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Electric bikes are becoming the most common option for commuting and a pleasurable ride. The motor is the essential component of an electric bike.

Regarding electric scooters and bikes, hub and mid-drive motors are the two most commonly used motors. In addition, some e-bikes also feature friction motors and geared hub motors. Which one is more beneficial depends on your needs. Continue reading to know more about electric bike motors.

Types of Motors For Electric Bikes

Electric bikes come with various types of electric motors, so make sure you choose the one that best suits your needs.

Mid-drive Motor

At the bike’s bottom bracket, a mid-drive motor has to be installed between the pedals. The bike drivetrain transfers the motor’s power to the rear wheel and propels the bike ahead.

Mid-drive motors vary in size and weight. But in general, they are large, making the bike appear “fat” from the frame. Mid-motors are ideal for off-road and mountain e-bikes due to their lower unsprung weight and ability to employ bike gears for hill climbing.

Hub-drive Motor 

The hub motor is located in the wheel hub of the bike’s front or rear wheel. Instead of being near the pedals, the hub motor is built into the wheel, making direct contact between the motor and the ground.

Front hub motors are frequently easier to install than rear hub motors. The presence of a motor in the front hub effectively makes the electric bikes all-wheel propelled, which can aid in riding over soft terrain. On the other hand, a heavy front hub motor can put too much weight in the front and cause the front tire to spin in rainy conditions on inclines.

Putting the motor in the rear wheel hub usually results in more balanced weight distribution on the bike. This results in smoother acceleration and a more natural ride. A back hub motor is also easy to conceal behind the gears, giving the e-bike the appearance of a standard bike.

Geared Hub Motors

Geared hub motors work similarly to direct-drive hub motors, except that within the hub is a considerably faster spinning electric motor. The motor shaft is connected to a sequence of planetary gears connected to the hub and spins at a slower pace. This approach produces more torque but a lower top-end speed.

Geared hub motors are often smaller in diameter than direct-drive motors since they do not require as powerful. A motor provides the same amount of torque on the wheel. But the planetary gears make the hubs wider.

The motors also incorporate a freewheel, which means there is no regenerative braking potential. But they will coast freely instead of causing a slight drag when not used, making geared hub motor-equipped e-bikes ride more like traditional electric vehicles.

Friction Motors

Friction-driven e-bikes appear compared to those with modern hub motors and mid-drive systems. But the low-cost design has advantages for bikers who wish to convert a traditional bike with no effort. A bolt-on motor powers a small wheel that contacts the tire, which is located below the chainstays or above the seat stays. Some kits attach to the fork’s brake position.

The wheel of the motor turns the tire, propelling you ahead. The friction causes greater tire wear, although the kits are simply interchangeable between bikes. Friction drives aren’t common on new e-bikes because they’re inconvenient and inefficient, but all-in-one kits like this one from Alizeti are among the simplest methods to electrify a bike.

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