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Best Belt-Drive eBikes of 2022

By Jordan Grimes   /  Last updated - September 21, 2022   /  Belt-Drive, Best-Of-Reviews, Reviews

priority current belt-drive ebike

E-bike technology has greatly influenced the lives of many people, both cyclists, and non-cyclists, making day-to-day living easier, more convenient, and enjoyable.

One of the only downsides of regular bikes, however, is the need to perform regular maintenance to keep them running smoothly and get the longest lifespan possible. This type of maintenance involves cleaning and lubricating the chain, turning the gears and derailleur, and cleaning the rest of the drivetrain due to the heavy use and exposure to the elements of these components.

Thankfully, belt-drive e-bikes are a great solution to this issue. This system on an e-bike makes riding silent, clean, and maintenance-free. This is because there are fewer moving parts, no need for lubrication, and stronger materials that greatly reduce wear.

More and more long-distance bikepackers are turning to belt-drive bikes as they have an expected lifespan of up to 19,000 miles, roughly four times that of a standard chain drive.



1. Ride1UP Roadster v2

ride1up roadster v2 e-bike

MSRP: $945
Ride1UP

The Ride1UP Roadster v2 is the company’s most affordable bike. This bike provides an exceptionally fast ride with nimble handling and a stealthy finish.

This unique belt-drive electric bike takes the stress out of gearing with a single-speed hub and Gates Carbon CDX system. This hub is paired with a  350W geared hub motor with 40Nm torque.

Additionally, this bike has a 1-year warranty, powerful Tektro Aries Mechanical 160mm Disc, a 30-mile range, and rapid Kenda Kwest 700c x 28mm tires. Finally, the bike comes with fully integrated electronics.

  • 350W/40Nm geared hub motor
  • Range: Up to 30mi
  • 24mph Class 3 eBike
  • Battery: 36V 7Ah – 252Wh
  • Kenda Kwest 700c x 28mm tires
  • Tektro Aries Mechanical 160mm Disc
  • Weight: 33lbs
  • Fits riders 5’3″ – 6’3″

Buy on Ride1UP.com


2. Gazelle Ultimate C8 HMB

gazelle ultimate c8 hmb

MSRP: $3,749
Mike’s Bikes

Gazelle’s Ultimate C8 HMB e-bike is a commuter’s dream. This bike masterfully balances practicality and innovation using new technology and time-tested components.

This bike features fully-integrated electronics, internal suspension with 40mm of travel, and luxurious touchpoints to deliver an exceptionally comfortable ride. The electronics used are top quality, most notably a Bosch Active Line Plus system which has a 50Nm motor that is whisper quiet while running. Additionally, the 500Wh battery can last up to 90 miles.

To make commuting comfortable and to ride, the Ultimate C8 has comfy upright geometry, a gel Selle Royal Loire saddle, and shock-absorbent Schwalbe Energizer Plus balloon tires. The bike also comes with fenders, a rack, and integrated LED lights.

Finally, the drivetrain combines an 8-speed Shimano Nexus hub and a Gates CDX carbon belt for a low-maintenance, smooth ride.

  • 50Nm Bosch Active Line Plus mid-drive motor
  • 500Wh battery
  • 8-speed Shimano Nexus internal gearing hub
  • Hydraulic brakes 2-piston

Buy on Mike's Bikes


3. Specialized Vado 3.0 IGH Step-Thru

An urban eBike with a fully-equipped setup
specialized vado 3 0 e-bike

MSRP: $3,750
Jenson USA

The Specialized Vado 3.0 belt drive city e-bike is a comfortable workhorse that is built to last a long time.

This bike has a useful 300lb payload capacity with a 59lb capacity rack and relies on a punchy Specialized 2.0E 250W/50Nm motor to haul these kinds of loads over hills. This bike comes with 530Wh of juice with plenty of range for days spent zipping around the city.

The groupset combines a premium Enviolo Enviolo CV 310% hub with a Gates CDX Belt Drive for a silent, smooth, and maintenance-free experience.

Other notable features of the Vado 3.0 are the anti-theft feature, Shimano BR-MT200 hydraulic disc brakes, a brake-activated taillight and 210-lumen headlight, an SR Suntour MobieA32 fork with 80mm of travel, and Pathfinder Sport Reflect 650b x 2.3″ tires.

  • 530Wh/50Nm Specialized 2.0E motor
  • Shimano hydraulic disc brakes
  • 650b x 2.3″
  • 80mm fork suspension
  • Weight limit: 300 lbs
  • Weight: 55lbs
  • Fits riders 5’1″ to 5’10” (S/M)

Buy on Jenson USA


4. Gazelle Ultimate C380

Step-over frame

gazelle step-through ebike

MSRP: $4,799
Backcountry

Gazelle’s Ultimate C380+ belt eBike is a high-end step-through model that is designed for ultimate comfort and functionality for city rides or longer touring adventures.

