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7 Best Folding Electric Bikes – What To Expect in 2020?

Folding bikes have long been the go-to choice of cyclists who often use alternative transport, such as city commuters, cycle tourists, or motorists who like to drive to their cycle spots. With the recent rise of electric bikes, many of these same cyclists are now pondering to upgrade to something with a bit of motorized assistance.

Sinch Foldable Ebike

Image Source: Aventon

Purpose
Folding electric bikes combine the ease of portability with the additional convenience of motor assistance. This makes them the ideal bikes for city commuters who need a sweat-free trip to work and may also need to use the train on occasion.

Portable electric bike = foldable electric bike

Price & Value
Foldable electric bikes come in a wide range of prices, from as little as $800 up to $4,000 or more. The quality and components also vary greatly, with a big difference in battery life and motor strength. Depending on how you plan on using the bike it’s important to select one that is suitable for your needs.

fully foldable versus half folding bike

Two different types of folding electric bikes where you don’t have to remove the wheels. (Left) A hold-in handlebar for convenient storage. (Right) A fully folded electric bike.


 

7 Best Folding Electric Bikes

In this review

  • RadPower RadMini 4$1,499
  • Ecotric$815
  • Oyama CX$1,500
  • Tern HSD P9$3,199
  • Sinch$1,499
  • GoCycle GX$3,299
  • Lectric XP$999

busy new york city streets


 

Rad Power Bikes – RadMini 4

Best folding electric bike 🏆

radpower folding electric bike

MSRP $1,500 RadPower.com

The RadMini 4 is one of our top value-for-money portable electric bikes due to its tough design and quality components. It has a plus-sized 20″ x 3″ puncture-resistant tires combined with a mini front fork for extra comfort and safety while riding.

  • Range: 25-45miles
  • Folded Dimensions (LxWxH): 41″ x 22″ x 28″
  • Weight: 67 lbs

The robust aluminum frame and handlebars both fold up so the bike collapses to the size of a large suitcase (41″x22″x28″). For a foldable e-bike, the RadMini 4 is surprisingly powerful, providing 80Nm of torque from its 750W motor and taking you up to 45 miles on a single charge of the 672Wh battery.

Electronics

  • Motor: 750W @ 80Nm
  • Battery: 672Wh
  • Charge time: 5-6 hour

It has a twist-grip throttle and comes fully equipped with fenders, lights, a and detailed display panel showing speed, battery life, and other information. On the drivetrain, you’ll find decent 7-speed Shimano Altus gears and Tektro mechanical disc brakes with 180mm rotors.

Great for riders with an inseam of 24″-32″

Availability – RadPower

folding electric bicycle folded in


 

Ecotric

Best under $1,000 foldable fat tire e-bike on Amazon

ecotric white foldable electric bike

MSRP $815 Amazon.com

At only $840, the Ecotric is your best option for a cheap folding electric bike. Ecotric offers a 30-day free trial and 18 months warranty to address any concerns you may have about the quality. Despite the low price, the aluminum frame feels as solid as any other, with a strong clamp design that locks in tightly when unfolding it. There’s no front suspension here but with wide 20″ x 4″ fat tires, it’ll swallow up most vibrations.

  • Range: Up to 45 miles
  • Folded Dimensions:
  • Weight: 52lb

Admittedly, the 7-speed Shimano gears are quite basic and the mechanical disc brakes are squeaky, but the small 500W motor runs well and the battery will take you up to 24 miles on one charge. At 52lbs (23.5kg), it’s fairly heavy for a foldable bike and doesn’t pack down quite as small as some others. The bike is also not as comfortable for riders above 6 feet tall.

Electronics

  • Motor: 500W, Rear-hub
  • Battery: 48V 13AH battery
  • Charge time: 5-8 hours (1000 charging cycles)

Wheels / Brakes

  • 20″x4″ far tire bikes
  • Mechanical disc brakes – 160mm rotors

Recommended for riders 4’8″ – 5’10

Availability – Amazon

portable folding ebike battery system


 

Oyama – CX E8D V2

Folding fat tire electric bike

oyama foldable ebike

MSRP $1,500 Giantnerd

The Oyama CX E8D is a unique portable eBike designed for urban areas, as an everyday rider. It has a small and compact aluminum frame design with a simple middle pivot to fold the bike in half. It runs off a 36V Li-Ion removable battery and you can get it with a 350W motor with speeds of up to 20mph.

