If you’re looking to keep up with friends on ascents or on windier days, then investing in an electric road bike will make your rides much more enjoyable. They’re not a silver bullet to a 20mph average, but they will help to keep your speed up in the hills and can provide a much needed boost so you can ride for longer.
From afar, many electric road bikes don’t actually look like they are electric. The modern technology used for the motors and batteries can be very neatly hidden in the downtubes and wheel hubs. The general trend for road bikes to be nice and light has sort of followed into the electric road bike world, so you’re unlikely to find many bulky, large capacity batteries. Instead, sleek internal batteries are the name of the game. In terms of motors, hub-driven ones are more common, but there are some mid-drive options if they appeal.
There’s no denying a lot of these bikes cost more than you might wish to spend on a new bike. But, if you’re looking to stay out on the road and keep the miles rolling by and for whatever reason don’t want to or can’t use an unassisted road bike, electric road bikes are the best option for a similar ride feel.
Best electric road bikes
- Ribble Endurance SLe Di2 - best of British | Buy now for £5,199 from Ribble Cycles
- Bianchi Impulso E-Road - best looking | Buy now for £3,614 from Sigma Sports
- Scott Addict eRide - best race-inspired e-bike | Buy now for £8,999 from Westbrook Cycles
- Wilier Cento1 Hybrid - best lightweight e-road bike | Buy now for £4,999 from Merlin Cycles
- Pinarello Nytro - best Fazua powered | Buy now for £5,999 from Sigma Sports
- Ribble Endurance ALe Enthusiast - best under £2,500 | Buy now for £2,399 from Ribble Cycles
- Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL - best for big budgets | Buy now for £10,350 from Specialized Concept Store
- Boardman ADV8.9E - best under £3,000 | Pre-order now for £2,519 from Halfords
1. Ribble Endurance SLe Di2 - £5,199 (best of British)
Winner of our e-road bike of the year 2019/2020 award, the Ribble Endurance SLe is still right up there when it comes to e-road bikes. Although the price has risen slightly since we reviewed it, it’s still good value for a 12-speed Di2 Ultegra groupset and carbon frame, let alone adding in the motor and battery components.
It’s lightweight at just 11.5kg in this spec, using the popular hub-driven MAHLE Smartbike Systems X35+ motor and 250Wh battery. If you’re after a very neat e-bike that looks the part, the Ribble Endurance SLe range is certainly worth a look.
For more detail, read our review of the Ribble Endurance SLe Di2.
2. Bianchi Impulso e-road - £3,549
In 2018, when we last reviewed the Bianchi Impulso E-Road, we called it, “currently, the best e-road bike we've tried.” While we’ve since ridden plenty more, it’s still up there as one of the highest rated e-road bike reviews, thanks to the balance between power and weight. One of the big draws of this bike was the fact there wasn’t a big compromise between the two, thanks to the previously used Polini mid-drive motor. Current models are sold with the MAHLE Smartbike Systems X35+ hub motor and battery - the same as the Ribble e-bikes.
Whether this would drop the score now, we’re not sure – but we did love the Ribble Endurance SL e with the same motor. So if you want an electric road bike with a bit of Italian flair, the Bianchi Impulso is a great place to start.
For more detail, read our review of the Bianchi Impulso e-road.
3. Scott Addict eRide - £9,999 (best race inspired e-bike)
Our sister site, road.cc reviewed the Scott Addict eRide Premium bike in 2021. The range is slightly different now, in that the Premium is no longer available, but there are other bikes using the same frame and motor system. Like many others on this list, the MAHLE Smartbike Systems X35+ rear hub motor system is used, although the newer models use the improved X20 system which is even lighter.
There’s no getting away from the price, which is big, but if you’re after a race inspired machine with a top of the line spec and a geometry to match, the Addict eRide range is definitely worth looking at.
For more detail, read the road.cc review of the Scott Addict eRide Premium.
4. Wilier Cento1 Hybrid - £5,790 (best lightweight e-road bike)
Another electric road bike using the popular hub-driven MAHLE X35+ system is the Cento1 Hybrid from Wilier. It’s lightweight and provides a reasonable amount of power to tackle most hills, as our reviewer found back in 2019. It’s designed around an endurance road bike frame, and with minimal lag from the motor we found the extra weight from the electric system was barely noticeable when above maximum assistance speed.
It’s another frame that might elicit a double take from passers by. It’s not obvious it’s an e-bike to the untrained eye, and if you’re after something suave with a touch of Italian style, the Wilier is certainly worth consideration.
For more detail, read our review of the Wilier Cento1 Hybrid.
