Best Commuter Electric Bikes 2023. Wirecutter electric bikes

Best Commuter Electric Bikes 2023

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The daily commute for an average person can be a lot of different things. It can be dozens of miles spent in a car each morning and evening; an hour or two on public transit a day; or a myriad of other things. So why can’t daily trip from A to B be spent on one of the best commuter electric bikes?

From powerful speedsters and long-haul pedalers to nimble and comfortable cruisers, the team at Electric Bike Report reviewed some of the best commuter e-bikes money can buy in 2023. We’ve compiled our favorites into a list to help you pick the best commuter e-bike for your needs.

E-bikes are changing the world’s relationship with bicycles for the better. They’re making the sport — and, more importantly, the mode of transportation — more accessible for more people, making bicycle commuting an increasingly popular choice among those who never considered it before. The commuter e-bikes included on this list will not just get you to your destination without sweating through your clothes, they’ll get you there quickly and have the battery capacity to cover far distances with ease. EBR’s team of experienced testers have put many of these commuter e-bikes on this list through their paces on our home roads and paths in southwest Utah, but some of these bikes were included on merit alone — their reputations and spec sheets were just too good to ignore.

Because commuting can mean so many different things depending on where you live and work (especially here in the U.S.), we’ve tried our best to stick to bikes designed with commuting as their best intended use. These bikes are primarily built for pavement, and their motor and battery systems were chosen with speed, efficiency and longevity in mind. If you’re looking for a lighter-duty commuter more at home in a bustling urban environment, check out our list of the best city and urban e-bikes — a category closely related to this one. Or, since equipping motors on bikes mean just about any e-bike could be what you commute on anyway, you can check out our best overall e-bikes page for some of the top options regardless of frame style.

Ride1UP 700 Series

The Best Value Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

Built to replace your car on your daily commute, the Ride1UP 700 series is the brand’s flagship commuter that offers a lot of bang for your buck.

It’s fitted with a Shimano 8-speed Acera drivetrain, Tektro dual-piston hydraulic brakes and the really well performing Schwalbe Super Moto X e-bike tires. At close to the 1,500 mark, that’s a lot of e-bike for the money. Powering the 700 Series is a 750W rear hub motor and 672Wh integrated battery. We’ve spent a lot of time on Ride1UP’s bikes and overall we’ve been incredibly impressed by their power and ride quality — they’re super comfortable bikes.

The 700 Series comes with lights front and rear, a rear rack with a 50lbs carrying capacity and a really useful color display. The 700 Series also sports nine different motor assistance levels (five is more typical), which allows you to really fine tune how much the motor is aiding your pedaling. Ride1UP also has a pretty stellar customer service department, which can prove an important factor considering it’s a direct-to-consumer company.

This bike will serve the commuter on a budget very well. It’s comfortable, well spec’d and backed by a company that stands by its products — not to mention it’s just a flat-out fast and fun bike.


  • Ride1UP’s 700 Series includes a wide array of quality components when considering its price point
  • For enhanced visual appeal, the 700 Series’ battery is fully recessed in its frame.
  • The bike features a whopping 9 levels of pedal assistance for a high degree of control and customization over the ride.
  • With a potent 750W motor, the 700 Series can easily climb hills or handle extra weight on the rear rack.


  • The single size frame can leave out some riders. We prefer to see a few size options that span a wider range of rider heights and weights.

Aventon Level 2

Best Class 3 Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

The first iteration of the Level was already a solid choice for dependable, daily rush-hour transport. It offered solid specs and impressive performance and helped solidify Aventon’s position as an e-bike industry leader. Aventon surprised us by adding to and improving the solid framework they already had, making the Level 2 a definitive upgrade over its predecessor.

The Level 2 retained the core elements of the original – namely, its overall shape, 500W motor, and 672 Wh battery – but it also made some significant changes. Most notable is the switch to a torque sensor for the rear-hub motor, which resulted in a complete overhaul of the bike’s riding experience. This not only offers a more traditional bicycle-like feel, but also helps to conserve battery power – meaning more miles per charge by applying power more efficiently. The Level 2 also received an upgrade from a black-and-white display with a bar-based readout for the battery to one that offers full-color and a more reliable percentage-based battery indicator.

To round out the Level 2’s upgrades, some visual design elements were improved as well. The curved frame profiles have now become more sharp and angular, and the bike now comes in four snappy colors instead of just grey.

We did see less punch from the throttle and smaller increments of power increases between the higher PAS levels as a result of the torque sensor and prioritization of battery life, but we feel that the tradeoffs ultimately resulted in a better e-bike. All of the Level 2’s standard features make it a fantastic dedicated commuter that we highly recommend for a closer look on the list of best commuter e-bikes.


  • Aventon’s decision to swap cadence sensors for torque sensors makes for a more natural, traditional bike riding experience.
  • The Level 2’s battery efficiency also benefits from the torque sensor, and offers increased range.
  • The new Tektro hydraulic disc brakes offer easier maintenance than the previously included Zoom brakes.
  • In a sea of boring black, white, and grey paint jobs, it was refreshing to see the four unique colors now offered with the Level 2
  • We really appreciated seeing the Shimano Acera drivetrain. It’s reliable, responsive, and it provides a functional range of gearing.
  • The Level 2’s full-color display is a great upgrade. Not only is it easy to read, but it uses a more accurate percentage-based battery readout and also pairs with the Aventon app.
  • The contact points are comfortable, but also highly functional – an important combination on a commuter.


  • The Level 2’s torque sensor helps tremendously at lower PAS settings, but we noticed less-noticeable bumps in assistance from the motor at higher settings.
  • We appreciated the increase in range granted by Aventon’s prioritization of battery life and efficiency, but did notice that the Level 2’s throttle felt less impactful as a result.

Rad Power Bikes RadCity 5 Plus

The Best Class 2 Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

We’re really big fans of step-thru commuter e-bikes, so we always appreciate seeing the option on an otherwise-excellent high-step model. The Rad Power Bikes RadCity 5 Plus is the latest iteration of their dedicated commuter, which offers both high-step and step-thru frames in addition to being well-specced and comfortable to ride.

The RadCity is a powerful commuter that’s economically priced at under 2,000. It comes as a Class 2 e-bike with a throttle and a max motor-assisted speed of 20 mph.The bike is equipped with a 750W geared rear hub motor powered by a 672Wh battery, making for a decent range. We like that the rear rack is sturdier than most. That rack, according to Rad, is strong and big enough to carry a child’s seat, so you can take more of the family along for the ride.

We also like that Rad placed a premium on comfort with both models of the RadCity 5 Plus. As a dutch-styled e-bike, it features an upright riding position for high visibility. Its handlebars are ergonomically curved, and thanks to the bike’s adjustable stem, the distance between the saddle and the grips can be tailored to the rider.

A hallmark of bikes from Rad Power is their reliability, controlled handling, and user-friendliness. They often are not the speediest or most powerful, but they’re not meant to be; Rad Power’s models are more like a Volvo instead of a Ferrari. For that reason, we really appreciate the RadCity 5 Plus’ performance as a trusty commuter, and are happy to include it on this list.


  • We really appreciate seeing a rear rack that can handle significant weight. The rack’s compatibility with the Thule Yepp Maxi child seat is a huge plus.
  • As expected from a Rad Power bike, the RadCity 5 Plus has great handling and feels super stable.
  • The bike’s 750W motor provides tame but expected levels of assistance through the PAS settings, and can also handle hills with ease.
  • Rad Power’s reputation for reliability and customer satisfaction provides solid peace of mind.
  • The visual redesign of the RadCity 5 Plus gives it a much more mature and professional look that suits its function.
  • We were seriously impressed by the NUTT hydraulic disc brakes included on the RadCity. They set a new record in our measured Brake Test!


  • While it doesn’t detract from the function of the RadCity 5 Plus, the cable management is a bit untidy and conflicts with the otherwise professional aesthetic.
  • We really liked the new dual displays, but the information on the left screen can be difficult to see in direct sunlight.