  • Range: Up to 50 miles
  • Folded Dimensions: n/a
  • Weight: 47 lbs

The 20″ Big Schwalbe tires have extra-thick tread for grip in wet or sandy conditions. On the drivetrain, there’s a basic Shimano 8-speed gear set supported by Tektro hydraulic disc brakes that provide adequate stopping power.

Electronics

  • Motor: 350W rear-hub Aikema motor
  • Battery: 378Wh
  • Charge time: 4 to 5 hours

Oyama is a brand that specializes in folding bikes, and their bikes are known to have all the extras one could ask from a foldable bike. There’s nothing to be add or removed about the bike to make it more complete!

One Size Fits All

Availability – Giantnerd

electric bike rear hub motor demonstration


 

Tern – HSD P9

A cargo bike with a fold-in handlebar, front suspension, and a chain-tensioner

cargo foldable ebike

MSRP $3,199 REI.com

Not only is the Tern HSD P9 a high-quality electric bike but it’s also a foldable cargo bike. That’s the triple-whammy of convenience – electric assistance, portable, and able to carry heavy loads. It’s no wonder this is ebike is on the higher end of the price scale. The telescopic seat post and folding handlebars means this tiny bike can unfold to fit any size person and is surprisingly light considering the weight it can carry.

  • Range: 26-69mi
  • Folded Dimensions: Only the handlebar folds down
  • Weight: 57lbs

Electronics

  • Motor: 250W mid-drive @50Nm
  • Battery: 400Wh
  • Charge period: 1.5h – 3.5h

It’s equipped with a powerful 250W Bosch Active Line motor on the crank and a battery that will take you up to 69 miles (111km) at 20mph (32kph). To assist the motor you get Shimano’s mid-level Alivio drivetrain with 9 gears and matching hydraulic disc brakes. With 2.2″ Schwalbe tires and a 70mm Suntour front suspension fork, the Tern has no trouble absorbing any small vibrations or shocks.

Recommended for riders 4’11” to 6’5″

Availability – REI

tern folding electric bike with a

Most higher-end bicycles use the mid-drive engine, which is uncommon among foldable bicycles. Due to the cargo bike frame type, this bike also uses an extra chain-tensioner.


 

Sinch

Stylish fat tire foldable electric bike with a superb score

Sinch Fold-in urban Ebike

MSRP $1,499 Aventon.com

The Sinch is a modern-looking, funky little fold-up electric bike that will turn heads on the street. It has a 20mph (25kph) pedal-assist motor with an average 40-mile range on the battery and thick 4″ Kenda puncture-resistant tires for a smooth ride over any terrain.

  • Range: Up to 40 miles (Up to 71mikes pedal-assist)
  • Folded Dimensions: 41″ L / 23″ W / 31″ H
  • Weight: 68 lbs

Shimano’s Acera drivetrain provides a decent 7 gears but is sadly matched with subpar Tektro mechanical disc brakes and large 180mm rotors. You also get 45mm of travel on the front suspension fork with a lockout, which is great for tackling some off-road dirt tracks or rough streets.

Electronics

  • Motor: 500W (750W peak)
  • Battery: 672Wh, 48V Brushless motor
  • Charge time:

When fully folded, the Sinch dimensions are 41″x23″x31″, which is a bit bigger than average so it’s not the most portable bike. However, it looks great and is fun for zipping around town, visiting friends, or commuting to work.

Recommended for riders: 5’0 – 6’3″

Availability – Aventon

Sinch Foldable Ebike


 

GoCycle GX

Folds in less than 10 seconds, equipped with 1″ travel rear suspension

The Gocycle lightweight electric bike

MSRP $3,299 GoCycle.com

GoCycle makes two models of their lightweight portable electric bike, the GX, and GXi. It’s a modern, attractive looking bike that folds up quickly and easily for hopping on trains or buses. Design is a key factor in GoCycle’s appeal, with a futuristic display panel, unique five-spoke wheels, and a clean, minimalist frame.

  • Range: 40-50 miles
  • Folded Dimensions: L34.6in x W15.3in x H24.2in (with pedals folded in) / L32.7in x W15.3in x H29.5in (with kickstand folded in)
  • Weight: 36.5 lbs

Although this is one of the most lightweight foldable bikes in this list – there’s a double-kickstand for convenient storage!

Electronics

  • Motor: 750W
  • Battery: 300-375Wh
  • Charge time: 4-7 hours

The hydro-formed aluminum frame supports a proprietary 250W front hub motor powered by a 300Wh removable Li-Ion battery. It goes up to 20 mph (25kph) with a range of 40 miles (65km). Tires are 20×2.25″ with hydraulic disc brakes on the front and rear Pitstop wheels. The more expensive GXi model has a faster charge time, longer range, more detailed display, predictive shifting, and daytime running lights.

