The Best E-Bikes of 2023

The e-bike industry experienced meteoric growth following the pandemic, leading to a dearth of options for the modern commuter. While the industry initially focused on electric assist cargo bikes, now you’re just as likely to see electric cruisers, mountain bikes, gravel bikes, fat bikes, and folding bikes cruising local roads and trails.

Our team spent 3 months and 5,000 collective miles putting 20 different e-bikes to the test, with 12 making the cut for our list of recommendations. We’re confident our time and effort will help you narrow your search and choose the right e-bike for your unique needs.

Listed here are our favorite bikes of the bunch. Each entry has been thoroughly ridden and tested, with special attention to fit and feel, maintenance, and build difficulty. We highlight the key aspects you need to consider when purchasing an e-bike, including range, top speed, and carrying capacity.

We also list the appropriate surfaces for each bike based on our experience. Use the links below to jump to the type of e-bike that piques your interest or scroll along and take in the full breadth of our review. Use our comparison chart for a side-by-side look at specs and features and be sure to read our buyer’s guide so you know what to look for when considering an e-bike.

The Best E-Bikes of 2023

Best Overall E-Bike

Specialized Turbo Vado SL


  • Range 80 miles (120 with range extender)
  • Class III (top speed of 28 mph)
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain 11-speed
  • Carrying Capacity 55 lbs. on bike rack/250 lbs. on the bike frame
  • Weight 33 lbs.
  • Surfaces Pavement, gravel, some dirt
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Lightweight
  • Fast
  • Easy to use and maintain
  • Natural riding feel


  • Rack has a low weight limit
  • Not a huge range
The motto “innovate or die” has been guiding Specialized’s ship for the past three decades. So it’s no wonder their e-bikes are some of the best, sleekest, and most inventive in the industry.

Most commuter bikes are clunky, heavy, and cumbersome. The Vado SL ($3,750), however, is built to get on and go — and then get off again and carry up and down stairs, get on a subway, and go again. Weighing in at a mere 33 pounds, it’s one of the lightest e-commuters on the market.

The ride experience is smooth, fun, and zippy, seamlessly blending your power with the bike’s custom Specialized SL 1.1 custom motor.​​ Some bikes give you bursts of acceleration that interfere with your pedaling — not so with the Vado. It gives you boosts that keep your cadence smooth and steady. Every ride feels like at least a bit of a workout as the system just amplifies the power the rider is putting in. Proper gear selection on steep climbs is still essential — it just feels like you have stronger legs!

The components consist of Sram and Praxis, which are all high quality. The Tektro brakes stopped us smoothly and effectively. The chain is protected by a minimal chain guard, minimizing the need to oil it. At night we felt safe and seen thanks to the bright front and rear light. The front light was bright enough to let us see on some very dark gravel roads. While the rack is nice and slim, the carrying capacity is only rated for 50 pounds, but it handled a few days of groceries just fine.

At first glance, it’s hard to tell this is an e-bike, as everything is internal and streamlined. With a push of the button on the top tube, the bars light up and tell you how much power you have left. On the left handlebar, there is an up and down button that lets you scroll through the three different power modes: eco, sport, and turbo mode. On the right, you can easily shift through 12 different gears.

On the website, it says the Vado SL can go up to 28 mph for 80 miles. While we didn’t test this specifically, we rode it every day for an average of 8 miles and went between all of the modes depending on how fast we needed to get somewhere or how we were feeling that day. On a single charge, it lasted 5 days. If you need more range, there is an option to get a range extender. To charge it back to full capacity, it only took 2 and a half hours, which is on the faster end.

All Specialized bikes come with a handy and easy-to-use app called Mission Control. The app tells you all the usual information (range, power, and total trip miles), but what we loved the most was it told us how efficiently we were using the motor. People who live in big cities will love the security measure. Through this, you can activate an alarm if the bike is moved that only the owner can disable and you can also disable the motor so that it does not function at all.

Maintenance-wise, this bike is low-key. Besides oiling the chain and updating the battery through the app, it requires little upkeep. This bike is perfect for running quick errands and commuting to and from work and or school. We think it’s the best e-bike available.
Best Budget E-Bike

Schwinn Coston CE Step Thru


  • Range 35 miles
  • Class II (Top speed of 20 mph)
  • Throttle Yes
  • Drivetrain 7-Speed
  • Carrying Capacity 245 lb rider weight, 300 lb total payload
  • Weight 55 lbs.
  • Surfaces Pavement, gravel, some dirt
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Pedal assist and throttle assist
  • Integrated lighting
  • Affordable


  • Not as comfortable as other bikes with premium components
The Schwinn Coston CE step-thru ($1,799) strikes a great balance of quality and affordability. It’s a step-through style electric bike perfect for daily use, casual riding, and commuting. After months of testing, we found it one of the best models in terms of simplicity, user interface, and budget.

There is one computer and display unit mounted to the left handlebar, which allows riders to turn the e-bike on and off, view current and average speed, battery life, and throttle for assist up to 20 mph. With this bike, you can use either the pedal assist or throttle assist.

The battery charges via a standard AC charging cord. We found even after a long weekend of touring around the city, including a 10-mile ride down our tester’s city bike path, there was still a charge left. The Coston CE has a 35-mile range, according to Schwinn, but our guess is this would require using one of the lower assist levels and laying off the throttle. Aggressive joyriding would likely see the battery depleted after 25 miles.

