GSD: The Basics

GSD Gen 2: The Basics

This article refers to GSD Gen 2 bikes.

Thanks for choosing Tern, and congrats on your new GSD Gen 2. We’re excited for you to discover how useful, fun, and versatile the GSD can be.

In this article, we’ll help you get acquainted with your GSD’s main parts and features.

If you’d prefer to get this information from a video, you can watch the GSD Owner Briefing. We’ll also link each subheading in this article to the relevant video segment so you can get a visual explanation alongside the text.


1. Getting Started

2. Special Bosch Features

3. Unique GSD Components

4. Essential Bike Parts

5. For More Information

1. Getting Started

This section will go over the essential information you need to get started with your new GSD.

1.1 The GSD is a Pedelec  

The GSD is a pedal-electric bicycle, also known as a pedelec. That means the motor system only provides power while the pedals are in motion.

The GSD’s motor system makes riding easier, but otherwise, the GSD handles much like a regular bike.

1.2 Bosch Cargo Line Motor System Basics  

Your GSD is equipped with a Bosch Cargo Line Motor System. You control the motor system through the display, which is mounted on the handlebars.

Depending on which model you own, your GSD will have either a Purion Display or an Intuvia Display.

It’s best to turn the GSD’s motor system on and off while standing next to or straddling the bike—not while applying pressure to the pedals.

To turn the display ON, press the power button. To turn OFF, press the same button.

To switch between different assistance levels, press the “+” or “-” button to switch between OFF, ECO, TOUR, SPORT, or TURBO.

1.3 Integrated Lighting System  

The GSD is equipped with integrated LED lighting, including a front light, rear light, and brake lights. These lights are essential safety features that help you see and be seen.

Depending on which model you own, your GSD will have either a Valo Light or an Ignis Headlight.

Valo Light

The Valo Light is controlled by a switch on the rear of the light. To turn on the light, slide the switch to the right. To turn off, just slide the switch to the left.

Ignis Headlight

The Ignis Headlight is controlled by a pair of buttons on the left side of the handlebars. Using your left thumb, press the front-facing button once to turn the Ignis on or off.

The Ignis includes a bright low beam and an even brighter high beam that you can switch between depending on your riding conditions. To toggle between high and low beams, use your index finger to single press the rear button.

Rearstop Brake Light

All GSD models include a Rearstop Brake Light to let other road users know when you’re slowing down or stopping.

This red light on the rear of the GSD will come on automatically any time you pull either of the brake levers, as long as the bike’s display is turned on. The brake light will come on even if your bike's main lighting system is turned off.

1.4 Charging Your Bike  

To charge your battery, use the official Bosch battery charger that came with your GSD.

If you expect to charge the battery both at work and at home, we suggest buying an extra charger.

The battery can be charged at any time—on or off the bike—without shortening its service life.

Charging On the Bike

To charge the battery on the bike, open the rubber lid on the battery mount, plug the connector into the socket, and then connect the charger to an electric source.

If you've got two batteries on the bike, you still only need one charger. Connect the charger to the battery nearest the motor, and both batteries will charge simultaneously.

Charging Off the Bike

To charge the battery off the bike, remove the battery first. Insert the key into the lock, turn, lift, and pull out the battery.

Once the battery is off the bike, plug the connector into the socket on the bottom of the battery, and then connect the charger to an electric source.

To re-insert the battery, place the battery on the battery mount and push until you hear a click.

1.5 Battery and Frame Lock Key  

Your GSD came with two keys that work for both the battery and the frame lock. Make sure to separate these keys and store the extra one in a safe place.

Also, make sure to write down the serial number on the keys since the serial number can be used to get a new set if yours are lost or damaged. You can also register your keys with Abus to make getting replacements easier.

2. Special Bosch Features

In this section, we’ll introduce you to a few special features offered by your GSD’s Bosch motor system.

2.1 Walk Assist Mode  

The Bosch motor system includes a Walk Assist mode that provides a little bit of assistance when walking alongside and pushing the bike. It can come in handy when you need to walk the bike up a steep hill or ramp, especially when the bike is under load.

To activate Walk Assist, make sure the bike is in one of the four e-assist modes (Walk Assist won’t turn on if the motor system is set to “Off”). Then, locate the Walk Assist button.

If you have a Purion Display, the Walk Assist button is located on the bottom side of the Purion Display.

If you have an Intuvia Display, the Walk Assist button is located on the top side of the button set on the handlebars, above the “+” button.

Short press the Walk Assist button. An icon reading “WALK+” will appear on the display. Immediately press the “+” button for 3 seconds and keep holding the button to use Walk Assist.

2.2 Battery Range Information  

The GSD’s battery range varies based on many factors, including rider and cargo weight, which e-assist level you use, riding style and conditions, and more.

If you’re interested in a detailed estimate of your battery range, check out Bosch’s E-Bike Range Assistant, a range calculator that takes your individual riding situation into account.

Once you’re on the road, your bike’s display provides a continuously updated range estimate based on your actual riding data. To view this information using the Purion display, long-press the "minus" button to toggle through the trip stats menu until the range estimate appears. For the Intuvia display, single-press the “i” button to do the same.

2.3 Optional Dual Battery  

One feature that makes the GSD unique is its built-in Dual Battery capabilities. You can greatly extend your range just by purchasing a second battery and placing it in the second battery mount, no additional setup needed.

Speak with your bike dealer for information about acquiring a second battery.

3. Unique GSD Components

This section will introduce you to the special GSD parts you should know about.

3.1 Atlas Lockstand  

The GSD features a super-strong, super-stable kickstand called the Atlas Lockstand. The Lockstand uses a combination of Auto-Lock and Remote Unlock to make loading and unloading kids and heavy cargo easier and safer.

