The best electric mountain bikes

Blast through inclines and speed down declines with the best eMTBs, picked by our cycling experts.

electric mountain bikes

by Myles Warwood |
Updated on

When talking about the best electric bikes, what’s cooler than absolute railing a descent on an electric mountain bike and getting to the bottom of the tricky incline back up again? An electric bike motor to help you with those steep inclines saves energy for the downhills. That’s what.

Mountain eBikes, or eMTBs, are becoming popular among amateur mountain bikers due to their ability to descend incredibly well, how the motor and batteries are packaged for a low centre of gravity, and how they flatten the trails back to the top of the climb.

The best electric mountain bikes at a glance:

Best overall budget mountain eBike: Haibike Hardnine 4 Electric Mountain Bike 2022 - View offer on Tredz

Best entry-life mountain eBike: Orbea Keram 29 30 2022 - Electric Mountain Bike - View offer on Tredz

Best durable mountain eBike: Cannondale Trail Neo S 2 Electric Mountain Bike 2021 - View offer on Tredz

Let’s not beat around the bush when it comes to the prices of eMTBs; you have to factor in the cost of the bike and all its components, as well as the cost of the battery and motor. Depending on the motor you plumb for, it could be around an extra £1,000. These aren't budget picks.

You must remember though, you wouldn’t need to buy an eMTB for everyday riding, take a look at the best electric road bikes to make sure you’re getting what you need. If the bikes below are still too much, have a look at the best electric bikes under £2,000 rounded up here.

The Best Budget Mountain eBikes

For this, we’re going to class anything around £2,000 as ‘budget’ for an eMTB; we realise that this is the top end of some people’s budget, but as explained previously, this is the entry-level cost for eMTBs.

Best overall budget mountain eBike

Haibike Hardnine 4 Electric Mountain Bike 2022
Price: £2,199.00

While this is a more budget choice, it does not compromise on what you need – it has a super powerful and very responsive Bosch Performance line motor situation where the bottom bracket is, giving you direct power to your pedals where you feel the boost. It’ll provide you with 65Nm of torque to help you over the boulders and tree roots with a maximum of 250watts to help you up the hills.

The 400Wh battery is situated in the downtube, and on the bike, you get an 11-36t Sunrace cassette with entry-level Shimano Alivio M3100 9-speed gears. Two-piston hydraulic disc brakes and Suntour XCM32 Boost DS front forks with 120mm of travel will make tree roots a thing to wheelie over and not wince.


  • Strong BOSCH motor
  • 400Wh battery for long life on the trails
  • 65Nm of torque from the motor


  • Entry-level gearing, but at least it’s from a very reputable manufacturer
GroupsetSunrace Casette, Shimano Alivio gears
MotorBosch Performance Line
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best entry-life mountain eBike

Orbea Keram 29 30 2022 - Electric Mountain Bike
Price: £2,299.00

Kicking off with hydraulic disc brakes and Shimano Deore groupset, while still entry-level, it’s a step above the Alivio Groupset on the Haibike above; coupled with the BOSCH Performance Active motor, this can go some way to explaining the £100 price difference between the two.

We also find a Shimano CS-M4100 10-speed cassette giving you 11-46t gears, offering an extensive range to help you rail the descents and nail the ascents. Coiled suspension forks give you 100mm of travel; you’ll also get space for two bottle holders, plus a battery for extending the range from the already impressive 400Wh battery integrated into the frame.


  • Powerful motor
  • Large gearing range
  • 400Wh battery


  • I would like a little bit more suspension travel for ultimate riding comfort
GroupsetShimano Deore
MotorBOSCH Performance Active
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best durable mountain eBike

Cannondale Trail Neo S 2 Electric Mountain Bike 2021
Price: £2,559.00

Cannondale has produced a versatile eMTB that will get you to the trails up them and back home with up to 60 miles of range – depending on how you use the battery, which mode the motor is in, the weather and the amount of climbing you do. This Shimano E7000 motor is controllable via the button on the top tube and the accessible Shimano App.

With Shimano Deore 10-speed Group set and MT200 Hydraulic disc brakes and Suntour Coil forks, with 100mm of travel, the big party piece of this bike is the 504Wh battery integrated into the frame. There are also mounts for two bottle holders giving you everything you need for a weekend ride out.


  • Huge battery pack
  • Solid Group set


  • More suspension travel would be welcome
GroupsetShimano Deore
MotorShimano E7000
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best Full-Suspension eMTBs

If you want something with a little more bump than grind, then a full suspension MTB can be the way to go; these are a little more money because of the research and development which goes into getting the frame right to cope with the pressures and stresses it goes through. Then, of course, you pay for the extra parts, and they’re for bikes of a higher spec, too.

Best battery life mountain eBike

If you want a full suspension eMTB at a lower cost, the Vitus could be the one for you; it has much to shout about and not much in the way of downsides.