For $1,599, this electric bike offers the basics as well as a sturdy ride. The battery life, range, and integrated lighting are great. It even has frame lighting, which is a nifty feature absent in all our other test bikes and increases your ability to be noticed by motorists at night.

The bike isn’t as comfortable as some of the other e-bikes we tested, factoring in tires, budget suspension fork, and seat. If you’re looking for something super high-tech or with more features for commuting, we recommend the Vado SL, ET Cycles F1000, or Ride Radiant Carbon.
Best Mountain E-Bike

Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy


  • Range 30-45 miles, tunable up to 5 hours
  • Class II
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain 12-speed
  • Carrying Capacity Limited (rider and water bottle)
  • Weight 51 lbs.
  • Surfaces Dirt, gravel
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Premium components
  • Natural and plentiful power integration
  • Adjustable range and geometry to fit riding style


  • May not be legal on your local trails
If you’re in the market for an e-mtb, you can’t do better than the Turbo Levo ($7,500). It turns you into a mountain-biking superhero while still demanding you develop mountain-biking skills. It’s both nimble and forgiving, plush and stable, and all-around fun.

Just like the Vado, it has an incredibly natural ride feel — but with way more power. The 90 Nm of torque makes short work of climbs even our world champion’s legs can’t conquer.

Top-end features include a flip chip and headset spacers that create an adjustable geometry to suit your riding style, a premium dropper post, and the mission control app. The latter allows the rider to tune the power delivery as well as set a ride range, ensuring the bike will manage power for the entire distance and not leave you stranded with a heavy, powerless machine.

If you love dirt and want to extend your range but don’t want a gas-guzzling dirtbike, the Turbo Levo might be the best e-bike for you.
Best Folding E-Bike

ET Cycle F1000 Electric Fat Tire Bike


  • Range 125 miles (in eco mode, realistically 40 because you'll want to ride fast)
  • Class II
  • Throttle Yes
  • Drivetrain 8-speed
  • Carrying Capacity N/A
  • Weight 75 lbs.
  • Surfaces Pavement, dirt, sand
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Plows through sand and dirt
  • Easy to set up
  • Storable


  • May be hard to find replacement tubes
  • Limited to 20 mph
  • Aggressive power delivery
While the ET Cycle F1000 ($2,099) is a major investment, it’s one of the less expensive options and one of the easiest to put together. The time between its arrival (in a reasonably sized box) and riding away on it was less than 2 minutes. The folding design is intuitive — click, click, and away you go. However, at 75 pounds, it’s on the heavy side. You may need a friend to help hoist it into the back of a car.

Note: Make sure you check all the bolts on the stem and headset as ours were loose and made that first ride exciting.

The power delivery is more aggressive than any other bike we tested, so be ready. It seems to jump into “full power” as soon as the sensor triggers the motor to start. It also stays on longer once you stop pedaling. This bike is tons of fun, but we’d hesitate to let inexperienced folks ride this bike as it can be a bit more intense for beginners than your standard e-bike.

The German-made Das kit G20 rim motor is ultra-powerful. With a torque rating of 60 Nm and a peak of 750 watts, it got nicknamed the “Motor Bike” in our tester’s household. The ET comes with a throttle, which is nice for accelerating quickly when at a stoplight with cars. We may have gotten a little too “trigger happy” with it, as we never did make it close to the website claim of 125 miles before having to charge it. However, like most e-bikes, the portable battery is easy to pop off and charge overnight. And the big display in the middle of the handlebars has all the necessary numbers on it, so we were well aware of the battery life before it got too low.

Beyond the ability to fold up and how quick and easy the setup was, we were also impressed with what kind of terrain the 4-inch tires could plow through. We rolled over 2-inch-deep sand, rutted-out gravel roads, and city roads with ease and comfort. It comes stock with a suspension fork and a suspension seat which adds a bit of “bounce” and intensifies the fast and loose feel of the ride. It’s finished with nice leather hand grips and a rack on the rear and the front.

The ET Cycle F1000 is great for beach riding and people who aren’t interested in getting a workout. It’s more of a hybrid between a bike and a moped. However, for those looking for a beefier commuter or beach cruiser that can go over any terrain, this is a great option.
Best Single-Speed E-Bike

State 6061 eBike Commuter


  • Range 100
  • Class I
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain Single Speed
  • Carrying Capacity 330 lbs.
  • Weight 38 lbs. (size M)
  • Surfaces Pavement, dirt
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Does not look like an e-bike
  • Affordable
  • Simple and well-made


  • Battery cannot be removed
  • No gearing so some starts or bigger hills can get athletic
Frugal Hipsters and single-speed bike lovers rejoice — State’s first e-bike is here! The affordable State 6061 eBike Commuter ($1,499) quickly stole our simplicity-loving hearts. From unboxing it to riding it for the first time, our experience has been enjoyable. There are no racks or clunky exterior batteries, no gears, and no throttle. Instead, it looks like a regular bike as both the battery and motor are slim and integrated into the bottom tube/crank area.

While this bike appeals to minimalists, it still has all the important and slick features. The battery is thin and is fully integrated into the down tube, making it hard to tell it’s an e-bike. However, it does prevent the battery from being removed. This isn’t an issue for riders with an outlet in their garage, but some people may have to get creative with how they recharge it.

