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Power Your Ride with an E-Bike

E-BIKES 101

New to electric bikes?

You’ve come to the right place

Starting your journey into the world of electric bikes can be intimidating. And with so many kinds of motors, batteries, and technologies, we’ll be the first to admit that it can get a little confusing. Here, we’ll answer your questions, like what is an electric bike and how do electric bikes work, and teach you about the tech that goes into them and what you need to know before you saddle up, so you can ride with knowledge and find the best electric bike for you. 

Anatomy of an E-Bike

1. DISPLAY AND CONTROLLER

This is where you can see and control your e-bike's settings, like assist level, how far you rode, and your battery status. Many e-bike systems allow for integration with a smartphone app.

2. BATTERY

E-bike motors run off of lithium ion batteries. On many e-bikes the battery is hidden in the frame - and on some, it's so well hidden you wouldn't even know it's an e-bike. The higher the watt-hours (Wh) of the battery, the farther you can ride.

3. MOTOR (or DRIVE UNIT)

Pedal-assist systems on our e-bikes help turn the pedals while you're riding. These motors are mounted near the crank, or in some cases, in the rear wheel hub - and they engage when you start to turn the pedals.

SAY WATT-WHAT..?!

Confused about the language and terminology of e-bikes?

Here, we'll break down basic terminology that you'll often hear associated with e-bikes.

TORQUE

Torque is the turning force that causes rotation in an electric bike motor and propels you forward. We call it the "oomph".


HIGH-TORQUE E-BIKE

There's no official classification, but generally those with 65Nm of torque or more. They're great for getting up steep hills or moving heavier loads like you would do on e-cargo bikes.


LOW- OR MID-TORQUE E-BIKE

Again, no official classification, but generally those with less than 65Nm of torque. They're awesome for a smooth ride, but not as quick or "oomphy" as high-torque e-bikes..

NEWTON-METER

A Newton-meter (Nm) is a unit of torque (the "oomph" again). Most e-bikes are rated by this measurement.


WATTS

Power is measured in watts (W), which is a single unit of electrical energy. To be classified as an e-bike motor in most countries, the motor must sustain 250W of continuous power.


TOP ASSIST SPEED

The maximum speed at which the e-system will provide assist. In Canada, this is governed at 32km/h. Beyond this speed, the e-bike can still be pedaled like a non-electric bicycle.

RANGE

How far you can ride with e-bike assist before running out of power (battery). There are many variables that can affect range, like rider weight, wind, cargo weight, tire pressure, and riding surface.


CHARGE CYCLE

The number of times a battery can be fully charged and drained before needing replacement. Most e-bike batteries are rated for 800-1000 (!) charge cycles, which translates to over 15,000km of supported riding.


BATTERY CAPACITY

Measured in watt-hours (Wh), this is how much energy is stored in the battery. The larger the battery capacity, the farther and longer you can ride. Lower-capacity batteries have benefits, too: they're lighter and smaller.

CLASS 1 E-BIKE

Those you'll find in our store - a bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches 32km/h.


CLASS 2 E-BIKE

You won't find them in our store - a bicycle equipped with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bicycle (often by way of a throttle), and that is not capable of providing assistance when the bicycle reaches 32km/h.


CLASS 3 E-BIKE

You won't find them in Canada - a bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches 45km/h.


E-Bike Systems

The quality of an e-bike's motor and battery is one of the biggest factors in the quality of your e-bike experience. That's why we carry the most trusted industry partners in e-bike drive systems: BOSCH, SHIMANO, TQ, HYENA. These companies stand behind their product and that's why they offer coverage for up to two years on motors and batteries.

BOSCH

The Bosch e-bike system offers a 4 tiered assist system and with loads of motor options, battery sizes, and customizable displays, Bosch makes e-bike components for any terrain you'll encounter.


TQ

The compact and powerful TQ system offers a quiet, lightweight experience for riders looking to go the extra mile. Tiny but mighty. Despite being smaller than your chainring, the drive unit hits with 50Nm of torque.

 

SHIMANO

E-bike systems for every lifestyle - and as lifestyles evolve, so does technology. Whether urban commutes or leisure pursuits, taking off with cargo or dropping off packages, SHIMANO e-bike systems give you plentiful e-bike options.


 

HYENA

The lightweight Hydrive system offers simplicity and style with a discreet battery and controls for mid-range riding. It’s perfect for first-time e-bike riders and anyone who’ll trade a little range for a lighter setup.


How Far Can E-Bikes Go?