The Ultimate Buyers’ Guide to Choosing the Best Electric Bike

choosing the best ebike

What is an electric bike?

So, it looks just like a regular bike but electric bikes are anything but! E-bikes are a super hot way to get where you’re going faster – and you can have a lot more fun along the way. Spoiler alert, you can indeed charge it like your phone.

Read on for a lesson in all things e-bike in the best e-bike buyers’ guide.

1. What is an e-bike?

Let’s start right at the beginning: what is an e-bike? If you’re thinking an electric bike looks a lot like a standard bike but with a few more (very handy) parts, then you’re right. These parts put the ‘electric’ in ‘e’-bike: the electric motor, battery, and controls – but we’ll come on to these later.

Our designers integrate all these extra components into the bike’s frame, as a result, the frame doesn’t look any bulkier than a traditional bike. So, they look very similar but what’s it like riding an electric bike? You guessed it: it’s just like riding a regular bike but with an extra boost when you engage the motor. Honestly, once you’ve levelled up your get-around-town game, you’ll never look back!

choosing the best ebike

Ok, so how does an electric bike actually work? We’re not about to get (too) technical on you but there are some handy things worth knowing, so let’s start with the ones we’ve already thrown in the mix above: the motor, the battery, and the controls

The e-bike motor

Let’s start with the e-bike motor – this is where the ‘you can climb the highest mountains’ power comes from. When buying an e-bike there are two things to look for when choosing the motor; the Watt (W) and the Newton-metre (Nm).

A higher W power rating means the e-bike can pull weight with greater ease (FYI, it’s worth remembering that a higher W motor also drains the battery faster). The Nm rating refers to the force used to turn the e-bike’s back wheel – aka ‘torque’ (getting school flashbacks yet?!). The higher the torque figure the better the bike will climb and accelerate.

Momentum E bikes use the SyncDrive Life motor with 250W of power and 60 Nm of torque. If this all sits firmly in the TMI category then don’t worry, we go out of our way to make sure that you have the best motor and battery combo to pedal-assist your riding style.

choosing the best ebike

The e-bike battery

Next up, is the battery, which powers the motor. We won’t bore you with all the technical details, we’ll just get to what’s important: for Momentum’s lithium-polymer batteries, pay attention to the number of ‘Wh’, this stands for ‘watt-hours’; the bigger the number, the further the e-bike can go. Just remember, the distance you can travel is also based on the terrain and ride mode.

Momentum’s EnergyPak e-bike battery has a 500Wh capacity and can be charge from 0-100% in just 4 hours.

choosing the best ebike

The e-bike controller

Coming through with mission control vibes is the control unit – it lets you choose the amount of electrical boost (the electrical assistance from the motor) you get while cycling. Momentum bikes use RideControl One, super easy to use and make for a seriously smooth and effortless ride. 

RideControl One allows you to switch power and support modes and displays the battery level and support mode. This is also where you activate your e-bike’s walk assist function. 

Can we just take a moment to enjoy how easy it is to activate the e-bike’s electric assistance: all you need to do is pedal! Our controls are pedal-activated, so when the electric assistance function is turned on, just pedal normally and the e-bike knows to provide an extra boost. Super simple. 

How fast does an e-bike go?

Electric bikes are totally here to stay because they can go faster than traditional bikes. Countries have different laws regulating how fast e-bikes can go and most countries have a speed limit that depends on the power of the motor. Once the motor reaches a certain speed, the motor stops providing additional assistance and the rider can pedal faster. This means the absolute fastest speed your electric bike can go, depends on how fast and hard you can pedal!

As we said, different countries have different laws. In Europe, the e-bike must have pedal-activated assistance that stops once the bike reaches a speed of 15.5 mph (about 25 kmph). Remember, it’s still a bike so you can keep pedalling and reach a higher top speed with your own leg power once the electrical assistance stops, if needed.

electric bike

Is an e-bike worth the money?

E-bike math's is something we can totally get behind! E-bikes cost slightly more than traditional bikes but the price difference is worth it given the increase in convenience: you can go further and faster on an e-bike.

Don’t believe the hype? The benefits of e-bikes have been looked at in numerous studies, which show that using less effort while riding allows people to ride greater distances and; most importantly, ride more often.

The numbers are impressive: e-bike riders are twice as likely as traditional bike riders to use their bike at least once a week. The extra boost from an electric bike makes it easier to ride to work without getting too sweaty, while the additional speed can be a lifesaver if you’re running a bit late (you feel seen, right?).

But an e-bike’s price tag is an even bigger steal when you compare it to other modes of transportation. After the initial investment (which is already a fraction of the cost of buying a car or motorcycle) an e-bike’s maintenance costs are low. In fact, they’re about the same as a regular bike, including parts like new tyres or chains after they wear out. Compared to owning a car in the city, with its high costs for gas, parking, insurance, and maintenance, an electric bike turns out to be a really affordable option.

Consider this your reminder that life on two wheels is seriously good for your health as well. Even on an e-bike the extra boost provided by the motor is only assistance to your own pedalling efforts, and that can be a whole leg day right there! Switching up a more sedentary commute or journey for one that gets your heart and lungs pumping is a great way to reduce stress, improve your mental health and get a sneaky workout into your day. 

choosing the best ebike

How to choose and buy an e-bike?

There are so many options… So please don’t be overwhelmed, choice is good! It means it’s much easier to find the perfect e-bike for you. When deciding which e-bike to buy, ask yourself these basic questions to understand your needs:

1.   Where will you ride the most?

For example, if you plan to use your e-bike for your daily commute, then you might want to consider a city e-bike with a smart controller that offers a fast and seamless ride.

2.   How often do you plan to ride?

Again, if it’s for everyday use then a city e-bike with a fast charge battery is important.

3. How far do you plan to ride every day?

Your e-bike’s range (that’s how far it gets on a single charge) is very important, so if you’re riding to and from work you’re probably going to want a commuter city bike with a bigger range than say a weekender relaxed riding style bike.

Here are some of our best-selling options, whether you want a commuter-friendly ride, or an e-bike to spice up your social life!

e-bikes UK

The Transend E+ is made for commuting

If you're commuting to work every day you want an e-bike that focuses on range and speed, which will help you ride further and faster with less effort. The Transend E + has an integrated EnergyPak 500 battery that lets you ride longer distances on a single charge (the ideal range is 170km), and with six levels of pedal support you’ll be able to tackle hills faster and sweat-free.

When working out a bike’s range you need to considering a few factors: rider weight, riding style, riding conditions and tire pressure, all of these can impact an e-bike’s top range. When compared to riding the bus or the underground, however far you can go on a single charge is still healthier, greener and way more fun on the Transend E+! Plus, the bike’s upright position and luxe saddle make it super comfortable.

choosing the best ebike

E-bikes for exploring

Our Vida E+ boasts insane comfort and is available with a low-step frame, making it easier to get on and off your bike. It also comes with grippy 2.35-inch tyres to provide a chilled ride regardless of the terrain.

Check out our complete range of e-bikes to find out which model best fits your needs

choosing the best ebike

Where can I buy a Momentum e-bike?

We are obsessed with e-bikes and we want to make buying one as easy as possible. We have a global network of retailers and bike shops where our experts are ready to help you find the perfect e-bike. Find your closest Momentum e-bike retailer here: stores

If you know what you want already, just order your Transend E+ or your Vida E+ now.

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