The Best Electric Bikes Of 2017 – A Complete Buying Guide

After thoroughly reviewing 10 of the best electric bikes available today, we think the Addmotor HITHOT and Ancheer Power Plus are the best options available.

In case you don’t know by now, electric bikes are in.

What was once considered a small enthusiast bike niche has now grown to be a major force worldwide, as more riders take advantage of the growth and innovation in technology over the last decade or so.

There are now numerous choices available in most any bike genre, which is a blessing and a curse. One one hand, ore selection is always good, but that also means you have more to sort through when deciding on one to buy for yourself.

This being a bike review site, we decided to do the work for you, and have tested and hand picked a handful of models from each main electric bike genre, while also giving attention to a wide range of budgets.

We’ll also tell you some things to keep in mind when you’re shopping as well.

Listed below are our favorite electric bikes currently available, with more details on each bike a little further down, and also in our review section as well.

THE BEST ELECTRIC MOUNTAIN BIKE

Electric mountain bikes have come a long way in recent years. You can now find anything from light trail riders, to full-suspension versions that can handle the same rough terrain that an ordinary mountain bike would, but with an added boost of power and speed for longer rides.

The Addmotor HITHOT is an advanced electric mountain bike that offers an astounding amount of versatility, thanks to an innovative design and high-end components.

The HITHOT can certainly hold its own on advanced trails and off-road riding, while still providing excellent commuter and fitness qualities as well.

The bike’s frame boasts a full-suspension design, and is crafted from aluminum alloy. This gives it a bit of added shock absorption, while helping to keep the weight to about 52 pounds. Yes, that’s heavy for a mountain bike, but the motor aspect helps erase and lagging you might otherwise have.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The suspension system features a SR Suntour XCT front fork with 100mm of travel, and a coil King Shock rear shock holding up the back end. They are both responsive, and easily absorb big impacts from obstacles and jumps.

The seating position is very adjustable, and compliments the slightly more relaxed handlebar and stem design, making it highly maneuverable on the trail, and comfortable when on the pavement. This is definitely a high-end mountain bike through and through, but Addmotor tweaked it a bit to allow for casual city riding with the motor when needed.

Shimano components make up the drivetrain, which totals 7 gears. The shifter and the twist-n-go motor throttle are right by each other on the grip for better convenience when using both as the same time.

The HITHOT’s alloy disc brakes are made by TEKTRO, which are wholly capable of handling precise stopping power in any number of situations, without feeling mushy or overly sensitive.

The bike’s wheels takes a slightly larger approach than the standard 26-inch wheels you still see a lot, opting for a 27.5-inch size instead. This gives the bike more clearance, and allows for higher speeds as well.

Durable Kenda tires and alloy rims form a potent combination that gives the HITHOT an aggressive feel with an adequate amount of grip on off-road surfaces, while avoiding tan overly knobby design that would otherwise cause a rough ride.

The bike’s motor is the real star. The 500W brushless rear hub motor operates off of 47 volts, providing up to 25 mph of speed when using just the throttle alone. There are six different setting for pedal assistance, helping you fine-tune for any given situation. The lithium battery ensures around 60 miles on one charge.

The Addmotor HITHOT is everything you want in an electric mountain bike. It’s rugged, tough, and nimble, while still allowing for plenty of leeway in terms of pedal assistance, with a full-throttle mode for the times you just want to coast. This can transform your trail riding. It’s worth every penny.

Read our in-depth review by clicking here.

Not every quality electric mountain bike costs thousands of dollars. For those looking for a more affordable hardtail option, there is the Ancheer Power Plus.

While this is very much a viable mountain bike, it does have a sort of hybrid appeal that is reinforced by its powerful motor.

The Power Plus has a rugged look to it, hinting at its off-road capabilities. It uses an aluminum alloy frame, and combines that with a carbon steel suspension fork in the front.

The frame provides some give and flex, with the fork holding down the majority of the shock absorption, with satisfactory results.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The bike’s handlebars have a bit more curve than you usually see on a mountain bike, ensuring a little more of a relaxed feel that carries over to non-trail use. An instantly adjustable saddle allows you to quickly alter your riding stance for certain situations,

The Power Plus comes with a full 21-gear drivetrain, helping it retain the feel of a more conventional mountain bike. The shifting is quick and responsive, coming by the way of trigger shifters on each grip.

