Here is my comprehensive guide to purchasing an eBike. Finding the right ebike, suited to your needs can be quite a challenge. This guide aims to ease this process when assessing and buying an ebike, offering you the key attributes and items to consider:
1. Determine your Initial Needs
Before anything else, identify the purpose of your ebike. Are you planning to use it for daily commuting, off-roading, or long-distance touring? Different eBikes cater to various needs, from mountain eBikes, commuter, hybrid ebikes, to road ebikes and more.
2. Consider the Drive Unit
There are primarily two types of drive units offered in an ebike, these are either Pedal Assist or Throttle on Demand. Complimenting this is the electric motor position, be it an hub motor drives, usually located on the rear wheel, and mid-drive units placed on the bike frame. Mid-drive units yield more torque making hill climbing easier and feel more balanced while hub drives are generally less expensive.
3. Battery Life and Capacity
Battery life is key for distance riders. The larger the battery capacity (measured in Watt hours or Wh), the wider the range of travel. A 400Wh battery should generally cover around 30-80km depending on terrain, weight and power use. Remember to check the quality of the battery too, leading brands like Bosch, Shimano, and Yamaha are generally reliable.
4. Bike Frame and Fork Material
Consider the material of the frame and the fork. Aluminium and carbon fibre are lightweight and sturdy but can be more expensive. Steel, while heavier, provides durability.
5. Weight and Portability
ebikes are heavier due to the motor and battery. Look for something that strikes a balance between sturdiness and lightness. If you frequently need to carry your bike, folding ebikes could be a fitting option.
6. Price Point
Lastly, decide on your budget, by no means less important, your budget with significantly impact on your ebike options. ebikes can range from a few hundred to several thousands of dollars. More expensive models offer higher battery capacity, longer durability, and more advanced features. Ensure you are realistic when setting your initial budget and work through your options as your refine your needs and options.