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The 18 Best Electric Bikes You Can Buy Right Now

Bicycling logo Bicycling 8/5/2022 Louis Mazzante, Tara Seplavy

No segment of bicycles is growing faster than electric bikes—and that demand is good for you, the e-bike shopper. Newer brands like Aventon, Rad Power Bikes, Charge, and Himiway have sprung up offering affordable options you can buy online, bolstering the higher-performance e-bikes from more established players like Specialized, Trek, and Giant.

Designs keep improving, tech is becoming more reliable at all prices, and the capabilities are expanding. Whether you want to purchase online or through a retailer, you can find everything from folding e-bikes, fat-tire e-bikes, electric-assist road bikes, and a sea of commuter and city electric bikes. Liberated from some of the standard bike constraints like weight and gearing, e-bike design has exploded.

To make these reviews as helpful as possible, we focused on lower to mid-price options from brands you can purchase directly online—though we did include a couple of recommendations for more expensive e-bikes that our team of bike testers loved.

If you are looking for a higher-performance e-bike, or specifically want the help and service you can get from a specialty retailer, be sure to check out recommendations for our Best High-Performance E-Bikes. You’ll find 18 exceptional, award-winning bikes rigorously vetted by our editorial team.

The Three Classes of E-Bikes

After determining which style of bike is right for you, the next major consideration is which class of e-bike best fits your needs. In the U.S., there are three classes defined by the type of assist and how fast the motor will propel you. Most electric bikes are defined as class 1 or 3. Class 1 bikes have a motor (max 750w) that assists while you’re pedaling, up to 20 mph. Class 3, also known as “speed pedelec,” can also have up to a 750w motor (aka 1 horsepower), but can assist you up to 28 mph. Both are allowed in most states and cities without the need for a license.

Rare just a year ago, Class 2 models are becoming more popular, especially at lower prices. These models have a throttle that can propel a bike up to, and maintain, 20 mph without having to continuously pedal.

Some bikes blur the lines. Aventon’s popular Pace 500, for example, is technically a Class 3 e-bike in that it reaches speeds up to 28 mph, but it also has a throttle that tops out at 20 mph (the maximum legal speed for a throttle).

Two E-Bike Terms to Know

TORQUE: Measured in newton-meters (or Nm), torque is a rotational measurement of force—and the number to pay attention to when you want an idea of an e-bike motor’s output. More torque means more power off the line and more boost to your pedaling. The heavier the bike, the more torque it needs. Lighter road bikes typically have 30 to 40Nm of torque, trail and cargo models typically have at least 80Nm, and most commuter bikes fall somewhere in between.

a person sitting on a bicycle: Bicycling Deputy Editor Tara Seplavy makes adjustments while testing the Gold-Award-winning Aventon Level. © Trevor Raab Bicycling Deputy Editor Tara Seplavy makes adjustments while testing the Gold-Award-winning Aventon Level.

WATT HOURS: The size of an e-bike’s battery is measured in watt-hours (or Wh), which represents the amount of energy stored in the battery and how many watts it can deliver each hour. The higher the number, the bigger the range, but the faster you go, the less range you get. So, if a 504Wh battery paired with a 500-watt motor gives you one hour of ride time at the highest assist, riding at about half that power will double your range.

Other E-Bike Features to Consider

Locking Battery: As electric bike options continue to expand, brands are integrating the batteries more seamlessly, which makes the bike look sleeker (and more like a real bike). Most batteries lock to the bike and come with a key that lets you unlock and remove it, which serves multiple useful purposes: You can remove the battery and charge it off the bike, and a locked battery deters (and hopefully prevents) a thief from stealing it, and an e-bike with the battery removed is safer for hauling on a bike rack and lighter for carrying up steps.

a hand holding a cellphone: A removable battery helps for charging off the bike. © Trevor Raab A removable battery helps for charging off the bike.

