I was curious and I know others are too – how much does an electric bike actually cost? I’ve gone through countless sites, venders, and suppliers to bring you the ultimate guide to help answer: how much does an electric bike cost. To answer this question, I’ve taken a look at the following costs involved with buying and owning an ebike:
- Electric Bike Make vs. their High/Low/Average Prices (Chart)
- How Much Does an Electric Bike Cost
- Cost to Charge an Electric Bike
- Operating Costs of owning an electric bike
- Generally, electric bikes will range in cost from a low of $600 to over $8000.
- Not many quality ebikes can be had for under $1000, with most mainstream ebikes costing between $1500 – $4000. Almost 80% of the ebikes I compiled info on were under $4000 MSRP.
- The electric motor and battery on electric bikes add considerable cost to the bike and this is the main reason electric bikes can cost so much.
- Like a conventional bike, you’ll generally get what you pay for with a more expensive electric bike containing other higher-end components and better warranty
- Charging an electric bike battery is really cheap – we’re talking a few cents per charge!
Electric Bike Make vs. High/Low/Average Price Model
The following chart compiles many of the electric bike companies (makes) and shows the price range of their electric bike line (models). The blue dots at the bottom of each bar represent the lowest-priced electric bike, the yellow dot in the middle represents the average price of all the models compiled, and the green dot represents the highest-priced model available by each company. Keep in mind that these prices are generally the manufacturer’s suggested retail price so prices for each model could be lower, especially at the end of each season when their new models come out. Currently, this data I’ve collected is based on 2018-2020 pricing, but as I collect more data I’ll be updating these charts with more specific information. For now, I hope this gives you a good idea of each manufacturer’s price ranges for electric bikes.
How Much Does an Electric Bike Cost
The cost of an electric bike can vary widely between $600 to over $8000. Generally, though, most electric bikes start around $1500 and go up from there. Over the 450+ models I compiled, the vast majority of electric bikes (over 70%) fell in the range of $1000 – $4000, about 25% of ebikes were priced above $4000 and very few (less than 5%) were priced below $1000.
|Price Range||No. Of Ebikes Compiled||% of Total|
With ebikes becoming more and more popular every year and more volume of electric bikes being manufactured, this should continue to lead to lower prices each year for a comparable bike.
Highest cost Ebikes
Top of the line components and engineering can get pricing of an electric bike past $10,000. The most expensive ebike I came across was the Optibike Carbon Fiber R15C ($13,900), which is a beast of an ebike catering to a very demanding E-Mountainbike rider, with ample power and battery storage – heck this thing is more like a dirtbike than an ebike and isn’t even street legal as an electric bike in most places, with top speed of 35 mph.
Lowest cost Ebikes – Under $1000
On the other end of the spectrum, with lower-cost electric bikes (under $1000), you will generally be getting a lower quality bike and components. This tradeoff of cheaper cost versus quality could be found in use of off-brand batteries, little to no warranty, and minimal durability of components.
Some of these electric bike models under $1000 include:
|Ancheer Power Plus (2019)||$789.99|
|Ancheer Folding Electric Bike||$469.99|
|Cyclamatic Power Plus CX1||$749.00|
|Nakto City Electric Bike||$648.99|
|Merax Mountain Bike||$689.99|
|Swagtron Folding Bike||$529.00|
|Ecotric Folding Electric Bike||$949.00|
|Ecotric Fat Tire Electric Bike||$912.00|
|Yiilove Electric Bicycle||$759.00|
|NAKTO 26″ 250W Cargo Electric Bicycle||$649.99|
*Prices may vary, grabbed in October 2019.
Electric Mountain Bikes tend to be in the higher end of the cost spectrum for electric bikes. When compared to conventional mountain bikes, they will have similar (higher end) components and additional parts like front and/or rear shocks, hydraulic disc brakes, and higher-end derailleur.
Electric Bike Warranties
Typical warranties can vary widely for electric bikes, from 90 days to 5 years and what is included (battery, frame, motor, comprehensive, etc.) varies widely as well. In general, you’ll find the following ranges in warranties:
- 1-2 years comprehensive
- 1-3 years battery
- 2 year motor
- 2-10 years or lifetime warranty for frame
Higher priced models and brands will generally carry better or longer warranties for their bikes.
Why do Electric Bikes cost so much?