There’s no throttle and no gears, but the hub motor can achieve speeds up to 20 mph with the help of pedal power and five different modes. Since this is a single-speed, riding this bike does take some work. It takes a second for the cadence sensor to kick in the motor, and this can be especially hard if you’re starting on an uphill from a standstill. Even as avid bikers, we had more difficulty getting going on this bike than others in the test.

At level one, the lowest mode, State says you can get 100 miles out of it. But the range will be more like 20 miles if using the max assist of level five. The bike has more traditional sizing, so take care to get the best frame size for your measurements.

The tires are good for pavement or moderate dirt and gravel and absorbed the occasional bumps in the road, but the rigid fork means the ride gets a bit harsh on rougher paths and pothole-ridden streets. With the bike weighing in at less than 40 pounds, it’s easy to bring it upstairs or put it on a bike rack. The small LED screen is equipped with all of the important information and nothing more, adding another non-descriptive yet slick feature to its list.

We envision the State 6061 being right at home in a big city like San Francisco or Portland with fitted jeans and messenger bags as its only accessories. For those looking for a well-made but simple e-bike they can get on with nothing but a backpack and go, this is the bike for them. Single-speeders, simplicity lovers, and people not looking to spend a fortune will love this bike.
Best E-Gravel Bike

Alchemy Bikes eRonin Electric Gravel Bike


  • Range 100 miles
  • Class I
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain 12-speed (SRAM force wireless)
  • Carrying Capacity 250 lbs.
  • Weight 28 lbs.
  • Surfaces Gravel
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Subtle and nearly perfect power delivery for experienced endurance riders
  • Can handle multiple water bottles and bento boxes (three places to mount)
  • Easy to ride without power
  • Top-of-the-line frame and components
  • Lightweight


  • Price
  • Requires effort from rider and then amplifies it
  • Not your standard e-bike experience
Gravel bikes burst onto the scene less than a decade ago — born from a desire for roadies to add a little adventure to their lives (and avoid deadly auto/bike accidents), a desire for aging mountain bikers to get injured less while avoiding becoming roadies, or maybe just from costume-clad cyclocross racers tired of getting dizzy doing crazy little loops in the mud. Regardless of the point of entry, gravel riders embraced long rides on light but capable bikes.

It seems like a strange place to try to fit an e-bike, but Colorado-based Alchemy bikes took on the challenge and created a masterpiece (and it’s priced as such, too). The eRonin ($10,999) is a full carbon bike integrated with the subtle but powerful Fazua evation system. And what a system it is. We could write the whole review just on the motor, but it’s a thing of beauty to behold and even more spectacular to ride — but only if you understand this is a different kind of e-bike.

It smoothly amplifies a rider’s power with one of three levels (breeze, river, and rocket) that are only indicated by subtle lights on the top tube. It’s like a super secret agent bike of sorts, giving you a little boost when you need it.

The best part is the bike only weighs 28 pounds. And when the battery dies or is turned off, you ride it like a normal bike with no additional drag. You kind of get two bikes in one, as the battery is removable (with a slick tube cap to cover the hole). Without the battery, you have a 22-pound gravel bike that’s great on its own.

The eRonin is available in several spec levels, but we tested the wireless SRAM force, which makes the entire experience feel technologically advanced. On long rides, we set it on the lowest level (breeze) and basically enjoyed the feeling of a decent tailwind for 5 hours while traversing the backcountry.

The bike certainly comes at a premium price, but in the entire test, it was the bike that most beautifully married true endurance riding ethos with e-bike assistance. This is not a good first e-bike for anyone, but for endurance riders making the shift toward retirement, this could be the last bike you ever need.

It could convert to a great road bike with a slick, bike packing set-up with bags and bottles everywhere, or just make towing a trailer with your kids on board much more pleasurable.
Best E-Bike for Kids

Woom UP E-Bike


  • Range N/A
  • Class I
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain Sram NX
  • Carrying Capacity 160 lbs.
  • Weight 35.6 lbs.
  • Surfaces Single-track dirt, cross-country travel, not made for enduro/big jumps
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Lightweight
  • Can grow with your kids
  • Motor assist stops at 12 mph, making it safer for your kid and letting them work more


  • Price tag
  • Motor assist stops at 12 mph which could be annoying for little shredders
When it comes to kids bikes, WOOM has it figured out. From the well-thought-out geometry to the weight to the genius of putting a single front brake on their balance bike, its bikes have impressed us and many other parents and kids out there time and time again. It makes sense their new e-bike, the UP ($3,599), is quickly becoming popular.

At first, we were a little hesitant and not so sure about an e-bike for kids. Won’t it make them lazy? After having an e-bike, won’t they then always want an e-bike? However, after seeing the way it transformed family rides for friends, we’re excited to try them out.

Before getting the UP, our friends would split up their family riding times. One parent would spend the day riding with the kids on the lower trails, while the other parent would ride high up into the mountain trails. They would all meet at the bottom when everyone was done. While this is fun in its own way, with their kids on the UPs, the whole family is able to ride much longer as a whole unit.

It’s also changed the way they commute around town. Now the kids are able to ride longer distances to go to their different activities and actually prefer it over getting a ride in the car. And they still do reach for their traditional bikes for shorter rides and rides with friends.

The Fazua drive system is super slick and offers three different levels of pedal assist as well as an option to ride without it. Thanks to the lightness of the combined motor and battery unit integrated into the downtube, it’s possible to ride without any assist and requires no maintenance (our favorite part).

