Like this site? Help us to make it better.

feature Recommends Bikes of the Year 2023/24: we count down the best electric bikes

From practical folders to sporty rides, it’s time to check out the 10 best e-bikes that we reviewed in 2023

It’s time to unveil the very best electric bikes that we’ve reviewed on and ebiketips over the past year. Whether you fancy a sporty bike that offers some assistance, a practical option for getting across town, or even a folder you can take on the train, we’ve got you covered. 

Our awards showcase the outstanding bikes, components, accessories, and clothing from the hundreds that we review every year. Only the top-performing products make it, and here it’s the turn of the electric bikes.

> For everything you need to know about ebikes, including in-depth reviews, head over to ebiketips

With e-bikes becoming ever more mainstream, this is a market that’s buzzing with technology and competition, and the range of options available these days is incredible. Over the past 12 months, we’ve reviewed electric road bikes, gravel bikes, commuter bikes, leisure bikes, cargo bikes… You name it, we’ve ridden it, and that diversity is reflected in our top 10. We’ve got something for every requirement and taste. We’ve included bikes at a broad range of prices too, from £1,400 up to £7,600.

One of the biggest challenges when you’re buying an e-bike is that there are a lot of unfamiliar brands out there competing for your cash. Although it can be difficult to tell which are genuine innovators and which are simply here today, gone tomorrow chancers, our top 10 shows that there are plenty of great bikes from lesser-known companies. In fact, that’s often where you’ll get the best value.

The prices mentioned in the headings relate to each bike at the time of our review. They’re what we based our findings on. Prices and specs may have been updated since then.

Okay, let’s dive into our top 10 and explore the world of exceptional electric bikes.

10. Estarli e28.8 Trapez £1,780

2023 Estarli e28.8

We’re kicking off our countdown with Estarli's e28.8 Trapez, a bike that’s well-designed and practical. The cleverly laid-out controls, with the gear shifter on the right and power controls on the left, create a clean, minimalist look, and an integrated USB charging port is a welcome touch if you want to add a phone holder.

Once you step aboard, the e28.8 reveals itself to be an incredibly comfortable commuter bike. The 28 in the model name refers to the wheel size, while the 8 signifies the number of gears. Weighing in at just 16.5kg, it's a lightweight option for your daily travel.

As you start to pedal, the road-legal 250W rear hub motor – which boasts 40Nm of torque – is immediate and surprisingly powerful. It's the kind of bike you’d want for riding with the kids to the park or going on a family ride down by the canal. It’s entirely possible to go whizzing off if you’re using it for commuting, and it’s a nimble mover with excellent stopping power courtesy of hydraulic disc brakes with Estarli-branded callipers. Even without the motor assist, the e28.8 offers a perfectly fine ride.

Although it has no on/off switch, the front fork suspension is nearly invisible in design, reflecting the neat and well-thought-out construction of the bike as a whole. The eight-speed Shimano cassette, combined with five power levels from the motor, is suitable for various terrains.

While at its best on flat roads and gentle gradients, the e28.8 doesn’t shy away from hills, the fifth power setting boosting you upwards. You’ll get up to 40 miles on a single charge, making this a practical choice for daily commutes. You might even eke out more if you’re gentle on the battery.

Consider the Estarli backpack pannier bag too, because it’s an optional extra that’s worth the £70 investment. It provides enough room for clothes, office kit or lunch, there are straps so you can wear it as a backpack, and it’s waterproof.

Overall, the Estarli e28.8 Trapez is an outstanding city bike that’s not afraid to tackle canal paths, and the thought that’s gone into its design means it's easy to live with.

Why it’s here With neat presentation and clean design, Estarli's e28 refresh has been a success
Read the review 

9. Ampler Curt 11 speed £3,210

Ampler Curt 11 speed (2).JPG

The flagship model from the Estonian company that has made a name for itself with single-speed city electric bikes, the Ampler Curt is a lightweight gravel-style e-bike that does a great job as an urban commuter.

Equipped with a high-quality 11-speed derailleur system from Shimano, this is a strong commuting and ‘touring lite’ option. It’s a sleek package that doesn’t immediately announce itself as an e-bike, the rear hub motor pretty much hiding behind the gears and disc brake rotor. The gravel-capable tyres and a frame-hidden GPS tracking module add practicality. 

