Test e-bikes 2018

Electric bikes, or ebikes as they’re frequently known, space a yes, really popular option to carry out a bit of extra assistance on her ride. An electric bike wollen help keep your speed hoch on die flat und give you ns extra push sie need zu get up any hills on her way.

Du schaust: Test e-bikes 2018


As more und more human being take to ebikes, prices are coming down and manufacturers are adding new models to your ranges, with updated attributes like lighter motors and improved battery ranges.

We’re continually adding zu our collection von electric bike reviews here hinweisen stopcat.org, dafür if you’ve gott a kind of ebike or a specific e bike model in mind, you’ll probably find a testimonial here.


But if you’re still not certain what you’re looking for in your neu ebike, review on zum our complete run-down des electric bicycle types, to find ns right one weil das you.

There room ebikes for every type von riding, from electric mountain bikes helping sie get to the top von the next downhill trail kommen sie folding city ebikes you can take with you on your commute.

We’ll walk through ns different types des ebike, what they’re good for, und point you to our buyer’s guides and top reviews weil das each category.

The selection of ebike options mirrors ns range des non-motorised bikes available, dafür it’s deshalb worth analysis our best bike buyer’s overview too.

Electric bike basics

First, let’s anfang with ns basics. In electric bike zu sein a pedal bike with bei electric motor und battery that administer assistance as freundin pedal.

To legally qualify as in electric bike, you oase to pedal zum the motor to absent in. If yes a bar-mounted “throttle” or twist grip zu control the power, the bike möchte legally be thought about a moped. That method it i will not ~ qualify for tax- und registration-free ownership, weist least an the UK and EU.

Likewise, support ist legally only enabled up to 15mph/25kph an the UK, EU und Australia, above which the motiv will reduced out und any added speed will schutz to be the result des your own effort. Yet you’re bei luck if you’re analysis this and riding in the US, where your motor can keep on pushing up zu 20mph.

Take a look hinweisen our ebike FAQs weil das the answers kommen sie common electric bike questions.

Electric bike types

Electric roadway bikes


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ns Scott Addict eRIDE Premium is without doubt a great looking bike, nur like the non-assisted Addict RC sibling. Russell Burton / instant Media
If sie enjoy riding top top roads, yet want a bit von help to keep her speed hoch or zu get you hoch hills, there room a number des drop-bar ebikes out there from well-known brands.

Many motors und batteries kann be unobtrusive, too, so it’s less than noticeable that she riding bei ebike. Fazua, ebikemotion und Bosch are motiv systems to look the end for.

You may notfall be adding a lot of extra weight either because die lightest road ebikes are touching 11kg.


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die Scott Addict eRIDE Premium ist almost tantamount from the standard Addict RC. Russell Burton / immediate Media
However, with plenty of road riders achieving speeds on ns flat close zu 15mph or above, you may feel that you’re carrying tot weight about with the motiv cutting out hinweisen that top assisted speed.

It wollen conserve battery, though, und with cautious use you kann sein get significantly more mileage the end of in ebike system than ns typical 75km quoted range, so more ambitious, longer excursions möchte be in ~ reach.

Meanwhile, if she interested bei riding a wider range von terrain, there are an increasing number von gravel e bike options out there. With wider tyres and more grip, they’ll help you tackle ns rough stuff.

Pros: schon fast for road riding and lightweight (for bei electric bike)

Cons: Extra weight weil das no obtain if you’re riding end 15mph

Electric hill bikes


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electric mountain bikes kann be great on ns climbs however handling on the descents kann sein take a bit of getting used to. Ian Linton / instant Media
For some hill bikers, ns allure of that extra push up hills ist hard to beat.

An e-MTB wollen get you to ns top quicker, specifically on technical, steeper climbers, and with more energy kommen sie enjoy die descents. Plus, getting up die ups much more easily will give freundin extra range to explore further.



even though the STEPS E8000 motiv only has actually 75Nm von torque, it’s ausblüten plenty kommen sie winch trost tough climbs. Ian Linton
Recent improvements an e-MTB performance typical handling zu sein approaching that des unpowered mountain bikes zum flat-out speak fun.

But, nevertheless, ns extra weight can make handling an ext tricky on specifically technical sections, so it’s a great idea to ease turn off a little until you’ve got the feel of the bike.

Pros: getting to ns top ist a last easier

Cons: Extra weight can affect handling

Electric hybrid bikes


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A classic mischung position makes the Carrera Crossfuse in ideal bike zum negotiating traffic. Russell Burton / instant Media
Electric mischung bikes will schutz flat bars and stable handling. Castle often ns least high value ebikes und provide a good entry point if sie want to go electric.

With their upright position, electrical hybrids are great if you planning kommen sie commute kommen sie work by bike, ride roughly town or want zu go weil das leisurely rides on bike trails or with parks.


electrical hybrids make great commuter or recreation bikes. Russell Burton / prompt Media
But they’re frequently at ns heavier ende of the ebike spectrum because motiv systems tend to be much less sophisticated und the bikes space strongly built zum robustness. So, if sie need to carry them up stairs or over obstacles, it could be bei effort und they kann be awkward kommen sie store.

As fine as general use hybride ebikes, there room specialist modell designed zum carrying cargo or zum shopping.

Pros: simple riding position und versatility

Cons: regularly heavy and cumbersome weil das storage

Electric urgently bikes


Commuters that travel über public fahrzeug or are brief on an are are catered weil das too. Oliver Woodman / immediate Media
If sie want kommen sie commute or are just pressed weil das space zu store her ride, a compact electric folding bike can be the answer. The motiv means that much longer bike commutes space easier und more comfortable than v a typical folding bike.

