Hi Richard here from eBike Sussex. Lots of people ask us ‘How Much Should I Spend On An Electric Bike?’ So I thought I would give you a general rule of thumb guide to help you make the right decision when buying your next eBike. Please note this is a general guide and it is not supposed to be strictly adhered to. This is purely our own experience in the electric bike market. This article is up to date for 2018.
The first thing I will do is differentiate between commuter electric bikes (for riding to and from work or being used instead of a car) and electric mountain bikes (for exploring more off-road terrain).
So let’s start with commuter eBikes. How Much Should I Spend On An Electric Bike To Ride To Work On?
In general, if you are riding it 5 days a week between 3 and 20 miles each way we think you should spend at least £2,000 and at most £4,000. The comparable models here are the Raleigh Motus Hub (£2150) and the Haibike Trekking 9.0 (£3950). Both of these models use the Bosch system so they are software and hardware upgradable in many ways. They are also equipped with mudguards, kickstand, luggage rack and built in lights. These items are essential for most commuters and therefore a necessary aftermarket expense. You save money if the bike already comes with them as it is far cheaper for the manufacturers to source hundreds of mudguards for example in the factory than for you to buy a pair after buying your bike.
In this example the difference between the 2k machine and a 4k one is the power of the motor, the battery capacity, quality of the brakes, quality of the gears, quality of the suspension system, light system, tyres, frame build quality and wheel bearing quality amongst other things. You get what you pay for! You will be impressed with the cheaper Raleigh Motus if you are looking for affordable commuting on a daily basis. It is a comfortable machine with a great spec for the money. The Haibike Trekking takes componentry and comfort to a new level. You would have much better control, and a system that will make much lighter work of steep hills. It is also a great machine for taking on tow paths along the river and very light off-road. The smoothness of the ride is obviously more noticeable on the more expensive machine. Also the frame geometry has been worked on in a special way by Haibike to maintain the geometry of a normal high -end commuter bike. This is difficult to achieve with a motor and battery to deal with. So this costs much more money to design and produce a frame capable of giving performance and comfort in large doses. So it is easier to see why it costs a little more at point of sale now I hope.
We obviously have many more models to choose from, but this is just to give you an idea of the differences between two models that can both be chosen to do a similar job so you can see where the extra money is going. For a more precise explanation please come and visit our store. We are Open 7 days a Week 9-2pm and would love to see you and discuss your electric bike needs in more depth.
Okay…. now onto eMountain Bikes….
How Much should you spend on an Electric Mountain Bike?
Well it is important here to consider we sell eMTB’s from £2,000 to £15,000. In our opinion most customers that are looking to ride off-road should be spending £3,500 – £6,500 for ultimate comfort and safety at higher speeds. We always recommend you ‘buy right, and buy once.’ So do consider the future outcome of your purchase. We are not looking to sell you a bike with more travel or higher spec three years down the line. We want your eBike to last! Investing when you initially buy the electric bike means you will have a machine that may go beyond what you think you need, but that gives you the confidence to enjoy your rides safe in the knowledge that the bike can take everything you throw at it.
A big decider on how much you should spend on an Electric Mountain Bike can be dictated by whether you need a full suspension ebike or a hardtail one. The full suspension ebikes are usually a little more expensive to be able to take the rear shock suspension systems. It is not easy to maintain frame geometries with high end mtb’s when designing around a motor and battery, plus the extra weight of an electric bike. The idea of a full suspension system is that the suspension takes the shocks off road so your body doesn’t have to. Those steep hills you can climb with ease need to be descended from. The more you spend on suspension systems the safer you will be at higher speeds on bumpier off-road terrain. This is once again only a general rule of thumb, but the idea is the more money you spend the more travel you get. I have written another article on suspension systems and ebikes. Check it out on our blog.
This article is a work in progress, but hopefully I have outlined some key things you should know when it comes to how much you should spend on your next electric bike.
Looking forward to seeing you at our Electric Bike store in Shoreham West Sussex. No matter how much or little you spend on an electric bike, we are here to help!
The Electric Bike Specialists