Like traditional bikes, the cost of an electric bike is mainly a function of the type and quality of the components as well as the brand of bike. However, there are two major components that an electric bike will have over a traditional pedal bike which are the battery and the motor. The addition of a battery, controller, and motor required for an electric bike is where the significant increase in cost comes in. Most purpose-built ebikes now also have custom frames which house all the wiring and integrate a battery for a more streamlined package and better look.
Motors and batteries can be expensive and this is added to the cost of a conventional bike with similar components.
The Battery Cost
The battery can be a significant part of the cost of an electric bike. For top tier battery suppliers (Panasonic, Samsung, LG, and Sony), just the battery can range from $0.70 – $0.90 / Wh, so in a typical 500Wh battery, the cost would be around $350-450, This price will increase for custom packed batteries built specifically for one or two models, by one manufacturer.
Although electric bikes have gained a lot in popularity recently, they are still a long way off the numbers of mass-produced bicycles. With these economies of scale, custom components are more expensive to manufacture, ship, and ultimately this results in a higher price for an electric bike.
As electric bikes become more popular, and demand for electric bike motors and batteries increases, then we will hopefully see prices come down as these components are more mass-produced, competition in the marketplace increases and the technology improves.
What does it cost to charge an electric bike
It costs very little to charge an electric bike battery, even one that is high capacity. To give you a sense of how cheap charging an ebike battery is, the table below shows various battery capacities in Watt-hours and their approximate cost to charge. This is based on charging from 0%-100% capacity of the battery, which won’t typically be the case and isn’t really too good for battery longevity anyway, so cost per charge will probably be less.
Cost to Charge Electric Bike Battery
|Average Electricity Cost (assumed)||$0.133 / kwh||£0.22 / kwh||$0.150 / kwh|
|Battery Capacity (Wh)||Cost Per full Charge|
Cost Of Charging Ebike for 1000 Miles
Depending on the riding conditions, terrain and how much assistance you apply with your electric bike, the range on a single charge can vary a lot. Below is a table that estimates the cost to travel 1000 miles, for strictly charging your ebike, using three rough energy usage scenarios. This doesn’t account for any other maintenance costs like tune-ups, etc. but gives you an idea of how economical riding an electric bike can be.
Total Cost to charge an electric bike battery (several times) after traveling 1000 miles (1609 km).
|Motor Type||Rough energy usage||US||UK||AUS|
|Minimal Assist||6-8 Wh/km||$1.28 to $1.71||£2.22 to £2.96||AUD$1.45 to $1.93|
|Typical Assist||9-12 Wh/km||$1.93 to $2.57||£3.33 to £4.44||AUD$2.17 to $2.90|
|Power Hungry||14-20 Wh/km||$3.00 to $4.28||£5.18 to £7.40||AUD$3.38 to $4.83|
Operating Costs of An Electric Bike
The Real Costs to Owning an Electric Bike aren’t Charging it!
The higher cost of operating an ebike is not the charging cost, but the maintenance, repair, and replacement cost of major components. If you are riding your ebike frequently, for a daily commute, for instance, you can expect to incur some of the following costs:
- Tune-up – every 500 miles or 6 months: $75 – $120+
- Flat tire fix: $10 – $20
- New tire tubes: $5 – $20
- New tires: $30+ each
- Brake adjustment: $20 – $35
- Drivetrain replacement or adjusting: $20 – $60
- Battery replacement (every 700-1000 charges), large price range depending on make and capacity: $350 – $800+
Electric Bike Costs / Mile
At the risk of simplifying these costs too much, the UK provides a tax credit for travel by bike for business purposes (sort of like the rate for car travel). This rate is 20p/mile for bikes (around $0.26/mile or $0.16/km)), which gives you a rough idea of per-mile costs for operating a conventional bike. I would expect per mile costs to be higher for an electric bike due to more expensive components (battery especially) and generally more wear and tear on components due to higher average speeds and heavier weight.
There are definitely exceptions to this simplified cost per mile estimate like riding a high-end downhill ebike with very expensive components, but very short distances for instance. The per-mile cost for that type of riding would be way different (a lot higher cost per mile) than you average commuter ebike where lots of miles could be ridden every day.
I hope you’ve found this article useful and I’ll try to update the charts and data as I track down more stats and prices.