One of the primary purposes of an e-bike is transferring power from the motor to the drivetrain to "support" your regular pedal stroke. All of the different drive units do this in relatively the same way, although subtle differences in their power output make them all feel slightly different. It is important to note that all of these systems work pretty well; the differences between them are relatively subtle but noticeable. We tested this metric primarily based on feel, as opposed to any sort of scientific measurement, and our testers could all notice the differences between the various models. All of the e-bikes we tested have several support modes offering varying levels of pedal assist support.
Trevor Porter, Kona's e-bike manager, said that motors can demand longer chainstays and adding batteries to downtubes can require larger headtubes, increasing stack height. This is common across the range of e-mtbs we tested. The reach and head tube angle tend to remain similar to standard bikes, but the chainstay length, head tube length, and stack height are generally increased.
I bought an electric bike mainly for hunting purposes earlier this year. Due to the motor size of 750 watts, it is not considered a motorized vehicle like a motorcycle where I live in the Rocky Mountains. No idea what the regs are in other states. It is considered a bicycle and can therefore be used just about anywhere on public land. Great way to go when you are covering tens of thousands of acres. Going from a week to a day to cover one of the ranches I hunt.
It's finally here: The 2019 E-MOUNTAINBIKE Print Edition, our timeless annual issue! Consisting of around 240 (!) pages, the 2019 E-MOUNTAINBIKE Print Editon offers a ton of inspiration, buyers advice, and eMTB know-how as well as reviews of the hottest bikes of the year. Our premium magazine is aimed at experienced eMTBers and beginners alike. Click here for more information (new window) or order it directly in our shop or on Amazon.de!
The Felt Redemption-E 50 is a 140/150mm travel all-mountain bike. At 53.5 pounds, it is the second heaviest in this group, but bike rockets up non-technical climbs, which makes it awesome for shuttle runs, but it can’t disguise its heft when navigating tricky switchbacks and rock gardens. Rather than moving the bike around with your body, you learn to mash the pedals and let the motor bludgeon the trail, trusting the e-mtb-tuned suspension to handle the hits. The Shimano motor's “trail” mode has all the power you’ll need, and quick surge of torque from stop means you have to be ready for the bike to take off before you get on the pedals. Everything on the Redemption-E 50 works well—the Shimano Deore brakes are powerful and the shifting is crisp—but the Redemption E-50 doesn’t work well everywhere. Buy it if you’ve got smooth and open trails to rip; skip it if you’re fond of crafting the perfect line through rough and technical singletrack.
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.
The 13amh battery is nestled at the down tube frame on a battery bracket, which you can remove quickly if required. The battery is powerful enough to provide life juice to the bike for a long distance. The trip distance is 25 miles in full electric mode and 50 miles on the assist pedal. The battery comes with a 48V 2.0A charger and it survives more than 500 times of recharge cycles.
A carbon frame shaves off several hundred grams of weight, of course. However, this is largely irrelevant when it comes to eMTBing. The two major advantages of carbon on eMTBs are, on the one hand, greater freedom in optimising the frame design and, on the other hand, increased stiffness. Thanks to carbon, smooth transitions can be achieved, better facilitating the integration of motor and battery. Unfortunately, the magical black material also has a few potential disadvantages. Carbon has poorer thermal conductivity, which means that heat is dissipated less efficiently with a fully integrated motor, and stiffer is not necessarily always better. Frames and wheels require a certain amount of flex to be comfortable and to generate enough traction through curves. Buying a carbon eMTB can currently only be justified by aesthetics rather than functionality.
I haven't given a full benchmark on battery life as I haven't gone without pedaling just using the motor. I live in a hilly place and I need to pedal to make it up some hills. But initial impressions are good. My hilly trip to the beach with kids in tow was about 13 miles round trip and I made it down to 3 of 5 bars on the battery. The battery does go down when the motor is under stress but levels itself when back on level ground. Battery is looking good.
For two months I had fun with the bike and loved it until it stopped working. The controls lid up but no power with a full charge. At this point I was about to write a 4 star review but with the breakdown I decided not to. Long story short I sent the bike for repair. They promised 3 days to repair and return or replace if they can’t fix it. They could not fix it so I received another new bike – after another week of waiting.