To engage the Atlas Lockstand, use your foot to push it down and rock the bike backward slightly. The Lockstand will automatically lock into place, preventing the GSD from moving until you're ready.

To disengage the Lockstand, simply straddle the bike, press the Remote Unlock lever located on the handlebars' left side, and roll forward. It is not possible to disengage the Lockstand without using the Remote Unlock button.

Please be aware that the Atlas Lockstand has a maximum capacity of 80 kg.

3.2 Abus Frame Lock  

Your GSD is equipped with an Abus Frame Lock for extra security during quick stops.

As we mentioned before, the frame and battery locks are keyed alike, meaning the same key works for both locks.

To lock the frame lock, turn the key and slide down the knob until you hear a “click.” Then pull out the key. The key can only be pulled out when the lock is engaged. To unlock the frame lock, insert the key and turn.

For extra security, an Abus chain that locks into the pre-installed frame lock can be purchased separately.

3.3 Suspension Fork  

All GSD models come equipped with a front suspension fork to help absorb bumps and vibrations from the road.

There are two adjusters on the fork: a Speed Lock adjuster and a Preload adjuster.

To enable suspension, turn the Speed Lock adjuster to the Open position. To disable suspension, turn the Speed Lock adjuster to the Lock position.

The preload adjuster lets you adjust the hardness or softness of your ride. Turn the Preload adjuster clockwise for a harder ride or turn it counter-clockwise for a softer one.

3.4 Suspension Seatpost  

Some GSD models also include a Cane Creek Thudbuster Suspension Seatpost for an even cushier ride.

It’s possible to switch out the elastomer in the seatpost without tools to make it easier for different-sized riders to share the bike comfortably. Visit the manufacturer’s website or ask your Tern dealer for more information.

3.5 Folding Handlepost  

The GSD’s folding Physis Handlepost allows you to flat-fold the bike when necessary.

To open the Physis Handlepost joint, slide the red security knob, and push the lever. To close the joint, push the lever towards the Physis Handlepost. The lever will lock automatically.

Be sure that the lever feels stiff when it opens and closes—but not too stiff. The stiffness is just right if you can use two or three fingers to close the lever and a firm push of your thumb to open it.

If the lever is not correctly closed or adjusted, there is a risk of injury.

3.6 Quick Releases  

There are quick releases on two parts of your bike: the Andros stem and the seatpost.

Andros Stem Quick Release

The Andros Stem's quick releases let you adjust the handlebars' height, angle, and orientation without tools. This allows you to find your most comfortable riding position quickly.

To adjust the Andros stem, raise one Andros lever at a time. Adjust the stem and handlebar to your desired position, and then firmly close both Andros levers.

Seatpost Quick Releases

The two quick releases on the seatpost can be used to adjust the seatpost height.

Notice that there is a minimum insertion point indicator printed on the seatpost. For safety reasons, you should always stay within the indicated range when adjusting your seatpost.

From time to time, you may need to adjust the tightness of the quick release clamps on your seatpost. You’ll know it’s time to do this if it feels too easy or too difficult to open and close the quick release levers. Just use your fingers to tighten or loosen the seatpost clamp nuts.

If the quick-releases on your bike are not properly closed or adjusted, there is a risk of injury—so it’s essential to operate them correctly.

4. Essential Bike Parts

This final section will familiarize you with your bike’s braking and gearing system.

4.1 Braking  

Your GSD is equipped with front and rear hydraulic disc brakes for excellent stopping power.

When you’re looking down at your handlebars from the rider’s position, the rear brake lever is on the right, and the front brake lever is on the left. (In a few countries, this orientation may be reversed, so please double-check with your dealer or try before you ride if you’re not sure.)

Be aware that suddenly pulling the brakes hard can have dangerous results, particularly in wet or slippery conditions. In general, aim to apply even pressure to both brake levers when you need to stop.

4.2 Shifting Gears  

Shifting gears lets you tackle hills with ease and ride smoothly and efficiently no matter the terrain. How you’ll shift gears depends on what model of GSD you own.

GSD S10 Gears

The GSD S10 has a 10-speed Shimano cassette.

The gear shifters are located on the right side of the handlebars. To shift gears, either push the rear-facing shift lever paddle with your thumb (to pedal with less resistance) or pull the forward-facing shift lever paddle with your finger (to pedal with more resistance).

Remember to only shift gears while you’re pedaling. For smoother shifting, pedal lightly while changing gears.

GSD S00 Gears

The GSD S00 has an Enviolo Sportive groupset with a continuously variable gear range. This means it has a spectrum of gears rather than a fixed number.

The twist gear shifter is located on the right side of the handlebars. To shift gears, either twist the shifter away from you or towards you until you reach your desired pedaling resistance.

Unlike bikes that use a derailleur system, the GSD S00 allows you to shift gears at a standstill.

GSD R14 Gears

The GSD R14 has a Rohloff E-14 hub with electronic shifting. That means it uses electronic switches to shift gears instead of mechanical cables.

The gear shift buttons are located on the right side of the handlebars. With the Intuvia Display turned on, press the top button to shift into a higher gear or the bottom button to shift into a lower gear. Press and hold either button to shift three gears at one time.

When you shift, the Intuvia Display will show your current gear. You can also view your current gear by pressing the "i" button until the word "Gear" appears on the display.

The Rohloff hub will automatically downshift several gears when you come to a stop, making it easy to get started again. This bike can also be shifted at a standstill.

5. For More Information

That should be more than enough to get you started. As you ride more, you’ll likely have further questions. Your local Tern dealer is your best resource for getting those questions answered. You may also find the information you need here in our Knowledge Base.

We also recommend that you join our Tern GSD Facebook Group, where you can connect with fellow GSD owners, ask questions, and share your experiences.