The Best Electric Bikes for Every Rider

The Ride1Up 700 Series is a great value for beginners and experienced riders.

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VanMoof S3 Electric Bike tout
Courtesy of VanMoof

Electric bikes are designed for a wide range of activities. Compared to conventional bicycles, battery-powered e-bikes provide extra juice to conquer uphill climbs or shave time off your commute. Though all e-bikes add some zip to your ride, there are certain characteristics to consider for specific uses and compatibility with your needs, including weight and range. We asked e-bike experts to share their best tips for shopping for an electric bike so you can find the right one for you.

Our top pick went to the Ride1Up 700 Series for its versatile uses, solid features, and superb power and range. It also has a modest price point, making it a great value in the e-bike market, and its plush gel seat will keep you comfortable through a long day of sightseeing on your bike.

For more options to fit your style, preferences, and budget, check out our full breakdown of the best electric bikes.

Best Overall

Ride1Up 700 Series

Ride1Up 700 Series

Ride1Up

Why We Love It: This e-bike delivers great value with excellent features and quality design at a mid-level price. 

What to Consider: It’s on the hefty side, so it may not be the best option if you plan to store it up or down stairs.

The Ride1Up 700 Series tops our list for its all-around performance and functionality for beginner and seasoned cyclists alike. The 750-watt motor can propel riders up to 28 miles per hour with pedal assistance or 20 miles per hour using just the throttle. The 48-volt battery, which affords a range of up to 50 miles depending on terrain and assistance, is integrated into the frame’s downtube to maintain the e-bike’s sleek and aerodynamic profile. The 700 Series is equipped with an eight-speed Shimano trigger shifter for greater versatility and brake control. A plush gel bike seat and the hydraulic suspension keep riders comfy cruising around town or on bumpier terrain. The 700 Series has the option of standard or step-through design, letting riders choose the best fit for their needs. Additional features, including a rear rack, fenders, and front and rear lights, add further value to the 700 Series.

Weight: 62 pounds | Estimated range: 30-50 miles | Top speed: 28 miles per hour

Best for Beginners

NAKTO 26" 250W Shimano 6 Speed Electric Cargo Bicycle

NAKTO 26" 250W Shimano 6 Speed Electric Cargo Bicycle

Amazon

Why We Love It: The step-through design and affordable price make this a top choice for e-bike newbies. 

What to Consider: Its weight can make it difficult to pedal unpowered.

For beginner cyclists and new electric bike users, starting with a user-friendly model is a helpful way to test features and improve skills before ponying up for a more specialized set of wheels. Nakto’s Classic Electric Bike fits the bill with a classic cruiser design many riders will be familiar with and a list of features for well-rounded functionality. This includes a front basket and rear rack for storage, LED headlight, padded saddle, and six-speed gears. The Classic’s 250-watt motor supports pedal assistance and thumb throttle for extra juice. The 36-volt battery, which is secured by lock and key, takes four hours to reach a full charge and affords a 22-mile range. Riders can easily track battery charge on a display in the cockpit.

Weight: 68 pounds | Estimated range: 22 miles | Top speed: 20 miles per hour

Best Budget

ANCHEER 350W Electric Mountain Bike Ebike

ANCHEER Electric Bike Electric Mountain Bike 350W

Amazon

Why We Love It: This versatile e-bike offers solid pedal assistance and durability at an entry-level price. 

What to Consider: The all-electric range is limited compared to other models on this list.

Electric bikes run the gamut in price. For budget-conscious riders, the Ancheer 26-Inch Electric Mountain Bike is one of the most affordable e-bike models on the market. Fortunately, the accessible price doesn’t come at the cost of quality. The removable battery and 350-watt motor support three levels of pedal assistance and an all-electric mode for a maximum speed of 20 miles per hour. And with 21 speed gears, riders can choose the appropriate setting to climb hills or reach top speed. A suspension fork, knobby off-road tires, and aluminum alloy frame round out the features of this low-cost e-bike.

Weight: 44 pounds | Estimated range: 22-40 miles | Top speed: 20 miles per hour

Related: The Most Comfortable Bike Seats

Best for Cargo

Momentum PakYak E+

Momentum PakYak E+

Landry's Bicycles

Why We Love It: This e-bike has room for two child passengers. 

What to Consider: This model’s sturdy design comes at the cost of a hefty weight.

Fitted with a front basket and generous rear rack, the PakYak E+ makes it possible to ditch the car for grocery runs and school drop-offs. And with a max capacity of 361 pounds and rear rack compatibility for two child seat mounts, it’s a popular pick for families with young kids. The PakYak E+ prioritizes safety with wide tires and four-piston hydraulic disc brakes that enhance stopping power and control. The parking kickstand provides stability while loading and unloading. Once cycling, the SynDrive Pro quickly delivers pedal assistance — a big help when riding with cargo or kids in tow. The battery can reach a full charge in under four hours and last up to 60 miles, depending on speed and terrain. It comes with the option for a second battery, letting riders double their range.