Recommended for riders up to 220lb

Availability – GoCycle

gocycle low gravity with removable wheels


 

Lectric XP

Step-Through, Unisex frames available

Lectric XP Step-Thru folding bike

MSRP $999 Lectricbikes.com

This foldable e-bike from Lectric is a steal at only $999 and comes in both a standard and step-through model. The bike has a strong, chunky frame that folds down to 37″x18″x27″, making it small enough for easy transportation and storage. It weighs a rather hefty 63lbs (28kg) though, so keep that in mind if you think you’ll need to lug it upstairs.

  • Range: 25-50+ miles
  • Folded Dimensions: 37″ x 12″ x 27″
  • Weight: 63 lbs

Equipped with 4″ x 20″ fat bike tires for all-terrain riding – The bike comes fully assembled (folded)

Electronics

  • Motor: 500W (800W peak)
  • Battery: LG 48v 10.4ah
  • Charge time: 4-6h

Go up to 50 miles (80km) on a single charge of the 48v Li-Ion battery, with the 500W motor reaching speeds of 28mph (45kph). It comes fully assembled with fenders, a rack, and front and rear lights. The basic drivetrain and Tektro mechanical disc brakes aren’t great but acceptable on a bike in this price range.

Recommended for riders: 4’10 to 6’3″ / Maximum rider weight: 275lbs / Maximum load on rear rack: 55 lbs

Availability – Lectric

black folding fat tire bike


 

Extra Pick: Oyama CX E8D V2

Folding-bike experts’ eBike

oyama folding ebike

MSRP $1,899 $1,499 Giantnerd.com

Known by their ‘premium touches’, the Oyama CX e8D features an all-inclusive package for someone who appreciates a product made by a bike brand that specializes in one niché only – and in this case, it is the folding bikes (With 50 years of experience)  The bike comes with everything you need for smooth, everyday commuting – fenders with mudflaps, a kickstand, chainguard, rear rack, on a fully foldable yet sturdy bike frame.

  • 350W rear hub motor
  • 8-speed gearing
  • Shimano Altus drivetrain
  • Weight: 47 lbs

For the money, it sure has a great value. With an integrated bell, front light, and a hidden battery – it ticks all the boxes to be a decent choice to consider!

Availability – GiantNerd

compact folding electric bike


 

FAQ

Mid-Drive vs Hub-Drive

  • Mid-drive – Mainly used on mid/high-end bicycles. The transitional torque is known to be smoother, also the weight reduction is more balance on the bikes’ geometry.
  • Hub-drive – Cheaper to make. Compared to riding a standard bicycle, it might take some time to get used to the location of the mass.
RadMini Electric Fat Bike Version 4key feature 3

A hub-drive motor


Foldable eBike wheels & tires

In the past, most foldable bicycles had skinny tires on small diameter wheels that served a purpose to save as much space as possible. Today, you’ll see many folding electric bikes with chunky fat bike tires, which are the opposite. Fat bike tires allow you to ride on multiple terrains with ease while riding an eBike with skinny tires you’ll only feel safe on only well-paved areas.

  • Fat bike tires – Multi-surface riding, better comfort. Generally 20″ diameter wheels, 3″ to 4″ wide.
  • Skinny tires – Faster and smoother on paved roads, better mileage due to less friction
wide electric bike tires

Wide, puncture-resistant tires

PUNCTURE RESISTANT TIRES

A folding eBikes is not your typical bicycle. The market for folding electric bicycles is rather limited, and most people expect a hustle-free ride – that’s why most folding e-bikes are equipped with puncture-resistant tires. Most bikes in this review are using a rear-hub motor, which makes removing a bike tire rather complicated.

Spoke vs cast wheels

Almost all bicycles these days come with wheels that use spokes instead of a solid alloy. The main purpose of spokes being used on bicycle wheels is to absorb vibration, evenly. Alloy wheels on the other hand are better on paved roads only. ‘Cast’ wheels are mainly made of alloy.


Class 1 / Class 2 / Class 3 Electric Bikes

  • Class 1: eBikes – Pedal-assist only, with no throttle, maximum assisted speed of 20mp/h
  • Class 2: eBikes – Throttle-assisted with a maximum speed of 20mp/h
  • Class 3: eBikes – Pedal-assist only, w/a a throttle. Maximum assisted speed of 28 mph
an ebike throttl

A twist-grip throttle


Related articles:

Best deals on non-electric foldable bikes by Oyama – Giantnerd.