The bike uses a lightweight Bosch Performance Line Speed mid-drive motor and a 500Wh battery for speeds of up to 28mph covering distances up to 55 miles on eco mode.

The bike comes with premium features such as 4-piston Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, Schwalbe Energizer Plus puncture-resistant tires, a Selle Royal Essenza Plus saddle, and telescopic fork suspension. Additionally, you can rely on a beautiful Enviolo 380 trekking internal gear hub and Gates belt drive for an unbeatable ride feel at all times.

  • Aluminum frame & fork
  • Ryde Dutch 28″ rims
  • 4th Generation Bosch Performance Line Mid-Drive
  • Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes
  • Class 3 eBike
  • 500Wh battery

Buy from Backcountry


5. VVolt Alpha

vvolt alpha & alpha step-through electric bikes

MSRP: $1,399
Vvolt

The Alpha is VVolt’s entry-level hub-motor belt-drive e-bike compared to their more advanced mid-drive (belt-driven) e-bike. If you managed to understand that, the good news is that the Alpha is super easy to go around and understand. Matter of fact, the Alpha & Alpha S hold quite an astonishing value at their price range.

Besides the sleek look and matte finish, these bikes have quite a nice set of features that fit well for above-average commuters’ needs.

  • 350W hub motor
    Acer
  • 375Wh battery
    Celxpert
  • Gates DDN belt-drive
  • Hydraulic brakes
    160mm rotors
  • Tires – 27.5″ x 2.0″
    Clearance for 2.4″
  • Class 1 eBike

Buy from Vvolt.com


6. Priority Current

priority current e bike

Gates Carbon Drive CDX

MSRP: $3,299
Priority Bicycles

The Priority Current eBike is a sleek and versatile e-bike that functions well in urban environments or on longer adventures on rural roads.

This Gates belt-drive eBike has a 500W torque-sensing mid-drive motor with 140Nm of torque that reaches speeds up to 28mph for ranges of 30 to 60 miles. This belt drive system is combined with Enviolo’s rear hub that delivers a super smooth and natural pedaling motion.

Using comfy 650B tires, a padded gel seat, and comfort geometry, the Current is very comfortable to ride over short to medium distances even on bumpy roads.

Finally, this Priority electric bike has five levels of pedal-assistance, dual-piston hydraulic disc brakes, USB charging capability, and automatic lights on the front and back to round out an all-around excellent bike.

  • 500W mid-drive motor – 140Nm max torque
  • Max speed: 28mp/h
  • Range: 30-60miles
  • Class 1 – Class 3
  • 650b wheels
  • Hydraulic disc brakes

Size Recommendations (Inseam)

S – 26″ – 29″
M – 29″ – 32″
L – 32″-35″

Buy from Priority Bicycles


7. Serial 1 RUSH/CTY

serial 1 belt drive ebikes

MSRP: from $3,799
Mike’s bikes

Serial 1’s MOSH/CTY belt drive electric bike is a beautiful bike with a matt-black finish and tons of great features which allow it to perform at the highest level in urban environments.

This city bike uses a premium Brose S Mag mid-drive motor with 90Nm of torque combined with an integrated 529Wh battery for up to a whopping 105 miles of range.

The Gates Carbon drive ensures a smooth, silent ride and pairs with a single-speed freewheel hub to boost longevity and reduce maintenance further.

Other notable components on the MOSH/CTY include dual-piston hydraulic disc brakes, premium 2.8-” Schwalbe Super Moto-X tires, and fully integrated cable routing. Finally, this e-bike is fully equipped with front and rear lights, a rear rack, and fenders to make city riding even better.

  • 529Wh battery
  • Range: 30-105mi.
  • Hydro brakes: 203×1.8mm
  • Tires: 27.5×2.8″
  • Torque – 90Nm (66ft. lb)
  • Single-speed
  • Weight: 48.4lbs

Buy from Mike's Bikes


8. Stromer ST2 Sport

stromer ebike

MSRP: $5,700
Mike’s bikes

Swiss e-bike manufacturer Stromer design some of the best, most reliable electric bikes on the market, and their ST2 Sport is a great example of keen attention to detail and the use of premium quality components.

This all-rounder bike has a 570W/40Nm rear hub motor that works with an integrated 618Wh battery to deliver ranges up to 75 miles. The drivetrain on this bike is super smooth and includes a 5-speed internal hub gearing and a carbon fiber belt drive.

The ST2 Sport also has large volume tires for better comfort and stability, fully customizable pre-order frame options, and full connectivity with GPS, Smartlock. Finally, the bike uses Tektro hydraulic disc brakes and comes fully equipped for all your city riding needs.

  • 570W Rear hub motor – 40Nm
  • Battery: 618Wh
  • Range: 75mi. Can be extended to 110mi
  • 5-speed internal gear hub by Sturmey Archer
  • Stromer HD922 by Tektro
  • Class 3 eBike

Buy from Mike's Bikes


9. Vvolt Sirius

High performance belt-drive hardtail

Vvolt Sirius belt-drive e-bike

MSRP: $2,799
Vvolt

Vvolt belt-drive bikes are some of the best models in their price range. With the Sirius backcountry e-bike, they have built an affordable trail bike without sacrificing performance, comfort, or durability.

