A beginner’s guide to buying electric bikes

Riding an electric bicycle looks fun and easy to use when compared to its manual counterpart. But the big question is; what’s the difference between the two bike types? The answer to this question is simple, an e-bike has an electric motor, and a regular bike doesn’t. 

So, what does the electric motor do? It provides power boost assistance. For example, if you’re riding through a steep ride or long hill, an electric motor helps you pedal more efficiently without using too much of your bodily strength. An e-bike is also helpful in circumstances where you’re too tired to ride and need a bit of help pedalling. 

These benefits are a few of the reasons why e-bikes have become popular in recent years. So, perhaps you’re a cycling enthusiast who’s been thinking about getting an e-bike. 

Well, if that is the case, you’ve come to the right page. Below, we’ve put together a guide to help you get acquainted with e-bikes. We’ve also put together e-bike riding tips for beginners, as well as where to find the best electric bikes in South Africa.

There are different types of e-bikes

Like regular bikes, electric bikes also have different types designed for different purposes.

Road e-bicycles have a motor that’s specifically made for moving around city roads. 

Mountain e-bikes are designed with a motor that has more power to give you an ability to successfully ride on mountains. Riding through rugged mountain terrain can be a lot easier with a mountain e-bike than a regular mountain bike. 

Folding e-bikes are similar to the above bike types; the only difference is that they fold. This makes it easier to navigate around crowded areas because you can simply fold it and carry it in your hands. 

If you’re wondering where to buy an electric bicycle, look no further than Chris Willemse Cycles. But before you start surfing the net, you have to know exactly what you’re looking for, and these below factors will help you with that.

Things to consider when buying an e-bike 

When you’re browsing an online bike shop in South Africa, you have to look for a bike that will work for you. To figure that out, consider the following factors:


When you buy an e-bike, you have to look at the power it will provide you, while also considering the area you live in. If you live in a city with minimal hills, you’ll do just fine with a bike that offers anything between 200-350-watt motors. Like our avalanche electric e.go e-bike 2020, which offers 240-watt motors. This is just enough power to help you pace yourself and maintain a sustainable momentum on minimal hills.


You’re going to want an e-bike with a throttle that controls power output. It’s a good addition to the power assist that you get from the e-motor. While you need to be pedalling to get the power boost from the motor, with a throttle you’re able to start up from a stop without pedalling.


Road bikes typically have narrow, high-pressure tyres, while mountain bikes have fat or thick tyres. Since you’re riding on the mountains, you’re bound to meet obstacles you’ll need to ride over or around, thicker tyres are reliable in helping you achieve this. So, when you search for an electric bike in South Africa, make sure to check the sizes of the tyres according to your preferred riding type. 


Every bike has brakes, but electric-bikes need to specifically have disc brakes. These are self-adjusting, which allow for more precise braking in comparison to the rim brakes. This is helpful on descents because not only do they not overheat; they also have enough stopping power to help you avoid crashing. 


Unlike regular bikes, e-bikes require more maintenance because they’re typically ridden farther and faster. So, you’ll have to pay attention to each part, especially the electric motor. To ensure that you carefully maintain your bike, draw up a service schedule. 

Final thoughts  

If you’ve been curious about e-bikes, we hope the above information helps you understand that they’re only slightly different to traditional bikes. Their biggest advantage is that they offer you a boost you might need in various circumstances. Learning how to ride an electric bike is also not that different from riding a traditional bike. However, the common mistake you shouldn’t make is letting the motor do the work from the very onset. Remember that the motor is there to assist you, not to carry you. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll become an e-bike pro in no time. And, like a pro, you always have to be dressed in your cycling clothing. So, start your search for an electric bicycle for sale in Cape Town at Chris Willemse Cycles.