Wider Tires: Because e-bikes are capable of maintaining greater speeds for longer periods of time than standard bikes, you want extra control. Wider tires provide better traction and the freedom to leave the pavement with little penalty, and a suspension fork will help tame some of the rougher roads you might explore. Good disc brakes are a must, too, for slowing a heavy bike at high speed. This is not a place to skimp.

Integrated Lights: Some e-bikes come with an integrated lighting system that turns on when you power up the bike. While this is an awesome feature to have, it’s not a deal-breaker if your bike isn’t equipped this way. With so many great bike lights available, it’s just as easy to attach your own.

During our e-bike evaluations, we checked the stability of kickstands and cargo capacity of panniers. © Trevor Raab During our e-bike evaluations, we checked the stability of kickstands and cargo capacity of panniers.

How We Tested

Our team of experienced bike testers evaluated each model here on its overall quality, its safety features, handling, motor, battery life, and whether the components and features added to the overall quality of the ride. We tested most of these bikes on our local roads, commuting to and from work on them, using them to stock up on groceries and beer, and running their batteries down to officially see how long they last on one charge.

Deputy Editor Tara Seplavy testing the Aventon Pace 500’s adjustable stem. © Trevor Raab Deputy Editor Tara Seplavy testing the Aventon Pace 500’s adjustable stem.

A few bikes here were not available for testing. In those cases, we relied on the expertise of our test team, interviews with product managers, and rigorous research to compare the bikes’ value and performance against similar models we have tested.

―Best Overall E-Bike―

Aventon Level

Power: 500W | Weight: 58 lb. | Top speed: 28 mph

Aventon Level © Aventon Level


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The Aventon Level is the sleeper car of city and commuter e-bikes. Similar to a Volvo V70 R wagon, the Level is practical, and understated, but also packs a punch. The Level cuts the same profile as many other commuter-styled bikes on the market: upright geometry, full fenders, rear cargo rack, kickstand, and subdued graphics. It is not until you jump onto the bike, and give the throttle a blip, that you realize the Aventon Level has some serious muscle behind that reserved exterior.

Providing the Level’s muscle is a rear hub motor, which puts out 500 watts of sustained, and 750 watts at peak power. Feeding the motor is a 672-watt-hour lithium-ion rechargeable battery, housed cleanly inside the bike's downtube. The 8-speed Shimano drivetrain clicks through gears effortlessly, the SR Suntour fork soaks up cracks in the pavement well, and the e-bike rated 27.5- x 2.2-inch Kenda tires rolled smoothly and without additional noise.


―Best Fat Tire E-Bike―

Rad Power RadRover 6 Plus

Power: 80Nm | Weight: 74 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Rad Power RadRover 6 Plus © Rad Power RadRover 6 Plus


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With the Radrover 6 Plus, Rad Power has made a fat tire e-bike that is comfortable to ride on pretty much any terrain, from urban streets riddled with potholes to off-road paths riddled with rocks or snow. Updated display and hydraulic disc brakes make the RadRover 6 Plus substantially nicer to ride than its predecessor.

The bike's extreme weight can make it feel sluggish at times and this makes getting the bike up or down any kind of stairs an issue. However, the RadRover's powerful 750w rear hub motor helps overcome increased rolling resistance and the weight of the four-inch-wide tires. The bike is available in traditional or step-through frame styles in your choice of charcoal or white color.


—Best Cheap Folding E-Bike—

Lectric XP 2.0

Power: 500W | Weight: 65 lb. | Top speed: 28 mph

Lectric XP 2.0 © Lectric XP 2.0


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Lectric's XP 2.0 has a striking appearance for a folding e-bike. The 3-inch-wide tires mounted on 20-inch wheels and an industrial-styled aluminum frame help get you places traditional folding bikes can't access. And with folded dimensions of 37" x 18" x 28", the XP 2.0 can be stored in places non-folding e-bikes won't fit. An integrated battery hides in the frame and powers the 500-watt hub motor. This provides up to a claimed range of 45 miles. A seven-speed drivetrain provides gearing for varied terrain, and there’s a throttle to let you zip along pedal-free. It includes a suspension fork, as well as a large and legible LCD screen. The bike ships as a Class 2 e-bike but can be upgraded to a Class 3, increasing its maximum speed to 28mph.

