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It’s fair to say that electric bikes have hit the mainstream. People of all ages have been asking me about them, with many looking for recommendations about what they should buy.
However, when I ask people what their budget is for buying an e-bike and what they want to use it for, I usually get responses on the following lines: “not too much, under £1,000 ideally” and “a bit of everything – riding to town and maybe through some trails”.
And that brings me to the Engwe P26, which I’ve been testing for the past two months. It’s also the bike I’m recommending to most friends and family – it’s a cheap electric bike (£1,200/€1,200/$1,250 – although on sale at the time of writing) with an upright hybrid bike style with slightly chunky tyres and front suspension that makes it ideally for a some light off-road adventure.
An affordable hybrid electric bike with a good range (~27miles with full power). Extremely comfortable with an upright seating position. Easy and intuitive to use. The best budget e-bike for everyday commuting.
- Incredible value
- Rides well on roads and trails
- Comfortable upright position
- Bit heavy to carry (53.35lbs/24.2kg)
Is the Engwe P26 Value for Money?
One of the biggest deterrents for e-bikes is that they’re perceived as expensive.
And while it’s true that you could buy a pretty stunning non-electric bike for £1,800/$2,000 (the go-to price for a mid-range e-bike), I’d like to see how much of a car you could buy and run for the same price.
So it really comes down to perspective, if you’re already cycling a lot without an electric bike, it is an increased cost. But if you’re looking at stopping/reducing your driving and using an e-bike instead, you will save a fortune (e-bike cost less than 10p/10c to fully charge).
Anyway, the point of this tangent is that at just Engwe P26 is one of the most budget-friendly e-bikes for commuters right now and in the following sections I’ll explain why.
Engwe P26 Specs
|Motor||250W (UK + EU) 800W (USA)|
|Battery||48V 13Ah Lithium-Ion BATTERY|
|Advertised Range||Up to 100km (62 miles)|
65km (40 miles) at full speed in 5th gear
|Top Speed||20.5mph (UK/EU) 28mph (USA)|
(i.e. Rider Weight)
My Engwe P26 Experience
Once I’d put together the bike (assembly was pretty straight forward), the first thing I noticed about about the Engwe P26 is that it struck me as a very upright bicycle. The way the frame has been built (so that the front is significantly higher than the back) and the high handlebars make it very hard to imagine anyone hunched over this bike.
And that’s great, because this bike strikes me as a bike for commuting. An e-bike that will function well in the city, while also handing slightly rougher terrain if you want to go for a bit of an explore.
As well as the upright seating position which promotes good posture, the P26 also has front suspension, a padded saddle and thick, durable tyres. This is a comfortable bike.
Budget Commuter Electric Bike
The P26 also comes with a built-in fenders and a rear pannier rack as standard, plus built-in front and back lights, 7-speed Shimano gears and even a bell for good measure.
But the thing I really like about this e-bike, is that – despite its budget price tag – it doesn’t feel cheap. It has a solid, well-built feel. You feel sturdy on this and it actually looks good. I went for the metallic blue model (it’s also available in grey) and it really does look fantastic.
If you want a no fuss, bit-of-everything electric bike on a budget, this really is it.
Engwe P26 Top Speed
If you’re in the UK, Europe or the US, asking about an electric bike’s top speed is pretty much a redundant question.
All (legal) electric bikes have a pre-set speed limiter in place. That means you won’t get electric assistance above 25kmh (15.5mph) in the UK, and not above 20mph in the US. Of course, you can still go faster than this if you’re going downhill or you pedal furiously, you just won’t get e-bike’s motor helping you.
In the US, the Engwe P26 is equipped with a powerful 800W motor, but UK riders will have to do with the 250W motor as this is the maximum that is legally allowed.
Engwe P26 Range
Another highlight of the Engwe P26 is the bike’s impressive range.
All electric bike brands make grandiose claims about their “range”. But brands normally state how far a bike can go with minimal electric assistant on a good.
As a rule of thumb, the real-use range of an e-bike (i.e. using the bike’s full power) is just under half of what is advertised. So if they say a bike can go 100 miles, you can assume the reality is more like 40-45 miles.
In fairness to Engwe, they try to give a true indication of the battery life on their product page, stating that while the bike can go “up to 100km)”, it can go “65km at full speed in 5th gear”.
My usage found that the bike can go about 45km (27 miles) on a single charge, which involved me pedalling with full pedal assistance on moderately hilly routes. You could probably squeeze 50km out of it if you’re area is flatter.
Is Engwe P26 Worth Buying?
The Engwe P26 is the best budget hybrid e-bike around and is one of the main bikes I recommend to friends and family who are looking for an electric bike for day-to-day life.
At £1,200 (€1,200/$1,250), this electric bike represents incredible value for money.
It is a great all-rounder: it’s comfortable, is great in the city, is solid on trails, it has a really solid range (~27 miles on a charge with full assistance), it’s easy to use and… it looks cool.
If you’re looking to cut down on car journeys to save money and get fit, you should absolutely consider the Engwe P26.