Blix Aveny Skyline

The Best Commuter Electric Bike for Style, 2023

For those looking for a more classically-styled commuter, look no further than the Blix Aveny Skyline. We remarked in our testing that the bike’s color schemes and overall paint job quality reminded us of classic cars. It’s not uncommon to see dutch-style e-bikes with old-school styling, but the Aveny Skyline really brings a refined level of quality to the category.

Its looks may be deceiving; the Aveny Skyline is actually pretty speedy, too. The bike’s 500W motor and 27.5” wheels provide quick acceleration, and despite lacking a suspension, it handles bumps well. We noticed that the bike did struggle somewhat on steep inclines, though it still had the torque to get to the top. Overall, the Aveny Skyline’s ride is smooth, responsive, and generally what we expected from the bike’s design and purpose.

We appreciate seeing features like the Aveny Skyline’s integrated rear rack, fenders, and taillights on commuter e-bikes, as these additions really dial them into their function. Blix offers quite a few accessories to expand the functionality of the rack, which is rated for a respectable 55lbs despite its lightweight construction. We do wish the Aveny Skyline had a slightly larger battery; the included 614Wh power source isn’t huge in the world of e-bikes, but it does provide decent range regardless.

All in all, the Blix Aveny Skyline holds its own when compared to other commuters on this list, but it stands out thanks to its visual styling and classic treatment.


  • The Dutch-inspired design provides a refreshing option from some of the standard commuter options and the bike’s pain job is extra glossy
  • Thrilling rides each time thanks to a motor that packs a lot of pep
  • It has an easily rideable step-thru design without sacrificing the extra stability of a top tube



The Best Commuter Electric Commuter Bike for Speed, 2023

The Ride1UP LMT’D is a bit of an outlier on this list of the best commuter e-bikes. Most offer a full scope of lights, a rear rack, and enough power to handle average hills and moderate distances. Where others might FOCUS a bit more on function, the LMT’D is geared more toward the higher end of performance.

Specs like the LMT’D’s 750W motor with a full 100 Nm of torque, a 48V, 672 Wh battery rated for 30-50 miles per charge, an 8-speed drivetrain, and a front suspension fork might easily lead you to believe you were looking at a multi-purpose fat tire e-bike. But as a Class 3 powerhouse, the LMT’D is built for speed, and both its low-profile tires and mindful geometry help to define it as a cosmopolitan-friendly commuter.

See, Ride1UP applied the cost reduction from trimming out typical inclusions like the rear cargo rack and taillights to beefing up the components that drive acceleration, speed, hill climbing ability, ride comfort, and range. They still offer those commonly-seen commuter trademarks, but they’re just offered separately. The LMT’D also benefits from a torque sensor on its hub motor, giving it responsiveness similar to a traditional bicycle and increasing the e-bike’s range.

We saw solid performance across the board from the Ride1UP LMT’D in our Circuit Test, Brake Test, Hill Test, and Range Test, with our only minor critiques focused on the saddle and left-handlebar-mounted display/interface. Overall, both its specs and performance proved the LMT’D to be a confident and capable e-bike with a lean toward city travel.


  • We always appreciate seeing torque sensors, and the inclusion of one with the LMT’D’s 750W hub motor resulted in a natural yet powerful feel.
  • Our testing supported Ride1UP’s claims of a substantial 50-mile range from the 672 Wh battery.
  • 7-speed drivetrains with limited gearing are relatively common, so it was nice to see a Shimano 8-speed system with a wider range.
  • If an e-bike is going to make use of a suspension fork, something like the LMT’D’s air/oil fork with 80mm of travel is the way to go.
  • 27.5” wheels with 2.4” WTB Groov-e tires offer stability and speed with low-resistance and low-profile tread.
  • A 50-mile range that matches Ride1UP’s claim means more/longer trips between charges.


  • As a commuter, the lack of a rear rack or fenders removes some functionality, but Ride1UP made some worthwhile trades in power and quality with their absence.
  • While the full-color display is bright and readable, we’d prefer it to be separate from the controller and centrally mounted above the stem.

Rad Power Bikes RadRover 6 Plus

The Best Off-Road Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

Not all commutes are limited to smooth, paved roads. Additionally, some riders may want greater flexibility from their daily ride when planning to make such a significant purchase as an e-bike. Fat tire e-bikes are a good solution in such an instance, as they generally aim to be more all-purpose machines, capable of handling dirt roads just as easily as paved paths. Of the long list of such models with the potential to cross over into the commuter territory, the Rad Power Bikes RadRover 6 Plus earned its place on our list of the best.

With its Kenda Juggernaut 26×4” tires and RST front suspension fork, the RadRover 6 Plus can handle rougher terrain and bumps, all while offering a smooth and stable ride. The bike’s 750W rear hub motor gives it plenty of power for tackling hills and loose dirt, and the 48V, 672 Wh battery provides solid range that can meet and possibly exceed Rad Power’s claimed 45 miles.

While the RadRover does not come equipped with a rear cargo rack, it does include stock fenders, a headlight, and a taillight/brake light combo. Rad Power also offers a frankly staggering number of accessories with which a rider can customize their bike to suit their needs.

There’s a reason that this is the second Rad Power bike on this list. Each Rad model has a well-earned reputation for being consistently reliable, comfortable, and capable. The RadRover 6 Plus takes a different approach from the RadCity, but still embodies the brand’s thoroughly thought-out and tested design approach. With the RadRover, you can cover just about any terrain comfortably, safely, and quickly.


  • As is common with Rad Power e-bikes, the RadRover’s 750W motor engages smoothly and predictably.
  • With two displays, the RadRover’s rider has access to more immediately available ride data.
  • The bike’s fat tires and front suspension do a solid job of absorbing impacts from bumps, resulting in a smooth and comfy ride.
  • We really appreciated the aesthetic upgrades to this latest iteration of the RadRover.
  • The bike’s battery is easy to remove and replace thanks to its semi-integrated design.


  • While we love the dual display, the left screen can be tough to read in sunny weather.
  • The Shimano name lends a sense of quality to the shifter, but we feel that one mounted below the handlebar would be more comfortable and suitable to the RadRover’s design.

GoCycle G4

The Best Folding Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

In dense urban areas where space comes at a premium, it may be difficult or impossible to find room for a bulky, full-size e-bike. As such, two-wheeled alternatives to cars or public transit may be completely disregarded as a viable option. To solve this problem, many e-bike manufacturers produce folding e-bikes, which collapse for portability and storage. Some of these are more effective and practical than others, with GoCycle at the front of the pack.

The GoCycle G4 was made to be extremely portable and highly functional. It makes use of a fantastic, quick, and solid folding mechanism, and at just 38 lbs, collapses to a size that is easily carried on a bus or stashed next to a desk. It’s also a Class 2 e-bike, with both pedal assist and throttle limited to 20 mph.

best, commuter, electric, bikes, 2023

While it’s true that all folding e-bikes have some compromises, the GoCycle G4 keeps these pretty light. Part of that is due to the bike’s abundance of proprietary technology, while the rest is just due to its straight-up excellent design. The G4’s aluminum and composite frame, single-sided carbon fiber fork, rear shock, and single-piece magnesium wheels combine to create its highly practical but lightweight frame. It also features a custom 500W G4drive front-hub motor with a torque sensor, which is surprisingly zippy and capable on hills, and a 36V, 291.6 Wh battery which keeps the bike moving for a respectable range considering its size.

And size is definitely what matters here. For those looking for a compact, lightweight machine but who don’t want to sacrifice when it comes to performance, we highly recommend the GoCycle G4 as one of the best commuter electric bikes.


  • We couldn’t be happier with the G4’s folding mechanism. It allows the bike to expand or collapse incredibly fast, and also feels sturdy.
  • Especially considering its small size, the 500W motor delivers quite a bit of power for speed and hill climbing.
  • The GoCycle G4 makes great use of materials and overall design to bring the weight down to a manageable 38 lbs.
  • Its compact nature is deceptive; the bike easily adapts to taller riders.
  • The 3-speed Cleandrive drivetrain performed well despite being somewhat limiting
  • The tires are easily accessible thanks to the single-sided fork and folding frame.
  • As expected, the G4’s small wheels and wheelbase make it highly maneuverable.