―Best Price Mid-Motor E-Bike―

Ride1Up Prodigy ST

Power: 90Nm | Weight: 50 lb. | Top speed: 28 mph

Ride1Up Prodigy ST © Ride1Up Prodigy ST


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Mid-drive motor-equipped e-bikes usually outperform hub motor bikes in our testing. Mid-drive motors have more consistent power transfer and an intuitive pedaling feel. The central placement of the motor helps to balance the weight of the bike front-to-back, making them easier to ride and control. Plus, they are easier to service as the rear wheel can be removed like a non-assist bike. The biggest downside of mid-drive motor e-bikes: The price; they often cost double the price of equivalently equipped hub motor bikes.

Ride1Up, however, built the Prodigy ST with the great Brose mid-drive motor, a smart component package, rack, fenders, and lights for less than many hub-drive bikes. The class-3 Prodigy has pedaling assistance up to 28 mph, stops via Tektro hydraulic disc brakes with 180mm rotors, and helps you get up hills thanks to a 9-speed Shimano Alivio drivetrain. Ride1Up offers the Prodigy in step-through (ST) or traditional double-diamond (XR) frame styles. A more rugged, mountain bike-styled model (XC) with knobby tires and suspension fork costs an additional $100.

―Best Cheap E-Bike―

Aventon Pace 350 Step-Thru

Power: 350W | Weight: 49 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Aventon Pace 350 Step Through © Aventon Pace 350 Step Through


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Aventon recently updated its already outstanding Pace range with a brand new frame and fork, integrated battery, and tail lights sleekly designed into the seat stays. At $1,400, the Aventon Pace 350 continues to deliver an outstanding balance of price and performance, now with a fresh new look. As a Class 2 e-bike, it has a max pedal-assist speed of 20 mph along with a thumb-controlled throttle. The Pace 350 rolls on 27.5 x 2.2-inch e-bikes rated tires and stops via mechanical disc brakes. A 7-speed Shimano drivetrain and five levels of pedal assist provide you with various options. The bike doesn’t get fenders or integrated racks, but the Pace 350 felt viable for daily commuting. If the step-through frame isn't your style, Aventon offers a Pace 350 standard frame model for the same price.

If you need a little more speed and range, check out the Aventon Pace 500 for $300 more. It has a 28 mph top speed, hydraulic disc brakes, adjustable stem, and an 8-speed drivetrain. Read our review of the excellent new Pace 500 model below.


―Best Utility E-Bike―

Rad Power RadRunner

Power: 80Nm | Weight: 65 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Rad Power RadRunner © Rad Power RadRunner


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The singlespeed RadRunner is designed to haul cargo while being nimble enough to outrun your deadlines. The step-through, moped-style frame has mounts for front and rear racks (whose options include baskets, bags, insulated bags, platforms, panniers, and more), and you can also opt to buy a center console to add a third storage option (the battery is mounted behind the seat tube to free up space for it). A double kickstand keeps it upright so you can load all that cargo without fear of the bike tipping over, and there’s an integrated taillight that lights up when you hit the brakes.

Beneath all this utility is a solid e-bike, too. The 750-watt rear-hub motor has enough torque to take you and all your stuff up hills and across level pavement at a comfortable 20 mph, and the wide 20-inch Kenda K-Rad tires balloon out over rough pavement and rocks, allowing you to take the RadRunner (and whatever you choose to put on it) almost anywhere. If you live in a hillier area, opt for the RadRunner Plus model with a 7-speed drivetrain for $1,900.

―Best Carry-All E-Bike―

Benno Boost Performance

Power: 65Nm | Weight: 59 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Benno Boost Performance © Benno Boost Performance


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This latest version of the original Boost, which made its debut in 2016 and impressed us with its immense utility and bold design, improves on that model without changing ride quality. Bicycling staff enjoys the Boost so much that a couple of folks regularly use them for commuting, grocery runs, and carrying kids around town. We've seen people carrying all sorts of things—from dogs to surfboards to camping gear—on their Benno Boosts.

