6 of best electric mountain bikes for under £2000 (in 2020)
In this article we will be looking at 6 of the best electric mountain bikes currently available for under in £2000 in 2020. The selection below only includes e-bikes with mid-drive motors, hence the cheapest bike comes in at nearly £1400.
What kind of specifications can you expect?
It’s not until you get past £2000 that things start to get really interesting, although there are a couple of surprises below that price, particularly Decathlon’s Rockrider E-ST900 hardtail electric mountain bike.
All of the bikes in this article have mid-drive motors. There are also hub drive e-MTB’s available for closer to £1000, but you can’t really compare hub motors and mid-drives side by side, as that wouldn’t be fair.
All of the bikes in the selection below, primarily use middle of the road Shimano components. Think about the same sort of specification you would expect on a regular mountain bike at around £400-£600 price range. The great thing is, these components are durable, and cheap to replace if they do go wrong a couple of years down the line.
Although hub motors still have their place on e-bikes in 2020 (especially systems like the ebikemotion X35), mid-drive motors are where it’s really at.
Electric bike motor production is now a massive industry, and leaders like Bosch, Shimano, Yamaha and Brose have been at the forefront of design and development for some years now.
What makes a mid-drive so great? It’s hard to say unless you’ve actually ridden one. From my own personal experience testing out all the major brands, I would have to say the best thing about a mid-drive ebike is you still need to pedal, but your pedalling input is amplified by up to 340% (on some models).
The best analogy I can use, is it feels like you have somehow been given super strong robotic legs, that never get tired, don’t burn with lactic acid and take you up very steep climbs with a fraction of the effort you would usually need.
Riding a mid-drive is a really liberating experience, and a lot of fun. The latest generation of motors produce assist so smoothly, so quietly, that you wouldn’t even realise you had a motor. That is, until you realised you were cycling up a 10% gradient without breaking a sweat or getting out of breath.
Most of the electric bikes in this selection have batteries with energy capacities of between 400-500Wh. It’s true that a lot of sub-£1000 e-bikes also have batteries of this size, but the main difference is you will get about 30-40% more range from a mid-drive motor vs a hub motor.
The reason for this, is a mid-drive motor is much more energy efficient in the way it produces and transfers that power into useful work.
Just like their budget competitors, all of these e-MTB’s use aluminium as the primary material in frame manufacture. Alloy is cheap, light and readily available. I have ridden both steel, alloy and carbon fibre framed bikes, and although i’m a big fan of steel (of the Reynolds kind) and I love the feel of carbon bikes, I have ridden countless miles on alloy bikes and I’ve never had any issues – even riding across Dartmoor or Bodmin moor!
What are the best electric mountain bikes for less than £2000?
I have had the pleasure of riding most of the electric mountain bikes listed below and can honestly say, that they are all very good in their own way. Ultimately it comes down to your budget and personal preferences, I have my favourite, but there’s a good few hundred pounds separating the cheapest from the most expensive. Read on and come to your own conclusions.
Decathlon Rockrider E-ST900 Electric Mountain Bike
The Rockrider E-ST900 is my pick of the bunch, simply because if offers so much ebike for the money. The specification is only matched by the Voodoo Bizango E (featured below), but that is £400 more expensive.
Featuring a Brose-T mid-drive motor, that has been specifically tuned for Decathlon and a whopping 504Wh battery, it also has quality components to match including:
- Shimano Deore 1 x 10 drivetrain with an 11-42 cassette and 34t front chainring
- Rockshox Judy forks with 120mm of travel
- Tektro TKD32 hydraulic discs with 180mm rotors
- Hutchinson Taipan Koloss 27.5″ x 2.8″ tyres (on tubeless-ready rims)
I personally think this is one of the best value e-MTB’s currently available. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a go on one of these, and I was suitably impressed!
- Exceptional value for money
- 2.8″ Tubeless-ready tyres
- Brose-T motor with custom tuning
- 504Wh battery
- Shimano Deore M6000 1 x 10 gearing
- Very capable off-road for a budget e-MTB
- None at this price!
