Electric mountain bike are becoming more and more popular and despite access problems – and perhaps because of that – they are becoming better and more pleasant to ride. Their small engines help you go faster and farther and can make challenging climbs less daunting.

E-bike motors

Every bike on this list uses a centrally powered motor (instead of a hub) and for good reason. A centrally driven motor builds a bike with better weight distribution. In addition, maintaining lightweight wheels helps ensure that the rear suspension works better and is more efficient than a hub motor at the usual minimum speeds for mountain biking.

The motors use sensors to determine the assistance levels based on the torque applied to the pedals by the driver. In general, the harder you pedal, the more support you will get. However, all of these bikes have different power levels – usually three – so you can measure how much assistance (and therefore battery) you have. , You use.

The most popular motors come from Bosch and Shimano. Taken together, they appear on 85% of the bikes on this list. Other popular engines are Brose and Yamaha. Some brands use customer-specific motors: Brose specializes in their motors, while Rocky Mountain has developed a Powercycle motor.

What you need to know about power and torque

Most brands list the performance of their bike, but avoid putting too much emphasis on the number – there is no standard for measuring it, so performance can vary widely. Every motor on our list is designed for a continuous or rated output of 250 watts. But this number is not always correct either. Instead, look for torque, which measures how much rotational force is being applied to move the motor. It’s the momentum, the murmur, or the slap that you feel when you pedal. Higher torque means faster acceleration and more support.

How an engine eliminates this torque is also very important for the overall experience. The low and uneven energy output makes an e-bike less fun and more difficult to ride on technical terrain. A well programmed engine feels smooth, predictable and consistent in all situations.

mountain bike

Batteries: It’s about watt hours

Watt hours (Wh) is the best number when you look at batteries. Take into account the performance and lifespan of the battery. (A higher Wh number is higher). However, the higher the Wh number, the heavier and more expensive a battery becomes, which means that the largest batteries are usually found on the most expensive bikes

Compromises between geometry and suspension

Due to the size of the motor and battery, the manufacturer is not always able to use the same design and geometry of the suspension on his electric bicycle as on his uncoupled bicycle.

Trevor Porter, Kona’s e-bike manager, said motors may require longer casings and adding batteries to the downpipes may require larger head tubes, increasing the stack height. This is common for all tested E-MTBs. The head tube cover and angle usually remain similar to standard bikes, but the chassis length, head tube length, and stack height are generally increased.

Also read about: The Beginner’s Hiking Equipment Guide

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