How do I choose my Electric Bike?
You’ve probably seen a lot in the media recently about Electric Bikes, after all, they're the fastest growing sector of the Bike market Europe wide and deliver a wide range of benefits. So you’ve decided that you want to benefit from all the positives, but with so many models to choose from, how do you decide which Electric Bike is right for you?
My experience suggests there are typically 3 factors in making that decision: These are:
- The usage pattern
- Budget, or how much the benefits are worth to you.
- Personal preference – you may love, or not, that colour scheme.
Let’s look at these in a bit more depth:
What you want to use the Bike for? Is it for a daily commute; occasional Leisure rides; or would you use it many times a day for deliveries; visiting customers etc.? Will most of your riding be on Roads, or do you want to traverse the South Downs? Perhaps towpaths and Bike tracks feature in your needs?
When you have an idea of ‘where’ you’re likely your cycle, consider “how far” you’ll go and whether it’s hilly or flat? Life on the South Coast means that we often have head-winds to contend with. All of these factors determine what sort of “Range” you’ll require. After all, there’s no point buying an Electric Bike and running out of assistance when you need it most!
The answers to the above will help decide which features your Electric Bike must provide. Whether it’s mudguards, panniers and lights, or fat, grippy tyres. A Long range; powerful motor; comfort saddle or just out and out power, a reputable Dealer will be able to supply a bike to meet your needs.
Research shows that when they’ve had a chance to try one, the vast majority of people love riding an Electric Bike and want to own one. It also reveals that there’s often an initial perception that they’re expensive.
When a slightly deeper analysis is undertaken and comparisons to the alternatives are considered, most people then find the Electric Bike a very cost and effective means of transport, or a great way to spend their Leisure time.
However, beware of the trap in trying to buy too cheap, as it will nearly always cost you more in the long run. Consider that Electric Bike manufacturers have a vast range of components available to them. If they choose to make a ‘cheap’ Electric Bike, they’re obviously going to choose components from the ‘cheap’ tin.
We have a steady stream of people coming through our Shop Doors who made this error and are now searching for a replacement battery, or some other component that’s failed. Only last week a customer told us he’d had 3 battery replacements in 18 months – at £300 a time! Contrast that with the Electric Bikes we sell, where we’ve not yet sold a single replacement battery, on any bike to any customer!
This is partly attributed to ‘Brand”. Buy a recognised and established brand and you’re much more likely to have a positive experience.
You can imagine that lots of people think that there’s a profit to be made from selling Electric Bikes. Typically they go to the Internet and purchase a ‘crate load’ from some far eastern supplier and stick they’re own stickers on them. No account is taken on replacement parts; longevity of supply, warranty etc.
The phrase: “Buy right, buy once” is definitely apt with Electric Bikes.
Even once you’ve decided what the Bike will be used for, how far it will be ridden and how much you want to spend, there will always an element of which model you look at and like. It may be influenced by size, reach, colour or comfort or perhaps the geometry of the frame. Most bikes come in a range of sizes and to date, we’ve not met anyone whose body size and shape could not be accommodated.
As the only specialist Electric Bike shop in Brighton, we pre-select which Brands and products we’re happy to supply to our customers. We have one of the biggest ranges of Electric Bikes nationally and can help you determine which brand(s) to consider; which models are most suitable and at what price point.
We invite you to come and visit our Shop in Brighton Marina. We open 7 days a week. We’re happy to chat and remember that all questions are worthy! We enjoy understanding the best solution for your requirements. Pop in at your convenience, or phone ahead and book an appointment if you’d prefer.
- Graham Rowe