Folding ebikes often oase the battery hidden in their frames, or they may kommen sie with a removable battery to make transporting them on and off public fahrzeug a little easier. A removable battery so means the you kann sein take it somewhere where it’s easier kommen sie charge (at her desk, weil das example, if sie use die bike zu ride kommen sie work).

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But ns extra weight des the motor und battery typical that transferring a folding ebike on und off publicly transport und up und down stairs wollen be harder, und the accessible range kann sein be rather limited in some models.

Pros: Ideal zum a much longer commute, kann be handled public transport

Cons: can be heavy to carry on und off publicly transport und may have limited range

What zu look zum when buying in electric bike?

Motor position


Specialized’s own-brand motor is considerably lighter than many other designs. Oli Woodman / immediate Media
Electric bikes have their motors mounted bei one of three places: an the middle of the bike, in the behind hub or an the front hub.

Many system will oase mid-mounted motors that sit at the bottom bracket and power the elektronisches fahrrad through die chain. That a good position weil das the motiv because it hülle the extra mass short down und centrally bei the framework where it i will not ~ affect die bike’s stability and handling.

The rear wheel hub is also a popular place kommen sie put the motor. Again, it’s low down and since a lot of ns rider’s weight zu sein on the zurück wheel, handling and road fixed are notfall too adversely affected über the extra weight and power.

Finally, the motiv may be bei the former hub. The a contempt trickier position because the motiv unit kann affect steering und generally there’s notfall as viel weight on the front wheel, deshalb grip might be impacted. It’s frequently used for folding ebikes und sometimes for hybrids.

As well as ready-built ebikes, you tun können buy kits zu convert a normal bike to bei ebike. There room kits that use a motor an each von these positions. We’ve got a round-up des the most popular e bike conversion kits.

Batteries

An electric bike wollen be powered von a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. Like die batteries in other electrical vehicles, lock used for their low weight and performance, together with rapid recharging – typically in a few hours.

In general, the more expensive die ebike, the larger die battery capacity, dafür the usage you kann sein get betwee charges increases.

There’s a range des battery shapes, sizes und positions. Bolted to the top von the down tube ist a popular auswahl but part ebikes will schutz their batteries covert within ns down pipe or sometimes ns seat tube, making for a much more elegant (and invariably more expensive) solution.

Bottle cage batteries are an additional way to disguise the battery und are often used for a back-up battery kommen sie increase range.

The batteries themselves can normally be fee from a standard wall surface plug, either bei situ on ns bike via a port or with die battery itself eliminated from the bike. It’s an extremely common to see removable battery package that are secured through a key.

Electric cycle range


How far you kann sein ride before your battery provides up ist unlikely kommen sie be in issue for most ebike riders – it’s more a question von how regularly you can ride before freundin need zu recharge it.

Range is very dependent on your riding style und where und how sie ride, and also being dependent on ns battery capacity. Some ebikes will schutz multiple battery that might eke the end 100 mile plus ~ above a charge, conversely, others, specifically folding ebikes designed zum easier carrying and folding und for shorter stadt rides may have a range von 20 miles or less.

There möchte be multiple assistance levels the you kann tailor to your needs und select between as sie ride. Select bei eco or low assist mode und you will need to put bei more effort, but your battery will belastung longer.

On die other hand, a greater assist setting is useful kommen sie get freundin up die hills und to accelerate more easily an stop-start conditions, but wollen drain her battery substantially faster.

You tun können usually switch the motor off entirely zu conserve battery and with most system there i will not ~ be any added drag, back you still have the extra weight des the motor und battery.

Sensors

To control the motor’s output, bei ebike will schutz a range of sensors. First, there’ll be a speed sensor, so that help cuts the end at die legal best speed.

To match the assistance level kommen sie your pedalling input and make sure that an ebike won’t run away with you, there’ll it is in cadence und torque sensors too.


More sophisticated systems may add an ext sensors; zu control that output an Smart assist mode, the Giant Trance e +1 electrical mountain bicycle uses five sensors bei all.

There’ll be some sort of display of battery und assistance level, follow me with knoten to select die assistance mode. Die display zu sein often a bar-mounted führen zu unit that might so give freundin speed, distance und range info. More minimalist displays are often used ~ above racier roadway ebikes though, with ns front des the oberteil tube gift a renowned position.


Electric bike slang buster

Assist level

How much additional help your motor gives you as freundin ride. Many ebikes will have multiple levels to switch bolzen as sie ride, relying on the topographisch (and your power levels). Some wollen be able zu automatically switch assistance level up and down, relying on where you’re riding or zu conserve your battery levels. More power means much less range.

EAPC

Short for Electrically helped Pedal Cycle, this ist the main legal term regularly used von the UK government to describe ebikes.

Watts

Output for bei ebike motor ist typically measured bei watts. It is a measure von the maximum energie it kann produce.

Watt hours

Ebike battery capacity is measured in watt hours – or, bei other words, how plenty of watts a battery tun können put out und for how long. Deshalb if a 250-watt motiv was fed von a 250Wh battery und run punkt full power, die battery would drain in an hour. An practice, your motiv doesn’t run weist full power much of ns time, dafür your battery will last longer 보다 this.

Torque

For eMTBs, in particular, talk is also an vital figure. It steps how much turning pressure a motor will put in, something the helps add zu your own initiative especially wie climbing hills.

Pedelec (pedal electrical cycle)

Another synonym for bei electric bike.

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Walk mode

If you’re walk to have to press your ebike, a go mode möchte use the motiv to move the bike in addition to you. Because ebikes tend to be heavy, it’s advantageous if sie need to push your an equipment any distance.