Another plus is at speeds upwards of 12 mph, the motor assist switches off and allows the rider to take over with their own power. For safety reasons, we like having the top end lower than other e-bikes because, well, it’s a kid’s bike. No parent wants their 7-year-old being able to go up or down any trail at 20 mph! The Sram NX drivetrain and trigger shifter make shifting between the 11 gears smooth, natural, and efficient-feeling, even for the smallest 7-year-old thumbs.

The WOOM UP is made of forged aluminum, making it both lightweight and durable. The creative flip-flop design of the stem (which is our favorite feature) lets the bike grow with your kids. Simply flip the stem over, which raises the handlebars, making it more comfortable and giving your kid another year or two with their awesome bike!

With more power comes the need for stronger stopping power. Input the easy-to-engage and easy-to-reach hydraulic disc brakes. Our friends say their kids can stop on any hill, no matter the steepness or wetness.

Of course, not every kid or family needs one of these. However, if you’re a biking family that wants to get out and ride some big trails together, or if your kid has a long commute to school, this bike may be your ticket to ride. And while $3,599 is pretty steep for a kid’s bike, it’s able to grow with your child (to a certain extent). Non-electric WOOM bikes are well known for holding their resale value, so we’re hopeful this will be true for the UP as well.
Best of the Rest

Biktrix Juggernaut Hub Duo Step Over


  • Range 100+ miles (with second battery)
  • Class II
  • Throttle Yes
  • Drivetrain 9-speed
  • Carrying Capacity 330 lbs.
  • Weight 70 lbs. with 2 batteries
  • Surfaces Everything (sand, snow, dirt, pavement)
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Heavy duty
  • Long range
  • Great build options
  • Perfect for tons of surfaces


  • Heavy
  • No small sizes
  • Hub motor is not ideal for super “hilly” cities like San Francisco
  • Cheaper fork
The Hub Duo ($2,399) is a bike that can go just about anywhere (and can keep going just about anywhere for a long time). We reviewed the option with 4-inch fat bike tires (also available with narrower MTB tires) and were blown away by the versatility.

Beaches, moderate winter snow, gravel, singletrack — the Juggernaut handles it all. The heavy weight is matched by the thumb throttle which helps with standing starts when the bike is loaded. The Hub Duo is the lowest price tier of the Juggernaut line, with the main difference between them being the motor. And while sometimes hub motors get a bad rap, we found the 80 Nm of torque delivered by the Bafang 750W to be totally adequate for all the riding we did.

Furthermore, the power delivery is driven by a torque sensor (instead of a cadence sensor like the other two models) which makes the riding experience a more natural feeling in our opinion. Even our biggest riders (230 pounds) didn’t feel the motor was underpowered for our adventures.

The bike is finished with a basic 80mm suspension fork (with lockout), a large rear rack, and an integrated display interface that’s user-friendly and displays relevant information such as speed, distance, range, power level, etc.

The cornerstone of the Juggernaut “Duo” name is the ease of adding range through a second battery. During the bike purchase, there are several add-on options designed to turn the bike into a long-range adventure vehicle. We opted for the second battery and the 2,000-lumen integrated front light. And wow — a 100-mile range and a darkness-banishing light that never (well at least until the bike does) runs out of batteries! Bikepacking anyone? Throw some panniers on the rack and a front roll on the handlebars — the Juggernaut Duo is ready.

The bike is big, though, and saddling up feels a bit more like getting onto a light-duty motorcycle than any other e-bike in our test. Biktrix does make a step-through model for those who are smaller, but even the step-through is a “big” bike not suited to smaller riders under 5’6” or so.

Xtra Cycle Swoop


  • Range 30-60 miles depending on load and terrain
  • Class I
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain 11-speed
  • Carrying Capacity 400 lbs.
  • Weight 62.9 lbs.
  • Surfaces Pavement, smooth gravel
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Big carrying capacity
  • Can fit three kids very comfortably
  • Comes with sling bags and footrests
  • Can fit multiple-size riders


  • Speed limiter to 20 mph
  • On the longer side for longtail cargo bikes
  • No throttle for assisting standing starts
Xtra Cycle’s Mission is “to use bikes as everyday transport and to ride together.” The Swoop ($4,999) embodies all of this and more. Our tester’s whole family fell in love with this bike for its comfortability (for both the riders and the passengers) and for all of the little things XtraCycle thought of to make it the perfect everyday grocery getter, kid hauler, and library book messenger.

On their first trip with this bike, our tester’s family rode it down to the outdoor climbing and splash park with a full picnic, a bag of climbing gear, towels, sun hats, and sunscreen. It handled the gear and the passengers with ease, making the whole experience enjoyable.

After a few weeks of having it, not a day went by when they didn’t ride it. It makes even a mundane trip to the grocery store a super fun journey. They opted for the Swoop to come fully assembled and ready to ride which added a bit to the shipping cost ($350), but being able to ride it within 5 minutes of getting it (with three squealing happy boys on board) was well worth it.

It comes with integrated lights, footrests for the passengers, and the brilliant Freeloader Too sling bags — some of the best cargo-carrying accessories we’ve ever tried! Our tester opted to add a few accessories to make it their own. The long tail hooptie ($240) and the Magic carpet ($75) made the riding safer and more enjoyable for her boys, while the front rack ($200) and porter bag ($150) allowed her to carry a full day’s worth of adventure gear.