  • While the LED-based indicator is functional, the GoCycle G4 is really best paired with the app for better functionality and accessibility of information.
  • We appreciated the grip of the tread, but the tires seemed prone to flats (at least in our desert environment). A flat-resistant tube may be a good addition.

Specialized Turbo Vado

The Best High-End Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

Specialized has a long history of building some of the best bikes money can buy, so it’s no surprise that they built an e-bike that perfectly embodies what a commuter should be.

The Turbo Vado 5.0 is Specialized’s purpose-built commuter, equipped with the company’s specially-tuned 1.3 mid-drive motor that doles out 250W of power. It’s a Brose motor that Specialized has given its “Rx Street Tune” treatment that the company says makes it more powerful and efficient than the competitors. Powering everything is a 600Wh battery that’s integrated into the frame.

The bike comes with a mixed Shimano XT/SLX 11-speed drivetrain that keeps shifting crisp, even under load, and Shimano hydraulic disc brakes. Efficiency is the name of the game, so while the Turbo Vado comes with a fork, it’s a notably short 50mm variation that takes the edge off bumps but doesn’t add wasted weight. It’s a Class 3 e-bike, so the motor will assist your pedaling until 28 mph but there is not a throttle.

The Turbo Vado 5.0 is the essence of a no-nonsense commuter bike. Specialized is an industry leader in the e-biker world, so their commuter won’t disappoint.


  • The full Shimano XT/SLX drivetrain is a workhorse that doesn’t compromise on shifting performance or reliability
  • Specialized isn’t kidding when they say their motor might lead the commuter class. They’re really, really good at perfecting e-bike power plants
  • It’s an understated e-bike, but still manages to look really nice


  • We hope you like black, because that’s the only color option for the 5.0. Other spec levels of the Turbo Vado come in other colors

Vvolt Proxima

The Best Tech-Savvy Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

The Vvolt Proxima is an interesting case; like the Ride1UP LMT’D mentioned above, it is a bit of a hybrid in the commuter space. However, instead of focusing on massive power and performance, the Proxima aims for a more refined riding experience that can be expanded to light dirt paths.

This e-bike boasts some truly exemplary features and technology. First, it uses a Gates belt drive instead of a chain, almost completely eliminating the need for maintenance. The belt drives a gearless Enviolo CVT (continuously variable transmission), which allows for near-infinite flexibility in pedal resistance over various terrain. The torque-sensing 250W mid-drive motor results in a more responsive and natural feel than a hub motor, while also providing greater overall motor efficiency and better hill climbing.

The bike ships as a class 1, meaning a pedal-assist speed limited to 20mph and no throttle. For those needing a more dedicated speedster to keep up with morning traffic, Vvolt offers a “Warp Core” upgrade package that unlocks the Proxima to Class 3 pedal-assist speeds of 28 mph. We tested the bike with this upgrade, and found it to be appropriately zippy with motor assistance, and also lightweight enough to function well even without motor assistance.

While we felt a little disappointed by the range provided by the Proxima’s standard 36V, 10 Ah battery, we appreciated the bike’s aforementioned functionality without motor assistance even more. Also, Vvolt has plans to release a larger 14 Ah battery in the future, which can be purchased separately to extend the Proxima’s range.

Overall, the Vvolt Proxima’s inclusion of a mid-drive motor and cool, functional tech earned it a spot on this list of the best commuter electric bikes.


  • Despite its 250W classification, the Proxima’s MPF mid-drive motor performed well for us on both flat ground and on hills.
  • We appreciated the bike’s low-maintenance, high-end belt drive that keeps pants free of grease.
  • The Enviolo CVT is high-tech, super functional, and just plain cool. The sealed system also requires very low maintenance.
  • Vvolt included some nice details in the frame design, such as triple pack mounts on the front fork and a pass-through for the belt in the rear triangle.
  • It’s subjective, but we loved the bike’s unique visual design and color.
  • The Proxima provides solid value with specs that would normally reflect a higher price tag.


  • While Vvolt has plans for a larger battery, the Proxima we tested had a relatively small 375 Wh power source with more limited range than some other commuter options.
  • We found the small handlebar-mounted display to be a little small and tough to read. A larger, central LCD display would bring this up to date.
  • The Proxima handles well, but its lack of suspension can make bumps stand out.

Denago City Model 1

The Best Entry-Level Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

As the first e-bike in Denago’s lineup, the City Model 1 needed to make a statement. From the specs and performance of this bike, we learned that its intention was to provide great value by boiling down the essentials of a good bike and starting with highly effective, quality components. This is why the City Model 1 doesn’t come with lights, fenders or a rear rack; Denago offers these as optional accessories that can be purchased separately, but placed their FOCUS squarely on building a solid bike first.

The City Model 1 is a Class 3 e-bike with a surprisingly powerful Shengyi 500W rear-hub motor, 180mm Zoom hydraulic disc brakes, and a 48V, 652 Wh battery. To be frank, the motor knocked our socks off, especially considering its relatively low wattage and torque ratings. It felt potent on flat ground but its capability really shined on an incline. We were also impressed by the City Model 1’s range; it absolutely lived up to Denago’s claim of 45 miles and has the potential to exceed that.

Comfort has also been clearly prioritized by the manufacturer, as the City Model 1 is offered in a whopping three frame sizes. Additionally, to maximize comfort, the bike features an adjustable stem.

For a commuter e-bike around the 1500 range, the Denago City Model 1 provides a solid, affordable starting point that can be added to and expanded to meet the needs of its rider. We highly recommend it even without accessories as one of the best commuters out there.


  • For its size, the City Model 1 punches above its weight class, especially when conquering hills.
  • Zoom hydraulic disc brakes with 180mm rotors provide excellent stopping power and control.
  • It’s awesome to see a full three frame sizes offered at this price point (two in the high-step frame, one as a step-thru). This makes the bike accessible to a wider range of riders than usual.
  • The City Model 1 provides a solid, affordable base that can be added to with Denago’s range of optional accessories.
  • Where many commuters place the rider at a more aggressive forward-leaning position, the City Model 1 takes a more relaxed, semi-upright approach.
  • We appreciated the traction and comfort provided by the included Kenda Quick Seven.5 tires


  • It’s always great to see a throttle included, but we’d love to see more governance over the throttle’s speed with the PAS system.
  • We understand the tradeoffs between function and pricing, but we’d love to see an upgrade from the Shimano Tourney shifter as long as it didn’t affect cost.

FLX BabyMaker II

The Best Single-Speed Commuter Electric Bike, 2023

The FLX BabyMaker 2 may have a silly name, but it takes its job seriously. This stripped-down, Class 3 commuter emulates the style of traditional fixed-gear (or “fixie”) single-speed bicycles and is made to navigate the crowded streets of cities during rush hour.

Along with a few of the other commuter-focused electric bikes we selected for this list, the BabyMaker 2 is lacking some of the trappings that are commonly thought to define a bike in this category, such as a cargo rack and lights. That stripped-down characteristic is a core element of a fixie; they tend to be no-nonsense machines that are completely dialed in to their purpose of getting a rider from point A to point B. They also tend to be pretty fast, and the BabyMaker 2 lives up to that expectation.

The BabyMaker 2 is incredibly lightweight, at just 35 lbs. This, in combination with its 350W rear hub motor and Kenda 700x28c tires, gives it fast acceleration and great maneuverability on paved surfaces. The Gates belt drive keeps it quiet, mess-free, and super low-maintenance. While the 36V, 10 Ah internal battery doesn’t provide extensive range, the 45 miles we saw in our testing is considerable in the grand scheme and still likely covers a majority of daily commutes. Plus, the bike is light enough to pedal without battery power if needed.

We would normally knock a bike for including brakes that don’t feature a motor cut-off switch, but in this case, it’s a bonus. The fact that the BabyMaker 2’s rider can keep pedaling at low speeds while applying the brakes means it has better overall regulation and control for maneuvering in traffic. This is another way that the bike emulates the feel of a fixie, despite taking a completely different approach.

