Why are electric bikes so expensive?

Last Updated on August 7, 2023 by Matt

A himiway electric bike surrounded by dollar signs

In this post, I’ll cover all the factors that contribute to the hefty price of an electric bike, and whether investing in one is actually worth your money. 

Why do electric bikes cost so much?

A good electric bike with optimal performance and features can cost you between $2000-$5000. The reason they cost so much is because of the extra electrical components that you won’t find in a traditional bicycle. An electric bike’s price mainly depends on its battery, motor, design, and advanced features.

The higher the quality and performance you want, the more money you should expect to pay. That being said, considering how convenient and cost-effective electric bikes are compared to cars for short-mid commutes, I’d say they’re worth the money.

Let’s dive deeper into what makes electric bikes so expensive.

What is the cost of a good electric bike?

The price of an electric bike mainly depends upon the quality of its components, brand, integrated features, and specifications.

Common features that buyers look at when buying an electric bike include its battery capacity, motor power, top speed, and braking system. Based on that, a good electric bike that is both impressive in looks and performance can cost you anywhere between $2000 to $5000. 

You can get entry-level ebikes at a more affordable price, usually between $800 to $2000. While basic electric bikes are easy on the wallet, I got bored of mine pretty soon once I passed the beginner skill level. So instead of getting a cheap electric bike and then going for an early upgrade, I suggest directly starting with an ebike priced at least $1500 if you can afford it.

Mid-range electric bikes range between $2000-$3000 and are great if you want something balanced in features, performance, affordability, and quality. However, if you crave a more premium and powerful model, you can expect to pay between $3000-$10000 or even more. 

Factors that contribute to the cost of an electric bike

The following are the main factors that contribute to the expensive cost of an electric bike.


person replacing battery on an electric bike

One of the most significant factors that contribute to an electric bike’s cost is its battery. The greater the capacity of an electric bike’s battery, the higher its price.

Low to mid-cost electric bikes usually have battery capacities ranging between 300-700 Wh, whereas the battery capacity of higher-end ebikes can go up to 1000 Wh or higher.

Apart from the capacity, the type of battery used in your electric bike will also affect the price. There are three main types used in electric bikes:

  • lithium-ion
  • lead-acid
  • nickel-metal hydride.

Lithium-ion batteries are more common, but also more expensive, and they outperform the other two types in energy density and lifespan. 


Electric bikes also differ in price depending on the type and power of their motor. Most ebikes either have mid-drive motors that are fitted near their bottom bracket, or hub drive motors seated in the wheels.

Mid-drive motors offer a natural pedaling experience and more consistent performance than hub motors. However, since they are more complex in design, they’re usually more expensive. 

Motors also determine how well your electric bike will perform. The more powerful your electric bike motor is, the more top speed and acceleration you’ll get. Electric bikes with high-powered motors are more capable of handling rough terrains and steep hills. So naturally, they do jack up the price of an electric bike quite a bit.

Braking system

Electric bikes can vary in terms of their braking systems, and riders often don’t mind paying extra if it gets them high-quality brakes. The most common type of electric brakes found in electric bikes are hydraulic ones. 

Hydraulic brakes are generally more expensive because of their complex components, but even their prices can vary depending on the number of pistons and rotor sizes. The more stopping power and seamless operation you get from the brakes, the more you can expect to spend.

Advanced features like regenerative braking and anti-lock braking systems, which enhance the overall brake operation of an ebike, can also raise the price.

Brand and quality

An electric bike by a well-recognized brand will often come at a higher price tag because of the credibility they’ve established among the masses. Popular brands use high-quality components and production processes to manufacture their electric bikes.

Their bikes go through extensive safety testing to meet international standards, and these companies also offer warranties and customer support. While electric bikes by non-established brands are cheaper, they also don’t come with these benefits.

Design and material

A closeup of a cool looking electric bike

Anyone’s first impression of an electric bike is based on its design.

If you want something sporty and sleek with more color options (other than the occasional black, white and grey), you might have to invest in a more expensive electric bike.

Another factor for an ebike’s price is the material. The frames of electric bikes are usually made of aluminum, steel, or carbon fiber. Carbon steel frames are lightweight and more durable than those of aluminum and steel, which is why they are more expensive.

Advanced features and accessories

Electric bikes with advanced technologies like integrated GPS, Bluetooth, different riding modes, etc., tend to cost more than standard models. Accessories like lights, baskets, fenders, phone mounts, etc., will also add to the electric bike’s cost, although not by a lot usually. 

These features and accessories are usually optional, so you can just choose a model without them. However, if you want the full electric bike experience, I definitely recommend spending a bit more in this area.

Why are ebike batteries so expensive?

Electric bike batteries can range from $500 to over $1000 depending on their type, capacity, and brand. Their manufacturing process is the main factor that makes them so expensive. The process involves complex assembly, complying with strict quality control measures, and employing professional engineers.

Plus, manufacturers have to take care to meet certain safety standards for which they have to spend on specialized production facilities and trained personnel. This increases the overall manufacturing cost of ebikes.

Though high-quality electric bike batteries are expensive, they can easily last up to 3-5 years. This is an advertised range, and in my experience, you can increase this lifespan to as long as 8 years with proper battery maintenance.

Are electric bikes expensive to maintain?

how to clean an electric bike

Honestly, electric bikes aren’t that expensive to maintain. Most of the maintenance, like lubricating, maintaining tire pressure, adjusting brakes, etc., you can do yourself, either for free or at very low cost. 

Another major part of maintaining an electric bike is to keep it clean and regularly check for any kind of damage. This way, you can catch damages before they become worse from neglect and avoid expensive repair costs.

The most you’ll have to spend is on a battery replacement, but even that’s after a good few years of buying your electric bike.

Also, an electric bike’s maintenance is far cheaper than a car’s. In fact, I often use my electric bike instead of my car for short commutes, so I don’t use my car as much as before. Since I use it less now, I’ve been saving quite a lot, not having to pay for its maintenance as often.

Will ebikes come down in price?

During the pandemic, the demand for electric bikes went way up because people were looking for a recreational activity they could do by themselves to let off some steam. This caused rapid inflation in electric bike prices. Now, however, with demand stabilizing, electric bike prices are becoming more affordable.

Many electric bike brands offer multiple discounts, and some have permanently lowered their prices, such as Aventon, which have announced a decrease in their original prices by 20%. Even governments are pitching in by introducing tax credits to motivate more people to use the eco-friendly vehicle.

Plus, a lot of research is going on in hopes of improving the manufacturing processes of electric bikes and their components so that the prices can be reduced.

Is it worth getting an electric bike?

As someone who enjoys the thrill and convenience of riding an electric bike, I’d say absolutely!

The upfront cost may seem high, but you save so much money in the long run. As I mentioned above, I often use my electric bike for short-medium commutes instead of my car. Since my car isn’t used as much as before, it requires less maintenance, saving me the expensive maintenance costs. 

Also, with the consistent rise in fuel prices, now is better than ever to get an electric bike because charging costs are way cheaper.

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Matt standing next to his Xiaomi M365 Pro electric scooter and holding an electric scooter helmet
My name is Matt Trajkovski. I love electric scooters, and electric vehicles in general. I like doing a lot of testing, reviewing, and research on various electric scooter models and brands, looking for great value and performance, both through data and experience. All of the content published on this blog goes through a rigorous review and editorial process, and our product reviews not only include the hands-on experience of our own team members, but the experience of our audience members as well. My goal is to provide you with the best information about electric scooters possible. You can see all of my posts in my articles archive.

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