The best commuter eBikes for £1,000 – £2,000

The best commuter eBikes - get away from public transport with our guide to the best eBikes under £2k


by Myles Warwood |

Commuting to work by car and public transport is forever getting increasingly expensive, with no sign of dropping anywhere near where it ‘used to be’. There is one way to make it cheaper, and it’s not even a very well-kept secret. Of course, we’re talking about the power of the pushbike.

More recently, that power has been boosted by an electric motor. While you might notice this on your electricity bill a tad, the chances of it ever costing you as much as a tank of petrol or a season ticket are very slim. If it does get to these levels, you're putting some serious miles on the bike.

In truth, most eBike batteries will be good for around 40 miles of use, which is usually enough to nip about town for the week or even commute to work. The charge time (depends on battery and size) is around four hours, which means that you could charge them from your workplace or location and have no need to run your electricity bill higher.

What to expect

eBikes are very similar to a regular push bike – they require you to put power through the pedals to move – sure, as soon as you do (as long as the motor is turned on), you’ll get the assistance of up to 250 watts.

The pedal assist will work until you reach 15.5mph, where the bike will only be propelled forwards by you pushing on the pedals. These aren’t a twist-and-go moped but much more of a bike which will enable you to commute or ride your bike with some of the strain taken off.

Motors

It’s very likely that towards the lower end of this price bracket, we won’t see the super powerful Bosch motors - they will start appearing after or around the £1,500 mark. Instead, we will likely see rear hub motors, these are much more discrete, but they don’t have as much instant power and torque as the Bosch and crank motors.

Be assured that each of these motors will be enough to help you on your way to where you want to be.

What should I be looking out for?

As ever with these purchases, you should be buying what you can afford and get the best for you. However, there are a few things you should be looking out for when purchasing a bike, which will help you understand why some bikes are a bit more expensive than others.

All brakes on the bikes at this price should be disc brakes - these are becoming increasingly popular and offer much more stopping power. There are different types of disc brakes, mechanical disc brakes, which use cables to apply the brakes - hydraulic disc brakes, which use fluid in a closed system to apply the brakes and a hybrid system which uses a closed hydraulic system to the brake piston where it pulls a cable to apply the brake.

The advantage hydraulic brakes give you is greater stopping power than cable-driven mechanical brakes, and you have to put less effort into the brake lever to achieve that. If they’re not on disc brakes, it’ll be the classic rim brakes - these will likely be cable-driven.

If you’re looking to commute on this bike, you’ll want it to ride nice and smooth – tyres can help you achieve this. Some big excellent comfy tyres will help you eliminate road buzz, offer a bit more in the way of suspension in any bumps in the road, and provide a sense of confidence in balance.

Are you going to be riding year round? You might need mudguards for that. Look for a bike with either them or mounting points for mudguards. If you’re going to be carrying things like a change of clothes for when you get to the office – it’s nice to have these in pannier bags rather than in a backpack. This means you don’t get as hot and sweaty when commuting because your clothing isn’t allowed to breathe. A big bonus is a bike with pannier racks, and our mounts are ready for your luggage.

Most, if not all, will have lights that run off the bike’s battery when switched ‘on’. Lights are great for year-round riding, but they can also be the first thing a driver might see, making them a superb safety feature.

The best eBikes for £1,000 - £2,000

The very bottom of the price range brings about the lowest spec, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad. The lightweight aluminium step-through frame has a Samsung battery pack stored neatly in the rear pannier racks.

No matter how lightweight the frame is, the bike still weighs a heft 22kg, thanks to the 317Wh Samsung battery and Bafang 36V 250-watt motor. This bike is built and made for cruising with an 8-speed Sunrace 13 – 32 cassette.

Pros
The step-through frame makes getting on and off easier when transporting loads.
Classic design

Cons
Heavy bike
Basic setup

A little folding bike packed with plenty of punch – mechanical disc brakes, a 6.6Ah battery integrated into the bike’s aluminium frame, and a Shimano 6-speed drive train. This bike will help you get to the train station and office comfortably and quickly.

No Panier rack mounts (which isn’t a surprise considering it’s a folding bike) or lights fitted, but built-in mudguards are a nice touch.