The Ampler Curt is built around a lightweight alloy frame and carbon fork and boasts a smartly integrated rear rack, bottle cage mounting points, and a quick-charging 3-amp charger, all of which add to its touring potential. 

The frame-hidden module offers Bluetooth, GSM, and GPS wireless connectivity, while the top tube display neatly shows battery capacity and your estimated remaining range. The positioning of the control button underneath the top tube isn’t the most convenient design, though; it makes switching between the two assist levels a bit of a faff.

Although it lacks USB charging and a kickstand, the Curt offers a precise pedal torque-sensing motor control system that provides smooth assistance. The range of 25-40 miles per charge, the powerful Shimano M6100 hydraulic disc brakes, and the Panaracer Gravelking tyres are all positives.

The Ampler app isn’t as feature-packed as many, but its simplicity is part of its appeal, with the user-friendly interface allowing you to tweak assist levels and monitor essential metrics. The location tracking facility provides an added layer of security too.

The Ampler Curt is a great choice if you’re looking for a lightweight, fast, and fun commuter e-bike that can double as a gravel bike.

Why it’s here An efficient and natural-feeling ride for commuting and bikepacking duties
Read the review 

8. EBCO Street 2 £1,399

EBCO Street 2 (1).JPG

The EBCO Street 2 is a compact e-bike that combines manoeuvrability and portability and is suitable for all-weather commuting and even riding off-road. The price is attractive too. 

Why is this bike ‘compact’? Because it has 20-inch wheels, although it doesn’t fold. It manoeuvres easily through city traffic and is simple to store in a corner at home or on a busy train.

The Street 2 stands out with an eye-catching lime green finish and a geometry like a BMX that’s stretched vertically. The small wheels get up to speed quickly, which is perfect for zipping ahead of traffic at lights and simply delivering a fun ride. Although it’s a ‘one-size-fits-all’ frame, the Street 2 can accommodate most tall riders well.

Discreetly integrated into the rear wheel, the Bafang hub motor accelerates swiftly and tackles steep terrains with ease. Hardwired lights, alloy mudguards, a kickstand, rear rack, and an adjustable handlebar stem all improve the Street 2’s practicality.

The non-removable frame-integrated battery means you need to get the bike close to a plug socket for recharging, although it does add to the Street 2’s svelte looks. The positioning of the charging port under the down tube is an inconvenience, but the 7-speed Shimano Altus derailleur gearing and Clarks Clout hydraulic disc brakes both work well and the knobbly 2.4in tyres give the bike a touch of ruggedness.

Weighing 20.6kg, the Street 2 isn’t exactly heavy for an e-bike but it’s not lightweight either. Still, its compact size makes it easy to carry and manoeuvre. The display doubles as a power level switch, making it easy to change through the five power levels, and we got a range of around 30 miles from the 360Wh battery.

The EBCO Street 2 is a practical, fun, and stylish e-bike with a sensible price tag. We recommend it highly if you’re looking for a versatile and affordable e-bike.

Why it’s here A nice blend of design elements makes for a practical and fun compact e-bike
Read the review 

7. BMC Roadmachine AMP ONE £7,600

2023 BMC Roadmachine AMP ONE - riding 3.jpg

We have a very different bike at number seven: the Roadmachine AMP One from BMC’s road e-bike line-up, and it’s a belter. It offers an easy-to-live-with endurance geometry, but the firm ride and stiff frameset mean this bike is all about performance. Mahle’s latest X20 motor system provides a smooth and intelligent power boost, while the added weight of the motor and battery is never a major concern.

Positioned as BMC’s do-it-all road bike, the Roadmachine is neither a full-on race bike nor a relaxed, long-distance cruiser. It’s up for a bit of everything. Chuck in the discreetly integrated Mahle X20 motor system and you have an all-rounder that delivers a boost off the line, or on long, draggy climbs.