The Boost's Bosch Performance motor gets you up to 20mph of pedal assistance (or spend an extra $300 for the 28mph version). You can haul up to 130 pounds on the rear rack and 45 on the front, and the Boost is compatible with a ton of useful accessories, including a variety of front trays, Yepp baby seats (for two), and different rail systems for your little ones to hold onto. A Bosch Powerpack 400Wh battery sits cleanly on the frame and will provide up to about 75 miles of riding—a range you can double with a second battery. The whole package rolls on 2.6-inch tires wrapped around 24-inch wheels. The step-through version is shown here, but a standard style frame is also offered.

―Best Equipped City E-Bike―

Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0

Power: 70Nm | Weight: 57.5 lb. | Top speed: 28 mph

Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 © Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0


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Specialized's Turbo Vado 4.0 just feels'right'. From the motor to the interface, to the aesthetic design, to the parts selection, to the ride quality; the details on the Turbo Vado 4.0 have all been thoroughly thought through to perform as a seamless package. This is a rare quality from which anyone—be they a lifelong cyclist or someone getting their first e-bike—can benefit from and enjoy.

We have ridden a lot of e-bikes over the years and the Specialized Turbo models consistently test amongst the very best in all categories. The brand puts a ton of development time into its Turbo series e-bikes by refining the motor tune and carefully selecting parts. This work pays off with best-in-class ride quality. If you have been hesitant to try an e-bike because you think it won't feel like your favorite non-assist bike, try a Specialized Turbo and you'll quickly become a convert.

Specialized offers the Turbo Vado at several price levels between $3,250 and $5,500. You can purchase Turbo Vados with traditional or step-through frame styles, derailleur or internal hub drivetrain configurations, and several color offerings.

Read Full Review

―Best Commuter E-Bike―

Cannondale Treadwell Neo 2 Remixte

Power: 40Nm | Weight: 35 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Cannondale Treadwell Neo 2 Remixte © Cannondale Treadwell Neo 2 Remixte


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We're fans of the Treadwell for its clean looks and upright rider position. Not quite a hybrid, but also not a foot-forward style cruiser, Cannondale's Treadwell models are unique, practical bikes for city commuting or riding around town. The Treadwell Neo 2 eschews some of the bulkier features—suspension fork, rack, and fenders—found on many other bikes in the category. This makes for a lighter and zippier riding bike at a lower price. A Class 1 rear hub motor moves the Treadwell along smoothly with up to 20 mph of pedal-assisted power. The 7-speed drivetrain and a wide-range cassette help you get up longer hills and the Maxxis 650b tires roll fast on pavement. The Treadwell can be purchased in a step-through (mixte) or traditional frame style.

―Best New E-Bike―

State Bicycle Co. 6061 eBike Commuter

Power: 350W | Weight: 39 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

State 6061 eBike Commuter © State 6061 eBike Commuter


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Around the Bicycling offices, we like State for its practical, no-nonsense approach to designing bikes. As a result, the brand's bikes consistently perform well in our ride testing. The only problem, until now State hasn't had an e-bike. For its first entry into the heavily contested commuter e-bike category, State introduced a bike that is decisively practical and no-nonsense—right down to the name and color.

From across the street, the plainly named 6061 eBike Commuter doesn't look all that different from other State 6061 models. But get up close and you'll find an LG 36V10Ah cell Lithium battery neatly hidden in the frame's downtube powering the 250W rear hub motor. To keep maintenance easy, State equipped the eBike Commuter with a singlespeed drivetrain (so, you don't have to worry about gears). The bike rolls on 700c wheels with thick, 45mm wide Kenda e-bike tires and stops with cable disc brakes front and rear. The 6061 eBike Commuter isn't big on features or color options—with three sizes offered and matte black being the only color—but if you're after a good deal on a sleeky bike, this is a great new choice.

