3. What type of electric assistance does the bike provide?
The main thing you want to know when asking this question is whether the bike offers electric assistance only while you’re pedaling or if it also offers fully motorized riding.
If you know there will be times when you want to stop pedaling and let the motor take over, then be sure the bike you’re looking at offers a throttle-only or power-only riding mode.
4. What’s the maximum throttle speed?
In most places in the U.S., electric bikes cannot legally go faster than 20 mph, but beneath that threshold there is still some significant variance in the speeds different eBikes can reach.
The speed you need your electric bike to travel depends on where you live, how quickly you’d like to ride, and how heavily you plan on using the bike’s motor. In general, eBikes capable of hitting at least 15 mph prove to be the most efficient and helpful for riders to complete commutes and run errands quickly.
5. How do riders engage and control the motor?
Electric bikes come with a variety of instrumentation to trigger and control the motor, including push-button throttles, finger throttles, twist throttles, even software throttles.
Understanding exactly how an eRideable engages the motor is an important factor in determining whether it will give you the kind of riding experience you’re looking for.
6. What type of gear system does it have? Physical gears or software-based “speed modes”?
Does the eBike have a single gear or multiple gears? An eBike with a single gear might limit your ability to fine-tune how you ride. Your riding might also rely more on the motor.
Like a traditional bike, multiple gears give you more riding options. It might make climbing hills easier.
Software-based “speed modes” mimic physical gears by limiting the max throttle speeds. Electric bikes with this sort of set up are single geared and rely on a high-torque motor to conquer steep inclines.