Best Reviewed Electric Bike of 2021
We can talk all day about how great our Charge electric bikes are, because, well… they are. We built them. We believe in them, and we know bikes.
But we don’t want you to just take our word for it.
We want our riders to feel fully confident purchasing one of our bikes, knowing you’re getting the best ride on the market for your needs. One of the best ways to ensure that is to seek out independent, objective reviews from experts in the industry, particularly those that compare and contrast our products to other similar products.
These reviewers have no obligation or incentive to promote any certain brand or model of electric bike over another. Their job is to offer readers accurate, unbiased information, so they can make the best decisions for their own unique needs. Fortunately, due to the popularity of e-bikes, there are plenty of bike reviews out there too.
We Don’t Like to Brag, But…
We’re pretty proud of what people are saying about us. We consistently rank in roundups of the top electric bikes published by leading publications. Their reviewers test our bikes, review the features and then compare and contrast them with other e-bikes in the industry.
For a full list of bike reviews featuring Charge e-bikes, you can visit our press page, but here we rounded up some of the highlights so you can see that it’s not just us who think our bikes are rad.
Here are a few of the popular reasons why more often than not our bikes are recommended by experts:
Electric Bike Ease of Use
Our City e-bike was named the “Best E-bike for Small Spaces” by Gear Patrol. They noted things like its affordability (just $1,699) and ease of use, with five pedal-assist modes, built-in handlebar display lights, a rear rack and, especially, its versatility when it comes to storage and transportation.
“What makes this bike really stand out is some clever design — flip a lever to rotate the handlebar stem 90 degrees, then fold up the pedals and you can easily stash this rig where no bike has been stashed before,” they wrote in a roundup of “The 12 Best E-Bikes of 2021.”
Bicycling named the City one of the “Best Urban Bikes” for many of the same reasons. They wrote, “One of the lower-priced e-bikes we’ve tested, the City is a smartly equipped commuter. This class-1 e-bike has a hub motor, five levels of pedal assist, and a throttle. But it also comes with fenders, a rear rack, and running lights (nice additions at this price). Anyone with space issues will appreciate the folding pedals and handlebar (a flip of a lever at the stem rotates it 90 degrees).”
Electric Bike Weight
Some electric bikes weigh in on the heavier side, but Charge e-bikes are built lighter than most. The City Bike, which was named “Best Lightweight Electric Bike for Women” by Woman’s World, weighs just 45 pounds with the battery. That’s about 20 pounds lighter than similar bikes on the market.
“When it comes to bikes, lighter usually means more expensive — but this lightweight electric bike is the exception to the rule,” they wrote. “Although it’s the lightest e-bike on our list, it’s not the most expensive, or even the second-most expensive.”
We’re big fans of the designation our Charge XC e-bike got from CNET—The Bike That Goes and Fits Anywhere.
The reviewer, Joseph Kaminski, pointed out features like the fact that its pedals and handlebars fold in for easy storage, which he found particularly useful since he lives in a small Manhattan apartment. Other features he noted:
- The bike’s comfortable seat
- Front and rear fenders, which keep you dry on wet roads
- Rain-proof battery cover
- Headlights and taillights
- Rear rack
- Easy-to-read display
- Tire pressure indicators
- Portable hand pump included
Kaminski wrote, “The Charge XC is a clean-looking e-bike that's made to go anywhere -- dirt, gravel or on the road -- for $2,499. The XC doesn't have a throttle, but it does have three levels of assist (eco, normal and high) and I found the 250-watt middrive Shimano motor was just enough to tackle any hill. Its front shocks were great for getting around the bumpy New York streets.”
Electric Bike Comfort
In a roundup of the “Best Places to Buy Bikes Online” for MSN, Marissa Miller wrote, “Leading the charge in all things e-bikes is Charge, a brand from the makers of Schwinn and Cannondale. These new ‘it’ modes of transportation allow you to cycle up hills and zoom in and out of traffic with less effort compared to a standard cruiser bike.”
She said that she chose our Comfort e-bike since she has chronic back pain, and she hasn’t been disappointed. “As a proud owner of the Comfort bike, I can ride long distances—up to 50 miles on a single charge at speeds up to 20 miles per hour—without a single pang of back or neck pain thanks to the bike’s unique upright position and pillowy leather seat.”
