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Top 10 eMTBs of the Year

For many years Fly Rides has always rounded up the best eMTBs of a given model year. We do this not just because we love you, but because we think it's important for buyers to know what the best options are at a given price point. That is why we always organize our top eMTB list by how much it's going to cost you. 

As we were putting together the 2022 list, we got to thinking that many of the so-called “best options”  available were from big-name brands. And those big-name bikes were going to cost you well over $10,000. While spending that kind of dough might be fine for some people, hearing that the best eMTBS of 2022 will cost more than $10,000 might have you clicking away right now. (Please don’t - good news is coming!)  

This year we decided to kick all the higher price tags to the curb and stick to bikes that are going under $10,000. You do not have to be spending five figures on an eMTB to get something amazing. In fact, some of the best stuff is around $8,000. But a nearly identical bike from a big name brand might run you more like $15,000. It makes you wonder if those big-name brands are really all that special. 


So maybe you’re thinking, "under 10k? What does that even mean? Is it going to be a bunch of bikes that are $9,999?" It does not! We’re going to start with bikes under $5000 with one excellent option, the Cube Reaction Hybrid Series. 

 

Cube Reaction Hybrid Pro 500

 

Year after year the only hardtail eMTB that even matters to me is the Cube Reaction Hybrid. Part of what makes this bike such an excellent option is that you have, well, options. 

  • If you want something entry-level so that you can hop into the eMTB world at a minimal price point, they've got the Cube Reaction Hybrid Performance 500. It's going to run you only $3500. 
  • If you are fully committed to the hardtail eMTB gang then you can go ahead and get yourself a Cube Reaction Hybrid EXC 750. 
  • Or you can meet in the middle and get the one that is probably my choice, the Reaction Hybrid pro 500. 
  • Not only do you have different price points and battery sizes. you've also got different frame types, including a low step option and your traditional diamond frame. Having these different frame styles opens this bike up to riders as short as 4 foot 11, maybe even shorter. And, of course, they've also got sizes for you tall guys and gals as well. 
  • More and more, I do feel like Cube is one of the few companies out there who not only cares about giving you a hardtail eMTB but wants to give you one that you are going to want to use. 

And that is why the Cube Reaction Hybrid Pro 500 kicks off our top 10 list. 

 

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Heading back into full suspension eMTBs we're going to talk about some bikes that are in the $5,000 to $6,000 range. These bikes pack in the same value as the under 5ks with some higher-end specs. 


Bulls Copperhead EVO AM 1

 

This bike made the cut largely because it is the only bike in this price range that features the new Bosch Smart System. If you don't know what the Bosch Smart System is, I would encourage you to go watch our video on it. 

  • For the uninitiated, the Bosch Smart System Cliff Notes: a 750 watt-hour battery, the e-bike flow app, and, of course, that Bosch CX motor that you know and love. 
  • If you look at a big name brand like Trek, the first available bike you can get the Bosch Smart System on is going to cost you $9,200. So if you're looking for a Bosch Smart System and you're looking to save some money as well, the Bulls Copperhead EVO AM 1 is pretty much the only choice for you. 
  • But just because Bulls knew that they were probably the only company offering a smart system at this low price does not mean they’ll short you on components. This bike has got a nice all-mountain design: 150 millimeters of travel along with some plus-size tires on there and a very popular mullet setup. (That means there's going to be a 29-inch wheel in the front and a 27.5 inch in the back.)
  • This is pretty much an all-purpose bike and would be great as a bikepacking bike because you could pretty easily get in a 40 to 60-mile trip on that 750-watt hour battery. 

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Cube Stereo Hybrid 140 HPC Pro 625

 

This is the eMTB that I rode first in 2022 and immediately fell in love. This electric mountain bike is seriously perfect for flowy singletrack and cross-country riding, but it also climbs incredibly well. And the price point of this bike comes in at $5799, which is incredibly low for how well this bike performs. 

  • Plus, you're getting a carbon front end along with an aluminum rear triangle. That is Cube's twin mold technology, and getting a carbon frame for under 6k is pretty impressive. 
  • The 140 in the name means that you're getting 140 millimeters of travel. That's going to be a RockShox Recon fork and then a RockShox Deluxe in the back. 
  • If you're like me and you want to use this bike for cross-country single track kind of riding this is going to be a perfect suspension setup. You don’t need anything more than this.
  • You're also getting the newest version of the Bosch CX motor, a 625-watt hour battery, and a Purion display which helps keep costs down. 
  • And for what it’s worth, this bike is an absolute stunner in terms of looks. 
  • The Cube Stereo Hybrid Pro sets you up with a stock bike that's going to ride well out the gate, but it's also nice that you're saving money so that when it's time to change out those components because you've been riding so much, then you have a little saved up to upgrade the components. 

