Hills … most of us have a love/hate relationship with hills, and that can be especially true when trying to get somewhere in a hurry, or while carrying cargo of any kind- not to mention not wanting to get to our destination drenched in sweat. That is one of the obvious advantages of an e-bike, and one of the reasons why they have become so popular among commuters of all types.
What makes for a good hill climbing e-bike? Well, a few things really play into this equation when considering what you are looking for, and what your needs are. Do you have long or steep hills to get over? Are you planning to carry a load? Do your hills come after a longer distance? And, what about the road or path you’ll be climbing? Is it smooth pavement, or chunky and rough?
One of the major considerations should be the motor itself and the type of assist system- is it cadence based or torque based? Most current motors range anywhere from 500W to 1000W, in either hub or mid-drive versions. The majority of motors we use are rear hub motors, and are either 500W or 750W power. And as we covered in our recent blog post about cadence and torque sensors, we use cadence sensors on all our bikes because we believe they are superior for use with hub motors, especially. This means that you get a significant amount of assistance from the bike when climbing, without having to exert yourself as much to get over hills as you would with a torque sensor. Depending on the bike model you select, you can cruise up hill at speeds that are nearly unchanged from your flat ground speeds, and without having to sweat into a puddle to do it- even with cargo. Part of this is because of the hub motor power itself, but also due to the fact that the cadence sensor does not rely on your force to calculate the amount of assistance provided- merely leg speed when pedaling. Think of it this way; a torque sensor is like a tailwind, and a cadence sensor is like getting pulled with a tow rope up hill!
If your climbs are near the end of your ride and you have anxiety about getting over the top before your battery power drops off, then you want to look for a bike with larger battery capacity or increased efficiency with a smaller battery. Our Trax series is especially capable in both regards. With narrower, lower profile tires for improved efficiency through decreased rolling resistance, even our 500W motor versions have the power and range to get you over the top of a climb on a longer ride. But if you really need power and range, our 30Ah battery version with 750W motor has an outstanding range, and the power to haul you and a heavy payload up virtually anything, and at much greater distances.
And, if you are riding on rougher roads or trails, or even exploring offroad on a camping adventure, both the eXplorer and Lynx models are excellent options. Both models use beefy, knobbed fat tires for incredible traction and puncture protection, and their 750W hub motors and 20Ah batteries have both the power and range to let you explore without fear of hills putting your finish at risk.
By evaluating your needs, the conditions, and the types of hills you will encounter, you can select a Troxus model that will help you soar over climbs with ease, and with enough battery strength to make sure you can comfortably finish your ride at full power … and not arrive drenched in sweat!