We think the FLX BabyMaker 2 has a ton of appeal for downtown dwellers who need a straightforward, lightweight, and speedy way to get around. But in case this barebones bike is too basic, FLX does offer a pretty substantial range of accessories to transform the BabyMaker 2 into something more expected from a commuter.


  • At this price point, e-bikes don’t get much lighter than the BabyMaker 2’s 35 lbs. This makes it easy to carry and maneuver, and also quick to accelerate.
  • While not massive, the 45 mile range we saw from the bike’s 360 Wh battery is more than ample enough for practical daily use.
  • The Babymaker 2’s included Gates belt drive is clean, requires little maintenance, and is long-lasting.
  • With no motor cutoff on its brakes, the Babymaker 2 can be pedaled while slowing, offering better control and handling in traffic.
  • The bike’s sensitive cadence sensor makes for highly responsive motor input.


  • The bike’s minimalistic display coincides with its stripped-down fixie style, but some details like the battery readout can be tough to read.
  • While the bike comes in two frame sizes, the high step-over height on the small/medium version may be a bit too tall for shorter riders.

Best Nontraditional Commuter Electric Bikes

One thing that’s true about e-bikes: they open up the capabilities of most any bike style to fit it to your personal needs. With that extra help from the motor and battery providing you higher speeds, and the ability to sail up hills, you can make an argument for most any e-bike being a capable commuter. With that in mind, you can check out our page where we listed all of our best e-bike of the year nominees.

However, If you’re looking to break the mold and commute on a bike that’s contrary to the definition of a commuter e-bike, we do have a few specific suggestions:

  • The Electric Bike Company Model Y. It’s a souped-up beach cruiser that can handle Class 3 speeds, boasts an optional battery upgrade that gave us over 80 miles of range when we tested it earlier this year and tops our list for best cruiser e-bikes.
  • The Aventon Aventure 2 fat-tire e-bike. It’s built mostly for backroad exploring, but it’s stable build, comfortable ride and impressive carrying capacity make it great for urban commuting. It’s also on the top of our list of best fat tire e-bikes.

How we picked these bikes

There’s no such thing as the perfect commuter e-bike. There are just too many factors to consider; too many different things that each person needs for their daily commute. But there is such a thing as a really, really good commuter. We’re here to help you find that bike.

Many of the bikes on this list we’ve ridden and know very well, but there are others that we’ve included purely based on their design characteristics and components. The bikes we test are put through a number of assessments including a hill climb, a timed circuit and braking tests to get a feel for how they actually perform in the real world. Our team of testers then puts their heads together to compare notes and opinions.

To make this list, we evaluated commuter e-bikes based on a few key criteria, mainly:

  • Range: The average commute in the U.S. is about 15 miles one way, so a good commuter should be able to go twice that distance (you’ve got to get to and from work, right?) on a single charge. So a minimum 30 mile range.
  • Speed and power: Commuters should be fast, so every bike you’ll see on this list is a Class 3 (speed pedelec) e-bike with a top speed of 28 mph. They also need to have enough power to get you to and from your destination without breaking much of a sweat. Some of these bikes come as a Class 3 and others can be turned into a Class 3 by changing some settings.
  • Comfort and efficiency: A commuter bike, at least in our opinion, should feel something like sitting on a well-balanced eMTB. You should be comfortable enough to show up at your destination without lower back pain, but in an efficient enough body position that your pedaling actually gets you somewhere.
  • Components and extras: Does it have Bluetooth to connect your phone? Will the bike help you navigate, carry your groceries home and does it have good lights? If that sounds like we’re describing extras that make a good car, it’s because we kind of are. Commuter e-bikes are made to replace cars, so they should have some of the same features.
  • What does the manufacturer say it was built for? This may sound obvious, but it’s actually not. E-bike categorization is nebulous at its best and downright nonsensical at its worst. But e-bike manufacturers do their best to describe the best intended use of their bikes, so we take that into account. We sometimes break from their definition in categorizing bikes for our best lists, but not always.

This is not an exhaustive list. Far from it, actually, especially considering one person’s daily commute can be wildly different from the next. What this list is, is a catalogue of some of the best dedicated commuter e-bikes according to the EBR staff’s collective expert opinion. Does that mean you can’t commute on an eMTB or an electric cruiser? You absolutely can, it all depends on what you want from your commute.

Bottom line: Pick a bike that matches your commuting needs

There’s an adage in the cycling world that there is no one bike that’s perfect for everyone, but there is the perfect bike for each person. Remember that when you’re shopping around, especially when it comes to commuters.

From coast to coast, what constitutes a daily commute varies wildly depending on where you live. A commuter in west Texas, for example, is going to need something much different from their commuter e-bike than a person in Portland, Maine. The most important thing to do before buying a commuter e-bike is to really think hard about what you want your bike to do. The former bike salesman in me wants to say that the only way to answer that question is to go ride as many e-bikes as you can — that’s a partially useful answer, as many of the bikes on this list are sold in brick and mortar bike shops, but it’s not entirely good advice considering many, many e-bikes are sold direct to consumer. It’s entirely likely that the best bike for you can’t be ridden until you buy it and it’s shipped to your door. If that’s the case, research is your best friend. Our bike reviews are useful resources, and if you’re a newbie to e-bikes we’ve got a handy guide that’ll help you get started.

If your commute is dirt heavy, or might even involve some light trail riding, it might be worth checking out some eMTBs or electric gravel bikes. The commuting category is so broad, we’ve even broken out a separate best list for lighter-duty commuters more at home in dense urban environments. Whatever your commute may be, an e-bike of some sort is likely your best alternative over a personal car or public transit. They’ll get you where you need to go, no matter what’s between you and your destination.

Have a bike that you think would be a good contender for our best commuter electric bike page? Let us know in the comment section below. At the very least, we always want to know what our readers are riding.

Best electric bikes for commuting 2023: Get to work faster and with less effort

The best electric bikes for commuting help you get to and from work faster and with less effort. That means that you’ll arrive less hot and also gives you a boost away from traffic lights and other stops on your ride.

You’ll become fitter and your commute may well take less time than by car or public transport as you’ll probably find quicker routes that you can only take by bike. It’s likely to be cheaper too, once the up-front cost of the electric bike has been discounted.

Depending on how far you’re planning to ride, your needs will differ. Our pick of the best electric bikes for commuting below covers everything from a folder for a short hop to and from the station to drop bar bikes for a long distance commute that maybe includes some off-road riding.

Cyclingnews has a huge amount of advice on electric bikes if you want to know more.

Our guide to the best electric bikes gives you a more comprehensive range of options, while our pick of the best folding electric bikes offers options that make a compact package for storage or to carry on public transport.

If you’ve got a budget in mind we have guides to the best electric bikes under £1,000/1,000 and the best electric bikes under 2,000/£2,000. You can even convert a non-electric bike to an e-bike with the best electric bike conversion kits.

Alternatively scroll down for our pick of the best electric bikes for commuting, or head to the bottom for a guide on how to choose and an explainer of the laws on electric bikes worldwide.

Best electric bikes for commuting

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Reasons to avoid

The Orbea Gain has such subtle integration of the battery and motor that, at first glance, you’d be hard-pushed to know it was an e-bike. It has an attractive, lightweight, aluminium frame and carbon fork with an 11-speed Shimano 105 drivetrain which should see you over any terrain. Well-disguised within that frame is a 248 Wh battery which should be plenty to get you to work and back.

best, commuter, electric, bikes, 2023

If, however, you’d like more range, you can simply attach the external water-bottle-style battery and that’ll boost the battery capacity up to 456 Wh. Pedalling assistance is provided by a rear hub motor, which works in a concept Orbea are calling Enough Power and Enough Energy. The idea is that the bike intuitively offers enough power to keep you pedalling smoothly and efficiently to enhance your rider, rather than overwhelming you with big surges in power.