The powerful Shimano STEPS EP8 motor can deliver up to 250W of power and maxes out at 85Nm of torque, and the Shimano E8036 battery has a class-leading 630Wh crammed into the downtube. What’s more, you get a mid-range groupset with the Shimano SLX system, so what you lack in name or brand compared to Cannondale or Specialized, for example, you make up for in groupset, battery range and utilising wheels, handlebars, stem and saddle from Nukeproof, you’ve got some recognised brands to back up the grunt.


  • Good quality groupset
  • Powerful motor
  • Huge battery life


  • Not a very well-recognised brand name
GroupsetShimano SLX
MotorShimano STEPS EP8
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best tubeless-ready mountain eBike

Orbea Rise H30 Electric Mountain Bike 2022
Price: £4,899.00

You may be looking at this bike, scratching your head, wondering why if it’s on Shimano Deore groupset, bringing the MT410 hydraulic disc brakes with it, is it worth over £5,000? Well, the answer may lie in the motor and other components on the bike. Tubeless-ready wheels wrapped in Maxxis rubber may explain it, but through the much acclaimed Shimano EP8-RS motor and Orbea’s own RS Internal battery, which is suitable for a massive 540Wh and we are getting closer to understanding why it’s worth so much.

Rounding out the spec, you get an Orbea OC MC20 Dropper seat post and combining Marzocchi Bomber Z2 forks with the Orbea Rise Hydro frame, giving you 140mm of travel, and it’s easy now to see where these extra pennies go.


  • Tubeless ready
  • Good brand name


  • Groupset could be better
GroupsetShimano SLX
MotorShimano EP8-RS
BatteryOrbea RS Internal 540Wh
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best versatile mountain eBike

Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy Electric Mountain Bike 2023
Price: £6,950.00

Specialized has combined an M5 alloy chassis with one of the most powerful and smoothest running motors to bring you the Turbo Levo Comp. It has four assist modes and a massive 700Wh battery pack to give you up to five hours of riding time, depending on the use and conditions.

With a middle-range SRAM GX Groupset, things start getting serious, giving you 12 gears and a 10-52t range – massive for the inclines. Four-piston calliper hydraulic disc brakes offer modulated and mighty stopping power with just a couple of fingers on the brake lever. An internal cable-routed dropper seat post allows you to move the saddle out of the way for the steep drops. 150mm of rear suspension travel and 150-160mm in the fork efficient shock absorption gives you the confidence to attack the descents and jumps.


  • Nice Groupset
  • Large range of gears
  • Huge battery life


  • Quite large
GroupsetSRAM GX
MotorSpecialized Turbo Full Power System 2.2 Motor
BatterySpecialized M3-700, integrated battery, 700Wh
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best top-of-the-range eMTBs

Even if you’re not here to buy, sometimes it’s nice to look at the top-end eMTBs to see where the money is going and dream that one day, they will be mine… Let’s collectively drool over these bikes of beauty.

Best premium mountain eBike

Orbea Wild FS M-Ltd 2022 - Electric Mountain Bike
Price: £9,499.00

Sometimes bikes don’t have to be from the top-of-the-range brands to stand out, but we love this from Orbea; the colour scheme and the way the suspension colours match the frame, yeah – that’s nice. Let’s talk about the paint here, too, because it starts with this beautiful deep burgundy at the front and blends into a black at the rear – we have much time for that.

Top of the range Shimano XTR groupset - you can go one higher, and that’s XTR Di2 which is only really reserved for the pros. Full-suspension full carbon fibre frame gives you an extra bit of flex in the frame but is still super strong and stiff where needed. Fox 38 Float Factory, 160 Grip2 QR15x110 Kashima E-Bike Optimized front suspension with a Fox DHX2 Trunnion 2-position, adjust rear suspension, of course, the brakes are hydraulic, and you get a 10-51t 12-speed cassette.

Motorwise, if it matters at this point, it is a BOSCH performance CX Cruise with a BOSCH Powertube 625Wh Horizontal battery pack. Wow.


  • Full Carbon fibre frame
  • Large battery
  • Powerful motor
  • Incredible groupset


  • We’ll say cost, but that will be true of the other bikes in this section – you get what you pay for
GroupsetShimano XTR
MotorBOSCH performance CX Cruise
BatteryBOSCH Powertube 625Wh Horizontal
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best motor mountain eBike

Santa Cruz Heckler CC X01 MX Electric Mountain Bike 2023
Price: £6,999.00

Look at this. Just look at it – even the dropper seat post matches the suspension. How can you not think that’s cool?

Before we get into the finer details of the spec, this has a colossal 720Wh battery integrated into the downtube, coupled with a powerful Shimano EP8 motor delivering 85Nm of torque. Not only does it utilise a top-line motor but it takes every component part from the top shelf, too. Wireless SRAM X01 Eagle AXS 12-speed drivetrain and SRAM Code RSC hydraulic disc brakes.

