How Steep A Hill Can An Electric Bike Climb?

Who doesn’t love electric bikes? Although they’re pedal bikes, they’re still assisted by electric motors – which makes riding them even easier than regular bikes. That’s a key reason why e-bikes are well-loved and demanded across the globe.

If you’re an electric bike owner living by the hills or planning to ride the bike in hilly areas, you may often wonder critical questions. “How steep a hill can an electric bike climb?” or “Can my e-bike even climb a steep hill?” You’d be pleased to know that the straightforward answer to the latter is, “Yes. Of course!”

The answer to the first question varies on several factors, including the motor, design, specs, and make of your electric bike. And if you’re curious about finding out the detailed answer, welcome to the right blog. Below, we delve deeper into the discussion of riding electric bikes up and down the hills and how steep a hill they can climb.

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Can Electric Bikes Climb A Steep Hill?

Electric bikes are versatile inventions designed to offer comfort, ease, durability, and functionality. They also are a vital form of exercise to keep your body fit because they’ve got the same power as regular motorbikes.

E-bikes are even more fun for people who love indulging in adventurous outdoor activities and racing on rocky terrains. This shows that they are ideal for climbing steep hills because they’re equipped with ample power to cater to various inclines, declines, and terrains.

If you get an electric mountain bike, things become even more interesting. These gems have mid-drive motors to help you navigate your steep hill ride even more flawlessly.

Read Are Electric Bikes Good For Exercise?

How Fast Can E-Bikes Climb Up The Steep Hills?

As we mentioned above, e-bikes can ride up the steep hills, depending primarily on their motor sizes.

Modern electric bikes either have mid-drive or HUB motors. While HUB motors are excellent for light hills and flat areas, mid-drive motors promise remarkable bike handling through the more inclined terrains.

An e-bike’s average speed for the hilly roads can be anywhere between 18 mph to 25 mph. This range ensures minimal exertion of the rider when riding the electric bike upwards.

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It’s also more than enough for riders seeking that deluxe oomph factor or simply prefer not sweating buckets as they travel to work or run errands up or down the hill.

Then again, if you want to notch it up a bit and go slightly faster, it’s your call. There’s nothing wrong with that. But you may need to alter and modify your bike’s motor to accommodate the higher speed limit for more athletic or need-for-speed feels.

Read Can you take an Electric Bike on Eurostar?

How High Can E-Bikes Climb Up The Steep Hills?

Every electric bike’s motor size determines how easily you can maneuver through the gradients.

Typically, when exerting a sufficient effort, you can drive your electric bike on hills of 1 in 10 (10%). This ensures you’re not participating in anything extremely strenuous and over-exhausting yourself.

You can also put in a little more effort to pass the maximum inclination of 1 in 7 (14%). You’d be astonished to realize that electric bikes and your efforts can even help you achieve a successful climb on gradients even steeper than this!

Though you can usually experience that in immensely hilly countries, the effect is extraordinarily stunning.

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What Features Your Electric Bike Must Have To Climb Up The Hill?

Ultimately, it doesn’t significantly matter how steep the hill is. What matters more is if your electric bike is equipped with the essential features that assist it in riding along that hilly terrain. Here are those key specs an e-bike must definitely have for a smooth climb.


Throttle is one of the best specs that offer essential assistance as you ascend on steep hills. You need to twist the handles to use the throttle that pushes your electric bike forward while climbing to the top.

However, throttles are usually more ideal for smaller hills, though you can also engage with them when riding at the bottom of the hill to experience remarkable momentum.

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Torque measures the applied force of the power generated from the e-bike’s motor and pedaling in relation to the bike’s turning wheels. While you don’t need much force to move your bike on flatter terrains, you need substantial effort.

Therefore, you need an electric bike with impressive torque to help you move up the hills and against gravity.

Torque sensors help you optimize your electric bike’s features instantly. They adjust the e-bike’s settings to offer you the maximum support you need when ascending the incline.

While immensely beneficial, unfortunately, torque sensors are more widely installed in premium e-bikes. So, if you wish to avail of this spec, the chances are that you’ll have to invest more finances to buy a high-end e-bike.

Read Are Electric Bikes Allowed on Bike Paths?

Pedal Assist

Pedal assists offer you maximum control over your electric bike when traveling up a steep hill. They stabilize the cadence and ensure it remains that way throughout your ascend.

Besides, pedal assists also come in handy when you want to ensure a smooth and gradual ride as you sail down these steep inclines.

Type Of E-Bike

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It’s one thing to ride your electric bikes through hilly terrains occasionally. But it’s completely different if you plan on frequently traveling through sharp inclinations. And if you do want an electric bike more suited for regular steep hill-climbing, then it’s recommended to buy a mountain e-bike.

Mountain electric bikes are equipped with better features and specifically designed to assist you with varying gradients. On the other hand, you can, of course, climb hills using regular e-bikes.

But they’re more suitable for flatter surfaces like commuting around the town, city, or work. Plus, you’ll have to over-push yourself and exert more effort to ascend steep areas, which can be very stressful and uncomfortable if done repeatedly. 

Read What Are the Different Types of Electric Bikes?