Cube Acid Hybrid One 400 Electric Mountain Bike
The Cube Acid Hybrid One 400, doesn’t quite have the spec of the Rockrider, but it is nevertheless a pretty good electric mountain bike for the price. I have ridden the 2019 model, and the latest 2020 remains relatively unchanged apart from a few minor tweaks. It still uses the excellent Bosch Active Plus mid-drive motor, and comes with a Bosch Powerpack 400Wh battery, which will give you a realistic range of between 40-60 miles on a charge.
The components on the Cube are fairly entry-level, but will be fine for mild to moderate off-road use:
- Shimano 9-speed drivetrain with an 11-36 cassette and 38t chainring
- Suntour XCM forks with 100mm of travel
- Shimano BR-MT200 hydraulic disc brakes
- 29″ x 2.35″ Schwalbe Smart Sam tyres
The Cube name, carries with it a certain kudos, and for the price the Acid Hybrid One isn’t a bad bike. The Bosch Active Line Plus motor is very smooth, but it was really designed for hybrids and city bikes. It’s a shame they didn’t fit the better CX performance line motor. Despite my grumblings, I like the Cube and it is definitely worthy of consideration.
- Cube quality shines through
- Rides nice
- Excellent Bosch Active Plus motor
- Decent 400Wh battery
- Reliable components
- Not suitable for hard off-road use
Voodoo Bizango E-Shimano Electric Mountain Bike
The first generation Voodoo Bizango E was a hit with consumers, and the 2020 model – the Bizango E-Shimano has had a major overhaul. This latest model uses the excellent Shimano Steps E-7000 mid-drive motor combined with a 418Wh battery, and some pretty decent components as well. The main retailers of this bike (Halfords and Cycle Republic) have also recently lowered the price to a respectable £1999. The Bizango is a very stylish, well-built hardtail e-MTB and also benefits from some excellent components:
- Shimano Deore M6000 1 x 10 drivetrain with an 11-42 cassette
- Rockshox Judy forks with 130mm of travel
- Shimano BL-M315 Hydraulic disc brakes
- 29″ x 2.4″ Maxxis Ardent tyres
I’ve owned a few Voodoo Hardtail MTB’s in the past (non-electric) and I’ve always been impressed with the build quality and value for money. The Bizango E-Shimano is a good, sub-£2000 electric mountain bike, but it is still considerably more expensive than the Rockrider.
The big selling point of course would be Halfords nationwide coverage – they have a store in practically every town and city in the country, and they are a trusted household name. The Bizango also comes with an excellent 2-year warranty on the electric components. It is well worth popping down to your local Halfords for a closer look.
- Excellent Shimano Steps E-7000 motor
- Good battery range
- Looks great
- Rides great
- Shimano Deore M6000 1 x 10 gearing
Giant Fathom E +3 Electric Mountain Bike
I tested the 2019 version of this bike and the specification remains largely unchanged for 2020. The Giant Fathom E +3 is a good all-round electric mountain bike, and has a decent frame and components. But what separates this bike from the rest is the excellent Giant Sync Drive Sport mid-drive motor – a joint operation between Yamaha and Giant, this motor has been especially developed for off-road riding and produces up to 70Nm of torque, while providing up to 350% of assist.
Not only is this motor powerful, but it’s also incredibly efficient and the 400Wh EnergyPak battery can give a potential range of up to 90 miles in Eco mode – although 35-50 miles is more realistic for off-road riding. See below for a list of the key components:
- Shimano Deore 1 x 9 drivetrain with an 11-36 cassette and a 36t front chainring
- Tektro HD-M285 hydraulic discs with 180mm rotors
- Suntour XCM32 120mm front suspension fork
- 29″ x 2.4″ Maxxis Ardent tyres
I’ve had a soft spot for the Giant Fathom E +3 since I rode one last year, that Giant / Yamaha motor is a beast and it makes this bike really great fun to ride. It’s a touch on the heavy side, but it does feel planted when riding fast on the rough stuff! I think price wise, it could do with being a bit cheaper, in order to remain competitive, but Giant bikes have a loyal following who are willing to pay that little bit more for quality.