The full carbon frame is fully suspended with 150mm progressive suspension on the rear and 160mm forks courtesy FOX 36 RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate suspension.


  • Huge battery life
  • Strong motor
  • Wireless drivetrain


  • High maintenance costs
GroupsetWireless SRAM X01 Eagle AXS
MotorShimano EP8 motor
BrakesHydraulic disc

Best luxury mountain eBike

Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo Carbon 2022 - Electric Mountain Bike
Price: £14,250.00

OK – here it is, the ultimate in mountain biking, the Specialized S-works Turbo Levo, a full carbon frame with a two-tone paint job that is just as fancy as the multi-colour chain and gears.

Full SRAM XX1 (top of the range) Groupset with a 12-speed cassette ranging from 10-52T. Fox Float front and rear suspension with a Specialized Turbo Full Power System 2.2 motor bring a more robust belt that delivers a more reliable motor. This new firmware update gives smoother delivery of power and a better water-rated charging plug and cover—some extensive upgrades over the previous motor. The new mastermind control unit is a small computer integrated into the top tub, displaying battery levels and the power level you are in. It’ll also give you information on distance covered and elevation gained and connect to your heart rate monitor.

It’s also a mullet-only set-up, don’t go thinking you can whack a 29er on the back; it’s been built around this set-up and has a 29-inch wheel on the front and a 650B rear wheel, giving you the ability to roll over bumps with the front wheel and provide plenty of traction with the rear, great for an eBike.

The batteries are also massive, giving you 700Wh of power – so it’s easy to see where your money is going—what a bike.


  • Great battery life
  • Strong upgraded motor
  • Clever setup
  • Amazing top-of-the-range groupset


  • Not the best choice for beginners
GroupsetSRAM XX1
MotorSpecialized Turbo Full Power System 2.2
BrakesHydraulic disc

Frequently Asked Questions

Shropshire, UK

There can be a lot of myth and confusion around eBikes so let’s take a look at the most frequently asked questions and figure them out.

Batteries and motors

To ensure you get something right, you'll need to pick between two different motors - hub or crank.

Hub motors, which are mounted in the rear hub and help the wheel to rotate, are often for lighter use of an eBike.

Crank motors help the pedals turn. Having a motor house in the cranks is generally heavier, but they give you more assistance when riding, and you feel their effects much more than a hub motor.

Batteries will either be mounted in the frame or an external battery which can be taken off the bike and charged. There are many different types of batteries, and we’ll go through that in the product descriptions, and we recognise how good they are by using Watt-hours.

Torque and Watt-hour (Wh)

The torque on an eBike is very similar to a car; the higher the torque a motor can produce, the more weight it can shift. It's not uncommon to find pedal-assist motors that can produce up to 80Nm of torque, and this is plenty to get you off the mark and up the hills.

The difference between a Watt and a Watt-hour (Wh) is that a Watt is a power unit, and Wh is a unit of energy. Watt-hours measure the amount of energy for a specific period and Watts measure rates of power at the moment in time. So if you have a 250Wh battery, it will give you 250 watts of power for one hour.

Use this as a rough guide, though, as when you're in the most assisting mode (which usually gives you 250 watts of power), the run time depends on how hard you're working, the steepness of inclines, the amount of weight the bike is carrying and environmental factors, like temperature and wind.

Are electric mountain bikes worth it?

This is a common question and the answer is subjective – worth it to who? Are they worth it to you? Probably, they enable you to ride further in more comfort, they make a lot of sense when it comes to mountain biking and are becoming ever more popular. If you’re unsure, try one out at your local bike shop and see what you think.

How do electric mountain bikes work?

They work the same way in which a conventional cycle does, except when you pedal you have a motor which provides you assistance for that pedal stroke, if you stop pedalling the motor stops working.

It is not a case of a twist and go like a motorbike, you need to put the effort into the pedals for the motor to work.

Are electric mountain bikes cheating?

Cheating at what, exactly? Riding a bike? Or, are they empowering people who have injuries or coming back from a long fitness lay-off to ride a bike again? If an eBike isn’t for you, that’s absolutely fine but be under no illusions thinking they are cheating, because they are not.

Electric mountain bikes – pros and cons

Pros: Increased ride time, quicker ride time, assisted riding, gets you back on the bike

Cons: If the battery dies while you’re out riding, it can be a long old afternoon.

Electric MTB or conversion kit?

If you’re looking at an eMTB, we would always recommend going for one which has been purpose-built. Some frames are not designed to take the pressure of the extra torque delivered by an electric motor. Also mounting the motor and batteries can be a bit of a Frankenstein's monster on a mountain bike, often leading to more problems than it’s worth.

Once you’ve bought the motor and batteries and frame, you may as well go out and bought a purpose-built mountain bike.

Myles is a Commercial Content Writer for What's The Best, Parkers and CAR. His areas of expertise include cycling, fitness tech and hot hatches.

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