Deciding on a new dirt bike this year? Electric MX Bike designs have been shaking up the industry recently, and while gas builds still dominate in competition, it’s getting to be because there are more riders who opt for them, not because their engine design gives them an objective advantage. Performance electric bikes like Intense Cycles MX e-bikes are now providing riders with the right riding style and experience level a distinct edge in some events, and as their designs continue to improve, we can expect the competition to stay pretty neck-and-neck for a while.
Are Electric MX Bikes Faster Than Gas Bikes?
If you’re talking about top end speed on a flat stretch of track, then no. In fact, under those conditions, most high end performance gas bike engines would win on a long enough track. On shorter tracks, the prize might still go to the e-bike though. Performance electric builds like the Intense Cycles Tazer MX e-bike offer much, much more responsive acceleration from a dead stop than their gas counterparts, which often gives riders an advantage on a short stretch. In events that require pinpoint maneuvers or frequent cornering, electric bikes often manage faster lap speeds. So which is faster? Depends on how you ride.
Pros & Cons of Each Type of Bike
As mentioned above, the Electric MX Bike options out there have a distinct advantage for maneuverability, but the gas engines do still rank for top end power under certain circumstances. Other advantages electric bikes have over gas bikes include:
- Lower maintenance costs
- No gas expenses
- Fewer rust-prone components
This might make it look like the electric bike is a clear winner, but there are some advantages to a gas engine:
- Gas bikes have a lower up-front cost for comparable power
- Lithium-ion batteries are expensive to replace at the end of their life cycles
- More aftermarket upgrade options on today’s market
So which one should you opt for? Well, that depends on what you want to do.
How To Choose Between Gas and Electric MX Bike
If you’re shopping for a new rider or a kid, there’s a lot of reasons to opt for electric bikes, but the big one is maintenance. Both bike types need regular maintenance and tune-ups to stay at peak performance, but there are fewer ongoing maintenance expenses for electric bikes. They still need fluid changes for brakes and other systems that use liquid cooling or hydraulics, but common oil changes and other combustion engine-based maintenance tasks are not an issue. That lets new riders focus on learning to make adjustments to the bike instead of having to memorize a complex upkeep cycle.
Experienced riders should consider how long they’re going to own the bike, rider weight, and preferred event types before making a choice. There are a lot of good reasons to go with a performance electric model like an Intense Tazer MX pro build for competitions, but casual weekend riders should spend a little more time considering issues like the economics of each decision, because they’re both a lot of fun to ride.