The Ride Radiant Carbon Electric Bike


  • Range 100 miles
  • Class I
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain Fully automatic
  • Carrying capacity N/A
  • Weight 50 lbs.
  • Surfaces Paved, dirt, gravel
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Unique build
  • Premium components
  • Incredibly stable
  • Long range
  • Easy fit
  • Delivered fully assembled


  • Expensive
  • No cargo carrying capacity
If Tesla or Lucid got into the e-bike game, this would be the bar they were trying to reach. The Ride bike ($7,499) is a unique carbon fiber frame with fully automatic shifting, thanks to the rare Enviolo SP AutomatIQ. It has a carbon belt drive, integrated pedal kickstand, asymmetrical single-sided front fork (easiest flat tire change ever) integrated lights, and beautiful detailing throughout.

The geometry is somewhat of a cross between a beach cruiser and a fitness bike and comfortably fits a range of testers from 5’2” up to 6’2”.

Ride-wise, the Ride is incredibly stable and smooth. It has three pedal-assist modes. The user chooses their preferred pedal cadence, and the bike shifts on its own to maintain that cadence. It sounds a bit counterintuitive, but in reality, it works well. Unlike a lot of bikes in our test, the eco mode does not feel underpowered and it is a pretty great experience to cruise around all day letting the “smart motor” work for you. There was no better bike we tested for riding in eco!

The Ride Radiant comes with all the best components: Magura hydraulic brakes/ Enviolo Stepless internal transmission (instead of external gears), Shimano Class 1 mid-drive motor, and premium 2.8-inch Moto X tires. The integrated battery and greaseless carbon belt help keep things clean and tidy and often had us viewing the bike as a work of art rather than the capable commuter/beach/fitness hybrid e-bike that it is.

Yuba Kombi E5 Bike


  • Range 25-50 miles depending on the terrain, the weight of the rider, and the weight of the cargo
  • Class 1
  • Throttle No
  • Drivetrain Shimano 9-speed
  • Carrying capacity 440 lbs.
  • Weight 64 lbs.
  • Surfaces Pavement, smooth dirt road, or gravel
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Can be stored vertically and transported on a bike rack
  • Can haul a ton of groceries and carry kids or dogs


  • Does not come with accessories
  • Changing the rear tire is challenging
  • On the shorter side of long-tail cargo bikes
This shorter “long tail” bike from Yuba ticked all of the boxes a simple and practical e-bike could. We love electric cargo bikes. But one big downside is it’s hard to transport them because they’re extremely heavy and their wheelbase is so wide they don’t fit on a rack. Yuba solved both of these problems with its new lightweight Kombi E5 ($3,299) and we quickly fell in love with it for this reason and many others.

Like all of Yuba’s other cargo bikes, the Kombi can be outfitted to your personal lifestyle and carrying needs. We opted for the monkey bars, bench seat, front basket and rear haul bags to make it both a kid-hauler and weekly grocery-getter. The Kombi is much shorter in length and can store vertically, which gives the garage much more real estate for other toys.

The Shimano Steps E5000 mid-drive motor coupled with the removable 418 Wh battery provided us with an average of 35 miles at 15-18 mph. It does not have a throttle, which could be a deal breaker for some families as a throttle does help when riding from a dead stop. However, for our tester, having three different power modes and a nine-speed drivetrain was plenty.

The entry-level Shimano Altus nine-speed derailleur is a bit on the cheaper end. But you can’t have all the high-end components for such a nice price of $3,200. The hydraulic brakes provide great stopping power and require little to no maintenance. Overall, the Kombi E5 is a great e-bike for the right person.

FREY AM1000 V6


  • Range 30+ miles
  • Class III+
  • Throttle Yes
  • Drivetrain SRAM NX 11-speed
  • Carrying Capacity 350 lbs.
  • Weight 70 lbs.
  • Surfaces Any except snow — the rougher the better
The Best E-Bikes of 2023


  • Tons of power
  • Stable at speed and on steep downhill
  • Mixed wheel size
  • Fair price


  • Heavy
  • Questionable road legality
  • Customer support overseas
The company exclaims “Welcome to Freydom” when you purchase one of their bikes — and after testing countless bikes with speed limiters, our tester’s first ride on the AM1000 ($5,180) did feel like freedom. She thumbed the throttle and reached 30 mph within 10 seconds before getting scared. The bike actually tops out near 35 mph — nearly double that of most bikes in this test.

Just like the Specialized Levo, the AM1000 is a mixed-wheel bike. The similarities continue with the Frey’s 160mm front and rear suspension, slack 65-degree headtube angle, and integrated dropper seatpost. But then the similarities end. Everything about the Frey AM1000 is bigger. It’s heavier, more powerful, noisier, and faster. In truth, it’s a bit more like a light-duty electric dirt bike you can pedal.

The motor peaks at 1500W and 160 Nm of torque, which is nearly twice that of even the most powerful of the other bikes we tested. Basically, this “bike” is so powerful it sits in a bit of a gray area as far as what U.S. law considers an e-bike. But damn, is it fun!

It feels way more at home on mixed-use ATV, motorcycle, and enduro trails than any other bike here. Bonus: the 1008 wH battery gives a rider a huge range, assuming you’re riding it more like a class I or class II e-bike. Rip it for an hour at 35 mph, though, and you’ll be working hard as you pedal that 75-pound empty battery home!
The FREY AM1000 is a perfect bike for those looking for a way to tackle gnarly downhill terrain and self-shuttle the uphills — especially those who live close enough to the local steep laps that they can ride straight from their door.

