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Quality Electric Bikes
When people walk into our shop asking for our "cheapest" electric bike we tell them straight away that we don't sell cheap Electric bicycles. By cheap we mean anything less than $1500. A good quality Ebike from a reputable Ebike company that offers a rock solid warranty will set you back between two and four thousand dollars. If it's less than that it just isn't a quality electric bicycle from an established brand.
Your Ebike will become your new mode of transport so it needs to be reliable and made of quality components. A cheap electric bicycle may have the same motor power and battery capacity of a premium Ebike but it's what's under the hood so to speak that counts. For everyday reliable use you need quality battery cells, strong motor gears and electrics designed for all weather riding. A cheap ebike will fall apart fast. You do get what you pay for.
A cheap Ebike will have the lowest quality bicycle components. The gears may be from Shimano but it will be the lowest quality version. It will be designed to get you up a slight hill but forget pedalling down a decline, you just won't have a proper gear range. Forget experiencing the joy of quality internal hub gears. Cheap Ebike manufacturers just don't have the means to install them in the rush to bring down the cost. Your brakes will be substandard and within a week they will feel soft and spongy, squeal like a banshee and will never feel like new again. You want a bike that feels just as good in a year or two as when you bought it right?
An affordable Ebike
If you're on a tight budget and 2 to 3 grand is just not feasible then consider a SEB Electric Conversion. If you already own a decent bike then making it electric is a perfect alternative to a brand new integrated Ebike. Standard bicycles are very competitively priced these days and your $500 bike from a typical bike shop converted will be a far better Ebike than a cheap and nasty one. It will also ride better, faster and be a lot lighter.