Electric Bike Value
E-bikes can be an investment, for sure, but our generally more affordable than most. In fact, our Charge City e-bike was ranked as the “Best Parts at the Best Price” by Bicycling.
Their editors wrote, “One of the lower-priced e-bikes we’ve tested, the City is a smartly equipped commuter. This Class 2 e-bike has a hub motor, five levels of pedal assist, and a throttle. But it also comes with fenders, a rear rack, and running lights (nice additions at this price).”
They also noted the fact that you order the City in a low-step or standard frame, and that it comes in four great colors—red, blue, silver and turquoise.
Insider agreed, naming the Charge City “Best E-Bike on a Budget.” “What sets the bike apart is that even with a price that undercuts much of its competition, it still offers a similar ride experience to its peers,” wrote editor Rick Stella.
“That 50 miles of range is on par with many e-bikes on the market (almost all of which are more expensive) and its design is great for the city rider who wants to get a little exercise, needs to run to the store, or just wants to head out for a leisurely ride. And it's a lot of fun to ride, too.”
E-Bike Commuting Power
Forbes named the City, “Best City Commuter Bike,” and we can’t say we’re surprised, since that's exactly why we designed it. Reviewer Dave Johnson touted the bike’s 250-watt motor, five levels of pedal assist and throttle. He also pointed out the ease of assembly and the convenience of the rear rack for carrying things.
“With three Charge models to choose from, the Charge City is good at exactly what the name suggests—your all-around-town daily commute or a quick trip to the grocery store,” Johnson wrote. “A 50-mile range is enough to get you through a full day of getting to work and errands, and the locking, removable battery is easy to disengage and carry to the office or your apartment for charging.”
Tom’s Guide concurs with the City’s commuting power, naming it the Best Electric Bike for Commuters.
“If you plan on commuting to work, Charge Bike’s City may well be the best e-bike for you,” the reviewer wrote. “Not only does it come with features like full-fenders to keep the mud off and a rear rack for a pack or bag, but it does everything well for a very reasonable price.”
Tom’s Guide also named the City as the overall Best Electric Bike in their 2021 awards for health and fitness. “It’s a great all-around electric bike that’s as comfortable in the suburbs as the city, and does so at a reasonable price,” they wrote.
In a seven-week road test for Adventure Cycling, writer Alex Strickland, said his experience with the Charge XC was much better than anticipated;
“But honestly, after riding more than a few more-than-$5k eBikes the last few years, the XC is the one that might’ve finally really sold me on an electrified future. I wouldn’t reach for the Charge for a long tour, but then I also don’t buy full-blown loaded touring bikes for a simple reason: most of my riding isn’t touring. I reached for the Charge instead of car keys to head to a trailhead after work (for a run, not a ride), I plugged it in overnight at home or at the office during the day once a week, I zipped across town without worrying about breaking a sweat over the lunch hour, and I finally, really, truly get it.”
Earlier this year, Men’s Journal called the Charge XC the “Do-It-All E-Bike for Any Type of Rider.”
They concluded, “And while we’ve tested several e-bikes in the past year, our hands-down favorite is the XC from Charge. This thing fits the bill for everything from grocery store runs, to a cruise down the beach boardwalk, to ripping a rugged trail up in the hills,” Jon Perino wrote.
“While it’s definitely on par with any of the city bikes we’ve tried when it comes to urban cruising, it’s built to withstand much more. With impressive full front suspension forks and all-terrain Goodyear tires, this e-bike is no slouch on the MTB trail. Seriously.”
Does every reviewer like every aspect of each of our bikes? Nope. Do they sometimes like other bikes better? Sure. There are a ton of great e-bikes on the market these days, and we’re thrilled that people have so many choices. But when it comes down to it, our bikes are regularly in the top ranks. That makes us proud, determined to keep doing what we’re doing and do it even better as we grow.
Ready to see for yourself how quickly an electric bike can change your life in all the best ways? You can try out Charge e-bikes for yourself by scheduling a test drive, or chat with a team member to learn more.