Weight: 79 pounds | Estimated range: 35-60 miles | Top speed: 28 miles per hour

Best Commuter

Heybike Cityscape Electric Bike

Heybike Cityscape Electric Bike

Amazon

Why We Love It: The step-through design and all-electric range make for an easy and zippy commute. 

What to Consider: It’s not a foldable model, so it may not be the best fit for commuters with limited storage space.

The HeyBike Cityscape Cruiser is well equipped for efficient daily commuting. The e-bike’s 350-watt rear motor and 36-volt, 10-ampere-hour battery have three levels of pedal assistance and up to 40 miles of range. For a sweat-free commute, riders can skip pedaling and use full electric mode for up to 25 miles. The modular battery is secured with a lock and key and can be removed for charging off the bike frame. And an integrated USB port can charge electronics to and from the office if needed. The Cityscape Cruiser’s step-through design is easy to mount and dismount in both office-ready and exercise apparel. An integrated rear rack is well suited for fastening cargo or attaching panniers or a basket for more secure storage.

Weight: 58 pounds | Estimated range: 40 miles | Top speed: 19 miles per hour

Best Folding

Rad Power Bikes RadExpand 5 Electric Folding Bike

Rad Power Bikes RadExpand 5 Electric Folding Bike

Rad Power Bikes

Why We Love It: You can adjust this highly customizable e-bike to make it your perfect fit. 

What to Consider: It’s not the most compact foldable electric bike model.

If storage at home, the office, or your vehicle is a concern, a foldable e-bike is a convenient solution. Step in the RadExpand 5, a user-friendly e-bike with a zippy 750-watt motor that can be folded for easier storage. The e-bike’s handlebars even fold down, allowing it to be stored flat against the wall. Besides its collapsible attributes, the RadExpand 5 supports off-road adventure thanks to four-inch tires with rugged treads. It also offers a high degree of customization with adjustable handlebars and riser bar, a seven-speed drivetrain, four levels of pedal assistance, and a choice of several accessories. And with a max weight capacity of 275 pounds and a range of 45 miles per charge, this e-bike can accommodate many riders’ needs.

Weight: 62.5 pounds | Estimated range: 45 miles | Top speed: 20 miles per hour

Related: The Best Phone Mounts for Your Bike

Best Lightweight

Cannondale M S6 EVO Neo 2

Cannondale M S6 EVO Neo 2

Piermont Bicycle Connection

Why We Love It: This sleek road e-bike delivers high performance and a lightweight design that’s reasonable to pedal unassisted. 

What to Consider: This e-bike does not have a throttle option, just pedal assistance.

At 26.7 pounds, the EVO Neo 2 weighs two to three times less than the standard e-bike, including many on this list. The e-bike frame features lightweight BallisTec Carbon materials and truncated airfoil tube shapes for less drag. The battery is enclosed within the bike frame, while the rear hub motor is hidden by the disc rotor. These integrated design features and quiet motor make this a rather incognito e-bike. Given the EVO Neo 2’s excellent performance, the seamless pedal assistance is often reserved for hills and headwinds. To optimize training, the pedal assistance can be linked to a heart rate monitor on the dashboard.

Weight: 26.7 pounds (size large) | Estimated range: Up to 62 miles | Top speed: 15.5 miles per hour

Best Mountain Bike

Specialized Turbo Levo Comp

Specialized Turbo Levo Comp

Courtesy of Specialized

Why We Love It: This e-bike is highly customizable to deliver top-notch performance on tough terrain

What to Consider: The display is located on the top tube of the frame unless you purchase the optional handlebar display to access information beyond battery level and power-assist mode.

Specialized continues to up the ante on performance with the Turbo Levo Comp. This enhanced e-bike delivers a 700-watt-hour battery for 40 percent more range than the 2019 model, as well as a lighter, more powerful motor to increase pedaling power by 410 percent. Instant engagement of the pedal assistance and disengagement of the gear box at top speed ensures a smooth ride and efficient battery use. The Turbo Levo Comp mixes a 27.5-inch back wheel and 29-inch front wheel for greater control in tough terrain, while 150 millimeters of rear suspension absorbs bumps and vibrations. Finally, this leading mountain e-bike comes in six sizes and allows six unique geometry settings to adapt to riding style and whatever outdoor adventures come your way.

Weight: 38 pounds | Estimated range: 43 miles | Top speed: 28 miles per hour

Most Stylish

VanMoof S3

VanMoof S3

VanMoof

Why We Love It: It includes some handy safety features, and the geometric frame gives it a unique modern look. 

