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The Best Electric Bike

Last updated on October 25, 2023
Best Electric Bike

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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Our Picks For The Top Electric Bikes

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

Swagtron EB5 Pre-Assembled Hybrid Electric Bike

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Swagtron

EB5 Pre-Assembled Hybrid Electric Bike

Available in black, blue or white, this electric bike is simple, yet stylish. It features an adjustable seat to accommodate riders of different heights and folds up small for easy storage. The bike comes fully assembled and as soon as you charge the lithium-ion battery, you're ready to hit the road!

Overall Take

Most AffordableThis economical electric bike won't break the bank.

 Runner Up

Heybike Energy-Efficient Modular Electric Bike

Heybike

Energy-Efficient Modular Electric Bike

Outfitted with thick 4-inch tires, this electric bike removes the worry of getting a flat on the road. The high-quality bike comes fully assembled and features three riding modes and seven speeds. It also offers a rear rack for attaching your backpack, cooler or cargo basket.

Overall Take

Puncture-Resistant TiresThis electric bike folds up to easily fit in the trunk of your car.

 We Also Like

VELOWAVE Pedal-Assist Waterproof Electric Bike

VELOWAVE

Pedal-Assist Waterproof Electric Bike

Whether you're interested in traveling across sand, rough mountain terrain or asphalt, this electric bike has you covered. The bike charges in just under 4 hours and can travel a distance of up to 40 miles. The 4-inch tires, adjustable suspension fork and easy-to-use LCD display all make this bike a great choice.

Overall Take

Most VersatileWith this electric bike, you'll be able to switch between seven different speeds.

 Strong Contender

ECOTRIC Ergonomic Handlebar Adjustable Seat Electric Bike

ECOTRIC

Ergonomic Handlebar Adjustable Seat Electric Bike

The powerful 500-watt motor on this electric bike allows travelers to switch between seven different speeds, traveling up to 20 miles per hour. The tires are slip-resistant and safe for all road conditions, even snow. Attached to the handlebars is an LCD display that not only shows cycling data, but also allows for charging a cellular device.

Overall Take

Durable Aluminum Alloy FrameThe handlebar on this electric bike has an ergonomic design that makes it comfortable to hold and control.

Buying Guide

If you want to cover a great distance in a short amount of time, few things will do the job like an e-bike. It couples the maneuverability of a bike with the speed of a motorized vehicle. But where you’ll be riding that bike makes a big difference in which one you’ll choose. Some electric cycles are made for riding on beaches and across hilly terrain, while many others are designed for navigating around the busy sidewalks of a big city.

“Purchasing an electric bike would benefit you twofold: you’d get exercise while getting to a destination faster than on a traditional bike,” Stephanie Mansour, a certified personal trainer and the founder of fitness brand Step It Up Steph, says. “This would make your morning commute, running errands, or getting to and from destinations both an exercise and a time-saving technique.”

Not all e-bikes are fully electric, though. You may find, for instance, that some feature pedal assist, which offers varying levels of help, depending on what you need. Others are fully automated, leaving riders to only worry about steering and braking when necessary. The problem with the latter is that if you ever do want to get exercise, you’ll have to use another bike since they don’t have that option.

Weather is another factor to consider. Even if you only need a bicycle for journeying around town or back and forth to class on campus, snow can be an issue. The bike that worked fine on dry streets could face challenges when blazing through piles of snow or traveling over bike paths. Of course, you could find another method of transportation on those days, which will also keep you out of the elements.

Portability can also be an important factor, particularly if you’re limited on storage space. Some bikes are collapsible so that you can just fold them up and tuck them away when you’re not using them. Some other bikes are small and lightweight enough to make them easy to carry up staircases. Think about what you’ll be doing with your bike after you’ve finished riding it, then pay close attention to the weight and size of your bicycle choice.

One feature some newer electric bikes include is a USB charging part. You’ll be able to charge your smartphone while you’re riding thanks to this function. It probably won’t be a must-have, but it’s a nice extra.

Unlike regular bikes, your electric bike will run on a battery that needs to be charged between uses. You probably won’t want your bike to die halfway en route, especially if it doesn’t let you pedal without assistance. Pay close attention to how long the battery will last between charges, as well as how long it will take to fully charge.

In addition to all of the electric-specific features, you’ll also need to look at typical bicycle offerings. The comfort of the seat of the bike will matter, especially if you use it for long trips. Some bikes also come with headlamps, which will keep you safe on those after-hour trips. Little extras, like a basket or a rack, can also become very important once you start using your bike and realize how often you need to store items you’re toting along with you.