- The Yamaha / Giant Sync drive sport motor is a gem!
- 400Wh battery
- 29er Wheels
- Suntour forks
- LCD display with 6 assist levels
- Quite heavy
Haibike SDURO Hardseven 1.0
The Haibike Sduro Hardseven 1.0 normally retails for £1799, but there are quite a few stores selling this e-MTB for a bargain price of £1399 – although there are limited frame size options at this price.
Haibike have been a major player in the e-bike world for a good few years now and the Sduro Hardseven 1.0 is their entry level model. This uses a 400Wh battery with the excellent Yamaha PW-SE mid-drive motor, which is one of the best available (in my opinion). Yamaha motors are renowned for their reliability and high torque output.
The components on the Hardseven 1.0 are fairly entry level, but at its discounted price, that’s not really an issue. The component list is as follows:
- Shimano Altus 1 x 9 drivetrain with an 11-36 cassette and a 36t front chainring
- Tektro 275 hydraulic discs with 180mm rotors
- Suntour XCM DS 120mm front suspension fork
- XLC 27.5″ tyre
At its current discounted price, the Haibike Sduro Hardseven 1.0 is fantastic value for money. It’s just a shame it doesn’t currently appear in larger frame sizes. I’ve ridden a few different models of Haibike, and I have always been impressed with the power delivery and handling. This is one to definitely keep an eye on!
- Excellent Yamah PW-SE motor provides bags of grunt
- Good sturdy construction
- Excellent value
- Looks great
- Limited size availability from retailers (at present)
Orbea Keram 30 29″ Electric Mountain Bike 2020
The 2020 model Orbea Keram 30 has been drastically overhauled from last years model. It looks much nicer with the integrated battery pack. The Keram uses the excellent Bosch Active Line mid-drive motor (as found on the Cube) with a 400Wh battery pack. These motors are known for their efficiency and you will have enough power from a fully charged battery for a good 2-3 hours of trail riding.
The spec list of the bike itself, seems pretty run of the mill for a sub-£2000 e-MTB:
- Shimano Altus 1 x 9 drivetrain with an 11-36 cassette
- Shimano MT200 hydraulic discs with 180mm rotors
- Suntour XCM LO 100mm front suspension fork
- Kenda 1153 29″ x 2.35″ tyres
The Orbea Keram 30 is another decent e-MTB for under £2000. I love the design and the frame geometry. The spec list is nothing to write home about and the Bosch motor is the lower-torque Active Line Plus model, which feels a little lacking, when compared with the Yamaha and Bosch Performance Line CX motor. It’s still a great bike though and would be an ideal beginners electric mountain bike
- Orbea style
- A vast improvement over last years model
- Feels solid
- Great value
- Excellent Bosch mid-drive motor
- Lower-spec components than some of the competition
All of the electric mountain bikes in this article represent excellent value for money, and they all have their redeeming features.
For me, the one that stands out from the crowd is Decathlon’s Rockrider E-ST900. How they can build such a capable machine, with good components and a Brose motor only they know! If it was my money, I would buy the Rockrider. I’ve owned a few Decathlon bikes, including hybrid and mountain bikes, and despite some of the critics, I personally think they’re great value for money.
I love the Yamaha / Giant Sync drive sport motor used in the Fathom E +3 – it’s an absolute joy to ride, and it feels planted when riding on the rough stuff.
Orbea’s Keram 30 has been totally overhauled from last years model, and really has that Spanish style to it (like all their bikes).
The Haibike Sduro Hardseven 1.0 is definitely the best value of the bunch (at its current price in Tredz) and the Cube Acid Hybrid One 400 is another e-MTB I have ridden and enjoyed.
All said and done, every e-bike featured in this article has its merits, I’ve said my piece – all you have to do is decide!
For more information of buying your first ebike, please check out our electric bike buyers guide.