Mountain biking is all about having fun, right? About getting out there, enjoying the great outdoors, exercising your body and freeing your mind. So what if we told you there was a type of bike that lets you ride further, faster, and have even more fun? One that even made you LOL on the climbs? You’d still have to work for your rewards, but by assisting your efforts, it allowed you to wring every little drop of enjoyment out of your rides.
Boasting incredible speeds of up to 17 mph and dependable geometry and stability, the Goplus electric mountain bike is one to die for. It is built to be lightweight yet durable, thanks to a dependable aluminum alloy frame. Among other features that are worth mentioning in this electric mountain bike includes its 6-speed transmission system, powerful LED headlamp and sharp hydraulic brakes.
Foldable bikes are becoming ever more popular. Being foldable means that the bike is storable. This means that it does not take up unnecessary space in a house or a shed etc. It also means that it could be hung up on a wall, should this be a requirement. They certainly have advantages over bikes that cannot fold, and their overall integrity of strength and purpose is not compromised.
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.
A true fat tire electric hunting bike, this model was built to provide maximum comfort, especially the shorter person with a stand over height of 26.5" thanks to those 24" wheels. You can go just about anywhere with this bike so getting to those hard to reach hunting areas will not be a problem. This bike features a Bafang 750W BBSH02 High Torque Mid Drive and a long-lasting LG 48V10.4AH battery.
Keeping track of speed and battery life will be easy because this bike comes with a Bafang LCD color display. This eBike can stop on a dime by utilizing a set of powerful hydraulic disc brakes. Built to last, this model comes with a strong aluminum alloy frame. Driving the Storm down hard to reach trails and other backwoods locations will be a smooth ride thanks to the Shimano Altus 8-speed gearing system.
Every e-bike here uses a hub motor rather than a mid-drive motor. Hub motors (the original industry standard and the lower-cost of the two) can be located on either the front or, more commonly, the rear wheel. Hub motors typically don’t offer the same natural maneuverability as today’s increasingly more common mid-drive motors because their weight is concentrated in the front or rear of the bike. In contrast, a mid-drive motor’s weight is low and centered over the bottom bracket, resulting in better control and a more balanced ride feel, much like a traditional bike. A hub motor’s top speed typically maxes out at 20 mph.
With its steep seat tube angle and powerful motor, the Rotwild E+ Ultra masters even the steepest climbs. Its high centre of gravity, however, negatively effects downhill handling. The GIANT FULL E+ 0 is a very solid eMTB where what you see is what you get, although the rather slack seat tube and bulbous-belly isn’t exactly pretty. Not so with the FOCUS SAM²: With its clean silhouette it is a bike for design lovers. But only if you get by with the small integrated battery. As soon as you mount an additional battery, not only the appearance suffers, but also the handling. The BMC Trailfox AMP has minor weaknesses in the componentry, finish and downhill handling – at a price of € 12,000 we expected considerably more. The Thömus Lightrider E1 fares better, it’s no bargain either, but the handling is outstanding. It’s a pity that the bike isn’t available outside of Switzerland. Another exotic specimen is the FANTIC XF1 Integra Enduro 160. The bike from the Italian motorcycle brand can’t deny its roots, tremendously composed and capable on the descents, though it cannot keep up with the competition when going back up – the 180 mm version of the Fantic is significantly better overall.
Now that we are more familiar with the best fat tire electric hunting bike brands, let’s take a moment to learn more about the models that they have to offer. Below we will compare many different eBikes in several different categories. This will give you a better feel for these bikes and you will understand why so many hunters have chosen to invest in them.
With most ebikes the choice of motor defines aspects of the frame geometry and to a lesser degree the suspension characteristics of the bike. Not with new Rock Mountain Altitude Powerplay. With its bespoke motor Rocky has been able to design an ebike that reflects the ride quality of a highly evolved 150mm trail bike. With instant power pickup, extended battery life and streamline proportions it’s not just the handling of the Rocky that will get you charged up for riding. It’s the best bike in this test by some margin, but we had an issue with the motor momentarily cutting and raising questions over it’s reliability.
I continued to have issues with the rear brakes. The rear disc brake was bending when I braked and I could not figure out how to get it from rubbing on the pads. I eventually took the bike over to REI and paid for a tune-up. Fantastic work by them, the bike has a better top speed by a couple mph now and shifting/braking are much smoother. I was also having issues with the chain jumping off the front derailleur on high torque (high gear from standstill). Looks like I just needed the experts to give it the tune.