Skip to main content

Best electric gravel bikes: our pick of the best bikes for assisted off-road adventures

Best electric gravel bike:
(Image credit: Basso)

If you asked for a roundup of the best electric gravel bikes ten years ago, you'd have received a funny look and a list totalling zero products. The concept of a gravel bike was just coming to the fore, and the functionality of electric bikes likewise. As technology has improved over the last decade, more and more brands are looking to add electric bikes, gravel bikes, and now electric gravel bikes to their line-up. 

Over that period, the best gravel bikes have transformed the way we ride, allowing us to head off the beaten path away from busy roads. The best electric bikes have been through a similar transformation, from the former twist-and-go moped-style electric bikes to a pedelec system that has boomed in popularity for commuters. 

Electric bikes make cycling accessible to a new group of people, and they also make it more fun in more situations for more people. Thinking along similar lines, it makes total sense that electric gravel bikes are increasing in popularity. Not only do they open up the world of gravel cycling to a host of new enthusiasts, but they also make it so much easier for anyone to escape the urban environment in a short amount of time.

With the days getting longer in the northern hemisphere, it's the perfect time of year to start heading out on post-work rides, but getting out to your favourite local tracks and back again before dark can put you under a significant time constraint. With the best electric gravel bikes, that no longer has to be an issue.

Here is our pick of the best electric gravel bikes currently available, or jump ahead to find out what to look for when buying an electric gravel bike.

Best electric gravel bikes

Cannondale Topstone Neo Carbon Lefty 3

(Image credit: Cannondale)

Cannondale Topstone Neo Carbon Lefty 3

Polished performer using a proven platform

Drive system: Bosch | Battery capacity: 500Wh | Max Torque: 85Nm

Dual suspension
Bosch Performance Line CX motor
Shimano GRX 812/600 11-speed hydraulic disc groupset
Lefty front hub limits wheel compatibility

The Cannondale Neo Carbon Lefty 3 builds on the standard Topstone Lefty. The same carbon frame and front and rear suspension set the stage. The rear is a passive suspension system using the natural flex in the carbon layup and a thru-axle pivot. Cannondale calls the whole system the Kingpin rear suspension system and promises up to 30mm of movement at the saddle. In the front is a revised version of the gravel Lefty suspension fork first introduced on the Slate gravel bike. There's 30mm of air-sprung suspension movement from the Lefty Oliver. The look is polarising but it's a system tuned for the needs of gravel riding and it works.

The chosen power unit for the Cannondale Neo Carbon Lefty 3 is a 250w Bosch Performance Line CX system. It's designed to work well even at low cadence and provide a sporty riding feel.

Merida ESilex + 600 2021

(Image credit: Merida)

Merida ESilex + 600 2021

Excellent all-rounder

Drive system: eBikemotion X35 | Battery capacity: 250Wh | Max torque: 40Nm

Almost invisible motor integration
Comfortable ride with vibration damping
Great all-rounder
Not the most powerful for steep and demanding terrain

If your idea of the best electric gravel bike is one that you can use on almost all occasions, from weekend bikepacking rides to urban commuting, then the Merida eSilex+ 600 could be exactly what you're looking for.

Powered by an eBikemotion X35 motor with 250Wh battery capacity, the eSilex delivers a seriously composed and comfortable ride, complemented by compact geometry and a relaxed riding position. Its aluminium frame boasts thin tubing that doesn't resonate in the same way that chunky carbon frames can, making it a much quieter and more pleasant affair to ride with the motor in full support mode.

With mounts galore for accessories, it's the kind of e-gravel bike that can wear all manner of hats when you need it to.

