Best Budget E-MTBs

Mark Colafranceschi

Updated September 14, 2023

Electric Mountain Bikes (E-MTBs) have come a long way in the last few years, giving riders that extra boost to tackle more terrain and go further. Unfortunately, many of the perks of buying an E-MTB come with hefty price tags, with some models stretching well past the $10,000 range. Luckily, some great options out there offer a no-compromise experience in a more budget-friendly price range. We’ve scoured the data to bring you a list of the top contenders in various categories, so you don’t have to.

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Best E-MTB On a Budget
Polygon SISKIU T6E

An affordable aluminum trail-focused electric mountain bike with respectable components, with adjustable and confidence inspiring geometry.

The Polygon Siskiu T6E strikes an impressive balance between affordability and performance. The polygon has a Shimano EP600 motor that generates a potent 85 Nm of torque, giving riders a solid boost for tackling rugged trails. This power is sustained by a 504 Wh battery, making it an excellent option for longer rides. The Siskiu rolls on 29-inch wheels with 150/140 mm of travel, providing a good mix of speed and suspension capability across various trail terrains.

One of the bike's standout features is its progressive, adjustable geometry. It has a long reach, a short seat tube, a 65-degree head tube angle, 445mm chainstays, and a flip-chip that adjusts the bottom bracket height—customizations that offer riders a tailored fit and feel. 

The Polygon Siskiu T6E blends reliable componentry with a reasonable price point. It is a top pick for anyone looking for a quality e-bike on a budget that doesn't compromise performance.

Longest Range Value E-MTB
Norco Fluid VLT A1

An aluminum mid-travel trail Electric mountain bike with robust and reliable features that is primed to get you riding faster and further with impressive battery life.

The Norco Range is an aluminum mid-travel, electric trail mountain bike offering impressive power and range. With an optional 900 Wh battery, The Shimano EP8 motor has no complaints about boosting over bumps and up steep climbs thanks to its best-in-class torque and power. 

The Norco stands out for its battery selection, offering riders 540, 720, or 900 Wh options. Even more impressively, the bike boasts a range of up to 39 miles(63km) with 11,000(3,500m) feet of climbing. The battery is even removable for those who occasionally prefer a more traditional mountain bike experience. This feature adds a layer of versatility, allowing for a pedal-only trail ride. 29-inch wheels 140/130mm of travel and Maxxis Dissector tires meld together to create a capable and confidence-inspiring trail bike package.

The Norco Fluid VLT A1 sets a high standard in the E-MTB market. Its impressive range makes it ideal for long trail days. At the same time, the robust motor and versatile battery options contribute to an offering that is hard to beat for riders seeking to maximize the benefits of an electric mountain bike.

Best Value Descender E-MTB
Canyon Torque:ON 7

A hard-hitting, long-travel electric mountain bike that lives for the descent

Skip the shuttle line with the Canyon Torque ON:7. The torque is a hard-hitting, long-travel electric mountain that lives for the descent. It has a sturdy Zeb fork, sticky Maxxis tires, a Shimano drivetrain, and a Shimano electric system to power you back up the hill for one more hot lap.  It has a Shimano EP8 motor, boasting an impressive 85 Nm of torque and fueled by a 504 Wh battery with 175/180 mm of travel, providing plenty of plush cushioning and control on steep and gnarly stuff.

Canyon brings it all together with the Torque ON:7 to create the gravity enthusiast's dream machine. In terms of value, its robust and reliable components make the Canyon Torque ON:7 a strong contender in its price range.

Lightest Budget E-MTB
Trek E-Caliber 9.6

A lightweight carbon fiber full-suspension E-MTB that mimics traditional cross-country bike geometry and efficiency with a natural, fast-pedaling feel.

The Trek E-caliber is a state-of-the-art, lightweight carbon fiber, full-suspension E-MTB designed to emulate the geometry and efficiency of traditional cross-country bikes. Weighing only 41 pounds (18.5kg), this bike targets riders who want a bike that rides with cross-country precision and efficiency but with the added advantage of electric assist. A Fauza Ride motor delivers 58 Nm of torque, complemented by a removable 250 Wh battery, adding versatility and range to your rides.

Trek's unique iso strut technology is a standout feature, integral to the bike's lightweight, quick, and snappy feel, making for a fast-pedaling full suspension ride quality in a far lighter package than other full suspension e-bike competitors. 

In conclusion, the Trek E-caliber sets itself apart by delivering the traditional feel of a cross-country mountain bike with the added convenience of pedal assistance. Its lighter weight and removable battery make it an excellent choice for riders who aim to minimize weight without compromising on efficiency and pedal assist.

Best Value Youth E-MTB
Specialized Turbo Levo SL Kids

An aluminum hardtail electric mountain bike specifically designed for young riders.

The Specialized Turbo Levo SL Kids is an aluminum hardtail electric mountain bike specifically engineered for younger riders. The Levo SL Kids is light at around 36.6 pounds (16.6kg), making it a manageable option for smaller rippers. Specialized SL 1.2 motor delivers an impressive 72 Nm of torque paired with a 320 Wh battery.

The Turbo Levo SL kids comes with shorter cranks, a low standover height of 603mm, an 80mm dropper post, and a narrow saddle. All these considerations help to dial in the perfect fit for younger trail rippers. The Levo SL Kids rolls on 24-inch wheels with 100mm RockShox Reba fork and a Sram NX 1x11 drivetrain. SramLevel T Hydraulic Disk brakes along with Specialized Ground Control tires round out the package, providing solid grip and control.

The Specialized Turbo Levo SL Kids presents an excellent package for smaller riders that's hard-to-beat for kids eager to hit the trails.

Conclusion

Today's E-MTB market has excellent options across all preferences and budgets. Whether you're looking for range, descending abilities, weight savings, or a youth-friendly ride, there's a budget E-MTB out there. Remember to prioritize your needs, test ride if possible, and, most importantly…Go ride!

Take a look at how these bikes compare with our comparison tool.

MSRP
$3,599$4,398$4,299$4,999$3,800
Spec Level
Weight
52.5 lbs51.4 lbs40.7 lbs35.7 lbs
Frame
AluminumAluminumAluminumCarbonAluminum
Fork
Suntour ZeronRockShox 35 SilverRockShox ZEBRockShox 35 Gold RLRockShox Reba 26
Wheel Size
29″29″27.5″29″24″
Motor
Shimano 250W 85Nm mid-driveShimano 250W 85Nm mid-driveShimano 250W 85Nm mid-driveFazua mid-driveSpecialized 320W 50Nm mid-drive
Battery
Shimano 504Wh900WhShimano 504WhFazua 250WhSpecialized 320Wh
Groupset
Deore, ShimanoDeore, ShimanoDeore, ShimanoXT, DeoreNX, X1
Drivetrain
1 × 111 × 121 × 121 × 121 × 11
Suspension
FullFullFullFullHardtail
Travel
140mm rear, 140mm front130mm rear, 140mm front175mm rear, 180mm front60mm rear, 120mm front100mm front
Where to Buy
$4,398

At Norco