The bike comes with an app that allows you to change the bike’s functionality, including how power is applied as well as ride tracking your rides. The mode button on the top tube has coloured LEDs that show you how much battery is remaining, and which power mode you are in. There’s now an additional bar-mounted controller/computer which gives you more info and which sits on an out-front mount with a built-in LED light.

As a full size e-bike, the Gain isn’t going to be easy to take on public transport though, unlike a small wheeled folder like the Brompton Electric.

Reasons to avoid

If you’ve ever been on the market for a commuter bike you will have almost certainly cast your eyes upon a Brompton. The British company has sustained a great reputation built on ingenuity and build quality for so long that you know you’ll be riding a high-quality machine.

If you need a bike that packs up into a small space, on a train or in the office, for example, a Brompton is likely the best electric commuter bike for you. The C Line Electric bike comes with front and rear lights fitted, as well as mudguards, and the 6-speed gears give you loads of range. Helped by the motor, you’ll get to work easily however hilly your city is.

The company has fitted a 250 W motor to the bike, with a large-enough 300 Wh battery. The battery sits in a pack that conveniently unclips from the front of the bike and can be carried over your shoulder to your office or home to be charged. A full charge should be achieved within four hours. The quoted range for the battery is up to 70 km if you have it on its most energy-efficient setting. There is an LED indicator on the top of the bag which shows you how much of the battery you have remaining, which power mode you are in, and what setting your lights are on.

The bag-plus-bike set-up does make carrying the bike that bit more difficult though, although it does make charging a lot easier than an integrated battery like that on the VanMoof and the Orbea Gain and lowers the weight of the bike when you need to carry it.

There’s a P Line Brompton Electric available as well as the classic C Line Electric. Lighter components and fewer gears drop the weight quoted by Brompton from the C Line’s 17.4kg to 15.6kg.

You can read more in our full review of the Brompton C-Line Electric bike.

Reasons to avoid

The first thing that strikes you with the VanMoof S3 is just how modern it looks. The bike has very clean lines, classic geometry and most of the cables are hidden. The company sells five bikes, with either a standard crossbar or a more step-through frame design, including the VanMoof V which is rated to 31mph (although this model needs to be registered and insured to ride in the UK and Europe).

As well as automatic gearing, VanMoof’s anti-theft package means that if your bike gets stolen, they will personally track it down and if they can’t find it, they’ll replace it with a new one.

A feature that is still quite rare on bikes at the moment is the automatic gearbox. The Sturmey Archer gearbox will react to your accelerations and speed and make sure you’re always in the best gear. Should you wish, you can alter the timing of the gear changes with the VanMoof app. The 250 W motor is powered by a 504 Wh battery, with a range of between 60 to 150 km depending on the mode you have the bike in and the terrain you’re riding over.

There’s lots of integration, like the LED array built into the top tube, built-in lights, lock and alarm and location tracking from the VanMoof app, although the built-in battery and high weight mean that charging is not as easy as with a separate battery like that on the Brompton Electric.

Reasons to avoid

Ribble is at the forefront of value-for-money, high-specification, well-integrated e-road bikes. Many of the hallmarks of this capability are evident in this hybrid bike, which should handle both your commute and leisure rides with ease.

The basis of the bike is a strikingly good-looking lightweight aluminium frame within which there is a battery so well hidden that you barely notice it’s there. A subtle button and LED light on the top tube allow you to see how much battery is left and let you choose how much assistance you want. If you want even more control of the settings, you can change the settings in Ribble’s app.

The bike is impressively kitted out too, with a Mavic wheelset, a rear pannier rack, a bell, front and rear lights and full-length mudguards. As with all bikes where you can’t remove the battery, including the Orbea and the VanMoof, you will have to take this bike within touching distance of mains power to charge it up.

Reasons to avoid

While Tern claims the GSD isn’t intended to be a car killer, it may well be just that. The company is best known for its folding bikes, and while the GSD isn’t a fully foldable bike, the seat post and handlebars do collapse to make storage of this bike a little more compact. The reason it can’t fold down much smaller is this is not your average folding bike. This is a heavy-duty cargo bike, capable of carrying up to 200 kg, be that luggage, or should you attach the right seat, two passengers on the back.

The bike employs a dual battery system, which is 400Wh and 500Wh in size. Should you have both of them attached you’ll have a whopping 900Wh of capacity. This will be enough to assist your cycling for between 110 and 250 km depending on which of the 4 modes you have it in. The 10-speed Shimano hub gears and impressive 85Nm of torque mean you’ll be able to get up any hill, even when fully laden. It comes complete with wide, grippy tyres, a rear luggage mount, a kickstand, front and rear lights, and mudguards.

It’s a heavy duty cargo carrying option, but not as practical as a folder like the Brompton C Line Electric or a bike with less luggage capacity like the Ribble if you have less need of carrying capacity.

Reasons to avoid

Built for comfortable as well as speedy commutes, the Trek Domane LT electric bike gets Trek’s IsoSpeed seatpost decoupler built in to increase the isolation of your rear end from road vibrations. There’s front IsoSpeed too to add comfort at the handlebars. Wide 32mm tyres help add comfort and grip as well and you can either fit mudguards or even wider rubber for rougher routes into the office.

The Fazua motor’s phone app lets you fine-tune the motor’s output levels to match your power needs, so you can upscale the power delivery if you need more support for faster getaways or tone it down if you want to preserve battery life.

The Fazua drivetrain is removable from the bike, so you can ride without assistance, save weight and use the space that held the motor for storage, while Trek’s endurance geometry makes the Domane LT a comfortable ride for the long haul commute.

The Domane LT is still available for now, but the new (and even more expensive) Domane SLR that replaces it is lighter and (for US riders) faster.

Reasons to avoid

You might initially mistake this bike for a mountain bike, rather than one cut out for commuting. In reality, the 2.3-inch tyres and 80 mm travel suspension fork are perfect not for the trails but smoothing out bumps and road buzz on your commute. If you live in slightly more remote areas, the bike should also deal with gravel or hard-pack dirt trails with ease.

The bike comes with a large 710 Wh battery which powers a trusty Specialized motor and a SRAM NX groupset with a wide enough range to get you over any terrain. To keep you safe, it also comes with hydraulic disc brakes which will provide dependable braking in any weather conditions. It comes with front and rear mudguards, and a rear pannier rack to carry any work stuff from A to B without having to wear a backpack. It’s available as a step-through as well as the version with a top tube shown above.

You get extra comfort, range and a more powerful motor, but the Turbo Vado isn’t as sprightly as the Orbea Gain or the Cannondale Synapse.

Reasons to avoid

If you want to speed up your e-bike commute, a drop bar racer will give you a more aerodynamic ride position that should be faster than a flat bar hybrid like the Ribble, the Specialized or the Orbea. The Cannondale Synapse Neo comes with a powerful Bosch motor that’s mid-mounted for stability and a high capacity battery for plenty of range. The EQ version also gets mudguards, a rear rack (not shown in the image above) and lights so it’s all-weather ready and easy to load up.

There’s a 10-speed Shimano Tiagra drivetrain with plenty of gear range, that along with the motor should make a breeze of hills on your ride into town. The hydraulic disc brakes mean assured stopping and the 35mm wide Schwalbe tyres should provide comfort over broken roads or even if your commute takes in a towpath or gravel track. There’s plenty of range from the large 500Wh battery too.

Reasons to avoid

Hummingbird has engineered its folding electric bike to be as light as possible. A carbon fibre main frame paired to a cantilevered truss rear section and lightweight components bring the overall weight down to a claimed 10.3kg.

The Hummingbird bike doesn’t fold down quite as small as a Brompton Electric, it’s only singlespeed so might not work for hillier cities and the range is quite limited at around 50km, but Hummingbird has upped the torque from the 250 watt motor so there’s more pulling power to help get you moving. All that engineering means that the Hummingbird bike is expensive though.

Best electric bike for commuting: everything you need to know

There’s a lot to think about when selecting an electric bike for your commute, so we’ve provided a breakdown of the key points here. There’s more information in our guide to the best electric bikes as well.

Why is an electric bike good for commuting?

