Guide for choosing the perfect electric bike

November 2, 2015 Company News Electric Bikes

Electric bikes are becoming more and more popular. This type of bike is great fun to ride, and genuinely really useful too. If you love the idea of cycling but aren’t keen on hills, want a practical commuting alternative (electric bikes are an awful lot cheaper than running a car), or would just like a little extra oomph as you build up your fitness, an electric bike could be just the thing for you. We have put together a handy guide to choosing your perfect electric bike.

Electric Bike Buying GuideWhat is an electric bike?

Let’s start with the basics. Put simply, an electric bike, or e-bike as they are sometimes known, is like a traditional bike, but with an electric motor and accompanying battery added on. You do still have to pedal but the motor will kick in when needed to give you a boost. Generally speaking, electric bikes have a variety of different settings so you can select how much extra input you want from the motor, depending on the terrain and incline on your ride.

Before you start

Usually, the same regulations that apply to normal bikes also apply to e-bikes. There are a few additional regulations that you need to be aware of too: the motor’s maximum output can’t be above 250 watts and to ride them on a public road you must be at least 14 years old. Make sure you have the suitable safety kit too, you don’t need anything extra for an electric bike but you should make sure you have suitable equipment, such as a helmet and lights.

What do you want to use it for?

Before you invest in an electric bike, think about how you are planning to use it. Is it primarily for leisure, commuting or working on fitness? All of these will make a difference to the bike you finally choose. With their motors running, an electric bike will happily go along at around 15 mph – easily enough to keep up with rush hour traffic in busy areas! Obviously, when you add in your own pedal power, it will go faster. Their main advantage in rush hour traffic is acceleration, which is great for stop-start cycling. For leisure cycling, a main attraction is a little extra help up those hills, which can make cycling for enjoyment a lot more fun – as will a comfortable saddle! An electric bike is also an excellent way to build up your fitness levels if you are looking to find your way back into exercise – as well as helping with the hills, you have the extra boost waiting for you when you need it.

Battery and power

There are two numbers that are important when you are looking at the performance of an e-bike. The first is the battery capacity, which will tell you how much energy the battery can hold. Put simply, the higher the number, the further you can go! The second is the voltage, which refers to how powerful the motor is. This is limited in the UK, so there won’t be a great deal of difference, but more power means more speed. Of course, more power also means more drain on the battery, so you will run it down faster too.


Most electric bikes will come with a variety of modes for you to choose from, so consider what you think you will use the electric aspect for and choose one with the right options – getting up to speed in the commute, or a boost from time to time so you can enjoy cycling for longer. Being able to select different settings means that your battery should last longer too.

Optional extras

As with traditional bikes, there are a range of options on electric bikes to help you with choosing the right model. If you are buying it to help with your commute, you might want to look at folding models to help with storage; this is also useful if you don’t have a lot of space at home – they can be, as the name suggests, simply folded in half, which takes up a lot less space. For leisure cycling take a look at the suspension options – the last thing you want is a bumpy ride!

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Axcess Electric Bikes is rated 4.85 stars by based on 96 merchant reviews

4.85 / 5 Rating
96 Reviews
The bike is comfortable and easy to use.
We called in to Access on impulse and we both road tested 2 bikes each. I bought one because it is quite simply the most comfortable bike I have ever ridden. No stretch forward straining my upper back and neck. My bike is the Access Exmoor. No hard sell, and a knowledgeable team
Having reached the age of 71, I decided that having retired I would get myself a bike again, and after much thought and also a lot of time on the internet, I decided that an electric bike would suit me better, and also that a folding bike would be useful as I could go places with my bike in the car, without the hassle of removing a wheel each time, also living in a flat a folding bike in It's bag is a lot less obtrusive. While on the Internet I came across 'Axcess Electric Bikes' site, this was not only very helpful, but gave a very wide choice of bikes, both in style and price. I drove up to Honiton to have a look at them for real. On arrival I saw a second-hand bike outside which I really liked, but It was not a folding one and I had to remind myself that I had decided on a folding Bike. On going in The showroom I was greeted by a very friendly lady who as it turned out was very helpful and knowledgeable. There was no pressure to buy and was encouraged to take my time to look at the stock. I decided to buy a New Axcess Shetland and asked to take it with me. The Gent who was working on the bikes in the workshop area, said that he would check it over immediately, and he also demonstrated how it folded and fitted in the bag which I also purchased. I was allowed to take it out for a test ride before purchase. It is a lovely bike, as has a really firm feel to it, and ideal for what I want. Being a folding bike it has a step through frame which I find easier a feature that even my Sister likes. (Come to that she did not want me to take the bike away with me when I visited her.). I use it for shopping, going on photography outings, or just going for a ride. I am still amazed as to how effective the battery assist is. The ratings only go up to very good, but I would rate both the bike and the firm as excellent. Should I decide to buy another Bike in the future, I shall go straight to Axcess Elctric Bikes of Honiton. Since retiring from a very physical job I found my knees were getting stiff, cycling has cured that. Thank You
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