Cycling with electricity - KONSUMENT Test E-Bikes

Together with Stiftung Warentest, the VKI has tested pedelecs designed for comfort with a low entry. The twelve e-bikes in the test, with prices ranging from 2300 to 3500 euros, are not exactly cheap. Despite this, frame cracks appeared in the endurance test and the testers found harmful substances and problems with fire safety. However, four e-bikes received a good overall mark, one model from KTM was the clear test winner.

Sensible for people and the environment?

One more battery that has to be produced, some will say in view of the problems of energy and resource intensive production. Is an e-bike now justifiable? If it saves the trip with a car or motorcycle, it probably is. And - many people would not ride a bike at all without the help of an electric motor. They can now use e-bikes to cover necessary distances or simply enjoy nature and boost their cardiovascular system.

Battery range

Decisive for the environmental balance of e-bikes is the efficiency and service life of the batteries. The testers simulated challenging conditions on the test stand, enabling the batteries to achieve a good range of 47 to 55 kilometers. However, in practical tests on moderately hilly terrain with shorter climbs, even up to 120 kilometers were possible. If you want to get far, you should ride with low support and only shift up when it gets strenuous.

Care and maintenance increases service life

The suppliers usually state the life span of the batteries with 500 to 1000 full charge cycles. Even with a constantly high motor support, you would get 25,000 kilometers. Regardless of use, however, batteries lose a few percent of their capacity per year; after five years at the latest, a replacement battery is usually needed. A careful handling of Pedelc batteries is therefore advisable: Do not discharge batteries below 10% and recharge them to about 90% after the ride. If the bike is not used for a longer period of time, recharge the battery to about half full (or according to the instructions for use) and store it in a dry place at 10 to 20 degrees Celsius, but remove the batteries from the e-bike. The batteries should never be exposed to the blazing sun or extreme cold in winter. Extreme temperatures damage the batteries, shorten their life span and can even lead to fire.

E-Bike von Stevens

The test results in detail are available at and in the test magazine KONSUMENT.