Over the past few years, electric mountain bikes have exploded in popularity. Our team researched the top models on the market and purchased seven models in the $4500-$6000 range to test and review. Our testers rode these pedal-assist mountain bikes for thousands of miles, countless hours, and many tens of thousands of vertical feet. In the process, we scrutinized each model's uphill and downhill performance, tested their distance range, paid close attention to the user-friendliness of their e-bike controls, and analyzed their power output. We rode of each of these bikes hard in an effort to expose their strengths and weaknesses and determine the key ride characteristics of each one, and most importantly how they compare to each other.
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You can set the maximum speed at more than 20mph (but the legal limit is 20). Also, you should not cross that limit because the Shimano 7-gear transmission system won’t be able to cope up with anything higher than 22 to 23 mph. However, to the absolute joy of the thrill seekers, the huge weight of the bike can push the speed to go over 40 mph on downhill coasts. Be careful though and make sure that the road and traffic conditions allow that speed limit.
There are few pastimes that reenergize the human spirit quite like a trip into the great outdoors — especially when you’re tearing down a trail at Mach 4 atop a fully-outfitted Enduro bike. It’s no secret that the insane individuals who spend their off-hours charting, traversing, and descending mountains at breakneck speeds are among the most well-rounded, athletically-inclined thrill-seekers in the world, but sometimes, even they need a break from the grind.
"The eMTB mode is a fantastic alternative to the manually adjusted power settings found on most other e-bikes. The beauty is that eMTB mode works so well, you can forget about it entirely and focus on the ride instead. Having e-bike specific forks and four piston brakes for example is something that seems obvious, but surprisingly few companies actually make happen."
There is no suspension, so the fat bike is not ideal for downhill. Also, you will feel more shocks than usual while doing large drops or crossing big tree roots. The fat tires are helpful for keeping it accurate and quick on sand and snow but don’t run it on ice. The tires simply don’t have enough traction to stay steady on ice. Studded tires may solve the problem but the safer option to steer clear of icy tracks.
The bike has a maximum range of 20 miles before needing to recharge. Keeping up with speed and battery life is a breeze with the Bafang LCD display that comes standard with this model. A durable aluminum alloy frame helps this bike take a beating and keep on going. The Stalker has an 8-speed transmission and a set of Tekro mechanical disc brakes that will give you full control over the bike. A pair of 20 inch by 4 inch tires will help you climb those steep hills and easily get down those muddy trails.
This powerful eBike was designed with the hunter in mind and comes in several different colors including matte black, gloss red and Special Edition Kuiu Verde 2.0 for those looking to blend in with nature. Stopping quickly on the trail won't be an issue with the Mule because it comes standard with a pair of 203MM hydraulic disc brakes. A set of aggressive skid-proof pedals help hunters power past even the toughest off-road challenges.
In fact, the manufacturers have already proven that what makes an e-MTB outstanding is not that much different to a regular MTB. Sure, there are slight differences in performance due to e-MTB’s heavier frame but both types share almost similar basics covering geometry, sizing, and balance. Also, the power-supplying motor comes into the forefront instead of the suspension in these bikes.
Giant is a household name when it comes to traditional mountain biking applications, and with a name that’s as respected as theirs, you’re right to think that the company’s Trance E+ 2 Pro is one of the most well-rounded e-bike offerings on the market. To ensure that riders preserve their stamina throughout each and every ride, the E+ features an assisted SyncDrive Pro motor, Maestro suspension, and 27.5-inch wheels for exceptional trail traversal. A tunable power output allows for bespoke customization, while the bike’s high-end Shimano XT and SLX groupset keeps things in perfect operating order. On the front and rear of the E+, you’ll find a capable Fox suspension, along with an e-bike optimized fork that’s been built for use alongside this platform. To keep things relatively lightweight, Giant has opted to create the bike’s frame from durable ALUXX SL aluminum, complementing the company’s dependable 36-volt lithium-ion battery.
The Blix Vika+ is a folding e-bike with a utilitarian execution: At nearly 50 pounds, it’s heavy for its size, and the folding mechanism isn’t as slick as other folding bikes we’ve tested. That said, it does fold into a small package and feels sturdy enough for riding between errands. The geared hub motor is adequately powerful and an included throttle makes it easier to get off the line. A rear rack, front and rear lights, and a kickstand come with the bike—it’s everything you need for zippy urban commuting.
With different degrees of assistance at your fingertips, riders of varying fitness levels are easily accommodated on the same ride too. Which, depending on who’s setting the pace, can bring a social aspect back to big days out, because you can all ride together and the assistance from the motor makes it that much easier to string a coherent sentence together even on the steepest climbs. How do you ride an electric mountain bike?