Best electric gravel bike: Specialized Turbo Creo SL Expert EVO

(Image credit: Specialized )

Specialized Turbo Creo SL Expert EVO

A quality option for those who enjoy mixing up the terrain on their rides

Drive system: Specialized | Battery capacity: 320Wh | Max Torque: 35Nm

Future shock front suspension
Built in power meter
Long quoted range
Non-removable battery
Low max-torque

Specialized names its e-bike gravel models by adding Evo to the road-focused models. The actual design of the two models is similar as well and geometry between the two bikes is exactly the same. Added to the gravel-focused models you'll find a different wheel and tyre package, flared handlebars and a dropper post with 50mm of travel. If you want a bike that can move between paved and off-road paths than the Specialized is a great choice.

The custom-designed motor is not a high-torque system but is rather designed for handling steep technical trails and obstacles. There's only 35Nm of torque on demand but if you're frugal, you can expect a quoted range of 80 miles (128km).

Best electric gravel bike: Canyon Grail ON CF 8 eTap

(Image credit: Canyon )

Canyon Grail:ON CF 8 eTap

The Rolls-Royce of electric gravel bikes

Drive system: Bosch | Battery capacity: 500Wh | Max Torque: 85Nm

Innovative suspension handlebar
12-speed gearing
Big tire clearance
Overly relaxed geometry

The Grail:ON CF 8 eTap is another polarizing bike. The frame utilises a unique double handlebar setup referred to as the double-decker hover bar. Instead of going down the route of suspension, with all its potential tradeoffs, Canyon chose to go with a passive system. The intent is still increased comfort through increased front-end compliance but it's lighter and simpler. The double bar also gives an upright riding position that suits long days covering rough ground without a long headtube. Like the Lefty fork, it works well but its looks are polarizing.

In terms of assistance, Canyon has used a more mountain bike-focused system from Bosch called the Performance Line CX (Gen4). The system has a focus on smooth handling of roots, steps and stones, even in low cadence and high torque uphill situations.

Best electric gravel bike: Giant Revolt E+ Pro

(Image credit: Giant )

Giant Revolt E+ Pro

Reliable performer with the geometry and components to match

Drive system: Giant powered by Yamaha | Battery capacity: 375Wh | Max Torque: 80Nm

Sensor driven natural pedal assist
Available range extender battery

The Giant Revolt e+ Pro has been built around making the riding feel natural and that's why it's so interesting. It utilises a Yamaha-developed motor that Giant has then customised by tuning the software to increase the available pedal assistance and torque output. 

Torque, cadence, slope and speed are all evaluated to understand how to ramp up assistance in a way that feels natural. Climbing a steep hill or riding across town is easily controlled with no intrusive surging in power and the like. 

The road bike-like geometry also gives the bike a racy nature and once up to speed, it's relatively easy to maintain momentum and zip to and from home.

Vitus E Substance Carbon E Adventure Bike

(Image credit: Vitus )

Vitus E Substance Carbon E Adventure Bike

Great spec for a competitive price

Drive system: Fazua | Battery capacity: 250Wh | Max torque: 40Nm

SRAM Apex 1 gearing
Great value for money
Power may not stand up to steep climbs

The Vitus E Substance Carbon E Adventure Bike doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, but it offers an excellent all-round package at a competitive price point. Powered by a Fazua motor with 250Wh battery and 40Nm of maximum torque, you can achieve around 400 watts of peak power in its full power mode. Don't be fooled, however, into thinking that you're getting a free ride. The Fazua motor is designed to complement your workout, not deprive you of one.

The bike comes equipped with SRAM Apex 1 gearing with a 1x setup combined with a 10-42 11-speed cassette. The 38t chainring should make climbing easier while rolling along on gravel-specific 650b wheels wrapped in 47mm wide WTB Venture TCS tyres.

Best electric gravel bike: Alchemy E-Ronin GRX Disc

(Image credit: Alchemy )

Alchemy E-Ronin GRX Disc

Fazua-powered boutique gravel grinder

Drive system: Fazua Evation | Battery capacity: 250Wh | Max Torque: 60Nm

Motor and battery can be removed as a single unit
Custom Geometry and paint for no extra cost
Four drivetrain options
Not available in sizes under 52cm

If you like the sound of a hand-made carbon bike from the USA then Alchemy is the answer. Since 2008 Alchemy has been putting out work like no other. All the manufacturing for every bike happens under the roof of its Denver, Colorado-based headquarters. The in-house manufacturing means customers can choose custom paint. Other perks include a crash replacement discount, a two-week money-back guarantee, free shipping and a lifetime warranty.

