Review: Lezyne Super Drive XL

$120 for a 709 Lumen light with field replaceable battery

Lights Lights Shootout

2015 Lights Shootout

Lezyne Super Drive XL Front

The Lezyne Super Drive XL jumps in output from 579 measured Lumens to 709 this year. That’s a pretty good jump and it’s what is needed to compete in this very tough $120 flashlight sweet spot.

The competition is very tough now with the Bontrager Ion 700, CatEye Volt 700 or Serfas and Niterider. But where this light still leads the pack is with its field replaceable battery. If ‘endless’ run time is what you want with a pack of backup batteries, then the Lezyne is the only game in town.

The light output Lumen graph is flat throughout its battery cycle. That is what it’s designed for, if you want a light that will deliver its promised output throughout the battery run time, in all kinds of inclement conditions and hot weather.

Note that when you turn the light on, you will not get the 700 Lumens as advertised in the box. You have to go through a special sequence (pressing the button for 6 seconds) to go in to the special Overdrive mode. It’s not difficult to enter this mode, but we are fairly certain many users will never realize that they are not in 700 Lumen mode by default. But a good feature is the light will remember what mode you were in last time and it will keep it there.

Beam Pattern Photo

We photographed the lights in the same location setting with the same camera settings. The photos were taken in the back yard that is approximately 25 yards long. These photos feature many objects and a distinct background to analyze detail and beam pattern. Compare all Beam Patterns here »

Lezyne Super Drive XL Backyard Beam Pattern

Integrating Sphere Measured Lumens

This light measured 709 Lumens in an integrating sphere. Claimed Lumens by the manufacturer is 700 Lumens. The Lumen-hour graph below shows how the light performs over the first three minutes of its battery cycle. Compare all Lumen Tests here »

Lezyne Super Drive XL Lumen Chart

Strengths
  • Honest Lumen rating at 709 Lumens
  • Lumens over time graph is as flat and stable
  • Good beam pattern with focused spot side visibility
  • Field replaceable battery extends run time
Weaknesses
  • Light is big for its output
  • Having the claimed output level in a hidden Overdrive mode is not ideal since it will be missed by many
  • Rear battery cover is easy to cross-thread and a bit difficult to screw in
Specifications
  • Price: $120
  • Claimed Lumens: 700 Lumens
  • Measured Lumens: 709 Lumens
  • Lumens per $: 5.91 Lumens
  • Lumens per gram: 5.14 Lumens
  • Time on High: 1:30 Hours
  • Charge Time: 3:00 Hours
  • Mounted Weight: 138 grams
  • Category: Flashlight/Commuter
Overall Rating

4.5 Flamin' Chili Peppers 4.5 out of 5 Flamin’ Chili Peppers

For more information visit www.lezyne.com.

This article is part of Mtbr and RoadBikeReview’s 2015 Lights Shootout. To see all the bike lights tested CLICK HERE.


About the author: Francis Cebedo

The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.


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