Disc brakes are used on the front and back for added stopping power with a more controlled feel than you get with caliper brakes. The alloy discs are much better off handling the increased load an electric bike provides.

Ancheer went with the traditional 26-inch size for their wheelset, which consists of Wanda King tires and Two Knives DX-3000 alloy rims. The tires have a less-prominent tread design then you see on other mountain bikes, which does help it have a softer ride on hard surfaces.

The Power Plus has a moderately-sized motor, offering up 250 watts located on the rear wheel hub. It has three different speeds available for pedal assisting, and also allows for full-throttle riding without pedaling when you need it.

A 36V lithium battery powers the motor for around 20 miles of pedal-less riding, and around 30 when using the assist modes. Recharging a an empty battery requires a wait of anywhere from 4 to 6 hours.

Some of the bike’s more commuter-oriented features include an LED headlight, kickstand, and even an air horn.

You can have all of this for under $700. For a legitimate hardtail mountain bike complete with engine, that’s more than economical, especially when considering its versatile commuter appeal.

Want to learn more? Read our review.

Cyclamatic is one of the pioneering brands of electric mountain bikes, and the CX1 is one of their oldest models. Each year it gets a few upgrades, and this year’s version is the best so far, and the lowest priced.

The CX1 is not the most rough and tumble of mountain bikes, but it can definitely handle easier trails and light off road riding with ease, while still being adept for pavement riding.

It combines a number of features with years of wisdom in bike design to create an affordable electric mountain bike that can be enjoyed by riders of all skill levels.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The frame of the CX1 is made of steel, which is a break from the normal aluminum material most electric bikes use due to weight. As you may imagine, the CX1 is a little on the heavy side at 47 pounds, but not that much more than its aluminum contemporaries. In fact, it’s lighter than most.

It uses a racing-style saddle with light padding that gives the bike more of a serious feel. The handlebars are a traditional mountain bike design, so you’re angled forwards more aggressively than you would be on a cruiser or hybrid.

With a full 21-gear drivetrain, the CX1 ensures you get the same level of versatility and convenience that you’d have with a normal bike. Shimano components from the crank and derailleur all the way to the shifters themselves help create a cohesive feel.

Disc brakes on the front and rear provide ample stopping power with a good amount of control for when you just need to slow down a bit, without worrying about hitting the brakes too hard.

The 26-inch wheelset uses high-level Kenda tires with a knobby tread design for added grip, with a noticeable amount of smoothness on pavement surfaces.

The CX1 is a pedelec, so you’re only getting pedal assistance below 15 mph. There are three different assist modes, and you can always choose to turn the motor off for a better workout. When engaged, the motor is smooth and seamless, making hardly any sound at all.

A lithium battery powers the CX1 for about 27 miles when using the highest assist setting. Recharging takes around 6 hours.

Overall, the Cyclamatic CX1 is an excellent value. The bike includes lots of brand name components to ensure that it rides on a high level, regardless of whether it has a motor or not. The motor itself is very efficient, and works so smoothly you’ll forget it’s there half the time.

THE BEST ELECTRIC FOLDING MOUNTAIN BIKE

Electric folding mountain bikes are becoming a force all on their own. These bikes represent the most versatile and convenient class of electric bikes, giving you a bike that can handle more abuse and rough terrain, with the added benefits of being both compact, and motor-powered.

The Ancheer Folding Electric Mountain Bike can pretty much do everything. It takes on trails with ease, folds down do a small, portable size, and is fully capable of riding all on its own. It’s hard to think of what else you can ask out of a bike.

The design catches a lot of looks on and off the trail. Although it’s a folding bike, it still has a full-suspension frame, and rugged features and components to go along with its tank-like aesthetic.

The bike’s frame is crafted from aluminum alloy, and utilizes a single-tube design to allow for easy folding, and to cut down the weight to around 60 pounds.

Front and rear shocks offer plenty of travel to eat up any bumps and drops in your way. A simple lock on the folding mechanism allows for a full breakdown in just a matter of seconds.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

A cushioned and easily-adjusted seat places the rider in an aggressive mountain bike stance, which is complimented by a handlebar design that avoids that mini-bike feel some other folding bikes give off.

The drivetrain is another good aspect to this bike. 21 gears and a motor on a folding bike? You bet. Shinano components comprise the entire shifting system, giving the bike an array of speed settings to better match your riding environment.

Alloy disc brakes help with the stopping part, and are coupled with magnesium alloy rims with a flat spoke design, and 26-inch tires with a hybrid-like tread.

