- Performance & Terrain Compatibility: It’s imperative to match the e-MTB’s power and build to the terrains you’ll tackle most.
- Battery Life & Range: The e-MTB’s worth is gauged by its endurance; scrutinize the maximum range and real-world battery efficiency.
- Build Quality & Brand Reputation: Affordability shouldn’t mean sacrificing longevity or quality; trustworthiness of the brand and component durability are paramount.
Mountain biking is exhilarating, and the addition of electric power has taken this thrill to new heights.
But can you really snag a quality e-MTB without splashing a small fortune?
The answer is an optimistic “yes,” provided you know where to look and what to consider.
Read on for our take on how to choose the best electric mountain bike under $2000.
What to look out for when buying an electric mountain bike?
Purchasing an e-MTB, especially under $2000, mandates a meticulous eye. Here’s a breakdown of essential aspects:
Motor Type and Position:
- Mid-drive Motors: Located centrally, these motors offer better balance and torque, making climbing easier. They tend to be more expensive but are ideal for technical terrains.
- Hub Motors: Found in the wheel hub, these are typically lighter and more affordable. They might not provide the same climbing prowess as mid-drives but are sufficient for general trail riding.
Battery Capacity and Range:
- Capacity: Measured in amp-hours (Ah), a higher number typically equates to longer range. Look for bikes that align with your intended ride duration.
- Removable vs. Integrated: A removable battery can be convenient for charging, while integrated batteries offer a sleeker design.
- Brakes: Hydraulic disc brakes offer better stopping power than mechanical ones.
- Gears: A wide range of gears can help in various terrains, from steep climbs to fast descents.
- Suspension: For rougher trails, a dual suspension system (front and rear) is beneficial. However, for light trails, a front suspension may suffice.
- Aluminum: Common in this price range, it strikes a balance between weight and durability.
- Steel: Heavier but offers a comfortable ride due to its vibration-absorbing qualities.
Tire Size and Tread:
- Size: Larger tires (27.5″ or 29″) offer better stability and roll-over capability.
- Tread: Depending on the terrain, choose between knobby tires for muddy or rocky paths and more streamlined treads for paved or light trails.
Ergonomics and Fit:
- Ensure the bike size matches your physique. An improper fit can lead to discomfort and reduced efficiency during rides.
Assist Modes and Display:
- Check how many assist levels the bike offers and if the display provides essential metrics like speed, range, and battery level.
Reviews and Testimonials:
- Real-world feedback is invaluable. Look for reviews that discuss long-term use, durability, and real-world battery performance.
Warranty and Post-purchase Support:
- Ensure the brand offers a reasonable warranty period and has a reputation for good customer service.
Best brands for cheaper EMTBs
- Aventon – best for beginners and new EMTB riders.
- Cannondale – pioneers of aluminum frames
- Juiced Rip – known for powerful motors and quirky designs
- Engwe – Ideal for urban riding
The best electric mountain bikes under $2000
Cannondale Adventure Neo Allroad EQ
The Cannondale Adventure Neo Allroad EQ is an entry-level e-bike designed for beginners and versatile use, ideal for commuting and light off-road adventures.
With a user-friendly geometry and a comfortable layout, it features a 418Wh HWT battery offering up to 80km range and a Bafang G020 motor providing 45Nm torque.
Despite its limited 50mm travel in the SmartForm C3 forks and 7-speed drivetrain by microSHIFT, its 23kg weight and competitive price make it an attractive option for casual city and country riders.
The Cannondale Adventure Neo Allroad EQ is a full suspension mountain bike electric under 2000, or you have the option to forgo the front suspension.
The Himiway Zebra is a heavy-duty e-MTB featuring fat tires and a massive 960Wh Samsung battery, providing a range of 100-120km.
Its 750Wh motor delivers 86Nm of torque, compensating for its hefty 35kg weight.
While its weight impacts its climbing and handling abilities, its sturdiness makes it excellent for long touring rides on rugged terrains, with a carrying capacity of 180kg and an added rear luggage rack.
The 100mm front suspension offers basic obstacle management.
Overall, for those focusing on touring rather than intense trail challenges, it stands out as one of the top e-MTBs under $2,000 and has frequently been listed in other articles on the best under $2000, such as on EMBK’s .
Ride 1UP LMT’D
The Ride 1UP LMT’D is an entry-level, comfort-focused e-MTB designed for leisurely countryside and urban rides.
Featuring a 672Wh Reention El Pro Samsung Cell battery, it offers a range of 50-80km, and its 750Wh motor produces a notable 95Nm of torque, making it efficient on steep inclines.
Weighing 24kg, it’s agile, but its 80mm fork travel and hardtail design limit it to simpler paths rather than downhill or enduro terrains.
Equipped with an 11-gear Shimano drivetrain and Tektro brakes, it’s a reliable choice for beginners seeking a balanced e-MTB for both city and basic off-road use.
The Aventon Level.2 is designed as a sporty commuter bridging city rides to light trail exploration.
It boasts a 672Wh custom battery, promising over 95km range, though actual distances may vary based on several factors.
Powered by a 500Wh motor producing up to 50Nm of torque, it’s competent for city inclines but can falter on steeper terrains.
Its design is city-centric, with a hardtail and modest 65mm fork travel, making it unsuitable for challenging off-road adventures.
Weighing 28kg, its ride is smoothed out by an 8-speed drivetrain, and a rear luggage rack enhances its utility for urban and trail cargo.
Juiced Rip Current S
The Juiced Rip Current S stands out with its formidable 1000Wh motor, allowing speeds up to 45km/h, although regional limits may apply.
Designed for muddier terrains, it’s a fat-tire hardtail with 26-inch by 4-inch wide tires and a massive 998Wh battery offering over 100km range.
While it’s not suited for tight maneuvers or challenging descents due to its power and 34kg weight, its 9-gear setup is built for speed.
Ideal for riders who prefer the bike’s power over pedaling, it’s a top choice for sheer power in the sub-$2,000 range.
If you are looking for a comprehensive resource that provides guidance on cycling in the USA including over 1500 city ratings for cycling check out the non-profit People For Bikes.
How long will a budget e-MTB battery last?
On average, a budget e-MTB can last between 30-60 miles depending on usage, terrain, and battery capacity.
Regular maintenance and careful usage can prolong battery life.
Are cheaper e-MTBs heavy?
While budget e-MTBs might be heavier than their premium counterparts due to cheaper materials, many are still reasonably lightweight and agile.
Is upgrading components of a budget e-MTB feasible?
Absolutely! Many riders start with a budget e-MTB and upgrade components like brakes, suspension, or even the battery over time.
Got more questions? Check out the International Mountain Bicycling Association’s most frequently asked questions.
Investing in an electric mountain bike doesn’t mean breaking the bank.
By understanding the three vital considerations — performance, range, and terrain compatibility — one can navigate the EMTB market under $2,000 effectively.
We’ve delved into the nuances of what to look for, highlighted some reliable brands in this price range, and provided concise overviews of five distinct EMTBs catering to various needs, from urban commutes to off-road adventures.
Whether you’re a novice cyclist or an EMTB enthusiast, there’s an affordable option out there tailored to your needs.
Remember, while cost is a factor, ensuring the bike aligns with your specific requirements will guarantee a satisfying and efficient ride.