What to Consider: The battery isn’t detachable, which can make charging a hassle.

The Dutch-imported VanMoof S3 is sure to capture attention with its modern, stylish aesthetic. Additional style choices, like an enclosed chain and gear box, hydraulic brakes, and integrated battery, help keep the focus on the S3’s elegant frame and color-blocking design. Aside from its good looks, the S3 has solid performance specs, including an automatic electronic gear shifter, push-button turbo boost, and four levels of pedal assistance. It also integrates several advanced security features. The S3 comes with built-in location tracking that syncs with a mobile app, and the majority of bike parts are fastened with bolts and screws that are only compatible with VanMoof tools. Riders can also activate a kick lock on the rear wheel that will set off an alarm if touched when it’s locked.

Weight: 42 pounds | Estimated range: 37-93 miles | Top speed: 20 miles per hour

Related: The Best Anti-theft Backpacks

Best for Tall Riders

Addmotor M-560 P-7 All-Terrain E-Bike

Addmotor M-560 P-7 All-Terrain E-Bike

Walmart

Why We Love It: Fat tires, sturdy design, and high standover height make this e-bike well-suited for larger riders up to 6 feet, 6 inches. 

What to Consider: It’s on the heavier side, even for an electric mountain bike.

Finding the right fit can be challenging, especially for taller cyclists. The Addmotor M-560 P-7 was designed to accommodate a range of rider heights, thanks to an adjustable seat height between 33.5 to 42 inches. But with a standover height of 32 inches, this e-bike is intended for riders who are between 5 feet, 10 inches and 6 feet, 6 inches tall. Other notable features on the M-560 P-7 include a 750-watt high-speed motor, a 5-inch LCD display with a USB port, twist throttle, and all-terrain fat tires for off-road adventure.

Weight: 74 pounds | Estimated range: Up to 55 miles | Top speed: 23 miles per hour

Tips for Buying an E-Bike

Factor in your intended use

Like conventional bikes, many e-bikes are designed with specific activities in mind, such as mountain biking, exercise, and recreation. Besides the design elements you’d look for in their non-electric equivalents, there are some unique e-bike specifications to consider based on your intended use. For instance, if you plan to commute by e-bike, it’s wise to make sure the range will get you to work and back on a single charge (unless you can charge at work). Electric bikes run on the heavier side, so it’s important to evaluate weight if you need to carry or transport them regularly.

Do I need pedal assistance, throttle, or both?

Electric bikes offer varying levels of assistance that fall into three classifications used in most U.S. states. 

  • Class one: pedal assistance up to 20 miles per hour
  • Class two: pedal assistance plus an exclusive throttle-powered mode up to 20 miles per hour
  • Class three: pedal assistance up to 28 miles per hour

The classification has implications for where you can use your e-bike. For instance, class three e-bikes may not be allowed on many bike paths or trail systems, making them better geared for commuting and on-road travel.

Personal preference also matters when it comes to pedal assistance and throttle style. As Dr. Terika L. Haynes, CEO and founder at DT Scooters, notes, “There are different types (thumb, grip, etc.) of throttles, so make sure that you are comfortable with it before making a final decision.”

Don’t overlook the battery

An e-bike’s battery is a key consideration for both range and weight. It’s beneficial to think about the terrain and weight of the rider and cargo when evaluating the range, as steep hills and extra bulk can drain batteries quicker than the advertised range. Brett Thurber, the owner of New Wheel, emphasizes the importance of battery quality for e-bike longevity. “Having a battery management system that controls the battery to ensure it is safe and reliable can take the guesswork out of maintaining it,” says Thurber.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How do electric bikes work?

    Most components of an electric bike work just like a regular bike. The key difference is that it incorporates an electric motor to supplement a cyclist’s pedaling or propel the bike entirely, though the latter will drain the battery relatively quickly. E-bike batteries require charging and may be detachable to plug in wherever is most convenient. To preserve the battery life, Dr. Haynes recommends letting it get as close to empty as possible before recharging it fully.

  • How fast do electric bikes go?

    Your own pedaling abilities will determine the top speed you reach on an e-bike. In terms of electric assistance, however, class one and two e-bikes will deliver pedal and/or full-electric assistance up to 20 miles per hour, respectively. Meanwhile, class three e-bikes offer pedal assistance up to the speed of 28 miles per hour.

  • Do you need a license to use an electric bike?

    The laws governing electric bikes vary by state. Some states consider e-bikes as motor vehicles and thus require a license. Most states have age and helmet requirements for e-bikes as well. It’s recommended to check with your state’s DMV for the most up-to-date information.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

Kevin Brouillard is a contributing writer at T+L, specializing in outdoor gear and apparel. He researched dozens of e-bikes, interviewed industry experts, and used his expertise as a travel writer to craft the perfect list for you.

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