―Best Beach Cruiser E-Bike―

Schwinn Mendocino 2 Step-Thru

Power: 250W | Weight: 66 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Schwinn Mendocino 2 Step-Thru © Schwinn Mendocino 2 Step-Thru


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For decades, Schwinn has been synonymous with beach cruiser bikes and is an iconic American brand. With the Mendocino, Schwinn has fitted a 250W rear hub motor and 313Wh rack-mounted battery to create this Class 2 e-bike. The Mendocino's aluminum step-through style frame makes getting on or off the bike easier and the disc brakes provide reliable all-weather stopping power. With panniers or a basket, the 55 lbs capacity rear rack works great for hauling groceries or running errands, while the color-matched fenders look great and keep road spray off your clothes. The Mendocino has a 6-speed drivetrain for getting up hills with a twist shifter and a thumb-controlled throttle.

―Great Parts at a Great Value―

Charge City

Power: 45NM | Weight: 45 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

a bicycle leaning against a wall: Charge City © Charge City


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One of the lower-priced e-bikes we’ve tested, the City is a smartly equipped commuter. This Class 2 e-bike has a hub motor, five levels of pedal assist, and a throttle. But it also comes with fenders, a rear rack, and running lights (nice additions at this price). Anyone with space issues will appreciate the folding pedals and handlebar (a flip of a lever at the stem rotates it 90 degrees). The Charge is available with a low-step or standard frame and comes in four pleasing colors (red, blue, silver, and turquoise), and in one size only (it fits riders from 5-foot-1 to 6 feet). Use the code BUYTWO at checkout with the purchase of two Charge e-bikes to save $200 and get free shipping!

―Best Singlespeed E-Bike―

Aventon Soltera

Power: 350W | Weight: 41 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Aventon Soltera © Aventon Soltera


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This affordable singlespeed model from Aventon delivers simplicity and style that is tough to beat. The bike also comes as a 7-speed geared option, but we like the easy maintenance and convenience of this one-speeder. Simply push the throttle to get started and the brushless hub motor kicks in, assisting you more gently as you start pedaling. There are disc brakes (on the 7-speed) or rim brakes (on the singlespeed) and integrated headlight and taillights.

The battery is hidden in the bike’s frame, a surprising feature compared to the bolt-on vibe of many bikes in this price range. Best for smoother roads and bike paths, the Soltera delivers the most essential features a city rider needs in a strikingly light 41-pound package.


―Best Value Cargo E-Bike―

Rad Power Bikes RadWagon 4

Power: 80NM | Weight: 73 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Rad Power RadWagon © Rad Power RadWagon


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A $2,000, fully loaded e-cargo bike seemed too good to be true, so we borrowed the RadWagon from Rad Power Bikes to see if it could stand up to competitors that cost thousands more. In short: it does. A 750-watt direct-drive hub motor provides powerful pedal assist at a much quieter hum than the mid-drive motors used on most e-cargo bikes; its only disadvantage is there’s not quite as much torque, but you’ll only notice that on steep hills.

A throttle lets you ride the bike like a scooter, and we had no problems with the 7-speed Shimano Altus drivetrain or the Tektro mechanical disc brakes. Lights, fenders, and a kickstand are standard. Despite its length, the RadWagon isn’t difficult to maneuver: We thrashed it around an abandoned golf car path and didn’t scrape the rear foot platforms against the ground—a good sign for low-speed handling. It’s a lot easier to charge $5,000 or more for an e-cargo bike when you market it as a car replacement, but the RadWagon proves you can render your car mostly obsolete for the price of an e-bike, not another car.


―Best For Families―

Flyer L885

Power: 50Nm | Weight: 73 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Flyer L885 © Flyer L885


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The sharply-priced Flyer Bikes' L885 longtail-style cargo bike is a great option for carrying smaller kids or running errands around town. Cargo e-bikes are a great way to reduce the use of cars for short trips but the high price of some cargo bikes puts them out of reach for many riders.

