Light electric bikes
Looking for a lightweight e-bike to power your two-wheeled adventures? Here’s how to find the right bike for your needs.
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Electric bikes make cycling easier, more accessible and more enjoyable for many people, but there's one big downside to this form of motorised transport: e-bikes are heavy. Many models weigh more than 20kg or even over 25kg, so they're significantly heavier than traditional bicycles.
But as e-bikes become more popular and technology advances, a range of lightweight electric bikes are becoming more readily available. Keep reading to find out how to find the lightest electric bike to suit your needs.
What exactly is an electric bike?
An electric bike is a bicycle with a battery-powered electric motor. Most e-bikes in Australia use a pedelec system, which means that the motor assists you as you pedal. This makes it quicker and easier to ride from A to B, travel long distances and tackle steep hills.
You also get to choose the level of assistance the motor provides, but once you reach 25km/h, you'll need to rely on pedal power alone.
How much do electric bikes weigh?
Motor, battery, display and control unit — e-bikes need to carry a fair bit of extra kit compared to normal bicycles. All these extra items result in extra weight you'll need to carry around when riding.
As a general guide, most electric bikes weigh over 20kg, with some tipping the scales at over 25kg. However, lightweight models are increasingly becoming available, so you can expect to see more e-bikes weighing less than 20kg in the future.
6 light electric bikes in Australia
Step-through option: Orbea Optima E50
Weighing in at just 16kg, this step-through commuter bike features eight-speed gearing and a compact rear hub motor.
Go-fast option: Focus Paralane² Square 6.7
Weighing less than 16kg, this sleek Focus bike features a Fazua Evation drive with its 252Wh battery for extra motorised support.
All-round option: Cube Nature Hybrid ONE 400 Electric Hybrid Bike
Weighing in at just over 20kg and designed from everything from commuting to casual dirt riding, the Cube Nature Hybrid ONE 400 can tackle a variety of tasks and terrain.
High-end option: Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL Carbon
With a lightweight carbon frame and 240W motor, the Turbo Creo SL Carbon offers a range of up to 130km (or more with an optional range extender). The price tag is enough to make your eyes water, though.
City commuter option: Polygon Path E5
Weighing in at less than 20kg, the Polygon Path E5 features an extended-range battery, Schwalbe Super Moto-X tyres and a carbon fork.
Off-road option: Forestal Siryon
Tipping the scales at 17.4kg, the Forestal Siryon features a carbon frame and a lightweight, high-performance motor.
What to look for when buying the lightest electric bike
There are several factors to consider when buying an electric bike. These include:
- Type of bike. You'll need to choose an e-bike that suits the type of riding you do, and this will in turn affect the weight of your bike. For example, road bikes are designed to be super-lightweight, while most e-mountain bikes carry some extra kilos due to the inclusion of front and rear suspension and heavy-duty components. Commuter/urban bikes can also gain extra grams from accessories like panniers, lights and mudguards.
- Weight. Check the specs sheet or contact the manufacturer to find out how much a bike weighs. If you're unsure whether this weight will be light enough for your needs, head in-store to arrange a test-ride.
- Materials used in construction. Some e-bikes use a carbon-fibre frame to save weight, but this comes with a higher price tag.
- Range. Check the manufacturer's claimed figure for maximum range on a single charge. However, don't take these claims as gospel, as everything from terrain and rider weight to the ride mode selected can influence performance.
- Motor. Most e-bikes have motors attached to the crank area of the bike, but hub motors are also available. Be sure to check how many levels of motorised assistance you have to choose from.
- Size. Check the manufacturer's sizing chart to make sure you choose a frame that matches your height and wingspan.
- Components. Compare the gears, brakes and tyres a bike comes with. Are they all high-quality products from reputable manufacturers?
- Warranty. Check the length of the manufacturer's warranty and what it covers. For example, is there a different warranty length for the motor and the frame?
- Price. As a general rule, lightweight e-bikes tend to be a little more expensive than their bulkier counterparts. Prices can range anywhere from around $1,500 to well over $10,000, so shop around for the best deal.
Where can I buy electric bikes online?
If you're ready to buy, visit one of the following sites.
Pros and cons of light electric bikes
- Less weight to cycle around with
- Easier to manoeuvre around the garage and up stairs
- Plenty of different models to choose from
- More portable and easier to take with you wherever you go.
- Many lightweight bikes are expensive
- Even the lightest electric bikes are typically heavier than conventional bicycles.
If you're searching for a lightweight electric bike, there's an increasingly wide range of options to choose from. However, be aware that lighter electric bikes tend to come with a higher price tag, so you'll need to compare a range of options to find the best value for money. And because an electric bike is an expensive purchase, it's a good idea to test-ride a variety of models before you buy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find the weight of an electric bike?
Many manufacturers list the weight of a bike in the online specs. If there's no weight listed, you can contact the manufacturer directly or head in-store to test the weight of a bike for yourself.
Should I choose an electric bike based on weight alone?
No. Weight is just one of many factors to consider when buying a bike. The type of bike, battery range, power and torque, components and price are just some of the other factors you'll need to take into account before buying.Back to top
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