Best e-Bikes for 2022: Consumer Reports

You see them everywhere, and those that have them love this new form of transportation. They’re electric bikes. Especially during the COVID pandemic, it’s a new and fun way to get wind in your face or to get wherever you need to go. Especially in urban areas, an e-bike is becoming the go-to way to get around town.

Consumer Reports scanned the e-bike offerings to determine the best bikes. It found that the more expensive models don’t necessarily equate to being the best. The prices range from almost the cost of a bicycle to much more than a motorcycle

Class 1 and Class 2 e-bike models were scored based on CR criteria

Blix e-bike | Blix

So it reviewed 17 e-bikes to determine what it considers the best based on range, acceleration, control response, and brakes. It also split the criteria based on whether it is a Class 1 or Class 2 bike. A Class 1 e-bike uses pedal assist. Because of this, they’re allowed in bike lanes, bike paths, mountain bike trails, or sharing the road with cars. 

Class 2 e-bikes are closer to being motorcycles because they don’t use foot pedals. Hand controls are used for the throttle. Some bikes in this class can share the same benefits as traditional bikes, but not all of them. 

Besides these two classes, there is also a Class 3 e-bike, which wasn’t scored. They are typically more powerful, so they can be a lot faster. This also means they are restricted to the street. There are also restrictions on the age of the driver and also licensing. 

Raleigh Retroglide Royale scored as the best e-bike

Raleigh Retroglide Royale
Raleigh Retroglide Royale | Raleigh

To cut to the chase, in the Class 1 category the Raleigh Retroglide Royale 2.0 iE Step Over won the top spot. It scored an 84 out of 100 points. Consumer Reports determined its 16-mile range, acceleration, handling, and brakes make it the number one choice. In the number two spot is the Tern Vektron D8 Folding. It scored just one point less at 83. But it costs much more at $4,000, whereas Raleigh’s price is $2,600. 

Blix Aveny Skyline
Blix Aveny Skyline | Blix

For the Class 2 category, the Blix Aveny Skyline won by quite a big margin with an 81 score. With 71 points, the Lectric XP 2.0 Folding came in second. The price of the Blix is $1,800; while the Lectric is priced at $1,000. 

Of course, your needs may be different than what Consumer Reports find important. But this gives you a general guide to get you started. The bottom line is that you have before you a fun new way to travel without having to shell out a large sum. For around $2,000 you can enjoy the e-bike experience for yourself.