Lezyne have built an impressive portfolio of cycling accessories in their 11 years. The company continues to develop their products and expand their range with new products and technology. With cycling lights a big part of the company’s product range, I have been running the Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL through the tail-end of Winter days and nights.
As with most of the front lights in their LED light range, the Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL features a machined Aluminium casing. This is designed to be heat-dispensing as well as being highly durable. The body is completely sealed, with small cut away’s around the lens to increase ‘side-on’ visibility. The USB charge point sits in the back of the light, behind a fixed rubber plug.
Upfront, the light beam is emitted by two high-output LEDs, housed in a MOR (maximum optical reflection) lens. As the light’s name suggests, the LED’s kick out a maximum output of 700 Lumens. In addition to the 700 Lumen ‘Overdrive’ mode, there are 7 additional modes. This is an increase from Lezyne’s Y9 models – adding a Day Flash mode to their performance range. This mode provides a powerful 700 Lumen double-flash, to increase your visibility during daytime riding. The internally sealed Li-Ion battery provides run times between 1hr 30 and 76 hrs – depending on the mode setting.
The mounting strap is fixed to the underside of the Lezyne Lite Drive with a 4mm Hex (Allen) bolt. The thick rubber strap loops under the bars and fastens securely to the plastic hook.
The thing that has always impressed me with the Lezyne’s lights, is the excellent build quality. This seems solid throughout their range. The Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL is no different. The compact Aluminium casing is elegant – for want of a better word, yet reassuringly robust at 114g. The Lite Drive is available in a more traditional black or silver finishes. However, Lezyne have added metallic blue, red or purple options to this model. This is great news for those riders keen on colour-coordinating their accessories with their bike and kit. Or maybe just fancy adding a splash of colour to their stealthy ride. The Lite Drive sits at the bottom of Lezyne’s performance range of bike lights. It’s 700 Lumen over-drive output is powerful enough for riding around the darkest of country lanes or trails. The Li-Ion battery has a decent run time in just about all of the different output modes. The recharge time is around 6 hours from empty, which isn’t particularly fast so it’s important to remember to plug it in well before you ride.
The rubber on/off button lights up and doubles as a battery life indicator. I’m a passionate about the use of bike lights at any time of day – so the addition of the ‘Day Flash’ mode gets a big thumbs-up. It uses the powerful 700 Lumens output and the double-flash pattern make it visible when riding in bright sunshine.
When it comes to the different modes, the Lezyne Lite Drive features an incredible 8 modes. Personally, I feel that this is excessive. I found it a little frustrating having to click through so many options to find the mode you want to use. That being said though, the Lite Drive does have the ‘Mode Memory’ function which we have seen on previous editions. This means that when you turn the light on, it automatically returns to the last mode used, prior to switching off.
I like the rubber mounting strap that Lezyne use for their more compact lights. I did find this one a bit fiddly to fit. Once in place though, it’s secure. Riding on rougher ground produced a little movement through vibration, but this wasn’t enough to cause any issues.
Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL Light Review Conclusion
There is very little to not like about Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL. It’s compact, and well made. The smooth, coloured Aluminium casing provides a touch of class to an accessory range designed for function rather than fashion. When it comes to it’s functionality, this light does exactly what it is supposed to and then some. The 700 Lumens output means this is a great light to see by – whether commuting or out on a night ride. The addition of a bright Day Flash mode is a big plus for safety-conscious riders wanting to be visible during the day. My only frustration is that I do feel 8 modes in total is unnecessary. Some may find it a bit awkward to connect to the hook but it is secure once in place. All in all, the Lezyne Lite Drive 700XL is a great light that ticks just about all of the boxes.
Pros - Decent output / classy looks / good battery life / Day Flash mode
Cons - Too many modes / Mount can be a little fiddly