What are we looking for in the perfect ebike? This is something we all need to consider when starting to research electric bikes and there's most definitely a criteria that every well designed ebike should fulfil:
- A silent motor
- Power to handle any incline (within reason!)
- A stable and comfy ride
- Efficiency of power
- A clear understanding of what the rider needs from it
- Weight that doesn't reduce the power of the bike and the rider's experience.
We have years of experience riding e bikes ourselves, selling them and receiving daily customer feedback. So we've combined knowledge and feedback to share our thoughts on our favourite current e bikes, and explain why we rate them so highly.
The Gazelle Orange C7+ HMB is designed for comfort and stability. The Orange frame is roomy and very low, making it feel spacious when you're riding it and super easy to get on and off. It has a suspension seat post + front suspension and a wide sprung saddle so ride couldn't be smoother. It also has a really large display screen which is clear and incredibly user friendly.
The motor is a mid positioned (it sits in the centre of the frame with the pedals) Bosch Activ Line 3.0. If you're looking for a powerful and stable ride, always opt for a mid mounted motor rather than one built into the front wheel. It's near silent and powerful at 40Nm. We've ridden the Orange C7+ HMB up every steep Hastings hill and it always manages it with ease. From our experience, the Bosch motor comes out top every time - it's powerful, reliable and quiet.
You have a choice of batteries with this bike which is so handy. Depending on your budget and riding distances, you can choose between the silver, gold or platinum. Here's a quick battery break down:
Travel up to: 110 km's with 300wh silver battery
145 km's with 400wh gold battery
180 km's with 500wh platinum battery
This is a spacious bike with tonnes of high quality indestructible features - an integrated lock, powerful front and rear lights and multi adjustable handlebar (to name a few) The advantages are huge but it's worth taking into account that each feature adds weight. In total with the battery the Gazelle Orange C7+ HMB is approx. 25kg - so not a good choice if you have to carry it into an apartment.
The Grenoble C380 HMB has all the amazing features of the Orange but it's also pretty slick in it's design and even more powerful. The frame is still really accessible and spacious but a nice feature of the Grenoble C380 is the integrated frame battery. This looks great but also performs the purpose of reducing drag and spreading the weight of the battery evenly across the frame. Making the bike feel lighter and even more stable. This is the bike that when customers try it, they can't quite believe it's an ebike due to the "nippy" and stable nature of the ride.
We've also gone up a step in power with a silent mid mounted Bosch Active Line 65Nm. So this bike can handle any hill + rider + child seat + luggage with ease.
The Grenoble C380 HMB also has the intuitive large display screen but with the added benefit of a phone charger and useful reminders such as when it's time for your next service! Handy.
Gazelle always have comfort as a top priority on their bikes and the Grenoble C380 conforms with suspension throughout and high end saddle and grips.
There are still battery options but as standard the Grenoble C380 HMB comes with a gold battery which you can upgrade to a platinum if you want to go for longer rides.
Travel up to: 145 km's with 400wh gold battery
180 km's with 500wh platinum battery
Other than the fact that this is still a heavy bike approx. 28kg inc battery. The Grenoble C380 HMB is faultless. It can ride just about anywhere, in any weather. It's clear in it's purpose which is leisure and commuting and within that field it's exceptional.
The Temple E bikes are plugging into a slightly different market. Ideal for quick city riding and longer tours, it doesn't have all the space or high comfort levels of the Gazelle's but it's easier to manoeuvre in traffic and considerably lighter at just 19kg. Suddenly this is a e bike that weighs in the same realm as a standard bike which makes it very very versatile.
The ride experience is great, smooth and very responsive. The motor is a extremely powerful mid mounted Bafang M420. At 80Nm this is the most powerful yet, it's also silent. We're all about embracing the E ride at Bell's, however if you'd like a "discreet" ebike that you'd never know had extra assistance then Temple have nailed it. The slimline frame, integrated batter and low profile motor make it almost impossible to decipher from a non ebike.
We're so impressed with the Fome Buxton and it's become known as the ebike in Hastings. If you're looking for a folding Ebike for less than £1500 then we don't think it can get better than this.
It folds in 20 seconds and only weighs 20kg. Making it so versatile for city and leisure riding. The motor is an impressive 40Nm which is still enough to power the smaller wheels up a decent incline, combined with the lack of weight makes it a powerful little machine. The battery on the Forme Buxton Pro is only available in 300Wh which gives you approx. 45 miles, so fine for city riding and day trips but not the best choice for much longer rides.
We love the design of the Buxton Pro - it's paired back, sleek and understated. We'd very happily ride this bike round town.
We see a Bafang motor again on this bike, rear wheel mounted this time but doesn't give as much stability as a mid mounted motor, but then as this is a ebike where ease of folding is also a big factor, we wouldn't really expect it.