws its power from a 430 Wh battery – the only one in this test that has to be removed from the frame for charging. On the upside, the lack of a charging port ensures a cleaner look and saves weight. Fortunately, removing the battery only takes a few seconds: just loosen the locking bolt on the battery cover using the 6mm Allen key hidden in the thru-axle and clip out the battery. The FAZUA LED HUB in the top tube displays the charge status in 20% increments using 5 LEDs, which change colour depending on the current support mode. Unfortunately, distinguishing between the colours of the different support modes can be difficult in direct sunlight. The FAZUA Ring Control remote is easy and intuitive to use but provides poor haptic feedback.

All-round talent
The Jam² SL does everything right, but nothing perfectly. However, this makes it extremely easy and predictable to ride.

The spec of the Light-eMTB FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 2023

Our Jam² SL 9.9 test bike isn’t the top-spec variant in the range, with the main difference being that our build is trimmed purely for trail performance rather than a low system weight. The FOX 36 Performance Elite GRIP2 fork offers countless adjustment options and delivers a top performance on the trail, albeit without the fancy Kashima coating. The fork is paired with a matching FOX FLOAT X Performance shock. A 170 mm Post Moderne dropper post ensures plenty of freedom of movement on the bike. Shifting and braking is taken care of by a Shimano XT groupset complemented by 200 mm brake rotors front and rear. The cockpit features a proprietary FOCUS C.I.S. stem, which routes all cables through the stem and head tube straight into the frame – octopus look guaranteed! The 820 mm Race Face Atlas 35 handlebars are the only alloy bars in our test, and far too wide for all our testers – we recommend cutting them down to suit! A DT Swiss HX1700 LS alloy wheelset, which was developed specifically for Light-eMTBs, is paired with Schwalbe tires, with a Magic Mary in Soft rubber compound and Super Ground casing at the front and Nobby Nic in Speedgrip rubber compound and Super Trail casing at the rear. We would have preferred a more robust Super Trail casing on the front too. Moreover, we recommend running tires with a softer rubber compound front and the rear for more traction.

An Easy
After removing the cover, you can simply unclip the battery from the frame.
One’s not enough
The rear end of the FOCUS has not one but two flip chips, which allow you to alter the chainstay length without affecting the geometry of the bike.
The FOCUS doesn’t have a charging port, meaning that the battery has to be removed for charging.
Same name, different character
While the new rear suspension system is still called F.O.L.D., it has a clearly different character than its predecessor.

The cables are routed through the top of the stem, which makes it hard to service and adjust the cockpit.

Focus Jam² SL 9.9

€ 8,499


Motor FAZUA Ride 60 60 Nm
Battery FAZUA Energy 430 Wh
Fork FOX 36 Performance Elite GRIP2 160 mm
Rear Shock FOX FLOAT X Performance 150 mm
Seatpost Post Moderne 170 mm
Brakes Shimano XT 200/200 mm
Drivetrain Shimano DEORE XT 1x12
Stem FOCUS C.I.S 50 mm
Handlebar Race Face Atlas 35 Alu 820 mm
Wheelset DT Swiss HX1700 LS Alu 29"
Tires Schwalbe Magic Mary Super Ground Soft/ Schwalbe Nobby Nic Super Trail Speedgrip 2.4/2.4

Technical Data

Size S M L XL
Weight 19.4 kg
Perm. total weight 135 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 116 kg
Trailer approval nein
Kickstand mount nein

Specific Features


Tuning-Tip Cut down the handlebars | Tires with softer rubber compound and tougher casing

The geometry of the Light-eMTB FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 2023

The FOCUS Jam² SL is available in four sizes, S to XL. Our test bike in size L combines 485 mm reach and a 440 mm seat tube. The latter is one of the shortest in the entire test field which, together with a dropper post that can be fully inserted into the frame, ensures plenty of freedom of movement. Chainstay length can be adjusted between 440 mm and 447 mm using two flip-chips in the seat and chainstays. Sizes S and M come standard in the short configuration while sizes L and XL are delivered in the long setting. In addition, you can change the head angle between 64.5° and 65.5° by turning the headset cups. We rode the bike in the long setting with the slacker head angle.