From the legendary brand Radio Flyer—of little red wagon fame—the $2,000 Flyer L885 isn't some watered-down cargo bike. You get a 500W rear hub motor, 720Wh integrated battery, 3" wide puncture-resistant tires, lights, and fenders. With a 400 lb. payload capacity, the L885 can easily carry an adult, two kids, and practically anything else you can haul. Accessories are available to customize the bike to your family's needs. Our favorites are the Kid & Cargo Carrier and optional extended range battery.

Flyer offers the L885 in your choice of four colors and three sizes. Our 6-foot-tall test rider found the Large sizing to be a bit too roomy in the cockpit for her liking, so make sure to check the fit guide prior to ordering. Also keep in mind that the L885 weighs about 90 lbs fully equipped, making it hard to move up any sort of stairs (but that's a normal weight for cargo e-bikes).

―Best Hardtail E-MTB―

Serial 1 Switch/MTB

Power: 90Nm | Weight: 53 lb. | Top speed: 20 mph

Serial 1 Switch/MTN © SERIAL 1 Serial 1 Switch/MTN


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Serial 1 is a new e-bike brand, but after riding its latest Switch/MTN model, we’re prepared to say this brand is legit and offers a high-quality product. Perhaps that’s because it has strong roots in two wheels: Serial 1 is an offshoot of Harley Davidson. The brand name is a reference to the oldest H-D motorcycle (which resides in the company’s museum in Milwaulkee) nicknamed “Serial Number One.”

The Switch/MTN uses a Brose Drive S Mag motor with a healthy 90Nm of peak torque. Brose motors are well regarded for their smooth and quiet operation and it's one of the very best e-bike motors we’ve ridden. Serial 1 uses Brose’s compact Display Remote for information and controls. The Switch/MTN also uses an app with navigation developed in partnership with Google. The app also lets the rider take advantage of the bike’s built-in security features. These include a lock, assist deactivation, and location pinpointing. Additionally, Serial 1 partnered with Quad Lock for on-bike mounting of a smartphone, and there’s a USB-C cable so you can keep your phone battery topped up from the bike’s battery.

The Serial 1 build kit's main features include a 12-speed SRAM Eagle drivetrain, TRP four-piston brakes, and a 120mm travel SR Suntour Zeron fork. Additionally, Serial 1 equipped the Switch/MTN with 27.5" Michelin tubeless tires, a dropper seatpost, and that powerful Brose motor. In total, it is a better-rounded bike than its competition.


―Best Full Suspension E-Mountain Bike―

Santa Cruz Heckler C R 29

Power: 85Nm | Weight: 49 lb. | Top speed: 15.5 mph

Santa Cruz Heckler C R 29 © Santa Cruz Heckler C R 29


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From suspension to geometry, to assist system, the newly updated Santa Cruz Heckler is a masterpiece of an e-trail bike. Updates for 2022 include a longer range 720Wh battery, adjustable geometry, and new lower-priced models like this $8,750 model. This bike just plain works; with suspension performance and handling ideal for all-around trail riding. The Heckler rides predictably and surefooted on challenging and fast terrain. It has quick enough handling to respond when the trail suddenly made an awkward turn and with precision to confidently ride fins and ridges barely wider than the bike's 2.4" wide Maxxis tires.


―Best Road E-Bike―

Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL

Power: 35Nm | Weight: 27 lb. | Top speed: 28 mph

Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL © Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL


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The Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL carbon e-road bike weighs around 27 pounds—half the weight of many e-bikes—and therefore feels more like a zippy, responsive road machine than anything else we’ve tested. For its owners, it also makes every ride a no-drop ride: Its magnesium-cased SL 1.1 mid-motor puts out up to 240 watts of assistance, which cuts out at 28 mph, and the 320Wh internal battery offers up to 80 miles of range. That’s enough speed and range for spirited group rides with the fastest of the pack.

A 160Wh Range Extender—included with S-Works models—fits into the seat tube bottle cage and adds up to 40 more miles of range. This version, at that price, isn't for most riders. Less expensive options start at $4,500 for the aluminum-framed SL Comp E5.



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