Which Electric Bike Has the Longest Range?
With gas prices skyrocketing around the globe, more and more people have been turning to long-range electric bikes for their everyday commuting needs. If you’re planning to make the move too, you might wonder which electric bike has the longest range.
Well, this blog will answer just that… but let’s first discuss the factors that impact the range of an electric bike.
What Factors Impact the Range of an Electric Bike?
For those who are unaware of the term, the ‘range’ or ‘mileage’ of an electric bike means how long it can travel on a single charge – that’s before your battery dies. In other words, it’s the range of your e-bike that determines the length and duration of your rides.
The range of an electric bike depends on the following factors.
That’s a no-brainer! The more ‘Ah’ your battery has, the more range you get. It’s the single most important factor that determines the range of an electric bike.
For instance, the Engwe C20 Pro is powered by a 19.2Ah Lithium-ion battery, which is much more than what’s found on an average e-bike in a similar price point. Consequently, it has a maximum range of 150km.
You must also note that Voltage is linked to power and acceleration, and not range.
Weight of bike
Lighter electric bikes with an aerodynamic body consume less battery charge so they run for a longer distance. It makes sense, as you need more power to move a heavier object than a lighter one.
This is why most long-range electric bikes come with a sleek and slim frame, usually made of lightweight aluminum alloy.
It includes the weight of the rider and their gear. The range reduces as the payload increases and vice versa.
Most electric bikes usually have a rated payload capacity ranging from 270lbs to 330lbs… but even those with insanely high load capacities experience a drop in range when the total load increases.
The electric bike batteries work more efficiently at lower speeds, which leads to a longer range.
At higher speeds, you experience energy losses due to many reasons. Also, when you apply brakes and repeatedly reduce your speed, your momentum (and the battery energy behind it) gets wasted.
Level of assist
You get more range on eco/ lower pedal-assist modes than on sport/ higher modes. It’s because at lower modes you get a very low level of motor assistance and you have to do much of the work by yourself. The situation is completely opposite at the higher modes.
Likewise, the range drops the most on the throttle – when you don’t pedal at all and let the motor (and the battery) do all the work for you.
Width of tires
Fat tires have a wider profile and face more rolling resistance so they need more power from the battery, which reduces range.
An indirect implication of having fat tires is the resultant increase in the bike weight as you need a sturdier frame to sync with their off-roading capability… and obviously these tires also weigh more. So, this increase in bike weight translates to a lower range.
Type of terrain
You need more power when you’re negotiating hills and gradients compared to when riding on flat pavements, so your battery drains more quickly and your range drops. This is particularly a problem when you have a single-speed drivetrain and you can’t use gears to downshift.
Single-speed electric bikes are extremely inefficient on ascents and climbs and you can hardly expect a reasonable range from them (more on that, shortly).
Type of motor
Mid-drive motors are significantly more efficient than hub motors and consume less charge for similar power output.
They not only produce a lot more torque but they also use the mechanical advantage of your bike gears to significantly amplify the power output. However, they are extremely expensive when compared to hub motors.
Type of sensor
The pedal-assist sensor in an electric bike detects your pedaling input to determine how much motor power you need at a given instant.
Torque sensors (that detect how hard you pedal) are incredibly more efficient than cadence sensors (that detect how fast you pedal) due to their high sampling rate. They adjust motor power in real time, which minimizes energy losses and maximizes range.
Frequent starts/ stops increase energy losses and, therefore, quickly drain the battery. Also, whenever you’re starting from the rest, you need more power for acceleration. This is why you get a poor range in stop-and-go urban traffic.
Keeping a consistent pedaling cadence, on the other hand, increases your range. This is just like why you get more mileage from your car on the highway than in the city.
Use of gears
By using the mechanical advantage of gears, you can amplify the power output of your motor and, therefore, conserve the battery.
Most electric bikes today come with a 7-speed drivetrain that gives you a wide range of gear-ratios to suit your ride.
The correct use of gears can make a great difference in the mileage you get from your bike. Always use lower gears when you need more power (such as when climbing a hill) and higher gears when you need more speed (such as when descending from a hill or when on flat roads).
Besides the factors mentioned above, your range is affected by a lot of other things.
For instance, having low tire pressure flattens out your tire, which increases the rolling resistance and reduces range. The wind conditions can create more drag force, causing your battery to work more. Your riding posture can similarly impact the range.
Another important factor is the age of the battery. All Lithium-ion batteries have a specific life time, reflected by their charging life cycles. As a battery approaches the end of its service life, its ability to hold charge drastically reduces, which decreases the range of your e-bike.
Which Electric Bike Has the Longest Range?
As of now, Optibike R22 Everest electric bike has the longest range.
It is a high-performance adventure e-bike with a magnanimous 3.260kWh power pack and has a manufacturer-claimed range of 480km (300 miles).
However, as you’d expect, this electric bike is way too costly. It sets you back for $18,900 – which is just as much as most subcompact SUVs cost today.
In other words, you can buy a 2022 Kia Rio or Hyundai Accent and would still have enough money to buy a great electric bike!
Obviously, not all long-range e-bikes cost as much. There are plenty of torque-sensing mid-drive electric bikes that promise a 150km+ range while being way cheaper than the R22 Everest.
Riese & Muller, for instance, offers bikes with a 200km (125 miles) range for around €8,000 and Trek offers a similar mileage for around €7,000.
You can find less expensive brands as well… but keep in mind that even the cheapest long-range electric bike with a torque-sensing mid-drive motor will set you back at least €3,000. If that’s still too much for you, don’t worry.
Engwe offers an innovative solution for those looking for long-range electric bikes in an affordable range!
Which Engwe Electric Bike Has the Longest Range?
At Engwe, we follow an innovative solution to offer long-range electric bikes without breaking the bank. We use super-efficient brushless gear hub motors that work with cadence sensors and Shimano gears to maximize the power output without draining too much charge from the battery.
Since we don’t have to resort to expensive torque-sensing mid-drive powertrains, we can offer a comparable long range at an extremely affordable price point.
Moreover, the Lithium-ion batteries we use have been re-engineered to minimize internal resistance and energy losses. As a result, our batteries are the most efficient on the market and can provide twice as much range as similarly priced hub-drive e-bikes.
If you're wondering which electric bike has the longest range in our lineup, it’s the Engwe C20 Pro.
With an ultra-efficient 250W powertrain fueled by a massive 19.2Ah Lithium-ion battery, the C20 Pro can cruise up to 70km on the throttle and up to 150km on the pedal assist. It has a sleek aerodynamic design with a lightweight aluminum alloy frame to further increase the mileage.
If you want something more powerful but with a comparable range as the C20 Pro, we suggest you check out the Engwe EP-2 Pro. It has a formidable 750W powertrain with 4” all-terrain fat tires and a reasonably large 624Wh (48V 13Ah) Lithium-ion battery, good for up to 60km on full throttle and up to 120km on the pedal assist.
If you want an even longer range, consider upgrading to a 16Ah power pack to keep the fun going almost indefinitely.
Our batteries come with an advanced safety suite, with protection from over-current, over-charge, over-discharge, over-heat, and over-temperature, and are rated at 1,000 charge cycles to ensure a long service life.
You can explore our line-up here.