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How Much Do Electric Bikes Cost

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July 30, 2019
How Much Do Electric Bikes Cost

 

Hey guys, Dustin here, CEO of sixthreezero. Today we're going to talk about how much do electric bikes cost? Let's jump right in. So, electric bikes gaining a lot of popularity, especially here in Southern California and other states in the US as well. A big question I get a lot of times is how much do they cost? And that's it, that's the question.

So, let's jump in, this is a... To dissect this is... I can't just give you a number, I really have to kind of explain electric bikes and what goes into it, but what I can say quickly off the bat is electric bikes can cost anywhere from let's say as low as $500, up to as high as probably $10,000, and that's a really, really big range, and can be confusing to the consumer, but just like any other product, let's take a T-shirt, right? You can find T-shirts in Walmart for a dollar, you can find a T-shirt at Barney's department store in Beverly Hills for $400, and so the question is why? What goes into it?

So, breaking it down, there are a few things. Number one is the actual specs of the bicycle itself, and when I say "The actual bicycle," I mean the frame, the spokes, the wheels, the tires, things that are the same features on a standard bicycle, non-motorized bicycle. The other piece of it is going to be the actual motor and the actual battery used, and then the other piece of it's just going to be the brand, and the markup and the margin, and how they service their bikes, and how they're presented in the marketplace and things like that.

So, let's talk about the specs of the bicycle, number one. So, typically the electric bikes that are going to cost less, I would say... You know, I would consider less expensive electric bikes anywhere in the $500 to $1,500 range, maybe like $1,500 or $1,300, somewhere in that range. But typically on those bikes, you're going to see lower-end bicycle specs, meaning that if you stripped away that motor, that bicycle itself is going to be in the lower end of the spectrum. To keep an electric bike that inexpensive, you also have to focus on using inexpensive components, like the tires, such as the seat, like the handlebars, like the frame, things of that nature, so that's one thing to pay attention to.

And you have to also look and see, you know, what kind of components do you want on your bike, and what kind of riding are you going to be doing? It's not to say that these $500 electric bikes are bad, just things you want to consider are what's your length of ownership going to be, how often are you going to ride it? Because when you do spend a little bit more money, you're going to get a higher quality bike, so when you look at the more expensive e-bikes, you're just... You're getting nicer bicycles, better tires, better rims, better spokes, better seats, just nicer frame, better paint job, better welds, better cranks, better handlebars, better derailleurs and gear systems, because the electric bikes also come with a gear system, derailleurs, speeds, things like that, so that all plays into it.

Now, those kinds of specs are only going to affect the price so much. You know, when you look in an electric bike, the bulk of an electric bike cost really lies in the battery and the motor. I would say typically, and I'm just going to ballpark, don't keep me to this, but I would say on the lower-end bike, like the $500 bike, the percentage of the cost of the bike itself is higher. So looking at a $500 e-bike, my guess is about 20% of the cost of that bike is attributed to the actual bicycle itself.

When you get into, let's say, a $2,000... Well, let me take that back. Let's see, when we get into actually about a $2,000 bike, I would say it's about 10% of the bike cost is related to the bike, and then when you get into the more expensive, a $5,000 bike, yeah, about 10%. So I would say 20% of the cost of the bike is... Of the electric bike is bike-related on the lower-end, and about 10%, maybe going down to about 5% as you get more and more expensive and the motors become bigger and the batteries become bigger, those become a bigger percentage of the cost of the actual bike. I think what we're also going to see is over time, is as electric components and batteries and motors become more popular and production rises, costs will eventually come down, and the cost of the bike will make up a bigger percentage of the cost of the overall product.

Okay, so we talked about the specs of the bike, now looking at the motor, two things... Oh, sorry. Yep, okay. So, two things that play into also is the motor and the battery. And a lot that goes into that is just the technology, the cost of the components, things like that. On the motor size, you've got 250 watts, 350 watts, 500 watts, 750, 1,000, and so the bigger you go in motor, obviously the more expensive. Also, there's a mid-drive motor and a rear-drive motor. Mid-drive motors are typically more expensive than the rear-drive motor. It's just the technology, where it's mounted, how it operates, what goes into production, that makes that mid-drive more expensive. Performance-wise, fairly equal, but the mid-drive does have more torque, so if you're going to be doing more hills, more towing, things like that, the mid-drive would be your better option.

So looking at that, the motor is going to be a huge chunk of the cost, but actually the biggest chunk of the cost of an electric bike is the battery, and the battery is really one of the most important elements because the battery's going to determine how many miles you're going to get out of this bike. So if you're only going to be going five miles max, don't go for the most expensive battery because you'll probably have enough juice, but if you're going to be going 20, 30, 40 miles, spending a little bit more money to make sure you have a great size battery is really a good idea, so... And you'll see as you go up in the cost of bikes, there's going to be bigger batteries, bigger motors.

Now, if you see the same size battery and the same size motor, but different prices, so let's say you see a $500 bike with a 250-watt motor and a 36... Or let's say 300 amp hour battery, and you see the same thing on a bike that costs $1,500, well, that's going to come down to the component tree, also brand names. As an example, Panasonic makes batteries, then there's also off-brand Chinese companies that make batteries, and there's a whole slew of different Chinese companies, there's a whole slew of American companies, and honestly Panasonic batteries are made in China as well, so with that said, why are the cost difference?

Well, it's like anything else. If you buy a Kia versus a Mercedes, Mercedes is using more expensive components that will perform better, the same is true of batteries. So it's not to say the $500 e-bike with the 250-watt battery is... Sorry, 250 watt motor with the 300-watt battery is bad, it just may not be what you want, so it really depends on your riding. Again, if you're going to be doing less riding, shorter rides, less frequently, the $500 electric bike might be just fine. If you're going to ride more, ride longer, you're going to want components that are a little bit better in the battery and the motor.

So, if I had to break it down from an electric bike cost standpoint, I would say generally speaking then roughly 10% of the cost is the bike, about 30% to 30%, 40% of the cost is the motor, and about 50% to 60% of the cost is the battery. And again, that's because of the size of a lithium-ion battery, it's huge, same with electric cars, in your phones they're much smaller. So as that technology becomes more prevalent, costs should come down, so...

And lastly, so the cost of electric bikes really depends on what you want. If you have questions and you want to talk to us about how you're going to use your electric bike, where you're going to go and what would you need, we'd be happy to help you. You can reach out to us, the team at sixthreezero.com, or call us by phone, 310 982-2877, and go to our website, top nav you're going to see electric bikes, check it out. We've got 250 watts, 500 watts, the EVRYjourney electric bike's the most comfortable bike out there, I guarantee it.

Also, take our body fit quiz, it's right below the top navigation. Put in your information, how you're going to be riding, it will recommend a bike just for you. And if you still have any other questions, reach out to us. And don't forget, we have a 365-day test ride policy. If you don't love your bike within 365 days, send it back, no questions asked, and we'll pay the shipping, nothing out of your pocket because at sixthreezero we want to ensure you love your bike. Enjoy the ride.

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