The bike’s 250W rear hub motor includes three different pedal assist speeds, ling with a throttle that can let the bike do the pedaling for you. This helps on flatter portions for sure, but really helps makes the bike good for urban commuting as well.

The bike can reach 17 mph when using the throttle, made possible by a 36V lithium battery that can power the bike for 15 miles on its own, and 31 miles with pedal-assist. They even threw in a headlight and kickstand to top it all off.

Lie we said, this bike does it all, for under $800.

Read our in-depth review here.

RUNNER UP: CYRUSHER XF700

The Cyrusher XF700 is another great example of a full-suspension folding electric mountain bike that can offer a ton of versatility without forsaking its off-road intentions. From trails to sidewalks, the XF700 is a force in any environment.

The XF700 has a solid aluminum frame design available in numerous bold colors.

To fold the bike, you simply unlock the frame in the center, swing the tires towards each other, and unhinge the seat to collapse.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

One of the cooler aspects of the frame’s design is the battery’s sort of hidden compartment within the tube itself. To access the battery, you unlock the frame, reach in, and slide it out. If you were a passerby who didn’t know any better, you would never know the XF700 is an electric bike at all.

The saddle has a little more cushioning than you usually see on a mountain bike, which is actually a good thing. The saddle’s design ensures a more comfortable ride, along with a gently-curved handlebar with a longer stem for a more relaxed position for your arms and back.

The drivetrain uses quality Shimano parts, and gives you 21 gear choices for maximum versatility during all types of riding. Shifting is fast and responsive, avoiding that annoying lag some shift systems have on electric bikes. Bumps and drops on trails don’t interfere with the shifting either.

Disc brakes hold down the stopping power, and you even get cushioned brake levers that help prevent slippage. Three spoke alloy rims give the bike a blackout look, while saving on weight and adding some aerodynamics as well. 26-inch tires with slight tread are great for any surface.

The motor is a brushless version located on the rear hub. It has 250 watts of power, which is great for the bike’s size and drivetrain. You can reach speeds up to 20 mph with pedal assistance, or just let the bike ride on its own. This can all be controlled with a twist throttle on the handlebar grip.

A 36V lithium battery powers the motor for around 20 miles when in throttle modes, and 25 miles when using a pedal assist speed. The charging time for the battery is fairly average, taking about 4-6 hours from a fully depleted state.

The XF700 includes a very helpful and informative computer mounted on the handlebars, keeping you up to speed on your, well...speed. You can also keep track of your battery’s charge, trip distance, and more. An LED headlight is equipped for night riding.

The Cyrusher XF700 is on the higher end price-wise, but it is there for a reason. This bike represents the top tier of electric folding mountain bike capabilities, sparing no details in the process.

THE BEST ELECTRIC FAT BIKE

Fat bikes are made to go many places ordinary bikes can’t, thanks to their rugged build and wide, oversized tires. Adding an engine to the equation makes them virtually unstoppable, and even enables them to be used for commuting and nearby travel.

The Addmotor Motan has the right idea: Start off by building an excellent fat bike, making sure it has the right components and design in the process. When that’s done, figure out a way to fit a motor in there somewhere, and call it good.

This logical approach results in a fat bike that conquers almost anything in its path, with the option to switch a motor on for the times you need a little boost, or want to feel like you’re on a dirt bike for a little while.

The controller and battery pack actually give the Motan a beefier look, with the assembly situated on the bottom frame tube. The uninformed may just assume you have some kind of cargo case, or a large water bottle.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The Motan’s frame is made from aluminum, and has an impressive front fork that helps to absorb bumps on the trail. The frame also has some give to it, and of course the fat tires help with the shock absorption as well.

Maneuvering the Motan is very easy thanks to a well-designed saddle and handlebar combination, placing the rider in an ideal position to both relax and steer without putting added strain on their arms and back.

The Motan’s drivetrain includes 7 different gears, with a spread out ratio that is perfect for the bike’s size and build. Shimano TX55 parts make up the drivetrain and the shifter, for a seamless speed changing feel that works in tune with the motor.

Fat bikes need some extra braking power, and that’s exactly what its TEKTRO disc brakes provide on each end. Not too sensitive, and not too much effort required for a full stop.

The tires of the Motan stand out. 26 x 4-inch Kenda tires give it the right amount of coverage, letting the bike easily ride over snow, sand, and any other terrain that smaller tires may not be able to deal with.