E-Bike Comparison Chart

E-Bike Price Range Throttle Weight Surfaces
Specialized Turbo Vado SL $3,750 80 miles (120 with range extender) No 33 lbs. Pavement, gravel, some dirt
Schwinn Coston CE Step Thru $1,799 35 miles Yes 55 lbs. Pavement, gravel, some dirt
Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy $7,500 30-45 miles No 51 lbs. Dirt, gravel
ET Cycle F1000 Electric Fat Tire Bike $2,099 125 miles Yes 75 lbs. Pavement, dirt, sand
State 6061 eBike Commuter $1,499 100 miles No 38 lbs Pavement, dirt
eRonin Electric Gravel Bike $10,999 100 miles No 28 lbs. Gravel
Woom UP E-Bike $3,599 N/A No 35.6 lbs.
Single Track dirt
Biktrix Juggernaut Hub Duo Step Over $2,399 100+ miles Yes 70 lbs. sand, snow, dirt, pavement
Xtra Cycle Swoop $4,999 60 miles No 62.9 lbs. Pavement, smooth gravel
The Ride Radiant Carbon Electric Bike $7,499 100 miles No 50 lbs. Pavement, dirt, gravel
Yuba Kombi E5 Bike $3,299 up to 50 miles No 64 lbs. Pavement, gravel
FREY AM1000 V6 $5,180 30+ miles Yes 70 lbs. Dirt, gravel, pavement
The Yuba Kombi E5 has a great cargo capacity for all sorts of errands around town. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Why You Should Trust Us

We love bikes and rode a fleet of e-bikes for several months. The testing team is headed by Chelsey Magness, the current 24-hour mountain biking world champion, and includes many professional athletes as well as an entire neighborhood of moms, dads, bike commuters, bike mechanics, a few totally novice riders, and even one prolific DIY e-bike builder.

Most of the bikes were tested over the course of several months in Bend, Oregon with its nationally renowned bike infrastructure and culture that includes hundreds of miles of trails, dirt roads, gravel paths, and paved bike lanes. Additionally, we tested bikes in deep sand and washouts, horse-trails, and even in light snow coverage.

We used the bikes for a wide variety of purposes: school drop-offs, overloaded grocery runs, geocaching adventures, night-time commuting, pub crawls, and lots and lots of just riding for fun.

Unless indicated, all bikes were built up from the box (as delivered) as well as maintained by our team (a few of whom have some basic bike maintenance skill). Every bike that made our list was tested by at least four different people, and we took individual praise and/or criticisms into account in our final review.

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose an E-Bike

As E-Bikes gain popularity and new brands enter the market, choosing the best model for you can seem daunting. Shopping for a standard human-powered bike is already a complex process of sifting through specs and comparing components. E-bikes — with their batteries, motors, and throttles — give potential buyers with a lot to consider.

The Specialized Turbo Vado SL is our all-around favorite Ebike for commuting. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

In this comprehensive buyer’s guide, we break down all of the variables and terminology that you need to make an informed purchase. From wheels to wattage, this guide has you covered. Once you’re primary bike needs are met, check out our guides on accessories like bike lights and bike racks.

Key E-Bike Terms to Know


An e-bike’s range is the total distance it will go before the battery is depleted. Numerous factors affect range, including battery capacity, terrain, air temperature, and manual input from the rider’s pedaling. E-bike ranges have improved in recent years, but the spectrum still tops out at just over 100 miles.

In reality, most e-bikes fail to live up to their advertised range. The manufacturer will claim a range of 80 or 90 miles, and though those numbers may be technically reachable under very specific conditions, you likely won’t manage them during real-world use.

Ultimately, an e-bike’s range entirely depends on how much the rider pedals. If the rider pedals at 100% effort all the time, the range will be much greater than if the rider relies on the motor to do most of the work.

High-end e-bikes don’t necessarily have better ranges than more affordable options. Larger, heavier batteries have greater capacity, but you won’t find them on lightweight performance-minded models. There are many styles of e-bikes — from cargo to gravel to commuter — and all of them must deal with the challenge of mounting a heavy battery onto a bike frame.

Battery life and range vary with the type terrain and the amount of cargo you carry. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

As a rough reference, a robust cargo bike with top-end battery capacity, such as the Xtra Cycle Swoop, will have an average range between 25 and 65 miles. A carbon-framed speed demon like the eRonin will get somewhere between 30 and 100+ miles per full charge.


An e-bike throttle works much like a motorcycle or electric scooter. In most cases, the throttle is integrated into the right-hand side of the handlebar for easy access while riding. Throttles provide on-demand power with no pedaling required. The presence of a throttle is part of what determines an e-bike’s class — which we explain later in this guide. Most of the bikes on this list have throttles.


Like the instrument cluster in a vehicle’s dashboard, an e-bike’s display informs the user of facts and figures related to their ride and their bike’s performance. Most e-bike displays are small 1-3″ screens with options for switching between settings and modes. Most displays read out MPH, total trip mileage, current modes, and remaining battery life. Some e-bikes — such as the eRonin gravel bike — don’t have on-screen displays. Instead, this bike has a series of small buttons and indicator lights on the top tube — which makes sense for a carbon-framed performance bike.