5. Pinarello Nytro – £7,299 (best Fazua powered)
Among the electric road bikes using a Fazua motor and battery system, the Pinarello Nytro is a high pedigree bike derived from race-winning frames like the Dogma – albeit with a slightly more relaxed geometry (and a motor). It uses the Fazua Evation Ride 50 motor, which packs a decent punch on all types of hills.
When we reviewed it in 2019, tester Dave found he got almost 100km out of one battery charge – and if you ride conservatively with the motor, you may get even more. It’s definitely one of the more expensive e-road bikes on offer, but if the budget allows, it’s a great mid-drive option.
For more detail, read our review of the Pinarello Nytro.
6. Ribble Endurance AL e Enthusiast Shimano 105 - £2,399 (best aluminium framed e-road bike)
We’ve already included the Endurance AL e’s lighter, carbon fibre framed sibling in this list, but if you’re on more of a budget and still want something decent for road riding, this should definitely be considered. Our sister site road.cc reviewed it back in 2021, and they were impressed with how balanced it felt with the MAHLE Smartbike Systems X35+ motor and battery.
For under £2,500 you get a full Shimano 105 workhorse groupset, the same motor as the more premium models, and the same geometry. If you have a little more to spend, there is always the carbon fibre SL e option we covered above, but otherwise this Enthusiast model is an excellent choice for those on a tighter budget.
For more detail, read the road.cc review of the Ribble Endurance AL e Enthusiast Shimano 105.
7. Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL e-bike – £12,000 (best for big budgets)
Famously the ‘most expensive bike ever reviewed on road.cc’ at the time of publication in 2020, the S-Works Turbo Creo SL e-bike had a lot to live up to. At £12,000 for the 2022 top spec SRAM AXS eTAP version (we reviewed the Dura Ace Di2 version), it’s definitely an e-bike for those with deep pockets.
It does, however, impress. The motor system is Specialized’s own SL 1.1 mid-drive motor, which sits neatly above the bottom bracket. It’s not a quiet beast, but it is powerful and enjoyable to ride over sustained or steep climbs. It’s also equipped with Future Shock 2.0 technology in the headset to provide relief from road buzz and potholes. You do get a lot for the money, but whether it’s good value will be a matter of opinion.
For more detail, read the road.cc review of the Specialized S-Works Turbo Creo SL e-bike.
8. Boardman ADV8.9E – £2,799 (best under £3,000)
For a little under £3,000 you get a mid-drive Fazua motor, SRAM Apex gears, and 38mm Schwalbe G-One Speed tyres – it’s a pretty good offering. The Fazua motor alone makes this worth the price (or more), and the overall package provides, "a bike that’s solid and enjoyable to ride,” according to our 2019 review.
The spec is still very similar to then, and with wide tyre clearances, you can easily turn this into a gravel e-bike at very little expense. The versatility and comfort are what makes the Boardman ADV8.9E special. The fact you’re getting a mid-drive motor and a decent sized battery for less than half some other e-road bikes makes this more than worth a look.
For more detail, read our review of the Boardman ADV8.9E.
How to choose the best electric road bike
Which electric road bike has the longest range?
This depends on a variety of things. First, the size of the battery (the capacity), the type of riding you’re doing (is the terrain hilly or flat?), the weight of the rider, plus environmental variables like the weather. If it’s blowing a gale and you’re riding into a 30mph headwind, you’ll suck the power from the battery much faster than on a calm day.
Many e-road bikes now have batteries that will last up to about 100km, as you can read above. The Specialized Turbo Creo SL’s battery, for example, lasted nearly 100km for our reviewer on one charge. Our colleague Dave also attempted 300km on the Cannondale Supersix Evo Neo 3 with the Ebikemotion X35 motor system including the range extender battery. You can watch his video about that here.
What type of motors are on electric road bikes?
There are two main types of motors available on e-road bikes: mid-drive and hub-drive. The general rule, (although this is occasionally broken), is that the cheaper e-bikes tend to use hub-drive motors. The more expensive ones use mid-drive.
That being said, you’ll find a mix on our list, with the great value Boardman ADV8.9E using a Fazua Evation mid-drive system at under £3,000, and the Ribble Endurance SL e using a hub-driven MAHLE system at over £5,000. There are, naturally, plenty of other variations between the two that justify their prices, but it shows you don’t necessarily have to spend a fortune to get a mid-drive if that’s what you’re after.
> Hub motor or mid-motor? What's the difference?
What materials are electric road bike frames made from?
There are two main materials: aluminium and carbon fibre. There are variations within each, with different qualities of metals etc, which we won’t go into here, but essentially, the lighter weight and more expensive e-road bikes tend to use carbon fibre and the cheaper ones use aluminium.