E-bikes are a great alternative to traditional bicycles, offering pedal assistance that allows you to ride faster, farther, and with more cargo. When choosing an e-bike, there are several decision points to consider:
There are three classes of e-bikes, with varying levels of pedal assistance and speed limits. Class 1 e-bikes provide pedal assistance up to 20 miles per hour, making them suitable for most casual riders. Class 2 e-bikes have a throttle assist, meaning you can ride without pedaling.
Class 3 e-bikes offer pedal assistance for up to 28 miles per hour, making them ideal for longer commutes or more experienced riders. When choosing an e-bike, consider which class best suits your needs and local regulations.
We also have out-of-class e-bikes that do not conform to the classification. For example, some "class 2 e-bikes" have a maximum speed of 24 mph. An out-of-class e-bike is not necessarily a bad e-bike.
E-bike motors come in two types: mid-drive and hub drive motors. Mid-drive motors are located in the bottom bracket and work with your bike's gearing system, providing more efficient battery use. On the other hand, Hub drive motors are located in the front or rear hub and give a more push or pull feeling.
When choosing a motor, consider the placement, efficiency, and power (torque and wattage) required for your riding style.
E-bike batteries come in various capacities, ranging from 250 to over 750 watt-hours, with removable or non-removable options. The range of an e-bike depends on the amount of pedal assist used. Check out this article for more information about batteries.
The weight of e-bikes can vary, ranging from around twenty-five pounds for a small folding e-bike to over 80-90 pounds or more for a robust touring bike. The weight of an e-bike can be influenced by factors such as the type of motor, battery size and placement, frame material, and added features.
The range of an e-bike can vary based on several factors, including the battery capacity, terrain, riding style, and the amount of pedal assistance used. The range of an e-bike typically is between 20 to 70 miles. Check out our fifteen tips for getting the most out of your battery.
E-bikes are versatile, with models designed for commuting, mountain biking, road cycling, and cargo hauling. They offer a great alternative to cars, reducing traffic congestion and air pollution, and are an excellent way to save on transportation costs.
The price for an e-bike can vary widely depending on the brand, model, and features. E-bikes are normally more expensive than traditional bicycles due to the added electric components and technology.
Prices can range from a few hundred dollars for entry-level models you want to avoid to thousands of dollars for high-end, premium e-bikes. Find out more with our independent buyers' guide.
Check out our independent reviews of e-bike components and accessories.
Choosing the perfect e-bike can initially seem overwhelming. Many bike shops offer test rides, and this is the perfect opportunity to get a feel for different e-bikes and decide which one is right for you. Focus on the quality of the e-bike's components as your safety is a top priority. Look for established brand names.
With these tips in mind, you're well on your way to choosing the perfect e-bike. So go ahead and make the investment in your health and happiness. Happy e-riding!