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Orbea Rise Hydro H30

 

I did a literal spit take with my morning coffee when I saw that this bike was in the $5,000 to $6,000 range. I honestly cannot believe the Orbea Rise H30 is under six thousand dollars, and well under it at that. Coming in at $5,699 this bike absolutely has to be on your shortlist of bikes to buy in 2022. 

  • The Orbea Rise series are lightweight, cross-country-style bikes with batteries that just won't quit. And that's especially true with these Hydro bikes (that’s what the H stands for) because it has a 540 watt-hour battery. 
  • Now I know you might be thinking "there's way bigger batteries than that" but remember this is a lightweight option with a Shimano EP8 RS motor that only pulls 60-newton meters of torque. Orbea estimates that you should be able to get one and a half times the range than you would on a normal eMTB motor, and in our testing, that turned out to be true. 
  • The H30 is certainly no slouch in terms of suspension components either. You've got a Marzocchi Bomber Z2 fork and a Fox Float DPS in the back. You're getting 140 millimeters of travel. This is a great amount of suspension and great suspension components for an cross country bike.
  • On a less powerful motor and a lightweight eMTB, you're definitely going to want a bigger gear ratio to make up for some of that lost power, and you've got it on this bike, with a 12-speed Shimano SLX derailleur on a 10 to 51 tooth cassette. 
  • The main reason the H30 makes our list is that you just do not see lightweight eMTBs at this price point. You can't go wrong with any of the Orbea Rise bikes in my opinion but to be able to get on one of the most popular lightweight eMTB series in the world for $5,699 is shocking in the best way. 

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Moving on to the $6000 to $8000 range, let’s looks at some bikes that give you some of the big brand perks you’re looking for without breaking the bank. These bikes under 8k level up with offerings like the Bosch smart system, innovative suspension systems and alloy. 


Cube Stereo Hybrid 140 HPC TM 750

 

Is it weird to say that the first bike we're featuring in this section gets on this list because it stays so similar to the 2021 model? Maybe. The 2021 version of this bike was damn near perfect in my opinion, and the 2022 model stays very similar but with some key upgrades. 

  • First of all, you have the opportunity to go with that Bosch smart system. You can choose to stick with a 625-watt hour battery if you want, but that's going to downgrade you from the smart system. 
  • The other big upgrade I think is the Fox Float-X rear shock. To be totally honest, this rear shock is overkill for many riders, but man, does it feel good. And if you're riding hard Fox Float-X is the way to go. 
  • I am an absolute fan of the Cube Stereo Hybrid 140 series, and if you're willing to spend a little bit more money it is definitely worth the upgrade from the Pro to the TM. There's a reason not much changed from 2021 to 2022, and that's because the TM version of this bike is pretty much perfection. 

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Mondraker Crafty R

 

If you follow our YouTube channel, you had to know that a Mondraker was going to make it onto this list, and (spoiler alert!)  there might be more later. But first, let’s talk about the the Mondraker Crafty R. 

  • The Crafty eMTBs from Mondraker are enduro and all-mountain focused, but they keep things nimble with their forward geometry, and they make the most of the Fox 38 Float fork and the Fox Float-X LV rear suspension with their zero suspension system. 
  • The Crafty is consistently one of the most popular lines from Mondraker, and I think that is because it keeps the all-mountain style with 160 millimeters of travel, plus-size tires, and an approachable geometry for new riders. But it is also capable of straight-line speeds that make it very popular with more advanced riders. 
  • Somehow Mondraker has found a way to ride that line between people who want to do downhill world cup style stuff and people who want to do that but aren't quite ready yet. 
  • The Crafty R is going to be the entry-level option, and it's going to run you $7,999, but that's because Mondraker doesn't make anything truly entry-level. 
  • Entry-level is a very loose term for the Crafty R with that Fox suspension, the Bosch smart system, and excellent drivetrain. You could expect to spend about ten thousand dollars if this was made by another brand. Mondraker consistently finds ways to undercut the rest of the market, and that is to your benefit. 

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Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy

 

Next up is another bike that makes the list based on the merits of its father and grandfather, a bit eMTB nepotism there. The Turbo Levo Comps are always near-perfect trail bikes that offer some nice cross country performance, big batteries, and excellent components. Plus they added an alloy for 2022. 

  • You've also get the quiet but powerful Brose S Mag motor and a nice displayless cockpit. 
  • We would have liked to see this bike priced more in the $6,000 range, history we’ve seen mid-6k for this bike. But there's no doubt that if you're okay with paying that big brand name upcharge, this is going to be a bike that you will love. 