That X20 motor system provides progressive power, making it feel like you’re riding with a constant tailwind – and who doesn’t want that? The only time you notice the AMP One’s 12.08kg weight is on climbs that you hit at speed, when it takes a few seconds to drop below the 25km/h limit for the motor kick in.

The Roadmachine AMP One offers well-balanced steering, making it ideal for long rides or unfamiliar routes. There’s an element of give in the frame, delivering a comfortable ride even on Britain’s imperfect roads, and the D-profile carbon seatpost adds a little more flex.

Fitted with SRAM’s Force eTap AXS electronic groupset, the Roadmachine AMP One offers responsive and efficient performance, and you always feel in control during out-of-the-saddle efforts and cornering. The handling is nimble, and the bike feels both planted and precise.

This is a clean, versatile, and enjoyable e-bike. It offers the feel of a race bike and the geometry of an endurance machine – which makes it an absolute blast to ride fast.

Why it’s here A fast road e-bike with flattering handling that's partnered with an awesome motor system
Read the review 

6. BMC 257 AMP AL Two £5,100

BMC 257 AMP AL TWO review (26).JPG

BMC’s 257 AMP AL Two is an extremely stylish commuter bike that offers a mouthwatering combination of a powerful Bosch mid-drive motor, substantial battery capacity, powerful lights, super-strong mudguards with integrated rear rack, and a sophisticated Kiox display. 

The super sleek design masks some practical features, like the BMC ICS MTT stem, for example, which provides 20mm of tuneable suspension for a comfortable ride. 

The Bosch eBike system 2 provides the super-powerful Performance Line CX mid-drive and a large 625Wh battery. The system’s multi-bike support through the eBike Connect app will be an advantage for some.

The 1.9in Kiox display offers clear visibility, automatically adapting to ambient light, and the navigation screen displays a dot following a simple line to show the direction of the route ahead. It sounds overly simple but works really well. 

Paired with premium hydraulic disc brakes, a 12-speed Shimano Deore derailleur setup, and a powerful Lezyne front light, the 257 AMP AL Two delivers in terms of both performance and safety.

Reviewer Richard Peace found the performance of the Bosch Performance Line CX mid-drive to be outstanding, handling even steep climbs with aplomb. As for range, the combination of the mid-drive and the efficiency and ease of unpowered pedalling on the flat meant he could have got 100 miles from the battery on some rides. On a hilly Pennine commute, with more liberal use of higher power levels, it was still nearly 60 miles.

The BMC 257 AMP AL Two justifies its premium price with high quality throughout. You could downgrade some aspects of the BMC’s spec to save money and still have a very good e-bike, but if you’re likely to haul loads, especially up steep hills, and want a super-efficient e-bike that’ll travel far and fast on a single charge, this is an outstanding choice. 

Why it’s here Sleek, fast and high-quality e-bike for long commutes and touring
Read the review 

5. Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 £4,300

2023 Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 - riding 1

At number five we have the Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0, a true workhorse with a great battery range, and it’s also a lot of fun. Mudguards, wide tyres, lights and a rack add to its versatility while the squishy front fork and suspension seatpost add plenty of comfort.

The Vado has a lot of stature on the road with a wide handlebar, chunky tyres, and a huge down tube which houses the battery. Even so, it’s surprisingly nimble and manoeuvrable for a big bike, easily negotiating city streets and cycle lanes.

The powerful Specialized 2.0 mid-mounted motor, coupled with a 710Wh battery, delivers a smooth and responsive ride. This “4x you” system senses the force you’re applying to the pedals and quadruples it. 

The torque is delivered subtly but as the gradient increases you can really feel it pushing the rear wheel around. With 70Nm available, steep climbs aren’t a problem, and Specialized’s claim of a 93-mile range is about right.

The Turbo Vado’s comfort is enhanced by its SR Suntour MobieA32 suspension fork and a seatpost that offers 40mm of travel. The SRAM NX groupset offers smooth shifting and the 2-piston hydraulic brakes supply reliable stopping power.

The Specialized Turbo Vado 4.0 gives excellent value for the features it provides and the range means that you don’t have to watch the display constantly. Whether you're commuting, bikepacking, or simply enjoying a leisure ride, this bike is a reliable and enjoyable option.

