Electric Bike Motors: A Guide to the Different Types Available on Modern E-Bikes

Views: 38     Author: sobowo     Publish Time: 2023-03-08      Origin: Site

Just look it up on the Internet, you will find that there is a huge amount of knowledge about motors, and you will be confused and maybe get lost. We will ONLY focus on the motor knowledge about electric bikes.


The knowledge will be presented to you in the form of questions and answers.




Q: What type of motor is used in electric bikes?

A: Modern electric bikes like to use brushless DC motors, or more commonly known as BLDC motors. They primarily come in two varieties- gearless motors and geared motors. Gearless motors are usually applied to the hub of the wheel. Geared motors are available in hub drive type and mid drive type. The vast majority of mid drives are geared motors. Gearless motor is also known as direct-drive motor. Compared with brushed motors, brushless motors have lower noise levels, because there is no brush, natually the noise is reduced. They have a longer lifespan, usually up to 20000 hours and around 7-10 years of normal use. They have reliable performance, because their efficiency is much higher than that of brushed motors.



Q: How the motor works with the rest of the e-bike?

A: In addition to the motor, all e-bikes have a motor controller and battery. The controller regulates the amount of power flowing to the motor, which uses your input to transfer the required amount of current from the battery to the motor.



A pedal-assist e-bike may use a speed (also known as cadence) sensor, which adjusts the electric assist by detecting the rider's pedaling cadence, or a torque sensor, which senses how much torque the rider is applying to the pedals.



Q: What are the differences between direct drive & geared e-Bike hub motors? Which is better?

A: Direct-drive hub motors use magnetic forces within copper winding coils to conduct power through the motor, while the geared hub motor uses a planetary gear reduction system inside the hub to transfer the turning force of the motor to the hub and the wheel.

direct drive vs geared motor ebike sobowo


As for which one is better, it depends on what you care more about. Both have their pros and cons. Learning the differences and evaluating your priorities, choose the one that best suits you.



Direct drive motors provide a quiet ride and a higher top speed. Geared motors provide longer travel per charge and more torque for climbing hills.


Direct drive motors are bigger and heavier so harder to pedal, while gear motors are smaller and easier to pedal without power, but are much louder.



If you're looking for higher top speeds and raw motor power, and don't want any pedaling, a direct drive motor might be the right choice, but if you want better hill climbing, longer rides and easier pedaling, geared motors are more suitable. Many stylish modern electric bikes now tend to use geared motors because they are smaller and lighter. Bafang motors that we often use are also geared motors.


Q: Hub drive motors vs mid drive motors, which is better?

A: This is again a "it depends" question. Each has advantages and disadvantages. Before making a decision, you must first understand your needs, terrain, and budget. We have both designs for you to choose.



If you live in mountainous environment, looking for better climbing ability and more efficient performance responsiveness and have a thick wallet, it is recommended that you choose a mid-drive electric bike; if you want easy maintenance and affordable prices, it is recommended that you choose a hub motor electric bike.



Due to the high torque and power of mid drive motors, the stress on components is increased too. So the needed maintenance is more. In order to reduce the chain damage caused by high impact force, we are the first manufacturer to propose the use of the shifter sensors and chain keepers. These two innovative concepts were first proposed by SOBOWO and applied to the mid motor fat tire ebike. Now these two features have been widely recognized and used in the industry. 



Okay, we believe that after our explanation, you have already had a general understanding of the electric bike motors.



We just introduced some basic knowledge of ebike motors, which can be easily learned on some professional websites where will explain you with much more details. The motor is a very important part of an electric bike, but it is only one component. A good electric bike is not only about one component, but about how to match the electrical parts and mechanical parts to stimulate the optimal performance and optimize the efficiency, which is what SOBOWO excels at. As the first fat tire electric bike manufacturer in China, we have extensive experience in electric bike design and performance matching.



Anything else you want to know about us, please drop us messages. We will bring you more information.



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