A 500W motor powers the Motan, whether you are needing pedal assistance, or want to let the bike propel itself while you simply steer. The motor is operated with a twist-shift throttle, and offers different speed and assistance settings to perfectly match your riding environment in any given moment.

The Samsung lithium battery uses 48 volts, and can keep the bike running for 30-55 miles, which is one of the longer ranges you’ll see on an electric bike. It’s not uncommon to expect speeds of around 23 mph on flatter portions of road. The battery needs 4 hours for a full recharge.

The Addmotor Motan is a true force of a bike, letting you ride through inclement weather conditions, shifting soil and dirt, and pretty much anything else it can get traction on. The motor is a perfect match for the bike’s grit and stature, giving you all that’s needed for getting around wherever the road or path leads.

Read our review by clicking here.

The Ego electric fat bike is just behind the Motan in our opinion, but not by much. The slightly different build and price may be preferred by some even due to its hardnose fork.

This is a very solid fat bike that uses a motor to really push it to another level, literally and figuratively.

The Ego’s design is fairly standard for a fat bike, but it looks great. The black color is simple and clean, and has just enough detailing to give it some depth. The frame is made from aluminum, which contributes to it staying around the average range of 54 pounds.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The motor and battery assembly are integrated in a way that doesn’t draw too much attention, but the bike doesn’t shy away from being an electric version either.

The Ego’s saddle has a cruiser look and feel to it, so if you are a fan of plush cruiser seats, you’re in luck. We don’t know why more bike manufacturers don’t do this. It even has the springs on the underside.

Combine this with a raised, curved handlebar and stem assembly, and you have an aggressive fat bike that feels relaxed and comfortable as you make your way over rougher terrain. When the motor is kicking, it’s a rather luxurious ride.

Like the Motan, this bike uses Shimano parts for a 7-speed drivetrain. The shifting is precise and quick, and the gear ratio is spread out enough to cover all the ranges you’d need on a bike like this.

The disc brakes come as no surprise, as that should be the norm with the wider wheels and tires of a fat bike. Still, the levers and brake mechanism are fluid and easy to use, and give you a better sense of control when slowing or stopping.

The Ego’s wheelset includes the standard fat bike size, with the 26 x 4-inch tires giving enough coverage to remain stable on snow, sand, mud, and more. The tread design offers some grip, but also lets you have a smooth ride on the pavement.

A powerful 500 watt motor propels the bike all on its own when needed, but it’s at its best when you're getting pedal assistance from it, especially when you’re dealing with inclines and tough riding surfaces. The bike can each about 20 mph on flat surfaces when using just the motor.

The motor’s variable speeds are controlled with a twist-n-go shift on the handlebar. A 36V lithium battery keeps it all going for around 35 miles on a full charge, and needs about 6 hours to recharge.

If front suspension isn’t an issue for you, and you want an economical fat bike that can help you get around on several different paths and surfaces, Ego’s electric fat bike is your best choice.

THE BEST ELECTRIC HYBRID BIKE

Hybrids and electric motors are a great duo. Hybrids are largely considered commuter bikes after al, and they are good for exercise and leisurely riding as well. An efficient motor can both improve your pedaling and trip distance, or just take over al by itself when you need a break.

Form, function, and style were the clear goals for the Magnum UI5, and we’d like to think they succeeded. The bike manages to avoid the kind of dorky look that some hybrids have, giving off a more sleek, hip vibe that is a reflection of its performance.

The bike manages to do all of this while seamlessly integrating a full electric motor drive that may be a little discreet, but provides a large amount of pedal power thats last for miles on end.

Combine that with an already efficient bike with a top-tier drivetrain, and you have a commuting machine that provides endless versatility

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

A saddle more similar to a road bike style gives the rider a more aggressive feel, which is actually tempered a little with the relaxed arm stance the handlebar design provides. The upwards curve and longer stem allows the rider to sit more upright, without giving up any steering ability.

The UI5 doesn’t go all out with the speed choices, but it makes the most of a well-ratioed 7 speed Shimano Tourney drivetrain, which includes a matching shifter as well. There’s enough low and high spread in between for any riding situation, especially when aided by the motor.

High-end TEKTRO brake components make up the front and rear disc brake system. This gives the UI5 a very measured and precise amount of braking, making it much easier to control the bike at high speeds, or when weaving around traffic.