Why it’s here A highly capable workhorse that's also great fun to ride
Read the review 

4. Velosta 1 £1,689

Velosta 1.JPG

Velosta's only current model is a cracking little e-cargo bike that comes at a light weight, offers a generous carrying capacity, and won’t break the bank. It’s cool to see a new brand introduce a practical and lively e-bike that’s easy to carry and store. The Velosta 1 neatly fits into a little niche between regular e-bikes and larger, more powerful cargo carriers.

With a distinctive load-carrying frame and a small Bafang rear hub motor, the Velosta 1 destroys the idea that e-cargo bikes must be cumbersome giants. Weighing an impressively light 21.5kg, it outshines other small-wheeled longtail e-bikes, offering a cost-effective alternative that doesn't compromise on performance.

The lattice-formed aluminium tubing provides a strong yet lightweight structure, while the battery’s unusual position alongside the crank demonstrates Velosta’s ability to think laterally, improving weight distribution and overall manoeuvrability. The Velosta 1 also offers a generous amount of height adjustment at the handlebar and seatpost, catering to a diverse range of rider sizes.

While the 345Wh battery might suggest the Velosta 1 is suitable only for short, flat trips, this bike performs surprisingly well in the hills too. We got 32 miles out of it over lumpy terrain with plenty of off-road sections, the watts consumed display confirming the efficiency. An optional throttle attachment comes in handy for city traffic, making for quick and stable take-offs from a standing start.

Despite minor questions over the rear loading platform size and battery gauge accuracy, the Velosta V1 impressed us as a cleverly thought-out, practical machine at a budget price. It’s a unique choice for light load-hauling, proving that affordability doesn’t always compromise quality and innovation.

Why it’s here Very effective around town e-cargo bike 'lite'
Read the review 

3. Honbike Uni4 £1,799

Honbike Uni4

In third spot, we have the Honbike Uni4, a distinctive belt-driven e-bike that delivers an excellent ride.

The frame is asymmetric, built around a wide main tube that extends all the way from the head tube to the drive side of the rear hub, while the controls, screen, front light and battery are completely integrated. 

That screen is a bit dim and it’s functions are limited, but the Honbike app steps in to provide additional information via Bluetooth connectivity. Rubber buttons for power levels on the left and a clever built-in bell on the right improve your ride experience.

Powered by a 250W rear hub motor, the Uni4 offers three levels of assistance – Eco, City, and Sport – indicated by a tiny coloured arrow. The absence of gears keeps things simple.

The unusual frame design may look cool but you’ll probably brush your right calf against it occasionally as you pedal. Still, this is a minor inconvenience, and it doesn't overshadow the enjoyable ride.

The Uni4’s chunky aesthetic extends to wheels that are equipped with six thick spokes and wide 27.5 x 2in tyres that are versatile enough for use on gravel paths and other loose surfaces as well as paved roads. The belt drive system – instead of a chain – ensures a silent ride and requires next to no maintenance.

The fact that the battery is integrated might pose a logistical challenge – you’re going to need a power socket wherever you store your bike – but the Uni4’s range of around 50 miles means you won’t be recharging daily. 

The Honbike Uni4 offers a great combination of looks, usability, and value. It's an attractive all-rounder for anyone looking for a smooth and uncomplicated ride.

Why it’s here Smooth-riding, light on maintenance and very nice to look at, the Honbike Uni4 gets you a touch of the unusual
Read the review 

2. Cairn E-Adventure Rambler £4,289

Cairn E-Adventure Rambler

Our runner-up gong goes to the Cairn E-Adventure Rambler, a gravel beast that offers versatility, sleek looks and, in this case, an excellent Campagnolo Ekar groupset. This is a bike that tempts you to go exploring with its superb handling and comfort – and it’s a whole lot of fun too. 

The Rambler’s modern mountain bike-inspired frame is built with more aggressive geometry than previously, and it’s surprisingly comfortable. The wide, flared bars instil confidence on descents, and the multitude of mounting points for racks and bags opens up possibilities for bikepacking adventures.

