Researching your perfect eBike can be an overwhelming flood of technical jargon with no simple explanation of what the real world benefit to you is. We give you the basics you need to make a sound decision, with an eye to the important ones, clearing the fog of marketing jiberish.
Each system and brand has benefits and drawbacks - motor performance, placement, control systems. Learn more about your options.
Learn more on what are the components of an electric bike and how they work together to make a perfect ride.
There are three main styles for full size two wheel eBikes - traditional diamond frame, with the high top tube - step through frame where it is easier to get your leg over - and finally low step frames that are the easiest entry. We don't say "women's" bikes anymore - the step through & low step designs are for anyone who doesn't like lifting their leg up that high.
Traditional chain/sprocket/derailleur external gears are the norm for most bikes, On premium eBikes, internal gears and belt drives tend to be quieter, cleaner and less maintenance. There is no free lunch though - each drivetrain type has it's strengths and challenges. Find out which one is right for you.
Daily commuting on an eBike will put you ahead of the pack every time, but it pays to be prepared. Fenders keep the spray off your face, back and feet. A rear carrier allows you to use bags. Lights that are integrated with your eBikes battery. A chainguard keeps your chain & trousers clean. Integrated frame locks for quickie stops. And a nice bell to politely tell people to get out of your way!
Where a battery is located on the bike can really affect the handling. Too high up and the bike will be top heavy - when pedaling hard out of the saddle it will fight being swung back and forth. To far back on a frame not stiffed in the rear, and the bike can "swim" when pedaling out of the saddle. When the battery is located in the frame, it keeps the lines clean and look is stealthy - so that your eBike will fit in more with regular bikes.
Long story short:
- skip cable brakes altogether
- if you want outstanding braking force - get hydraulic disc brakes.
- If you want the lowest maintenance brakes with great stopping power - get hydraulic rim brakes.
Answers to questions like - why is Pedal Assist better than Throttle? Mid-drive better than Hub Drive? Torque sensor vs Cadence sensor?
eBike terminology can be like a new language. Some of it just doesn't make sense, like how can all the motors possibly be rated at exactly the same watts - does that mean they are all just as fast? Motor power is usually in "nominal" watts - but this does not tell the whole story. What about Torque? Amps, volts, watts, direct drive - it's enough to give you a headache. Can't someone just tell me which is the best or has the most horsepower? If you are confused, that's a sign you are might be starting to understand.