The bike’s wheelset includes 26-inch, double-walled aluminum rims, coupled with some very stylish Schwalbe Big Ben 2.5-inch wide tires with a vibrant brown color. The tires are a little wider than usual hybrid tires, but they are a good match for the bike’s motor aspect.

The UI5 has a very efficient 350W rear hub motor that can carry the bike up to 22 mph. There are three different pedal assistance settings that riders can use to better match certain riding scenarios. The highest setting makes pedaling a breeze, requiring very little effort.

The Magnum includes some great extra features on the UI5 as well. The bike comes with an LCD info screen, fenders, a kickstand, a rear rack, and lights on the front and tail end for safer night riding.

This bike is everything a hybrid needs to be in order to be an efficient commuter and leisure bike. High-end components, an innovative design, powerful motor, and overall ease of use makes the Magnum UI5 an incredible electric hybrid bike value, and easily our favorite.

If you'd like to read our in-depth review, click here.

Sometimes bike manufactures think they need to infuse some unorthodox designs into electric models, which can sometimes backfire. There’s nothing wrong with keeping things conventional, working in the motor aspect in a more natural way.

The Yukon Trails Xplorer Sport is a versatile electric hybrid bike that actually borrows a little more from the cruiser bike end of things, resulting in an extremely comfortable bike that is great for everyone from senior riders to daily commuters who need an extra boost on their ride.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The Xplorer Sport isn’t flashy, instead choosing to focus on all the core aspects of a bike, with style and design further on down the list of priorities. Ths gives it a very familiar feel that shouldn’t be intimidating or off-putting to those who may be a little skeptical of electric bikes.

The frame of the bike is made from steel alloy and weighs around 60 lbs. A front fork with an adequate amount of travel helps to absorb bumps in the road, creating a smoother ride. The frame’s build offers a small amount of give as well, helping to absorb some of the shock on the rear end.

The saddle of the bike resembles a cruiser bike style, complete with a wide profile, and even an alloy suspension seatpost. The stem and handlebar setup have a cruiser influence as well. The handlebars sit high, with an extended curve allowing for relaxed steering in an upright position.

The Xplorer Sport’s drivetrain is made from Shimano components, offering 7 different gears for fluid pedaling in any scenario. A Lasco alloy crankset combines with one-piece alloy platform pedals for secure footing when pedaling.

The wheelset of the Xplorer uses 26-inch Kenda tires that have an ideal tread design for city riding. Alloy doublewall rims ensure stability and shock absorption, and TEKTRO caliper brakes offer plenty of controlled stopping power.

The bike’s 250W rear hub brushless motor is on the smaller side of the spectrum, but it still easily gives the The Xplorer Sport enough power to make pedaling a breeze, with several different levels of pedal assistance with the ability to reach speeds of 15 mph.

A 36V lithium battery powers the motor for up to 32 miles on a single charge, which is one of the longest ranges you’ll encounter. Recharging takes around 4-5 hours before it’s fully ready to be used again.

The The Xplorer Sport has some nice extras to give the bike some more versatility. It comes with a rear cargo basket, and includes fenders on the front and back tires to prevent any splashing when hitting puddles, something we always appreciate.

The Yukon Trails The Xplorer Sport makes hybrid electric bike riding easy and fun, giving it great use for everything from leisure and fitness riding, to a daily commuter. This biker can log some serious mileage, all while ensuring a smooth, easy, and enjoyable ride thanks to a well-designed motor setup.

THE BEST ELECTRIC CRUISER BIKE

Cruiser bikes may not be the first thing that you visualize when thinking about electric bikes, but it makes perfect sense. Cruisers are made for relaxed riding in casual settings, and what better way to make that goal fully realized with an engine helping to make pedaling easier?

The Malibu Beach Cruiser from X-Treme is easily one of our favorite bikes for quite a few reasons. It has the classic cruiser style, and uses some modern components and features to give it more comfort and efficiency. It’s already a great bike without a motor.

Some electric bikes tend to center everything around the motor first, but it’s clear the Malibu aims to be a top-level pedaled bike first.

Attractive design, a multi-ger drivetrain, extra features, and multiple color options all help the Malibu to be a superior bike.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

The aluminum frame gives it a more nimble feel, The Malibu’s saddle is your basic cruiser saddle, and that’s a good thing. Lots of cushioning, lots of coverage, and a plush feel. The handlebars have a perfect curve to them, allowing you to steer with your arms and shoulder more relaxed.