An electric bike can make your commute a lot more comfortable. It can make stops and starts a lot easier, provide assistance on uphills and increase your overall average speed, while lowering the effort you need to put in, so you should arrive less hot and tired than on a non-electric bike. You may feel more comfortable riding a longer distance too.

It’s also likely to be a lot more comfortable than a ride on public transport and you can choose your own time to travel, while you’re less prone to delays due to congestion than in a motor vehicle.

Many towns and cities now have dedicated cycling routes, so you may not need to compete with motorised traffic and might be able to skip queues and even get a jump at traffic lights due to cyclist priority signalling. There are also often quietway routes for cyclists that bypass main roads and take you away from traffic and may route you around bottlenecks.

On the flip side, most electric bikes are quite heavy, so moving them around at the beginning and end of a ride will be harder work than with a non-powered bike. If your commute involves public transport it will be harder to get your electric bike on and off than with a non-powered bike and you may not be able to take a non-folding bike at peak times. The best folding electric bikes will help here.

You also need to make sure that you can keep your electric bike charged up so you don’t run out of juice halfway home in the rain (although electric bikes are designed so that you can pedal them without assistance). That means having a handy power outlet close by where you park your bike, either at home or at work, or an e-bike with a removeable battery. You might need a second charger at work too.

What material should my frame be made of?

The three most common frame materials you’ll come across when looking for a bike are aluminium, steel and carbon, although titanium might make an occasional appearance.

Carbon is most often used in the best road bikes because of its low weight and high stiffness. However, it can be quite fragile, and innocuous bumps could cause very expensive damage, so if you’re locking your bike up in communal locations, we recommend you stay away.

Most bikes you look at for commuting are likely to be made from aluminium, and for good reason. It’s fairly cheap, very durable and not subject to corrosion.

You may find some electric bikes are made of steel. While it is tough and can take some bumps and bruises, it is relatively heavy and can be subject to corrosion.

What should I look for in an electric bike motor?

Most e-bike motors are power-limited to 250 watts, but they can provide varying amounts of torque, measured in Newton-metres (Nm). If your commute is flattish and you’re fairly fit, a motor with around 40Nm to 50Nm torque is likely to be fine, but if you’re riding somewhere more arduous or expect to be carrying a lot, then a motor with more torque will be better. Some go up to 80Nm or more, which is what an electric mountain bike puts out.

A mid-mounted motor is likely to keep your e-bike most stable, as it’s low down and central on the bike. But a rear hub motor isn’t likely to have a significant impact on handling and, as your weight is over the rear wheel, grip isn’t likely to be an issue.

Front hub motors are more tricky, as there’s less weight on the wheel and so less grip and the extra weight can affect the bike’s handling if it’s not been carefully designed.

How much battery capacity do I need?

As with all technologies, it’s easy to look back at some original e-bikes and notice how bulky they looked. Batteries were bolted onto frames wherever there was space and were often very low capacity. Fortunately, we’re beginning to see much bigger capacity batteries and sleeker integration of both batteries and motors.

Typically, the smaller the physical size of the battery, the lower its capacity, and the fewer miles you’ll get out of it. For most people, this shouldn’t be an issue, with even small batteries having enough juice to get you to work where you can charge up again or serving duty for multiple days of commuting.

Battery size is most often expressed in watt-hours (Wh), and the amount of assistance you’ll get from it depends on how much you ask of it. For example, a 300 watt-hour battery can provide 300 watts of assistance for one hour, or 100 W of assistance for 3 hours.

A battery can weigh several kilograms and make up a significant proportion of an electric bike’s weight. That’s okay in a non-folding bike, although it can make moving the bike to a storage area at the end of a ride harder. It’s more of an issue with a folding bike designed for portability, so a bike like the Brompton C Line Electric will often have a lower capacity battery to make it easier to carry.

How do I charge my electric bike?

Some bikes have removable battery packs making them simple to unclip and charge, even if your bike is left outside or in a communal bike store. Others, typically those with more integration, require you to charge the battery while it is attached to your bike, meaning you’ll have to hook it up to the mains in your house, garage, or at the office, so it’s worth checking to see how easy this might be for you.

You’re either going to have to carry your charger with you or buy a second one if you need to charge the e-bike at both ends of your commute. Some electric bikes like the Orbea can be fitted out with a range extender battery if you do need more range, but in reality most commutes are likely to be short enough for range not to be an issue even with the lowest battery capacity, unless you expect to go multiple days without recharging.

How many gears do I need?

As usual, the stock answer is that depends. If you live somewhere flat, a singlespeed electric bike may be enough for you. The extra power provided by the motor means that starting off will be a lot easier and faster than with a non-powered commuter bike.

At the other extreme, if your commute is hilly, you may need a full range of gearing, as found on the best commuter bikes which don’t include a motor. Again, the motor is a huge help here. Crank it up to maximum power output and it may pull you up steep inclines; lower the assistance level once you’ve reached the top to conserve battery life and range.

What additional features should I look for?

For commuting duties, it’s preferable to get the load you’re carrying off your back: you’ll be more comfortable and your centre of gravity will be lower. It may be easier to look around without a pack too, although the best cycling backpacks will be designed to address these issues.

If you’re planning to commute with your electric bike in all weathers, then look for mudguards or at least the option to fit mudguards to your bike. Likewise, winter commuting is likely to mean at least one journey in the dark. In-built lights are handy and they’ll often be run off the electric bike’s battery meaning that there’s less to remember to keep charged up.

You can pick up a set of the best bike lights relatively inexpensively though. It’s a good idea to use lights even during the daytime to up your visibility, particularly in town.

Take a look at our commuter bike accessories checklist for a longer list of things you might need for your commute.

How do I maintain my electric bike?

Bikes, like cars or any other mechanical device, need to be maintained. If you’re not an experienced mechanic, most things are simple enough to learn how to do yourself, but spend a little bit of money and a bike shop will have you good to go in no time. But, the fewer complicated parts, and the better you care for your bike, the less chance there is of things going wrong.

The gears on your bike, including the derailleurs, cables and shifters will require regular maintenance to keep them performing at their best. Some people are fortunate to live and work in flat areas and so they can get away with the simplicity and ease of a single-speed bike.

However, most of us live in areas with hills, and therefore gears are a necessity. Internally-geared hubs are a more robust, easier-to-maintain solution than derailleurs, but can be pricier. You’ll sometimes find a carbon fibre belt drive on bikes for commuting, which cuts down on maintenance over a chain-driven solution.

Maintaining your brakes in working order is arguably the single most important thing when looking after your bike. Jumpy gears and a loud chain might ruin your enjoyment, but poorly functional brakes could have much more dire consequences.

Classical brake systems, using a cable to join your lever and your brakes, have stuck around for so long because they’re simple and they work, but you do need to keep them properly maintained, regularly checking the cables for wear.

Higher-end bikes are often equipped with hydraulic disc brakes; not only do these work more effectively in poor weather conditions, once set up they should require less maintenance too. Disc brakes are trickling down the bike hierarchy and you might find them on quite inexpensive electric bikes.

What are the e-bike regulations where I live?

What classifies as an e-bike and what regulations apply to riding it vary by where you’re located.

At present, most e-bikes in the UK fall under EPAC (that’s the electrically assisted pedal cycle) amendment regulation mandate. This means bikes have to be moving before the motor can kick in, it can provide a maximum of 250 watts of aided power and has to stop aiding at 25 kph. You also have to be at least 14 years old to ride an e-bike.

So long as your bike meets these criteria (as all the ones in the article do), then you’ll have the same legal standing as regular bicycles and you’ll be allowed on roads and bike paths. If your bike assists you up to faster speeds it’ll be considered a two-wheel moped, and therefore you’ll require insurance, a certified helmet, and a valid driving licence.

In Australia e-bikes can assist you up to a maximum speed of 25 kph. The two legal systems in Australia are throttle-operated and pedal-assist. If you have a throttle-controlled bike it can provide up to 200 watts of power, whereas pedal-assist e-bikes can give you 250 watts of assistance. Anything above that is legally considered a motorbike and must therefore be licensed and insured.