The Sirius has a low-maintenance Gates Carbon CDX belt drive and an Enviolo TR 380% internal gear hub system which makes off-road riding a dream. Another huge benefit of this system is you can change gears when you stop at traffic lights, unlike a chain drive.

The 375Wh battery and 250W/80Nm motor on this bike means you can get up to 40 miles of range reaching assisted speeds up to 20mph. All of these electronics and cabling are neatly integrated into a super sleek frame design. Additionally, this bike is fully equipped with rechargeable lights, hydraulic disc brakes, and an air spring 100mm fork.

  • Alloy Aluminum
  • Enviolo TR Internal Gear Hub 380%
  • 2.4″ tires
  • Assists up to 20mph (Class 1 eBike)
  • 250W motor – 80Nm torque
  • Battery: 375Wh
  • Hydraulic disc brakes

Buy from Vvolt.com


10. Luna Fixed Stealth Ebike

A minimalist eBike

Luna Fixed Stealth Ebike

MSRP: $1,750
Luna Cycle

A similar style to the Ride1UP Roadster V2, Luna’s Fixed Stealth Bike takes a minimalist e-bike to the next level with powerful electronics and a performance-optimized design.

The Luna fixed eBike weighs just 39lbs yet incredibly has a 500W mid-drive motor. The bike has a 7Ah battery meaning you can get modest ranges of up to 20 miles.

The bike uses premium hydraulic disc brakes, a Gates carbon belt drive CDX and 3 speed internally geared hub combo, full integration, internal cabling, and grippy Kenda tires 35c tires meaning it is comfortable, smooth, and silent.

  • 500Wh motor
  • Battery: 36V 7Ah – 250Wh
  • Max speed: 24mph
  • Gates carbon belt drive CDX
  • 3-speed
  • Tektro Hydraulic Disc Brakes
  • 700x35c
  • Range: Up to 20mi
  • Weight: 39 lbs

Size Recommendations

S – Up to 5’10”
M – 5’9″ – 6′”
L – 6’1″

Buy from Luna Cycle


How to tighten a belt drivetrain?

E-Bike Chain vs. E-Bike Belt

The carbon belt vs chain discussion is quite clear cut, with clear benefits associated with either system.

Belt drive system pros are numerous. They require almost no maintenance, they run silently, degrade slowly meaning a long lifespan, don’t need grease, and riders can change gears while stopped. Internally geared hubs also greatly reduce the wear and tear of the gearing system. The cons of this system are that they are harder and more costly to repair, and they cost significantly more to buy.

Chain drives are cheap and easy to repair or find spare parts for; while being slightly more efficient while riding (as long as the condition is good). However, they require regular maintenance, regular repair, they’re dirty, they wear faster, and they can be noisy. Gates is the most common manufacturer of belt-drive systems, so if you’re sick and tired of dirty chains, consider giving it a try.

Conclusion

belt drive bike

Belt-drive bicycles undoubtedly offer some great advantages over the traditional chain and derailleur drivetrains. Very limited maintenance, silent operation, long lifespan, no grease, and the ability to change gears while stopped are the most important benefits of this type of system.

Although they are more expensive, savings of time, money on repairs, and overall convenience mean that belt drives will continue to grow in popularity, especially on electric bicycles.

We hope that this review has given you a better understanding of this type of bicycle as well as enough information to help you find the perfect belt-drive eBike for your needs.

6 thoughts on “Best Belt-Drive eBikes of 2022

  1. Bob Mariano says:

    Have you had a chance to review the Warthog MD1000 belt drive ? Thanks article & review .
    Bob

    1. Sam Millers says:

      Hey Bob, we still haven’t had a chance to review that Bikonit model, but the bike looks solid.

  2. Tom A. says:

    Any thoughts on the Cowboy ebikes? They use a belt-drive too.

    1. Sam Millers says:

      Hi Tom!

      We still haven’t had the chance to try one out, but we’re looking to change that.

      They’re well-built smart e-bikes with lots of modern features that are great for urban commutes. They are certainly not affordable, but worth it if you like all the gizmos.

  3. George Brizek says:

    Remarkably interesting article, do you have any input about the Specialized “Step-Through” the Como 5.0 with enviolo AUTOMATiQ stepless shifting technology, with an Internal Gear Hub (IGH) and a Gates Belt Drive

    Thanks
    George

    1. Sam Millers says:

      Thanks, George! I’m happy to hear you enjoyed reading the article!
      The 2022 Turbo Como 5.0 is a phenomenal bicycle, especially for commuters who want a fuss-free experience and a bike that requires minimal maintenance.
      We still haven’t gotten around to reviewing it, but we plan to change that soon.
      Cheers!

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