If you’re used to cruisers having one gear, you'll welcome the Malibu’s 7-speed drivetrain, featuring Shimano Tourney components. You get a wider variety of speeds and gear ratios to help you get up inclines, or get some extra speed when the need arises.

The Malibu uses disc brakes, which is another rarity for cruiser bikes, as they often have caliper-style brakes with pads instead. But, this is an electric bike, so the extra stopping power is definitely more than welcome.

For the wheelset, the Malibu uses Kenda balloon-style tires, measuring 26 inches. You get some added shock absorption, a nice white wall look, and some extra grip thanks to a smart tread design. Changing tubes is easy thanks to quick-release hub systems in the front and back.

The motor of the Malibu is 300 watts, and is located on the rear hub. You can use the twist grip control on the right side of the handlebar to cycle through various pedal assist levels, or just let the bike ride on its own.

A 24V battery seems a little inadequate, but somehow powers the motor to allow the bike to reach a max speed of 20 mph, for 20 miles on a full charge. If you need a recharge, you’ll only need to wait about 4 hours.

Extra features really polish the Malibu off. There’s a removable luggage rack, a headlight, a kickstand, and even a water bottle thrown in for good measure. Purchase a Malibu, and you’re all set.

For under $1,000, you can have one of the more unique bikes on the road, with an array of features to ensure a smooth and comfortable ride, whether you’re on a boardwalk, or a sidewalk. The X-Treme Malibu Electric Beach Cruiser is truly an awesome buy.

Click here to read our in-depth review.

X-treme knows how to do electric cruiser bikes. This model features an aluminum frame with a pink finish, giving it more of a feminine style. The bike comes full of features, but places the same emphasis on parts, components, and design that the Malibu Cruiser succeeds at.

A step-through frame design is used for this bike, with the battery and controller located on the back of the rear for a hidden look that allows the bike to retain its classic cruiser aesthetic.

Matching fenders keep mud and water away, and a matching chainguard gives the bike a nice touch.

Click on the image to check the bike out on Amazon.

Rather than do the traditional single-speed drivetrain, a 7-speed Shimano drivetrain assembly is used instead, giving the bike some added versatility when riding in areas that aren’t as flat as you’d like.

The bike’s saddle is very plush, as it should be for a cruiser. There is plenty of seat coverage, and springs under the rear of the saddle provide some added comfort too. The saddle encourages a relaxed, upright stance, which is reinforced by an extended handlebar design that has the perfect curved angle for easy steering.

Disc brakes are used on both the front and back, which is another great upgrade from an average cruiser. The disc system gives the bike better stopping and slowing control, which is definitely needed due to the extra weight and speed.

The bike’s wheelset comes with 26-inch Kenda balloon-style tires. They have the classic whitewall look, and have enough thickness and size absorb a moderate amount of shock whenever you encounter bumps and small drops.

A 300W motor gives the bike multiple levels of pedal assistance, which is controlled by a twist on the handlebar grip. You can use the throttle to power the bike by itself for the times you don’t want to pedal, which is a great option to have.

A 24V battery powers the motor for up to 20 miles when traveling at 20 miles per hour. That’s on the lower end, but with a cruiser, you shouldn't need to go too far. Recharging the battery takes around 4 hours when it’s been drained all the way.

The bike includes a luggage rack on the back, a basket in the front, and a headlight as well, so you have all the extra accessories you need from the moment you get the bike. So, for under $1,000, you get a very capable beach cruiser that can also be a reliable commuter for shorter distances when needed.

WHY YOU NEED TO CHOOSE YOUR ELECTRIC BIKE CAREFULLY

Folding bikes are a little more complicated than ordinary bikes, mainly due to the presence of a motor, and maybe a throttle as well. This affects the bike in a few ways, so you need to be sure of what to expect beforehand so you don’t end up disappointed.

And, of course, whether you’re getting an electric bike or not, it’s always good to be sure you’re getting the right type of bike for what your riding intentions are in the first place. Also, electric bikes aren’t cheap, so you don’t want to waste your money on the wrong one.

IMPORTANT ASPECTS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING AN ELECTRIC BIKE

Below are the main points to go over prior to choosing an electric bike. Think of this as an unofficial checklist.

STYLE

This is still the number one thing to decide on first, regardless of whether you’re using an electric version of the bike or not. Just because there is a motor on a cruiser bike doesn't mean you can now take it on a mountain bike trail, you know?