Size S M L XL
Seat tube 390 mm 420 mm 440 mm 460 mm
Top tube 578 mm 607 mm 637 mm 672 mm
Head tube 100 mm 100 mm 120 mm 140 mm
Head angle 65.5° 65.5° 65.5° 65.5°
Seat angle 76.5° 76.5° 76.5° 76.5°
Chainstay 440 mm 440 mm 440 mm 440 mm
BB Drop 25 mm 25 mm 25 mm 25 mm
Wheelbase 1.194 mm 1.224 mm 1.257 mm 1.295 mm
Reach 460 mm 485 mm 510 mm 535 mm
Stack 614 mm 614 mm 632 mm 650 mm
Helmet POC Tectal | Glasses Uvex Sportstyle 235 | Backpack POC Column VPD Backpack 8L | Shirt POC Reform | Shorts Fox Ranger | Kneepad Fox Launch D3O | Shoes Endura Hummvee | Gloves Dirtlej MTB Gloves

The Light-eMTB FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 2023 on the trail

The FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 places you in a comfortable pedalling position, which is neither too upright nor overly stretched. Riding uphill, the rear suspension isn’t the most efficient and bobs noticeably, but generates plenty of traction on technical climbs. If you need a little more help, you can resort to Fazua’s temporary Boost function, which increases the peak output to 450 W for 12 seconds. Unfortunately, this mode is rather complicated to control. On very steep climbs, you’ll have to actively weight the front wheel to prevent it from lifting. As a result, the Jam² SL prefers relaxed backcountry rides over challenging climbing expeditions, which makes it suitable for touring – although the 430 Wh battery and the lack of a range extender might constitute a major problem here.

The Jam² SL 9.9 boasts a very discreet look and doesn’t even have a charging port. On the downside, the battery can’t be charged on the bike and has to be removed for charging.

Two-wheeled sofa
No other bike in this test makes you feel as relaxed when making your way down the mountain. You can tell that tester Philip doesn’t have a care in the world.

Riding downhill, you’re nicely integrated with the bike. The high front end inspires huge amounts of confidence, and the weight is evenly distributed between the front and rear. In typical FOCUS fashion, the Jam² SL 9.9 has excellent handling but, apart from that, its character is radically different from the German brand’s other bikes. For starters, the suspension provides far more support, encouraging you to gap over nasty rock gardens rather than ploughing through them while hoping for the best. According to FOCUS, they’ve worked on the shock tune since delivering our test bike, meaning that the rear suspension of the production bike is more defined – but still provides good traction and final progression. In line with its understated look, the Jam² SL is pleasantly unglamorous and does its job discreetly, so you don’t have to worry about what’s happening underneath you. Although the FOCUS might not feel as composed and agile as the Orbea, it’s an excellent all rounder with intuitive, predictable handling. As a result, it’s the easiest bike to ride in this group test, which makes it particularly suitable for beginners.

With its solid spec, efficient suspension and predictable handling, the FOCUS Jam² SL is a workhorse for beginners and experts alike.

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. efficient


  1. cumbersome
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. confident


  1. demanding
  2. balanced


  1. harsh
  2. plush

Fun Factor

  1. planted
  2. poppy

Value for money

  1. terrible
  2. very good

Intended Use










While at first glance, the FOCUS Jam² SL 9.9 is seemingly unspectacular, both in terms of looks and riding performance, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Overall, the Jam² SL is a discreet all-rounder that combines a comfortable touring character with strong trail performance. The solid spec, good suspension and predictable handling make it a workhorse for beginners and experts alike, together with the smallest price tag in the entire test field.


  • Solid spec
  • Intuitive handling
  • Strong all rounder


  • The tires don’t do justice to the potential of the bike
  • Battery has to be removed for charging

You can find out more about at

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best Light-E-MTB 2023 – 8 models in review

All bikes in test: Focus Jam² SL 9.9 2023 | Forestal Siryon Diode (Zum Test) | Haibike LYKE CF SE (Zum Test) | Orbea Rise M-LTD (Zum Test) | Pivot Shuttle SL Pro X01(Zum Test) | SCOTT Lumen eRIDE 900 SL (Zum Test) | SIMPLON Rapcon Pmax TQ (Zum Test) | Trek Fuel EXe 9.9 XX1 AXS (Zum Test)

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Words: Simon Kohler Photos: Peter Walker, Mike Hunger