A display like the one shown here on the State 6061 provides important info, including battery life. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)


Pedal assist is the primary e-bike mode. Also known as PAS (pedal assist system) pedal assist combines the active engagement of analog cycling with the commuting efficiency of an electric scooter.

In pedal assist mode, e-bikes use a drivetrain sensor that monitors the revolution of the pedals and engages the motor accordingly. With battery-powered assistance, people are able to enjoy longer rides on more challenging terrain with less physical output. Pedal assist is like having a strong tailwind at your command.

Many e-bikes have various PAS settings. In most cases, the greater the setting or level, the more assistance you’ll get from the motor. Low settings will feel much like riding a traditional bike, and high settings will have the bike doing most of the work. As more pedal assist is activated, the battery will deplete faster.

Regenerative Systems

Some e-bikes have regenerative systems that can recharge the battery while you’re braking or vigorously pedaling. A bike that can recharge while coasting downhill theoretically has a greater potential range than one that cannot.

In truth, gradient-assisted braking systems are still in their infancy, and most bikes that have them only see minute benefits. In very hilly areas, regenerative systems hold some value, but in our experience, this technology is still mostly a marketing ploy in the e-bike world.

Types of E-bikes: What Bike Is Best For Your Riding Style?

Just like analog bicycles, e-bikes come in a variety of styles, each with a different kind of rider in mind. Every bike is built for an intended application, which in turn dictates its components and design. Some bikes — like the Specialized Turbo Vado SL — cross the boundaries and exist in multiple categories simultaneously. For the most part, e-bikes lean into the commuter, cargo, mountain, or performance categories.

Commuter E-bikes

Commuter e-bikes are built to carry their rider from point A to point B. These bikes tend to be comfortable, streamlined, and relatively lightweight. On this list, the ET Cycle F1000 and the Specialized Turbo Vado SL are great commuter options, Both bikes have at least 8 gears, a comfortable saddle, and a rear storage rack. Gears aren’t strictly necessary on an e-bike, but they do help to expand your range, and they’re quite handy in hilly areas.

Commuter e-bikes are defined by reliable components and utilitarian styling. In most cases, commuter bikes are designed for paved surfaces.

The ET Cycle F1000 is a good commuter option. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Cargo E-bikes

Gas is expensive, and many families are looking to e-bikes as a potential car replacement now that they’ve become reliable and affordable. Cargo e-bikes are the ultimate stand-in for a full-size vehicle. Bikes in this class offer storage for standard day-to-day errands. With the right cargo e-bike, you can make a run to the grocery store, pick up your laundry, and even take your kid to school.

On this list, the X Cycle Swoop and the Yuba Kombi E5 are standout family cargo bikes. Both models are available with modular accessories that can be customized to fit the rider’s lifestyle From two-seat kid haulers to large front racks, these bikes are viable alternatives to a car payment.

Because cargo e-bikes tend to be large and heavy, many have options for multiple batteries, which may be a good option if you’re planning to consistently haul a lot of weight. Cargo bikes won’t offer the speed of performance models or the off-road capabilities of mountain bikes, but that’s not what they’re made for.

In areas with safe commuter routes, bikes with good carrying capacity can almost replace your car. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Mountain E-Bikes

Mountain E-bikes prioritize recreation over day-to-day utility. Just like analog mountain bikes, e-bikes in this category are built for slashing singletrack and crushing cross-country circuits. Standard features include full suspension, dropper seat posts, and large rugged tires.

On this list, the Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy is a beast of a mountain bike. It’s got all of the high-end components we’d expect from a $7,500 Specialized model, plus a reliable frame-integrated battery and a mid-drive motor that cranks out 90Nm of torque.

If you love mountain biking but could use a little help on the climbing segments, mountain e-bikes are a glorious solution.

A Mountain E-Bike like the Specialized Turbo Levo Comp may not be trail-legal in many areas. Controversy aside, our testers had loads of fun riding the Levo Comp. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Performance E-Bikes

The performance category is all about speed and serious cycling. These bikes have top-notch components such as all-carbon frames and wireless shifting. All of the nonessentials are cut away to decrease weight and maximize in-motion mechanics. You won’t find any externally-mounted batteries here. The whole assist system is integrated into the frame.

Classes of E-Bikes

E-bikes are grouped into three classes. The class system helps lawmakers legislate e-bikes and their specifications. There are fundamental differences between each class.

Class 1

Class 1 e-bike motors only engage when the rider is pedaling. Once these bikes hit 20 mph, the motor will stop assisting. Class 1 models are ideal for cyclists who want a more traditional sans-throttle experience.

Class 2

Class 2 e-bikes do have a throttle, but it tops out at 20mph. The pedal assist modes in this class will also cease at 20mph. In some jurisdictions, class 2 is the most powerful legal option. Class 2 models may also be a good option for riders that don’t wish to travel at high speeds.

Class 3

Most of the bikes on this list are class 3. Class 3 e-bikes have pedal assist and throttle-only capabilities. Motors on class 3 models will power riders up to 28 mph. In recent years, class 3 e-bikes have become increasingly popular as vehicle replacements.

Types of Motors: Rear Hub vs. Mid-Drive

The vast majority of e-bikes are powered by either a rear hub motor or a mid-drive motor.