There are two base colour options and four choices of drivetrain: Shimano GRX, Shimano GRX di2, SRAM Force AXS and SRAM Red AXS. Also included are HED wheels, and Zipp cockpit, and no matter which build you choose you’ll find a Fazua Evation motor system and clearance for up to 45mm with 700c or 2.1in with 650b. 

Best electric gravel bike: Boardman ADV 8

(Image credit: Boardman )

Boardman ADV 8.9e

The most affordable electric gravel bike on the market

Drive system: Fazua | Battery capacity: 252Wh | Max Torque: 55Nm

Well suited to being the only bike you own
Carbon fork
Great value

At £2,699, the Fazua-powered Boardman ADV 8.9e isn't exactly what you'd call a budget offering but it's the most affordable model on the market.

The frame uses aluminium as a nod to keeping the price contained but Boardman has still managed to include a carbon fork. The running gear consists of a SRAM APEX 1x11 groupset with hydraulic disc brakes, Boardman alloy cockpit and wheels, and a Fizik saddle.

The 38mm tyres might be better suited to cyclo-cross than gravel but it does a good enough job ironing out trail buzz and supplying grip. As an everyday commuter, the Boardman ADV 8.9e makes for a very compelling case as to why it should be considered as your next N+1 purchase.

Best electric gravel bike: Ribble CGR AL e

(Image credit: Ribble )

Ribble CGR AL e

An electric gravel bike wrapped in traditional road bike clothing

Drive system: Ebikemotion | Battery capacity: 250Wh | Max Torque: 40Nm

Hard to tell it’s an ebike
Rack and fender mounts
Available on Cycle to Work
Carbon Fork
Non-removable battery
Low max torque

The Ribble CGR AL e is one of the cheapest electric grave bikes on the market. There are a variety of levels available and they start way down at £1,915.83 for a Shimano Tiagra version. Cough up just a little bit more though and the SRAM Apex 1x 650B retails at £2,082.50 but gets you a build that is much more capable off-road.

A 1x11 drivetrain keeps the system simple and lightweight. There's less to break, less that needs adjusted, and less to think about when shifting. The SRAM Apex rear derailleur also includes a clutch that helps keep the chain from bouncing over rough roads. Along with the change in groupset the generously size 650b wheels make for a much more comfortable ride.

Whatever configuration ends up fitting your budget the Ribble CGR Al e uses the Ebikemotion X35 drive system. While the Ribble bike is a budget bike this same system shows up on bikes at all price ranges. It's got the same integrated downtube battery and rear hub motor in the Ribble CGR AL e.

Best electric gravel bike: Pinarello Dyodo Gravel

(Image credit: Pinarello)

Pinarello Dyodo Gravel

One of the stealthiest electric gravel bikes available

Drive system: ebikemotion | Battery capacity: 250Wh | Max Torque: 40Nm

Fast recharge
Hard to tell it’s an ebike
Non-removable battery
Rear hub motor adds complication to rear wheel removal

The Pinarello offering is an ebike that puts the motor on the rear hub and is hard to distinguish from a traditional bike. There's no massive motor at the bottom bracket. Instead, it's a sleek design language that unapologetically borrows from the rest of the Pinarello family. You can tell the moment you look at it that it's a Pinarello but evidence of it being an ebike is a lot harder to spot.

The chosen drive system is the ebikemotion x35. Attached to the rear hub is where you'll find a motor with a max torque of 40Nm. This isn't the kind of system that will have you flying up the inclines without much work. Instead, the idea is to make it feel more like you are pedalling on your own but you've gotten a lot stronger.

