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Best Electric Commuter Bike

Samuel Stark
  Jan 30, 2023 11:22 AM

Our hope is that *Electric Bike Report will serve as a useful resource in your search for the ideal electric bike. You should know that we may receive compensation if you decide to purchase a product we've recommended.
 


OVERVIEW

Commute times for the typical person might vary widely depending on many factors. This could be a couple of hours on public transportation each day, a morning commute of tens of miles, or any number of additional factors. It seems illogical that you couldn't ride an electric bike to work.
Electric Bike Report analyzed some of the top electric bikes for commuting in 2022, including speedy racers, endurance bicycles, agile touring bikes, and plush recumbents. In order to assist you choose the best commuter e-bike, we have produced a list of our top picks.

The way people interact with bicycles is improving as a result of the introduction of electric bikes. They're lowering the entry barrier to the sport and, more crucially, the form of transportation, making bicycle commuting a viable option for those who might not have considered it before. The electric commuter bikes on this list will get you where you need to go without making you sweat through your clothing, and they'll do it swiftly and with plenty of juice left over to cover long distances. Many of the commuter e-bikes on this list have been put through their paces by EBR's team of seasoned testers on our home roads and pathways in southwest Utah, while others were included solely on merit; their reputations and spec sheets were simply too good to pass up.
We've done our best to limit ourselves to bikes that are optimally suited for commuting, given that the term's meaning varies widely depending on where you live and work (especially in the United States). These bikes were developed specifically for riding on paved surfaces, and their engine and battery components were selected with a focus on performance, efficiency, and durability. You may also be interested in our selection of the best city and urban e-bikes if you're in the market for a commuter bike that can handle the hustle and bustle of a city.
 


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BUYING GUIDE

Best Nontraditional Commuter Electric Bikes

 

You may modify the features of virtually any type of bike to suit your demands with the help of an e-bike. You can argue that any e-bike is a competent commuter because of the motor and batteries that allow you to travel faster and more effortlessly up hills. To that end, you may choose to peruse the page where we've compiled a list of all the contenders for best electric bike of the year.

But if you want to go against the grain and ride something other than a standard e-bike to work, we do have several recommendations:

  • Model Y from the Electric Bike Company. It's essentially a beefed-up version of a standard beach cruiser, but it's capable of Class 3 speeds, has a range of over 80 miles with the optional battery upgrade we tried out, and is, therefore, our pick for finest cruiser e-bike of the year.

  • The fat-tired electric bike, Aventon Aventure. Its primary use is off-road travel, but its sturdy construction, smooth ride, and large cargo capacity also make it a convenient city commuter. The best fat tire e-bike on our list is this one.


 

Reasons for Choosing These Bikes


 

The ideal electric commuter bike does not exist. Too many variables exist; each commuter has unique requirements. However, the ideal commuter does exist. You may count on us to assist you in locating the desired bicycle.

We have extensive experience with a number of the bikes featured, but some made the cut based solely on the merits of their construction. We put the bikes through their paces by timing them on a closed course, descending a hill, and stopping to see how they perform in a variety of real-world scenarios. Then, our testing crew gets together to talk about what they found and why they think it.

We chose the best electric commuter bikes by considering the following factors:

  • 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.

 

Why You Should Trust Us

 

Over the course of the past three years, we have evaluated 45 different models of e-bikes over a wide range of categories. We bought seventeen of the best mid-range electric bikes after conducting extensive study on the subject for this evaluation. To kick off our meticulous e-bike testing process, we built and weighed each one by hand to ensure uniformity. We put each bike through its paces over the course of a few weeks, putting them through a typical range test, handling testing, and daily commuting and errand use. After our evaluations were complete, we ranked each model according on our criteria, which included ride comfort, range, power, the user interface, and assembly time. Our best overall and top pick award winners were determined by adding together all of the votes.

Our testing of e-bikes is divided across five rating metrics:

  • Ride tests (25% of overall score weighting)

  • Range tests (25% weighting)

  • Power tests (25% weighting)

  • Interface tests (15% weighting)

  • Assembly tests (10% weighting)

Jeremy Benson oversaw our electric bike evaluation. Benson has been riding bikes for a long time and is now the Senior Mountain Bike Review Editor at GearLab. Benson, a 21-year Lake Tahoe local, is a dedicated mountain biker and gravel rider who competes in the Pro class of endurance cycling races in northern California. He spends an inordinate amount of time per year on his bike, between racing, commuting, and leisure riding. Benson has spent the previous five years as a full-time bike tester and reviewer, during which time he has evaluated well over a hundred different models of mountain bikes, gravel bikes, fat bikes, e-MTBs, and electric bikes. His years of expertise have given him a keen eye for detail and the analytical skills to separate minor variations in product performance from major breakthroughs.

 

Analysis and Test Results

 

In order to discern between the numerous models of electric bicycles that were evaluated, we carried out a number of quantitative tests in order to draw direct performance comparisons between the various types. We decided to zero in on a few important aspects of performance, including how simple it was to put together, how much power it produced, how far it could travel, how friendly the user interface was, and how well it rode. In our rating, we placed varying amounts of emphasis on each of these measures. For instance, the ride quality was considered a more essential factor than the ease with which the product could be assembled. The results of our head-to-head tests have shown not only how well each model performs but also how it stacks up against the competition.

 

In Conclusion : Pick a bike that matches your commuting needs

 

A common saying among cyclists is that while there may not be a single ideal bicycle, there is undoubtedly the ideal bicycle for every rider. Keep that in mind while you shop, particularly for commuters.

What constitutes a daily commute varies greatly from one place to the next, even within a single state. What a commuter in west Texas needs from an electric bike is very different from what a commuter in Portland, Maine needs. Before settling on a commuter electric bike, it's crucial to determine its primary purpose. 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 partially useful advice, as many of the bikes on this list are sold in brick and mortar bike shops, but it's not entirely good advice, considering that many, many e-bikes are sold directly to consumer. In all likelihood, the ideal bicycle for you is unavailable for riding until after you have purchased it and had it delivered to your home. In that instance, you should rely heavily on research. If you're new to electric bikes, our buying guide is a great place to start, and our reviews are a great place to learn more about different models.

eMTBs or electric gravel bikes are worth looking into if you have a muddy commute or the possibility of doing some light trail riding. Because there are so many different kinds of commuters, we've decided to compile a second best list specifically for those who spend most of their time in congested urban areas. If you can, rather than driving or taking public transportation, consider using an e-bike for your daily commute. No matter how difficult the terrain is, they will deliver you to your final destination safely.


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