Biking can be a whole lot of fun. Apart from the fact that it serves as a great workout, it’s also better on the environment than driving, and frankly, is a great way to start the day. But it can also be a whole lot of work, especially if you live in hilly areas. Ebikes help solve this issue. They can assist your peddling, or let you bypass peddling altogether, helping you go faster, and making it easier and sometimes more fun to bike.
But there are a ton of ebike models out there, and they’re not all created equal. Some are definitely better than others — offering better range, larger batteries, and other features.
There are a ton of things to consider before buying an ebike. For starters, you’ll want to think about the actual electric components on the bike — namely the motor and the battery. There are two types of ebike motor — mid-drive, and hub-drive. Mid-drive motoros are usually positioned in-between the two pedals, while hub-drive motors are usually positioned in the middle of either the front or rear wheel. Hub-drive motors tend to be cheaper than mid-drive ones. But, mid-drove motors are often smaller, lighter, and more powerful than hub-drives.
Ebike motors also deliver a certain amount of power, measured in watts (W). You can usually ignore an ebike’s wattage, as different manufacturers measure wattage differently, and some get a little creative in order to avoid regulation. Comparing ebikes based on wattage may be better when comparing two bikes from the same company, but still, wattage can often be ignored altogether.
Ebikes also come in different classes. In the U.S., Class 1 ebikes offer pedal-assist, but no throttle. Class 2 ebikes offer a throttle with a maximum speed of 20 mph. Class 3 ebikes are again only pedal-assist, but have a maximum speed of 28 mph.
Of course, you’ll also want to consider other aspects when buying an ebike. For example, you’ll want to think about whether you want an ebike that can fold up, or not. And you’ll want to think about whether you plan on taking the bike off-roading, or not. That all comes down to personal preference.
Without further ado, here are the best ebikes in 2022.
Best ebike overall: Rad Power RadCity 5 Plus
- Comfortable ride
- Solid value for money
- A little heavy
Looking for a great all-around ebike that performs well, looks great, and should last you for years to come? The Rad Power RadCity 5 Plus is the way to go. The bike is a little pricey, but not actually over-the-top for an ebike, and it boasts a ton of great features.
Under the hood, the RadCity 5 Plus offers a 750-watt motor that Rad Power says will deliver between 28 to 50 miles of range on a charge. That’s pretty good — though not necessarily as high as some of the other options on this list. The bike also has a backlit LCD display with a charge indicator, the ability change pedal assist levels, and more.
Riding the bike is great too. It’s very comfortable to ride, thanks to its imitation leather handgrips and good amount of padding. Pedal-assist kicks in smoothly and quickly, making it easy to ride. The bike is well-built and premium too.
So what are the downsides? While the price is in-line with other ebikes, it is still a little pricey. Also, the bike is relatively heavy. But that won’t really matter as much while you’re riding it, as it still feels nimble and easy to steer.
Best offroad ebike: Juiced Bikes RipCurrent S
- Tons of features
- Long range
- Step-through option
If you’re more of an off-roader, then it’s worth considering a bike that fits your lifestyle — like the Juice Bikes RipCurrent S. This bike offers nice fat tires, a great design, and a ton of helpful features. Juiced Bikes has been making ebikes for years now, and it shows in the RipCurrent S.
There are plenty of things to like about the RipCurrent S. For example, the bike boasts a strong build, that can easily withstand all kinds of use, from road use to mountain biking. The bike has a rear hub 750W motor, with a battery that can deliver up to an impressive 120 miles of range. That’s more than many other options on this list.
It also has some great safety features on board. You’ll get a 1050-lumen front headlight, along with hydraulic brakes and dual-piston calipers. Braking also disables the motor, preventing it from then launching you forward.
This bike is great, but again, not perfect. The RipCurrent S is relatively expensive, with a list price of $2,699. At the time of this writing, you could get it for $2,099.
Best commuter ebike: VanMoof S3
- Smooth ride
- Good range
VanMoof has been hailed as the Apple or the Tesla of the bike world, thanks to its stunningly-designed ebikes that offer a more simplistic take on bike design. The VanMoof S3 is around the same price as many of the other top-end ebikes on this list. But, it’s easily the most stylish, and great for riding to work in the morning.
When it comes to features, the VanMoof S3 has a lot to offer. It provides a super comfortable ride, with theft protection features and regular maintenance, if you’re willing to pay extra for them. Without having to pay extra, however, you’ll get a motor that’s able to deliver between 37 and 93 miles of range, depending on how you use the bike. On the higher end that’s not bad. The bike even works with the VanMoof app to control certain aspects of it, making using it even more versatile.
The VanMoof S3 is a great bike, but there are a few downsides to consider. Notably, the bike is a little pricey, and it’s probably not the bike to get if you’re looking for something to take mountain biking. But those issues will be easy to look past for many looking for a great commuter bike.
Best folding ebike: Rad Power RadExpand 5
- Foldable design
- Fat tires
- Range is a little low
Live in a city and want something you can better store away? The Rad Power RadExpand 5 is worth considering. This bike lives in the legacy of the much-loved RadMini brand, also offering a fold-up design, and boasting a relatively low price compared to some of the other bikes on this list.
Despite its small size, the RadExpand 5 offers excellent performance. You’ll get a top speed of 20 miles per hour, with a range of between 25 and 45 miles, depending on how you ride the bike and the terrain you take it on. That’s not incredible range, and you might want to get into the habit of charging in between rides. But still, most won’t ride further than 25 miles at a time.
The bike’s small size and low price mean there are some considerations to make. For example, the bike doesn’t have suspension, though it does have large tires that should help make up for that. Despite that, however, if you want a fold-up ebike, you can’t really do much better than the RadExpand 5.
Best cruiser ebike: Blix Sol Eclipse
- Comfortable ride
- Nice wide handlebars
- Premium build
- Mechanical disc brakes
Looking for a stylish cruiser that you ride around town? The Blix Sol Eclipse is the way to go. This bike offers a stunning build with a super smooth ride — and it comes in a range of stunning colors.
Under the hood, the Blix Sol Eclipse offers a 750 watt motor and battery that’s able to deliver up to 45 miles of range, which is fine, but not incredible. It also has an integrated front LED light. And, it has a digital display with a USB port for charging your devices built in.
The Sol Eclipse is a great beach cruiser, but there are a few things to note. Some will prefer hydraulic brakes over the disc brakes built in to the Sol Eclipse, for example. But if you’re able to look past that, you’ll love the style on offer by the Sol Eclipse.
Are ebikes worth the investment?
It really depends what you’re looking for! For many, they’re absolutely worth the investment, as they offer a way to get around, without having to use a car, and without having to exert too much energy. That means that you could get to and from work without breaking a sweat, and then take your bike mountain biking on the weekends, depending on the bike that you get.
How long do ebikes last?
Ebikes should last about as long as regular bikes. That’s to say, you should be able to get a solid 10 years of use out of an ebike. That can vary a little, depending on how you care for your ebike and how you use it. And, of course, keep in mind that some components will need to be replaced sooner.
How far can an ebike go on one charge?
That depends on the model of ebike you get. On the low end, and depending on your usage, you can expect to get around 25 miles of range from your ebike. Some ebikes, however, offer over 100 miles of range.