If you are wondering if an e-bike would be the right purchase for you, Mansour has this to say: “Purchase this product if you currently ride a scooter but are looking for more exercise, or if you would bike more places but it takes you too long on your current non-electric bike.”

Mansour says an electric bike also could be a great option if you are eager to sell your car and want an energy-efficient mode of transportation or if you like walking but need a faster mode of getting to your destination.

Our Expert Consultant

Stephanie Mansour   
Certified Personal Trainer, Health and Wellness Expert

Stephanie Mansour, host of “Step It Up with Steph” on public broadcasting, has been coaching women for over a decade on how to lose weight and make it last. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications with an emphasis on women’s studies and psychology from the University of Michigan. She holds certifications in life coaching, personal training, yoga and Pilates.

What to Look For

  • One of the first things to consider is how much assistance you’ll want your e-bike to have. Some models are fully electric, with footrests where the pedals would normally be. Pedaling is not even an option with this type of model. With other bikes, though, you’ll get five levels of pedal assist, allowing you to customize your workout to your level of energy each day. With this type of model, if the battery dies, you can still pedal, so you won’t be stranded.
  • If you deal with rough terrain or steep hills, stability will be one of the most important features of any bike you choose. Look for a model that is designed to power through even the roughest terrain. With just a twist on the throttle, you’ll have an instant boost of energy to get up that steep hill.
  • Wheels also affect navigability. Small wheels on certain electric bikes can make it tough to get around unless you plan to stick solely to paved roads. Higher end bikes, on the other hand, have wheels that can handle any terrain, including snow, sand and mountains.
  • Even with great wheels, you’ll struggle if you don’t have a motor that can push you along.  Look for a bike with a powerful motor.
  • With an electric bike, it’s all about battery life. Some models offer an extremely fast charging time, going from empty to full in only 2.5 hours. Compare this to others that take up to five hours to fully charge.
  • Once charged, you’ll need to know how far you can go before you need to put your bike back on the charger. Look for a bike that will give you up to 40-55 miles on a charge, as some will only take you up to 30 miles.
  • Consider an electric bicycle that comes with an indicator that shows how much battery power is left.
  • Another thing to consider is what you’ll do when your battery dies. Shop around to make sure you can purchase a replacement battery and swap it out when the time comes. The battery on some models is extremely difficult to remove, so you’ll need to prepare to do that at home rather than on the go.
  • Chances are, you’ll need to store your bike when it isn’t in use. Some of the best electric bikes are on the heavy side, which means it won’t be so easy to toss them in your trunk or carry them up a flight or two of stairs. Others are not only lightweight, at only 37.5 pounds, but they also collapse down for easy storage.
  • One feature that may not be a priority but is nice to have is USB charging. If this is important to you, look for a bike that offers a USB port for charging your devices while you’re cycling.
  • Of course, price is always a factor when you’re buying a bicycle. Some models are more affordable than others.
  • You probably don’t travel far without your laptop or textbooks. Even if you leave home empty handed, you’ll likely pick up something that you need to transport home. Consider a bike that comes with a large front basket and a rear rack to carry all those extra items.
  • If safety is a priority, go with a bike that includes an LED console that has dual front lights to keep you visible after dark.
  • Seat comfort is something you often don’t consider until you’re halfway through your first trip. There are bikes that have built in spring-mounted seats and hydraulics to ensure you stay comfortable throughout your trip.
  • Another factor influencing your bike’s comfort is its build. Some models aren’t designed for taller riders, and due to the suspension, you’ll find you get jostled around while you’re riding.
  • When your bike arrives, you’ll need to put it together. With many models on the market, you only need to install the handlebar and front wheel.
  • If you’re going to be seen around town on your bike, you’ll want to make sure it has a design that fits your own personal style. Some models are functional, but futuristic in appearance. Others have a sporty look, bright color or 1950s-era design.

More to Explore

Although electric bicycles have taken off in popularity in the past 20 years, they’ve actually been around since the 1800s. However, electric bikes as we know them today first hit the market in the late 1990s, when a line called Select came out. But their environmental-friendly features have pushed electric bikes even further into the mainstream. Today’s bikes can travel the same distance as a car in almost the same time — more if you’re in a traffic-congested city. You’ll save on gas and, with models that merely assist you as you pedal, you get valuable exercise as you travel. In addition to being a great way to go back and forth to work, an electric bike can also help out when you’re on vacation and need to jet from one site to another quickly.

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