The Marin Bikes Guide to eBikes and eMountain Bikes.
Wondering how eBikes work? Here's the Marin Bikes guide to everything you need to know about electric bikes, eBikes, electric mountain bikes and eMTB.
eBikes: Here to Stay.
Here at Marin we think eBikes and eMTB bikes are great and we have a range of models that can take you anywhere from the mountains to the coffee shop.
Considering going electric? Read on.
What Is An eBike?
Wondering how do electric bikes work, and how to ride an electric bike?
An electric bicycle is essentially a regular bicycle with an integrated electric motor and an eBike battery. You ride them like a normal bike, and the motor activates when you pedal. The eBike motor helps you out but it doesn’t replace your leg power completely.
Many people ask “does an eBike have a throttle?” and the answer is, no. When you stop pedalling, the motor stops.
How fast do eBikes and eMTB bikes go? The power assistance cuts out above a certain speed which is 25 km/h in the EU, 20 MPH in the US.
Do You Need a License For An Electric Bike?
One of the main mix-ups is whether eBikes are legal to ride on the roads or on the trails and whether or not you need a license to ride one.
In Europe and the UK, eBikes are known as “Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles” and are considered to be the same as regular bicycles. Anyone over the age of 14 is allowed to ride an eBike with no special training or insurance.
In most US states, they’re categorized as “Class 1 eBikes”, and they’re treated more or less the same as bikes. We’d recommend double-checking what laws apply in your local area, as there are differences from state to state.
Are you allowed to ride eMTB bikes off-road and on mountain bike trails? Most countries don't restrict access but certain landowners may so always check before you ride. In the US, many landowners such as the National Park Service or Bureau of Land Management class eMTB's as motorized vehicles and only allow their use where motorized vehicles are permitted.
We'd recommend asking your local Marin dealer for help with what the law says about eBikes in your home country. You can find a list of Marin ebike stores in your area here.
How Much Is An Electric Bike?
It’s true, eBikes do cost a little more than ‘normal’ bikes due to the added technology.
eBikes vary a lot in price, depending on their level of componentry and what they’re designed to do, but they’re typically $2-10,000 USD and are usually more expensive than the equivalent non-eBike.
There’s a good reason for this: modern eBikes pack in a huge amount of technology. They have systems that are designed to perform faultlessly in all conditions for mile after mile, high-capacity lightweight batteries, and smart features like Bluetooth connectivity and customisable power levels.
Are eBikes worth the extra cost? For a lot of riders, the benefits of an eBike more than make up for that higher up-front investment.
As eBike tech becomes more established, we're starting to see more and more affordable ebikes and value ebikes enter the fray. The Marin Bikes Alpine Trail E1 is currently one of the best-value eMTBs available.
Who Are eBikes For?There are eBikes for almost any type of rider nowadays from eCommute to eMtb to eGravel to eCargo Bikes and everything in between.
eMTBs are a great training tool for racers looking to hone their descending skills, and time-crunched riders looking to get the most of their power hour. They're also great for anyone that wants to ride further and faster than they could on a purely human-powered bike.
Many riders find that an eMTB can cover their rides in half the time they would on a ‘normal’ bike whilst also feeling very fast, fun and capable on the descents. Modern electric mountain or eGravel bikes certainly make a convincing argument to make the jump!
eBikes are also good for work as well as play. On an urban eCommuter bike or eCargo bike you can commute long distances with less effort. You can ride in normal office clothes, carry the kids in a child seat, haul heavier gear or tick off the weekly grocery shop much more easily than on a regular bike.
Perhaps you’re asking yourself “can you get fit on an electric bike?” or “do you get tired on an electric bike?”. There’s a myth that you don’t use any energy riding an eBike. Researchers have found that eBike riders tend to ride longer distances more often, and you’re still supplying a decent chunk of the power in order to push yourself along. If you ride an eBike regularly, you’ll almost certainly get fitter.
More than anything though, eBikes are super fun to ride. They make that extra climb and descent or that cruise to the shops and the café, a pleasure instead of a chore.
How Far Can You Ride On An eBike?
The range of an eBike is a tricky question to answer and really comes down to how long ebike batteries last, the terrain and how hard you're riding.
You can change the level of ‘assist’ the motor provides on all Marin’s eBikes at the touch of a button, from completely off, to “Boost” for the most brutal climbs. Use this wisely and you’ll get many more miles (or KM's!) out of a battery charge.
Hilly routes will deplete your battery and reduce your range, although again by using less assistance from the motor and taking the climbs more steadily, you’ll eke more life out of the battery.
On a punchy, hilly off-road route, using all the assist levels, you might get 30 miles out of an eBike's charge. Cruising on roads with shallower gradients and 50-60 miles should be achievable.
It all depends on your route, your speed, and how much of the work you’re happy to take on yourself. Either way, you’ll find all of Marin's eBikes have plenty of capacity for big days in the saddle and plenty of motorized assistance!
Other Things To Know About eBikes
And how much do electric bikes weigh? eBikes have become a lot more refined in the past few years, but they’re still several kilos heavier than an equivalent non-eBike.
It’s worth remembering that added weight if you live in a first-floor flat, you need to lift one onto the roof of your car, get it up the stairs to the office or over a gate on the trails. This is especially true if you're considering an eBike to help overcome an issue that stops you from riding a lighter, human-powered bike.
Lots of you asked us "can you ride an electric bike in the rain?". Yes, absolutely. They're weather sealed and can stand up to normal use in wet weather. Full submersion, salt water or heavy pressure washing should be avoided though.
Marin eBikes - Commuter Bike, Urban Explorer and Cafe Cruiser
The Sausalito E1 has a light alloy frame with a practical steel fork and rack, mudguard and kickstand mounts. An easy to live with 1x10 drivetrain and Tektro brakes complete the bike.
The Sausalito E2 has some choice upgrades over the E1, including a Shimano STEPS E6100 assist, wide-range gearing and a Suntour suspension fork that takes the sting out of unsurfaced trails.
Many of our markets also include the Marin Stinson Electric and Stinson Electric ST, a thoroughbred family of urban eBikes that are perfect for shopping or commuting to work. They are equipped with an easy-to-ride frame, comfortable and fast-rolling tires and a reliable 250W hub motor with a 309Wh battery.
Marin eMTBs: Trail Fun Machines
The Alpine Trail E family is Marin’s award-winning full-suspension eMTB, taking the winning formula of the Alpine Trail enduro bikes and adding some serious self-uplift potential.
All the models have bombproof alloy frames with 160mm front, 150mm rear suspension, Marin’s Multitrac suspension design, and coil shocks for smoothing out the roughest trails.
The Alpine Trail E1 has a Shimano E7000 motor, Shimano drivetrain and a Rockshox Vivid rear shock. From the RockShox Gold 35 fork to the Maxxis tyres, every part of the bike is ready to hit the hill. This one is a killer affordable eMTB and one of the best value eMTBs available.
The Alpine Trail E2 is a dream build for a real-world budget, with Fox suspension, a 12-speed Shimano drivetrain and Raceface finishing kit. Shimano’s next-generation EP8 motor is lighter, quieter and more powerful, and a 630Wh battery means it’s no problem to head up the hill for one more run.
You Might Also Be Interested In
CycleVolta.com's excellent First Ride Review of the Sausalito E1Learn More
Vital MTB's Perfect Five Star Review of the Alpine Trail E2Learn More
The crew at The Loam Wolf took one of our Alpine Trail E2s to Utah for their 2021 eMTB test sessions.Learn More