What Are the Best E-bikes Under $500

As the latest trend in personal transport, e-bikes have become increasingly popular over the past few years.

Powered by a rechargeable battery, which is attached to the frame of the bicycle, these bikes are easy to use and environmentally friendly.

They’re also an affordable alternative for those who would like some assistance on hills or just for the ability to get out and about without being the next Chris Boardman.

Of course, top trends always come with enhancements, so if you’re looking to purchase an e-bike outfitted with all of the bells and whistles, be prepared to pay up – they’re not cheap!

From hand-grip shifters and front suspension forks to speedometers and electric motors capable of speeds over 20mph (32 kph), there’s something for everyone… or at least everyone willing to fork out hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars.

Luckily there are a growing number of more affordable options on the market, and in this article, we’ll help you find the best E-bikes under $500.

Things to Look For in an Electric Bike

Before we get started with our recommendations, it’s important to consider the features you need and the type of electric bike that’s going to meet your requirements best.

Power

E-bikes come with a range of power options. Most models with a price tag of $500 or under are likely to come with an output of about 250w. That will allow you to travel up to 20mph when on a flat surface.

Battery

The last thing you want is to for the battery to go flat when you’re out enjoying your ride. That means that you need to check how long the battery will hold a charge and what that means in terms of the distance it can travel. A 5.2Ah battery, for example, will provide power for around 45 minutes on a 250w bike being run at full power.

Location of Wheel Hub Motors

E-bikes are created with either front or rear wheel hub motors. Front-wheel hubs are more common, but they require the rider to pedal at all times.

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    Rear-wheel hubs can be engaged with a throttle, so riders don’t always have to pedal for assistance.

    Technology

    Workout equipment built into some models allows users to hook their bikes up to computers that track speed, distance traveled, heart rates, etc.

    The Types of e-Bikes Available

    There are three types of e-bikes available on the market today: pedelecs, throttle bikes, and Power-Assisted Mountain Bikes (PAMBs).

    Pedelecs Bikes

    Require the rider to pedal in order to get assistance from the electric motor.

    Throttle Bikes

    Allow the riders to use a throttle to start the electric motor without having to pedal.

    PAMBs

    Are mountain bikes with an electric motor that helps with pedaling uphill or on trails.

    Our Choices of E-Bikes for Under $500

    There are now a huge number of bikes that fit within this price category, but we’ve selected just five that we think are some of the best options.

    SWAGTRON EB-5

    At the top of our list is the SWAGTON EB-5. This is an affordable e-bike that is not only full of features but also has a really eye-catching design.

    The Swagtron bike is both lights, being made of aluminum, and also highly durable, making it a great investment for long-term use.

    The bike comes with three riding modes, low, medium, and high-speed modes and it has a 21-speed transmission. The Swagtron will run for up to 15 miles on a full battery charge and it has a unique folding design.

    This makes it the perfect choice for commuting.

    Macwheel 16”

    The Mac wheel is a mini folding e-bike which despite its small size, can support riders up to 220lbs. It comes with a 250 watt rear hub motor and five different levels of pedal assist.

    There’s also a throttle to give a little more power as and when you need it. We like that the throttle has an on/off switch that ensures that you don’t accidentally engage it when out riding.

    Unlike the Swagtron, it’s not a true folding bike as it doesn’t fold in half. However, you can lower the seat post or remove it entirely which then means that it can fit into smaller places.

    You might still find though that it’s not small enough to fit into the boot of most cars without lowering the rear seats.

    Ancheer

    Ancheer is a well-known manufacturer of electric bikes that come with great features. The Ancheer mini just about comes into our budget of under $500.

    With a 350-watt high-speed motor, the mini achieves a top speed of 15 miles per hour and is powered by a 36V 6Ah battery, giving it a range of 12 miles.

    We really like the lightweight folding frame that weighs just 26.5lbs making it easy to carry with just one hand. If you’re looking for a commuter e-bike then this might be the one.

    NAKTO 26”

    With a high-strength carbon steel frame, combined with a premium shock absorption system, this is a good choice when the comfort of the ride is important.

    The Nakto comes with a 250W brushless high-speed motor that can happily travel at up to 26 miles per hour.

    Fitted with a six-speed shifting system, you’ll be able to easily decide if you need to get somewhere quickly or for those times when you need to conserve battery power.

    This model is equipped with a 36V, 10AH lithium battery and a full charge will get you around 30-45 km when in pedal-assist mode. If security is important, the battery can be locked or removed for safekeeping.

    Tomasar 26” Folding E-Bike

    The last of our choices is the Tomasar 26” folding e-bike. It comes equipped with a 36V Lithium-Ion battery, that can produce 250w of power.

    And which will take you on journeys of up to 50km depending on whether you selected e-bike or assisted mode.

    The Tomasar frame is made of 100% aluminum alloy, while the front fork is made of high-strength carbon steel. There are both front and rear disc brakes along with an LED headlamp and horn for night riding.

    Conclusion

    With a $500 budget, there is an excellent range of bikes to choose from. Don’t forget to carefully consider your requirements relating to speed and distance to ensure that you make the right choice.

    The electric bike has really changed the world of cycling for those whose fitness may have prevented them from heading out on two wheels.

    Now, there is the opportunity to feel the wind in your hair while being helped up steep slopes. But don’t forget to keep an eye on the battery consumption, if not it’s going to be a long walk home!

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