MOUNTAIN

Electric mountain bikes were a little late to catch on, but now they are more viable than ever before. These bikes can take on advanced off-road trails, and some moderate downhilling as well.

Electric mountain bikes offer a few major targeted advantages. For one, they can allow the rider to go on longer rides by saving stamina and energy thanks to pedal assistance. They can also make long climbs easier, and ensure a more efficient ride altogether, while boosting speed.

Ordinary mountain bikes are decent for commuting and in-town travel, but an electric mountain bike can make it much more suited for getting around off the trails as well.

HYBRID

Hybrids are sort of a cross between a mountain and road bike. They are the commuter bike of choice, and are great for fitness and leisure riding as well.

Electric hybrids are true commuting machines, offering improved speed and efficiency that can let you get from home to work without even breaking a sweat. If you are wanting an electric bike as a main way to get around, these are the best choices.

FOLDING

Folding bikes can collapse to almost a third of their size, making them easy to store, haul around, or bring with you when using public transportation as part of your commute.

An electric version of a folding bike equates to what may be the most versatile and useful of them all.

They can unlock endless possibilities thanks to both pedal assistance and increased portability. Plus, they are just really cool in general.

CRUISER

Cruisers are the most relaxed bikes of them all. Simple, stylish, and easy to ride, cruisers define what fun, casual bicycling should be. With an electric motor to help move things along, they become even more of an embodiment of their name.

ELECTRIC BIKE MOTOR CLASSES

Electric bikes have three distinct categories that refer to how the motor operates.

PEDELEC

Pedelecs are electric bikes that offer pedal assistance up to a certain speed, usually around 20 mph. They can’t offer assistance beyond that, and they cannot run on their own. Pedelecs often have a few different assistance settings.

The majority of electric bikes fall into this category.

S-PEDELEC

An S-pedelec also offers pedal assistance, but there is no cap on when the motor cuts off. These can help riders achieve faster speeds, and are more common on hybrids and mountain bikes.

VARIABLE SPEED THROTTLE

Sometimes called “power on-demand” electric bikes, models with an actual throttle enable the bike to be propelled by just the motor, and no pedal assistance. 25 mph is usually the cap on a full-throttle electric bike, as any faster would require a license.

While these motors are able to move the bike by themselves, they can also be used for just pedal assistance.

MOTOR TYPES

There are generally two main classifications for electric bike motors in terms of where they are installed.

HUB

Hub motors are located either on the front or rear wheel hub. This type of motor involves a rotor on the hub that turns when the motor is engaged. These are most often found on the rear wheel, and remain the most popular type of motor choice.

MID-DRIVE

A mid-drive motor in installed onto the bike’s actual drivetrain and crank. Instead of turning a wheel, these motors turn the crank that are connected to your pedals.

They also help give the bike a lower center of gravity. Mid-drive motors are found on higher-end electric bikes, and require more moving parts, but are generally favored by most electric bike enthusiasts. Still, they are not near as common.

BATTERIES

Electric bike batteries have come a long way since the old lead acid versions. Lithium batteries are the new standard, as they are both easier to recharge, and lighter.

The battery pack also determines how long the bike can use its motor. Always pay attention to the projected range of the bike’s battery, and the charging time.

Not all electric bike batteries are detachable, so if it can’t be removed to charge, you’ll have to move the whole bike to an electrical outlet.

CONCLUSION

We hope this guide has given you a better idea of where to start when looking for a new electric bike for your own personal needs. We recommend any of these bikes on the list, and we’ll also encourage you to look at some of our more in-depth reviews.

Before you make a purchase, always be sure of what your main use of the bike will be, so you end up with the right type that can do what you need it to.

The electric bike market is bigger than ever, so there are obviously some models that we haven't covered here. Have any recommendations of your own? Let us know in the comments below, we’d love to hear!

About the Author Max Shumpert

Over the last few years, I’ve taken my love of the outdoors, hiking, skiing, trekking and exploring to the next level by starting this site. I started a bike shop in Denver, CO, and have seen amazing growth over the last few years. Getting paid to do what I love has been a dream come true for me. That’s also what led me to start BikesReviewed.com. In my shop, I spend a large amount of time helping people find the perfect bike for them and the style of biking they’re going to be doing. It only made sense that I expanded my reach and got online, making it possible for me to help people all over the world. If biking and staying fit is your priority, too, you’ve come to the right place.

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