Best electric gravel bike: Basso Bikes Volta

(Image credit: Basso)

Basso Bikes Volta

A svelte motor-equipped Palta with looks to match

Drive system: Polini | Battery capacity: 500Wh | Max Torque: 70Nm

Low Weight
Long Range

With the Basso Volta the idea was to take the muscle-powered Palta and add more versatility. The hand-built carbon frame gets a new layup and internal structure but retains a similar geometry. Keeping the same geometry ensures similar levels of ride feel and the motor adds a helping hand when you need it.

Keeping the bike light was a priority for Basso and the Italian Polini motor fills that need. The 250w (500wmax) motor weighs in at only 2.8kg and sports one of the best power-to-weight ratios in the industry. The torque is a bit lower than the Bosch equivalent but, at 16.5kg for the whole system, it's light enough to pedal without assistance.

Best electric gravel bike: Look e-765 Gravel

(Image credit: Look)

Look e-765 Gravel

A light, electric option that can be ridden with or without the motor

Drive system: Fazua | Battery capacity: 252Wh | Max Torque: 55Nm

Motor and battery can be removed as a single unit
Looks like the non-electric version

The Look e-765 gravel is a capable e-bike with up to 400w of pedal assist. There's a solid app available for monitoring anything you can think of. Through the app, any battery system details you might want to know are available at a glance as is all the normal ride tracking data you'd expect.

If you'd rather ride a traditional pedal-powered bike you can remove the entire drive system. The Fazua system houses everything in a Drivepack system. Combined in a single unit you'll find an integrated motor and electronics as well as a removable battery. Simply slide the battery into place and then insert the whole unit into the downtube or swap it with a cover. With the drive system removed there is only a small weight penalty and the now-empty cavity is perfect for whatever you want to carry.

What to look for when buying an electric gravel bike

1. How far can you go?

When comparing electric-assist bikes there's a whole lot of numbers that get lobbied about. Range is sometimes measured by vertical gain and sometimes by distance. The batteries employed get listed by the watt-hours they hold and there's maximum torque available for the motors. It can all get overwhelming fast and what you want to know is how far you can go.

How far you can go is the hardest spec to figure out. The heavier the rider and bike the more power the battery will need to supply. If you ride into a headwind, you'll use more power. Spend your day on the bike climbing hills and again you'll use more power. It's likely you want gravel-specific tyres on your bike and knobby tyres have higher rolling resistance, which means more power. If you were riding a non-electric bike these are all the same factors that would determine how much effort you need to put in on a given ride. 

2. How much work does the rider do?

Going hand in hand with the range discussion is the question of how much work you have to do vs the bike's motor. One of the best ways to extend range is to do more work with your muscles and ask less of the bike. Every electric bike offers a variety of settings to make that easy.

What might not be so obvious is what the ranges actually mean. A quoted assistance range might show a number in watts, a support ratio percentage, or a speed. The simplest quoted max is the speed number. You can always go faster than the max speed listed but the motor will no longer assist. The point where that transition happens depends more on local laws than the actual motor.

While speed depends on regulations the other quoted numbers have to do with the limitations of the motor. Weight and size are the biggest obstacles to how powerful a motor will be. It's a balancing act where manufacturers try to get the most power in the smallest space. What a given manufacturer was able to achieve will dictate how much support is available at the top end. From there the user can turn down the support and gain battery life.

The numbers that show what you get at the various levels are max watts and support ratio percentage. A low mode might offer a 50 per cent support ratio percentage with a max of 250w. Meaning however many watts you put into the pedals, the motor will add an additional 50 per cent until the max of 250 watts is reached. As the speed regulation is always in effect the max speed is also always there.

Josh hails from the Pacific Northwest of the United States but would prefer riding through the desert than the rain. He will happily talk for hours about the minute details of cycling tech but also has an understanding that most people just want things to work. He is a road cyclist at heart and doesn't care much if those roads are paved, dirt, or digital. Although he rarely races, if you ask him to ride from sunrise to sunset the answer is probably yes