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What You Need to Know Before Purchasing an Electric Bike


Buying an e-bike can take a big part of your budget, so you’ll want to make sure you are making the right choice when you're purchasing an e-bike. That is why we’ve created you a guide to what you need to know before purchasing an e-bike.


1. What will you use an e-bike to do?

E-bikes now come in many different styles and have many diverse uses. Think about why you want, or need, an e-bike. You don’t want to buy a 180mm full suspension e-bike if all you need is some extra mobility help to get to the local shops. Conversely, you don’t want a hybrid if you’re going to be blasting some big trails.

The simple rule is to tailor your bike to the majority of your riding and not what you wish you did or do very rarely.

You don't have to get off and push your bike up that challenging uphill with an Electric City Bike

2. You get what you pay for.

With e-bikes, you genuinely get what you pay for. The more you pay, the better the battery life you’ll get. The stronger your motor will be, you’ll want a good motor when hills start to come up. You’ll also get a better spec the more you pay.

Remember a $1000 e-bike will have similar parts to a $500 standard bike, the extra charge is for your battery and motor.

The Marin San Anselmo Electric City Bike

3. How much power?

The question everyone will ask when looking at a new e-bike is, “How much power does that bike have?” You want to buy a bike with as much power as you can afford. It is worth knowing that 250 watts are the maximum power allowed in Australia. 250 watts is enough to help you reach a cruising speed of 25 kilometres per hour, the max speed allowed for e-bikes in Australia.

You also want to look at Amps and Volts available. Amps give you an indication of how long the battery will last, and Volts give you an indication of how fast the e-bike accelerates.

36V Entity battery on the BOA folding electric bike

4. What type of motor?

You can get your motor in your hubs, or as part of the chainset, which is known as a mid-drive motor. Both systems have their advantages and disadvantages. The benefits of hub motors are that they have been around for a while and are both cheap and reliable. You can find them mounted on your front wheel or your back wheel. The back wheel is generally more beneficial as it’s easier for your bike to support the weight of the motor there.

Mid-drive motors are located around the bike’s bottom bracket area, making the motor closer to your bike’s centre of gravity and it helps to make an electric bike feel more stable. Being around your chainset and reacting to your pedal torque makes mid-drive motors more efficient than hub motors. Mid-drive motors will also help to make hills easier. Hub motors will just move your wheel forward, but mid-drive motors propel your chain and through that action bring you more power. Your local hills will now feel smaller than they ever did.

A hub motor on the BOA Folding Electric Bike

A mid-drive motor on the Polygon Entiat Electric Mountain Bike

5. What is a watt-hour?

Battery life will be expressed in watt-hours. For many of us, the idea of a watt-hour is an abstract concept. The easiest way to think of it is that you want the biggest number possible for your budget here.

There is a small rule of thumb about watt-hours and e-bike distance. The idea is you take the watt-hours and divide by 15. The number you get is roughly the mileage you can expect from your battery. Like all rules, it is meant to be broken, but it gives you a good idea of what size you can get away with buying.

Watt-hours / 15 = Battery mileage

Now that you know the basics about E-Bikes, you can start browsing our website and the internet for the E-Bike that best matches your needs. If you have any issues, you can contact our customer service team or leave a comment in the comment section below.


You might want to read:

The Electrification of Personal Transport




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