Equipped with the Fazua Ride 50 Street Drive Pack, the Rambler effortlessly conquers steep climbs. You get three assistance levels: Breeze, which offers up to 100W of boost; River, which reacts to your power and then provides as much assistance as you need up to 210W, and Rocket, which provides constant assistance up to the legal limit. With a 250Wh battery, the bike boasts a respectable 74-mile range on flat terrain.

One of the beauties of this bike is that you can ride without the battery and it doesn’t feel that much different from a normal non-electric bike.

The Campagnolo 13-speed Ekar groupset adds to the Rambler’s performance, offering crisp gear changes, and the braking is reliable even on extended descents. If you have a preference for SRAM components, a Rival edition is available too. The Vittoria Terreno Dry tyres provide good traction on gravel surfaces.

The Cairn Rambler isn’t the cheapest e-bike out there, but if you’re serious about gravel or want a versatile commuter that can handle a bit of gravel at the weekends, it deserves your serious consideration.

Why it’s here A versatile e-gravel bike that will tackle anything you ride it on
Read the review 

1. Surge Traveler P5e, £3,499

roadcc recommends awards 2023-24 - ebike of the Year - Winner

And the winner is… The Surge Bikes Traveler P5e, an easy-to-ride, adjustable, and low-maintenance folding e-bike that comes at a reasonable price. It’s an ideal option for both daily commuters and leisure riders.

Surge’s commitment to user-friendly tech is obvious in the Traveler’s intentionally generic frame. It uses standard hinges and other parts, ensuring that replacements are easy to source. That frame is strongly made, and you get a few high-quality touches, such as frame-routed cabling and a convenient carry handle welded low on the frame.

Equipped with a Bosch Performance Line motor and a removable 500Wh PowerPack that sits behind the seatpost, the Traveler combines power and practicality. The tough Gates Carbon belt drive adds to the bike’s low-maintenance appeal, while the comprehensive package also includes a 25kg-rated MIK-compatible rear rack, Schwalbe Big Apple tyres, SKS mudguards, and a sturdy kickstand.

The Traveler P5e is the only e-folder that uses a belt-driven Enviolo Trekking stepless gearing system alongside a Bosch mid-drive, providing powerful hill-climbing ability and requiring little maintenance. Bosch’s system is one of the quietest and most effective out there, and Surge has sensibly paired it with a basic but easy-to-use Purion display.

The Enviolo Trekking gears are designed so that twisting the grip makes it easier or harder to pedal. It’s impossible to find yourself out of gear or for the gears to become unindexed.

The one-size frame accommodates riders between 1.48m and 1.95m tall, although larger riders may find the seat-to-handlebar distance a little short.

The Traveler P5e’s short wheelbase makes it ultra-manoeuvrable at low speeds while still feeling stable enough when you’re flying downhill at speed. There's no suspension here, but the large volume tyres give a comfortable ride on easy off-road tracks, such as decently maintained towpaths.

Folding the bike is quick and simple although, weighing in at 24.5kg, you’ll not want to lift it off the ground much. That’s not a problem; you can easily extend the seatpost and roll it along.

Overall, the Surge Traveler is a practical electric folder that offers exceptional performance at a competitive price, and that’s why it comes out on top.

Why it wins A unique and very practical electrical folder for general use
Read the review 

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

Add new comment


John Be | 1 month ago
1 like

The clue,  I thought,  was in the name,  Road Cycling Club. A site for roadies to share in enthusiast's cycling related topics.

I have to assume however, that once you place an  e suffix next to the model, the only people that you think are interested are non cyclists,  ie, people who dont cycle for fun.

Why else would you choose 10 mostly crappy bikes that no keen cyclist would be seen dead on.

Yes, that's right, keen cyclists ride ebikes, either because they have health issues, or have been overtaken by age. We are not all delivering pizzas or commuting by bike because it's cheaper and a bit healthy and not interested in cycling per se.

Put it another way, would one (okay, maybe the BMC if you were feeling flush) of these bikes be your first choice Matt for cycling pleasure in 25 years or however long?