Given the structure of the American legal system, the rules governing the use of e-bikes are predictably more complicated than those in the UK and Australia. Let’s begin.

Obviously, the laws governing the use of e-bikes vary from state to state, but these are often difficult to interpret. The all-encompassing, federal definition of an e-bike is “a two- or three-wheeled vehicle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts (1 h.p.), whose maximum speed on a paved level surface, when powered solely by such a motor while ridden by an operator who weighs 170 pounds, is less than 20 mph”.

As if that isn’t complicated enough, often state laws may override federal legislation. Some 33 states have statutes that define an e-bike in some way, while the rest lack any specific definition, and often chuck them in with other classes of vehicles. At present, 13 states are adhering to a three-tiered system proposed by The Bicycle Product Suppliers Association. While the motors on all classes of bikes can produce a maximum of 750 watts, they are tiered depending on their maximum assisted speed:

  • Class 1: the motor provides assistance only when the rider is pedalling, and cuts out at 20 mph
  • Class 2: the motor can contribute even if the rider is not pedalling, but cuts out at 20 mph
  • Class 3: the motor provides assistance when the rider is pedalling but cuts out at 28 mph and must be equipped with a speedometer
best, commuter, electric, bikes, 2023

While class 1 and 2 bikes are allowed anywhere bikes are allowed, class 3 bikes can only be ridden on roads and bike lanes, but not multi-use paths. In the states that regard e-bikes as vehicles, licensing and registration may be required to operate an e-bike.

Yes, this is a lot to get your head around, but thankfully the kind folk at People for Bikes have put together a state-by-state guide.

Best electric hybrid bikes in 2023: ebikes for commuting, shopping and riding around town

The best electric hybrid bikes will get you around in style and give you a bit of a push when you need it.

Many of the first electric bikes to hit the market were hybrids. With flat handlebars and a comfortable, upright riding position, they’re a good option for general recreational riding, beginner cyclists, shopping and trips around town. Electric hybrid bikes also work well for commuters who aren’t pressed for storage space and want a little assistance when cycling to work. If space is tight, take a look at our guide to the best electric folding bikes.

For more information on what to consider when buying an electric hybrid bike and other electric bike options, we’ve got a full buyer’s guide at the bottom of this article but read on for our pick of the best electric hybrid bikes.

The best electric hybrid bikes in 2023

Canyon Grand Canyon:ON 9

The Grand Canyon:ON 9 is happy around town but can take you places at the weekend. Mick Kirkman / Our Media

  • £3,699 / €3,899 / AU6,899 as tested
  • Smooth around town, but with the power for weekend adventures
  • Good range and spec

Although it’s a hardtail mountain bike rather than a hybrid, the Canyon Grand Canyon:ON is potentially a good choice for city riding if you want to go somewhere more adventurous at the weekend. It has the performance for steep and rough riding, but still feels comfortable around town.

It’s powered by the compact, powerful Shimano EP8 motor, with a 630Wh battery on all but the smallest frame size, delivering over 100km of range. The 12 speeds give plenty of options to tune your own pedalling power.

Canyon Pathlite:ON 5

The Pathlite:ON has the looks and many of the capabilities of an electric mountain bike. Dave Caudery / Our Media

  • £2,499 / €2,699 as tested
  • Delivers lots of power
  • Handles and rides well
  • Very bulky

The Canyon Pathlite:ON 5 is all you want in a commuter bike. It soothes rough roads and presents great value, while Bosch’s Gen 4 motor is powerful and the drivetrain is superb. Our testing was consistent with Canyon’s claimed 100km range.

The battery slots into the down tube and comes out at the click of a key. Its charger is easy to carry in a rucksack, which is a bonus for commuting. Mudguards and integrated lights add to its ride-to-work credentials.

Where the Pathlite:ON 5 stands out from the field is off-road. Its handling, gearing, suspension fork and tyres make it at home on mountain bike trails, but it has an upright riding position for urban riding and bike paths.

The Bosch motor is discrete when you’re pedalling unassisted. A welcome boost comes on steep inclines. You switch between off, Eco, Tour, eMTB and Turbo modes using the Bosch’s Purion display.

Since it weighs 23kg, one place you won’t want to take the Pathlite:ON 5 is up a flight of stairs.

Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0

  • £3,900 / €4,100 / 4,000 / AU6,900 as tested
  • Smooth and comfortable
  • Long range
  • Sophisticated controller

The Specialized Turbo Vado comes in the SL version and this full-fat iteration, with a more powerful motor boasting 70Nm torque and larger battery capacity. Specialized calls it “4x You” as opposed to “2x You” for the Turbo Vado SL.

We got over 70 miles/113km on a charge. There’s an impressive four-colour controller display, which you can configure using the Specialized Mission Control app. You can also set an alarm and deactivate the motor if the ebike is stolen.

It’s a relaxed, comfortable ride, thanks to 80mm of suspension in the fork, a suspension seatpost and comfortable saddle, although at 26kg – 11kg more than the Turbo Vado SL – you’re not going to want to lug the ebike up a lot of stairs.

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Specialized Turbo Vado SL 4.0

Specialized’s crimson red/black paint is a treat, while the reflective frame graphics are another nice touch. Oli Woodman / Immediate Media

  • £2,600 / €2,999 / 3,500 as tested
  • Well-tuned power delivery
  • Low weight
  • Lights included

Weighing under 15kg and with a 130km range, the Turbo Vado SL is intended to take ebike use for recreation and city riding mainstream. Its motor weighs under 2kg and the concealed battery makes for clean looks, although the 35Nm torque output is lower than most ebike motors.

Support feels very natural, without any bursts of acceleration but still helping out well on inclines, although it seems a bit underpowered on the steepest climbs, even in its top Turbo mode.

All models come with lights, and higher specs add a rack and mudguards.

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Tern Quick Haul P9

  • £3,100 / 3,299 / AU 4,995 as tested
  • Great handling and ride quality
  • Vertical storage to save space
  • Loads of extras to carry everything from kids to locks

Electric cargo bikes enable you to lug groceries, equipment, kids and dogs around, ditching the car, without breaking too much of a sweat.

The Tern Quick Haul can carry up to 70kg of additional load and is a much more affordable and compact option than Tern’s older models. It comes with a large rack, which can also be used to stand the bike vertically and free up space when it’s stored.

Tern sells loads of accessories and luggage, so you can kit the bike out for whatever you want to use it for.

With 65Nm of torque from the Bosch motor and a range that we found to average 46 miles, the Quick Haul has plenty of oomph to get you around. Handling and ride quality are great, although with a rack and luggage, it’s not so easy to negotiate tight gaps.

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VanMoof S3

  • £1,998 / 2,298 / €2,198 as tested
  • Outstanding value
  • Easy and comfy to ride
  • Integrated lights

Weighing in at 21kg, the VanMoof S3 is a smooth-riding urban ebike with substantial range thanks to a 504Wh battery in the frame. The front-wheel hub holds a 250W motor.

Our tester managed almost 130 rolling kilometres relying on the battery alone, with the 378Wh power bank attached but not turned on. The S3 fully recharges in four hours and the battery tops up halfway in 80 minutes.

The bike’s automatic four-speed rear-hub shifting mostly works well in hilly and flat settings. The assistance correlates with your speed and the turbo gives a blast of power if required. The S3’s two sizes should cater for riders of most heights.

The nifty LED display on the top tube doubles up as an accurate speedometer and battery indicator. When parked, you can set the in-built alarm and freeze the rear wheel, so you don’t need to tether it to something. Both can be disabled via an app or code.

VanMoof has now replaced the S3 with the S5, which looks similar but has upgraded functionality.

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VanMoof X3

The VanMoof X3 is a brilliant bike to ride around town, combining agility, pace and comfort along with a host of useful extras, including integrated lights and security features. You can also strap a bag to the front carrier. Power delivery is steady and correlates to the force you exert on the pedals. These can, however, lack grip in the rain.

Our tester eked out 64km and 500m elevation from the battery, a respectable distance. As for charging, the battery weighs 867g, so it’s easy to remove and carry. It charges fully in four hours.