Rear hub motors are housed in the hub of the bike’s rear wheel. When engaged, rear-hub motors create the sensation of being pushed along from behind. Most commuter and cargo e-bikes are equipped with rear hub motors. A slight downside: rear hub motors create complications if you ever need to remove the rear wheel

Mid-drive motors are mounted directly to the crankshaft and the drivetrain, which creates a natural feeling of assistance because the power comes from the same place as an analog bike. Many e-mountain bikes utilize mid-drive motors. Unfortunately, mid-drive motors create significant wear and tear on the chain and gears over time.

On this list, the Biktrix Juggernaut has a rear hub motor while the Specialized Turbo Levo Comp sports a mid-drive.

The Biktrix Juggernaut features a rear hub drive. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Portability: Folding E-Bikes and Vehicle Rack Compatibility

E-bikes are notoriously heavy, so any increased portability that’s worked into the design can be a major asset.

While some standard bike racks are compatible with e-bikes, many are not. Hitch-mounted platform-style racks tend to work better, but many e-bikes require special e-bike-specific racks. Check out our article on bike racks for more information on transporting an e-bike with your car.

To solve the portability problem, some e-bikes fold down into a trunk-sized package. While a folding frame doesn’t make sense for a high-performance bike, it’s a major asset in the commuter and cargo categories. On this list, the ET Cycle F1000 is a comfortable folding cargo bike with a step-through frame.

Fat Tire E-Bikes and Winter Riding

With the right tires and feature set, e-bikes can be capable four-season transportation. Fat bikes have been popular in snowy places for years now, and fat e-bikes are following suit.

If you’re seeking an e-bike for winter use on snowy and icy surfaces, four-inch (or wider) tires are a must. As for tread, the deeper and knobbier, the better. For a fully winterized ride, we also recommend studded pedals and extra bright lights. Keep in mind, lithium battery performance drops in cold temperatures, and your bike’s range probably will too.

E-bike Specs: Watts, Volts, Amps, and Torque

On paper, e-bike performance is determined by specs such as motor wattage and battery voltage. As a prospective buyer, it’s important to know that a motor’s “size,” or potential output, is measured in watts Voltage measures a battery’s ability to deliver power to the motor.

Battery capacity is also measured in amp-hours (Ah). Amperage is the rate at which electrical current flows. A battery with a capacity of 1 amp-hour can supply a current of 1 amp for 1 hour.

It’s easy to get bogged down in e-bike specs and power ratings. Ultimately, there are only a few key facts that shoppers need to know. On mostly flat terrain, a 750-watt e-bike will generally get you where you need to go without the need to pedal vigorously. In hilly areas, a 1,000-watt e-bike is a better choice.

If you’re a powerful cyclist and you don’t plan to use your e-bike to haul loads of cargo, you should be able to get by with something in the 250-500 watt range. If you’re going to be shopping and transporting other humans with your bike, at least 750w is the way to go.

For context, a 150-pound person can get by with a 500w e-bike equipped with a 36V 15 Ah battery for personal commuting use on moderate terrain.

The option to add an additional battery makes the Biktrix Juggernaut a versatile bike. You can keep things light when you don’t need the extended range, or add the battery for longer hauls. (Photo/Chelsey Magness)

Accessories and Features

Endless accessories and add-ons are available for e-bikes. Some models come with lights, horns, racks, and fenders. Others do not. Ultimately, included accessories add a lot of value, especially in the budget category.

On this list, the Biktrix Juggernaut Hub Duo comes with a rear rack, kickstand, and front and rear lights. The State 6061 is a bare-bones model — no rack, no lights, no stand, no water bottle cages. Then again, it only costs $1,000.

Accessories can always be purchased later, but you’ll often save money if you opt for included options. E-bikes tend to need a few upgrades from their stock feature set, so it’s a good idea to factor this into your budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do e-bikes cost?

Like analog bikes, e-bike prices vary wildly. In recent years, increased competition has created some excellent budget options. The models on this list range from $1,000 to about $10,000.

If you’re seeking a simple commuter bike, a $1,500-2,000 budget is a good place to start. In the cargo bike category, expect to spect $2,000+. Performance mountain, road, and gravel e-bikes cost upwards of $3,000.

Are e-bikes legal?

Class 1, 2, and 3 e-bikes are legal in most parts of the US. There are exceptions, including certain national parks and other public lands. Before you buy an e-bike, research local laws to be sure you’ll be allowed to use it.

How fast do e-bikes go?

An infinite stretch of downhill cruising will take you as fast as you can safely manage. As for pedal and throttle assist modes, e-bikes have a top speed of 20 mph (classes 1 and 2) or 28 mph (class 3) at which point the motor will disengage.

For everyday commuters, we recommend class 3 bikes. For casual grocery runs and leisurely cruising, classes 1 and 2 work just fine — depending on your preferences.

What’s the range of an e-bike?

Many factors affect an e-bike’s range including battery size, motor output, air temperature, type of terrain, and rider fitness. Though brands advertise bikes with a specific (often impressive) range, the answer is “it depends.”

Most folks should expect to get somewhere between 20 and 100 miles per charge from any of the models on this list.

Can an e-bike replace a car?

Potentially. If you’re seeking daily short or mid-distance transportation, an e-bike can handle it. If you need something to manage short runs to the grocery store or to pick up the kid from school, an e-bike can do that too.

E-bikes can be excellent car replacements, but they do lack some versatility. A cargo-oriented e-bike won’t be ideal for daily 15-mile commutes, and vice versa.

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