Pros
Easy to fold down
Mudguards

Cons
No rear mounting rack

Another step-through aluminium frame, but this time from Levit, and an extra £300 compared to the Pendleton but look what it has on the spec sheet. Hydraulic disc brakes and a more robust and lighter frame 6061 aluminium.

This hybrid bike has front and rear lights and mudguards with a pannier rack. It’s perfect for the city and urban riding, and an in-house Levit HD electric motor helps keep its price low with other lovely bits of spec thrown in.

Pros
The step-through frame makes getting on and off easier when transporting loads.
Comfy suspension

Cons
Not a very well-known brand

More than just a clever name, this little folding eBike has some excellent features – while the components of the bike, such as the brakes, brake levers, crankset and wheels, are not named, they are Raleigh-approved. We can assume that Raleigh is doing something that has been done on other models and car manufacturers - to keep costs low and share components with other manufacturers.

With a 30-mile range, thanks to the TranzX battery and motor, we see an integrated rear carry rack, along with the mudguards means that this is a great all-around bike.

Pros
Nice compact design
Integrated lights and mount

Cons
Not 100% sure about all parts and their origins

The rear hub motor on this Bianchi helps the bike keep its traditional styling while hiding the 418Wh battery in the Pannier rack and the standard mudguards. The integrated front and rear lights run off the battery, and the E-Going Rear Hub Motor provides 250 watts of power assist and 28Nm of torque – plenty for helping you up those hills.

The frame comprises 6061 aluminium with steel forks while stopping power is given by the V-brakes, which add to the traditional look. Big comfy 37mm tyres help reduce road bumps which the steel forks may pick up, and there is an LED display to show you what power setting you’re in and how fast you’re going.

Pros
Timeless classic design
Excellent standard parts like pannier rack, kickstand and lights

Cons
Very standard rim brakes might struggle with the weight of the bike

This stunning traditional-looking bike is one you’ll be desperate to ride, but if the weather turns, you won’t want to get those beautiful white tyres muddy! You needn’t fear, though, as bikes don’t mind the rain, plus the mudguards on these will help keep anything splashing up on the road to a minimum.

Not only will the 47mm tyres help keep your ride super comfortable, but with the Suntour suspension up front, you’ll enjoy a Rolls Royce-like ride as you cruise along. The Tekto mechanical disc brakes offer all the stopping power you need, and the discreet Suntour motor helps keep the bike look super clean.

Pros
Looks fantastic
Nice design
Nice tech packed in

Cons
A Bosch motor would make this sing

Now we’re getting towards the top end of the price bracket, we’re starting to see a few more desirables turning up like the Suntour suspension found on the Raleigh, and now this, the Ortler Bozen Trapeze. With 9-speed Shimano Deore gearing and hydraulic disc brakes, it’s got all you need to get this 23kg bike going and stopping.

The powerful Bosch motor won’t give up or let you down as you set off and climb hills with excellent wide 40mm tyres; you can cruise along for a range of 45-110 kilometres.

Pros
Desirable Bosch Motor
Integrated lights
Powerful hydraulic disc brakes

Cons
Not a very well-known brand

The super low step on this bike means that if you’re a child in a seat on the back, then getting on and off the bike is easy. It makes carrying things like shopping in pannier racks easier and, with the upright geometry, a much more comfortable ride.

All lovely additions include integrated mudguards, a battery hidden in the rear pannier rack, and elasticated straps to help you lash down your load. Add to that the Suntour NEX suspension, Shimano 7-speed internal hub drivetrain, hydraulic disc brakes and a lovely Bosch motor, and there’s not much more you’d want from a city bike.

Pros
Excellent step through the frame
Nice standard extras in the kickstand, integrated rack and straps and lights
Powerful Bosch Motor

Cons
Not a very well-known brand

The current 23% saving shrinks the price of this glorious city bike to just under £2,000, and it comes with hydraulic disc brakes, mounts for pannier racks and mudguards a powerful Bosch motor. With up to 120km of range, you have an excellent comfortable geometry with a step-through frame, making runs around town super easy, and the 9-speed Shimano gears give you a nice wide range with the added assist from the motor.

With the batteries hidden in the downtube, the Cannondale Adventure Neo 4 keeps things simple for ultimate enjoyment.

Pros
Quite the saving!
Nice simple design
Comfy tyres and powerful brakes

Cons
Perhaps a little too basic for its original price, we’d expect mudguards and racks as standard.

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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