The VanMoof X3 only comes in one size, but this should suit the majority of female and male riders. It’s now been replaced by the VanMoof A5, which has a sloping top tube design which gives a little easier step-over.

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Bianchi E-Spillo Luxury

Coming with a rear rack for proper panniers and an upright riding position, the Bianchi E-Spillo Luxury is made for cruising stylishly to the shops or work. The Shimano Steps E5000 motor is partially concealed in the position of the bottom bracket. It has three modes – Normal, Eco and Turbo.

The 418Wh battery slides under the rear rack, bringing maximum claimed range to 120km. Our tester found the power gauge dipped sharply after 97km, underlining the bike is best for short, urban trips.

The E-Spillo Luxury has Shimano’s 9-speed Altus groupset. The 34t front ring, matched with an 11-36 cassette, suits most town riding. The brakes do a decent job of slowing the bike’s bulk.

Steel mudguards are included and match the brand’s iconic celeste frame. It weighs 21.65kg in size 53cm and also comes in a 47cm version.

The easy-to-read Shimano Steps dE6100 head unit displays speed, predicted range, distance and journey time.

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Cannondale Quick 4 Disc with Cytronex C1 motor kit

Cannondale’s Quick 4 Disc hybrid fitted with a Cytronex ebike kit. Russell Burton / Immediate Media

  • £1,646 as tested
  • £995 for Cytronex C1 kit, £579.99 for Cannondale Quick 4 Disc, £71 for optional lights
  • Cytronex add-on kit electrifies a standard hybrid bike
  • Subtle power delivery

The Cytronex C1 kit includes a front-hub motor and bottle cage battery to electrify a standard non-assisted hybrid bike, adding just over 3kg to the weight. We tried it out on the Cannondale Quick 4 Disc, which was responsive and sporty, with a good gear range. It’s one of a range of pre-built options from Cytronex.

Add the motor and the Quick becomes a competent ebike with around 60km of range and progressive power delivery. The motor is controlled easily via the single bar-mounted button.

You can also spec lights when you order the bike, while the Quick has mounts for mudguards and a rack, making this an all-weather commuting machine.

Canyon Precede:ON CF 9

Stunning looks mean that the Canyon Precede:ON CF 9 stands out on the commute. Russel Burton / Immediate Media

  • £4,999 / €4,999 as tested
  • Top-spec motor and large battery
  • Belt drive with CVT transmission
  • On the heavy side

The Precede:ON’s futuristic design includes comprehensive integration for a slick, fast-looking commute. Power comes from a top-spec Bosch Performance Line CX motor, with a high-capacity integrated battery that gives plenty of range and is easy to remove for charging.

There’s a belt drive with a constantly variable transmission system that means you don’t need to change gears.

There’s a slick-looking cockpit, too, and the Precede:ON feels stable without being sluggish or lacking agility. At 23kg, it’s heavy though.

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Carrera Crossfuse

A classic hybrid position makes the Carrera Crossfuse the perfect bike for negotiating traffic. Russell Burton / Immediate Media

  • £1,899 as tested
  • Bosch motor and battery
  • Comfortable ride
  • Quality Shimano gears and brakes

Halfords’ Carrera brand offers the competitively priced Crossfuse, with a 50Nm Bosch motor and lockable battery. The ride position is upright, and the saddle and handlebar grips comfortable, while wide tyres with a deep tread work well on a variety of surfaces and the short-travel fork helps smooth the way.

Range is good – we got close to 100km – and you can remove the battery for charging.

The single-chainring drivetrain offers a wide spread of gears and the hydraulic disc brakes come from Shimano, making for effective stopping power. Coupled with a very comfortable ride, we rated the Crossfuse a great commuter option.

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Carrera Impel IM-2

Carrera’s Impel IM-2 looks neat for one of the more affordable ebikes available. David Caudery / Immediate Media

  • £1,299 RRP as tested
  • Commuting and off-road capability
  • Respectable range and punchy motor
  • No mudguards, disappointing brakes

The Carrera Impel IM-2 is a capable commuter with all-road potential and a nippy ride. Carrera says the 367Wh battery will see you through 50km, but our tester found this was slightly optimistic. Its assistance is supplied by a 45Nm/250W rear-hub motor, which has three modes.

The battery can be taken off the bike and recharged in five and a half hours.

The Impel’s agile handling, 650b wheels and 47mm tyres make it no slouch off tarmac.

The 1x drivetrain is unfussy and effective. It comprises a Shimano nine-speed Alvio rear derailleur and the brand’s Altus shifter. The 11-36 ratio is perfect for most commuting.

The absence of mudguards and powerful brakes are among few downsides to this keenly-priced bike.

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Cooper CG-7E

Cooper makes ebikes that are designed for clean lines and simplicity, with a rear hub that includes both the motor and its 173Wh battery, so there’s no wiring, sensors or other stuff to clutter it up.

It also allows regenerative braking, upping the range to a claimed 25 to 37 miles, which we exceeded. It’s controlled via a phone app rather than a separate controller, which also reduces clutter, although we found it a little hard to read in bright sunlight.

It’s a really nice bike to ride, with the characteristic feel of a steel frame. The motor helps, rather than taking over, although its 40Nm of torque is enough to get you up hills at a good pace. The gearing is basic but works, while Cooper has specced quality grips and saddle.

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Genesis Smithfield

A comfy ride and attractive looks come with a raft of commuter features. Dave Caudery / Our Media

The Genesis Smithfield is a sleek urban ebike that rides nicely with a sizeable 150km claimed range and all you need for commuting, such as metal mudguards, a nurse’s lock and bosses for bottle cages or racks.

Although the price tag calls for a better drivetrain than the nine-speed Shimano Acera, the Smithfield does boast a capable Shimano STEPS motor, long-lasting battery and disc brakes.

The Smithfield might not be the snappiest given it weighs 23kg, but it has the range and compliance for you to incorporate off-road sorties into your route home.

Our tester managed an undulating 81.5km using the variety of modes and found the battery recharged to 80 per cent in two hours and full charge in four.

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GoCycle G4

The GoCycle G4 is a class-leading collapsible bike with an excellent motor and reasonable range. A carbon fork and mid-section reduce weight but increase cost to just shy of £4,000.

The GoCycle is well-specced. It has hydraulic brakes and a three-speed Shimano Nexus hub gear with ratios low enough for steep hills. Its battery should be good for 50 to 60km rides.

The G4 motor has so much torque it really whizzes around town, and beyond, including towpaths, thanks to wide tyres, suspension and traction control.

The GoCycle’s app, which allows fine-tuning and displays loads of data, gets the best out of a fun-to-ride bike.

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GT Power Performer

  • £1,800 / 2,625 as tested
  • Retro BMX style
  • Decent range and performance
  • Fun but still practical

With 1980s-inspired looks and equipment, but the benefit of a motor, the GT Power Performer gives you a BMX-style ride position with a low saddle and high bars. There’s even a platform behind the saddle to stand on.

There’s a Bafang rear-hub motor with five assistance levels and 45Nm torque, and we got around 40 miles of range. There are hydraulic disc brakes to help with skids and tricks, and full mudguards that almost keep you dry, but not quite.

It’s more practical than you’d expect for the commute, well-priced and fun.

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LeMond Prolog

Former professional road racer Greg LeMond is back in the bike business with this impressive electric bike. The LeMond Prolog is lightweight and sleek-looking, but one of its biggest surprises is its dynamic ride.

Unlike many electric hybrid bikes, which look to mountain bikes for their relaxed, upright designs, the Prolog is much sportier and consequently has faster handling.

The stiff and responsive carbon frame has wide tyres and comfortable contact points to cushion your ride.

The bike has a 1x Shimano GRX drivetrain and an oversized rear hub that houses a 250W motor, putting out 40Nm of power. We found the battery life to be decent in testing, with the bike only running out of power after 60 miles / 100km of riding.

At over £4,000 / 4,500, the Prolog is at the pricier end of the electric hybrid spectrum. But if you’re looking for a sporty assisted bike, we reckon it should be high on your list.

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