John Be | 1 month ago


lukei1 | 1 month ago

Hard to see why you'd get any of these when you can buy a step-through version of the Turbo Vado SL 4.0 for £1.5k at the moment

Dz1 | 1 month ago
1 like

This top 10 is a joke. Why is it that my Engwe Engine X has more torque than nearly all of these ebikes while costing less than a thousand pounds but doesn't get a look in on this list in any year? It's because they favour slow European ebikes over faster and cheaper ebikes from outside Europe. What a joke.

Rendel Harris replied to Dz1 | 1 month ago
Dz1 wrote:

Why is it that my Engwe Engine X has more torque than nearly all of these ebikes while costing less than a thousand pounds but doesn't get a look in on this list in any year?

Because, according to their sister site's review, it weighs 32 kg, it's "a bit of a pig to ride", it "isn't a pleasurable experience", is "quite primitive", a "pain to manouevre at low speeds", "lacks finesse', has "twitchy steering even at cruising speed" and is "a jack of all trades but definitely a master of none." Which sounds like a pretty good list of reasons to keep it off the top 10 to me...

P.S. "It's because they favour slow European ebikes over faster and cheaper ebikes from outside Europe. What a joke." This is a UK website primarily directed at UK readers, in the UK and the whole of Europe ebikes are limited by law to 25 km/h (15.5 mph). What would be a "joke" would be to review and/or recommend bikes that it would be illegal for the majority of the readership to ride on public roads.

Miller replied to Rendel Harris | 1 month ago
1 like
Rendel Harris wrote:

"It's because they favour slow European ebikes over faster and cheaper ebikes from outside Europe. What a joke." This is a UK website primarily directed at UK readers, in the UK and the whole of Europe ebikes are limited by law to 25 km/h (15.5 mph). What would be a "joke" would be to review and/or recommend bikes that it would be illegal for the majority of the readership to ride on public roads.

On my new commute I'm seeing a ton of ebikes. What I'm picking up from that is that your newcomer to two wheels, tempted in by ebikes, doesn't want to do any pedalling, at all, ever. They just want to sit on their bike motionless, twizzle a throttle and be whisked along. 

I don't know where this leaves the legislation other than well behind the times.

hawkinspeter replied to Miller | 1 month ago
1 like
Miller wrote:

On my new commute I'm seeing a ton of ebikes. What I'm picking up from that is that your newcomer to two wheels, tempted in by ebikes, doesn't want to do any pedalling, at all, ever. They just want to sit on their bike motionless, twizzle a throttle and be whisked along. 

I don't know where this leaves the legislation other than well behind the times.

That demonstrates that most people aren't "interested" in cycling, but just want a quick, cheap transport option. It's the same people that like to use e-scooters as they're really convenient for journeys of a couple of miles or so and e-bikes are like the upgraded version - faster and goes further.

I think the cat's already out of the stable door, so any attempts to impose legal restrictions are half-hearted at best and police don't have enough resources to effectively police the dangerous drivers, let alone chase down people that are breaking the law by just wanting to zoom around from A to B.

wtjs replied to Miller | 1 month ago

They just want to sit on their bike motionless, twizzle a throttle and be whisked along

I haven't seen any e-bikes in Garstang for months because it's too cold for them, but only yesterday in Preston I saw a couple of the throttle-effort-only typical fat-tyre bikes charging along the pavements. There are a lot along the front at Blackpool also, and because of the unsavoury nature of the people who ride them they're a liability at the special bikes-only opening night for the rather-good Blackpool Lights

Rendel Harris replied to wtjs | 1 month ago

Those aren't, as many have noted in these pages before, ebikes, they are illegal electric motorcycles. There is a very significant difference, both in law and in reality.

I don't know how cold it is in Garstang, considerably colder than London I'd imagine, but my wife and I still commute in subzero temperatures and see plenty of other ebike riders doing the same, so I'm not sure where this "it's too cold for them" comes from. It might be too cold for the illegal electric motorcycle riders as they are not putting in any effort to keep warm, but as a number of people have pointed out to you just recently, ebikes do still require effort.

mark1a | 1 month ago

I picked up a discounted Vado 5.0 IGH last year, similar to the 4.0 but with belt drive, automatic hub gears, slightly better brakes, built-in radar and Rockshox Recon fork. With panniers and rack bag, it's been superb for commuting and local errands.

Latest Comments