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Orbea Wild FS H10

 

It’s another Orbea bike, but this time it is the Wild series. So what's different about this Orbea bike?

  • This one's going to be full-powered by a Bosch Performance CX motor. It’s not the Bosch Smart System, so it fills a nice little niche that I don't think a lot of other eMTB bike manufacturers have filled. 
  • What Orbea has done with the Orbea Wild FS H10 is pumped up the components of the bike instead of focusing on getting that Bosch smart system on there. So if you feel like the Bosch smart system is a bit of overkill then this could be the bike for you. 
  • You're still getting the very big 625-watt hour battery and the newest generation of Bosch motors, but Orbea is giving you a top-notch drivetrain to go along with that motor system with a massive gear ratio and one of the best derailleurs you can get: the 12-speed Shimano XT derailleur on a 10 to 51 tooth cassette.
  • You're also getting the very good Fox 38 Float Performance fork and a Fox Float DPS shock in the back. 
  • I honestly wasn't sure what I would feel about the Orbea Wild FS H10 going into testing. So much of what I like about Orbea has to do with the Rise series. The lightweight aspect, the cross country stylings, but the Orbea Wild seems to keep everything I like about the Orbea Rise and just put it on a stronger bike. 
  • The enduro packaging on the Orbea Wild bikes feels like a lighter-weight version of an enduro bike that rides really well in downhill usage. Orbea excels at that lightweight feeling on all of their bikes, and the Orbea Wild is still an excellent example. This enduro bike does feel more nimble too, so if you've got to change lines at the last second or if you just like making the uphills more interesting, the Orbea Wild accomplishes all of these things.

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In the 8 - 10K range, we have bikes that bring you all the big-name-brand bells and whistles without the big-name-brand prices. 


Cube Stereo Hybrid 160 Action Team

 

This is priciest bike on our list and it’s definitely one of the best. Year after year, the Actionteam has impressed the Fly Rides crew, and the enduro-focused 160 Actionteam always tops the list. 

  • As usual on the Action team you have got top-of-the-line Kashima-coated components. 
  • It's going to be a Fox 38 Float Factory fork, a Fox Float-X Factory rear shock, and a Fox Transfer Factory dropper with Kashima coating as well. 
  • But the specs appeal of this bike does not stop there because you have got a full Shimano XT groupset, and, of course, that Bosch smart system.
  •  So that is a top-of-the-line drive unit, with a top-of-the-line battery range, and a top-of-the-line drivetrain and the top-of-the-line breaks, from a top-of-the-line company...you get the idea. 
  • It is more expensive than the 2021 model, but that's just in comparison to the 2021 and 2020 models of the Actionteam. Any of the big two or three brands of eMTBs or some of these direct-to-consumer bikes, you are paying more than $9,449 for this type of setup. 
  • So really the only question is whether or not you're trading out that 2021 Actionteam for this brand new 2022. 

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Drum roll, please….our first choice eMTB under $10,000 for 2022 is…

 

Mondraker Crafty Level R

 

We've always said that Mondraker is a real rider's brand, and that is on full display this year with the Level series in general, but specifically with the Level R. And coming in at $8,499, we don't think there is another bike on the market that offers quite as much as the Mondraker Level R does for the price.

  • Part of what makes the Mondraker Level R so great is also what makes the rest of the Mondraker bikes great. They do a good job of riding the line of making bikes for advanced downhill riders but also offering things like the forward geometry and zero suspension that make this bike more approachable for riders just getting into the sport.
  •  So whether you're a veteran shredmaster or a beginner sending singletrack and tiny jumps, this is an excellent option. 
  • I've always been impressed with how Mondraker's zero suspension system seems to be able to make any fork and shock feel amazing, but on the Mondraker Level R you have also got some excellent Fox suspension paired with the zero suspension system. Up front, it's 180 millimeters of travel and a Fox 38 Float Performance fork with a FIT grip damper. And in the back, it is the Fox DHX2 performance rear shock. 
  • You're also getting the incredibly strong four-piston SRAM Code R hydraulic disc brakes with a 220-millimeter rotor up front and in the rear. This is something that I didn't see on any other bike this year.
  • You're also getting a SRAM GX Eagle derailleur with 12 speeds on this bike. That's going to offer plenty of climbing capability along with that Bosch CX motor. With that nimble forward geometry along with that zero suspension system climbing on this bike is a ton of fun. 

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That’s our top pick of the year and our top ten overall. Think we missed one? Check out our YouTube video and hash it out in the comments. Or visit us online or in one of our storefronts, and see if we can’t set you up with the 2022 bike of your dreams. We really think you’ll have a hard time beating most of these bikes in terms of components, reliability, all the good stuff. 


 

 

 

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