Yes, we’ve already discussed the motor types above. But honestly, perhaps the most important feature your electric bike needs is the mid-drive motor. It offers a power output of over 350W, whereas the hub motors offer a maximum output of 250W. This crucial difference greatly impacts how easily your e-bike can go up the hilly inclines.

Admittedly, e-bikes with mid-drive motors can be costlier than hub motors. But you can expect to get one of the wallet-friendlier makes and still benefit from a power capability of around 350 to 750 Watts output.

Ideally, we suggest that you spend more today to benefit from the perks longer. It’s not every day you buy electric bikes. So, why not get one that offers extensive and more rewarding advantages?

Getting an e-bike equipped with one of the best mid-drive motors enables you to get around 1000 to 1500 Watts power output. That’s an excellent feature for all riders likely to use their electric bikes and regularly climb inclines and hilly surfaces. 

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Although not as important as the features above, you must still know about the multiple ways to recharge your bike’s battery. That way, you wouldn’t have to stress about the electric motor dying out and leaving you stranded on the hills.

Regenerative braking helps your e-bike generate energy as you go up the hill. It utilizes the resistance you face as you travel against gravity and is a vital feature whenever climbing any inclination.

You ensure that your e-bike’s battery has some charging left for when you’re riding down the hill through this process.

If pedaling doesn’t generate enough power and the battery’s completely out of charging, you’ll have no other way but to stop the e-bike and hook it up to a charger.

Read How Long Does an Electric Bike Battery Last?

How To Climb Up The Hill With Your Electric Bike?

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There are several tricks that help you travel up and down the hill on your e-bike without consuming a lot of your energy. Below we list the most notable ones to help you go faster and further between each recharge.

Tire Pressure

Whenever you’re going out on a ride, don’t forget to check the air pressure for every tire. Maintaining it means offering your electric bike impressively better traction and optimizing the motor battery’s power. And by now, we already know how important motor charging is when ascending or descending inclines. 

Line Choice

Hilly terrains can be tricky. So, apart from being alert to your surroundings, you should also look as far ahead as possible. That helps you better evaluate the trail and estimate steering lines, preventing sudden momentum losses.

Body Posture 

You can’t stress enough about your body posture as you go up and down the hill. As you ascend, you must keep your body facing forward, lower your chest to a place near the bars, and bend your elbows. This position improves the aerodynamics while managing the rear wheel’s traction effectively.

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Tire Style

 The tire and its sturdiness are critical elements when riding along hilly and rocky surfaces. Therefore, you must ensure picking the right size and styled tires to help maximize the comfort and stability during your rides.

Read How to Clean an Electric Bike

How To Go Down The Hills?

Luckily, regenerative charging ensures your electric bike will slow down as you descend the inline, meaning you can limit the bike’s top speed as you ride downwards.

The built-in friction also helps to reduce the speed when going towards gravity. This spec offers an edge against the traditional bicycles that freely ride and often escalate, causing you to lose control over the speed when going down.

Best E-Bikes For Riding Up The Hills

When searching for an electric bike, you must always consider the possible purposes and the type of ride you will go for. Elements like riding on flatter terrains, hilly inclinations, or racing make massive differences.

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If you want to use your e-bike for rough and steep hills, here are a few e-bikes make that will offer optimal benefits:

Addmotor Motan Ebike

The classic electric bike offers high visual appeal with its aesthetically simple design and a wide LED headlamp. The make also offers an optimal battery life, traveling for around 65 miles per charge.

The highlight of the Addmotor Motan is its durable fat tires, great for experiencing comfort when riding along bumpy and rough terrains.

E-Cells Super Monarch Crown

At first glance or thought, you may not consider the e-bike for steep hills because of its hub motor. But here’s the intriguing part: the bike contains TWO 750-watt hub motors to develop ample torque even when you fully utilize its 400-pound capacity load.

The only drawback with the electric bike is that it takes around seven hours to charge every battery completely.

Haibike Sduro Fullseven LT

This model is perfect for amateurs because of the numerous safety features installed. The Sduro Fullseven is equipped with hydraulic disc brakes for heightened ride control.

It also has extra-wide Schwalbe Tough Tom tires to absorb shocks and vibrations caused when riding along extra rocky trails, ensuring optimal practicality.

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HalloMotor 5000W FC

This beauty is a dream commuter for all rocky travels with an electric motor of 5000W, and an ascending speed range that goes up to 55 mph. The electric bike also has premium air suspension to deliver an immaculately smooth ride.

The cherry on top: it also has stable hydraulic disc brakes to offer you more control over the braking forces, which is critical when encountering uneven and rougher surfaces and steep slopes.

how steep a hill can an electric bike climb
How steep a hill can an electric bike climb

Our Final Thoughts

This marks the end of our guide. Great news: you can ride your electric bikes along steep hills, and electric mountain bikes are better than the regular e-bike because it guarantees a smoother ride.

Just ensure that your bike tires are wide enough to embrace the effect of rough surfaces and that your mid-drive motor has regenerative charging to help you during the trip. And you’re good to go.

We also shortlisted a few successful electric bikes that work wonders for hilly terrains. So, don’t forget to observe their features and decide which one best suits your preferences and budget.

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