With a Brose motor, sleek alloy frame, and 130mm of suspension travel, this Rockrider e-bike may well be the biggest bargain of 2024.


If you want to get started with a new electric mountain bike, but have a limited budget, then Decathlon’s Rockrider E-Expl 500 S is on sale at the moment and the cheapest proper full-suspension e-bike we could find. Normally the best electric mountain bikes cost upwards of £4k, but this quality alloy-framed suspension bike, that comes with a smooth and quiet Brose motor, is on sale at just £2,299.

Decathlon Rockrider E-E-EXPL 500 S

Decathlon’s Rockrider E-E-EXPL 500 S is on sale, but looks like a solid deal even at full price.

Rockrider E-Expl 500 S | Save 9% at Decathlon
Was £2,499, now £2,299
With an alloy frame, 29in wheels, and 130mm of suspension travel, this Rockrider e-bike has everything you find on e-bike costing much more, but comes in at under £2.5k.

View Deal at Decathlon

So what makes the Rockrider E-Expl 500 S such a good deal, aside from the amazing price tag? Well, to start with it has a quality alloy frame, with sleek lines and a hidden battery inside the down tube. At 500Wh, it’s not the biggest battery available, but it’s expandable with an optional 360Wh range extender that’s sold separately. The internal battery is also removable for charging, making it convenient for people without power in their bike storage area.

Rockrider has gone to well-respected German motor brand Brose for the mid-mounted drive unit. It gets 50Nm of torque and up to 380W of power, so not up there with the likes of the Brose unit used by Specialized in the acclaimed Turbo Levo, but enough to provide significant assistance to your legs. Using a belt drive inside the casing keeps the noise down and makes this one of the quietest systems on the market.

Decathlon Rockrider E-E-EXPL 500 S

The quality looks up there with any high-end brand, and you even get moulded frame protection.

With 130mm of suspension travel front and rear, and 29in wheels, the Rockrider is aimed squarely at trail riding rather than hardcore gravity terrain. That suspension travel is delivered through a Sunrtour XCM 34 fork up front and an X-Fusion 02 shock. The fork has 34mm stanchion tubes and a 15mm through-axle to resist flex, and comes installed with a coil spring for smoothing out the terrain. While we’d prefer to see an air-sprung fork here, it’s no surprise that Rockrider has gone for a coil-spring given the tight budget. Out back there is an air shock, so it’s easy to set up your sag depending on your body weight.

Decathlon Rockrider E-E-EXPL 500 S

Sizing and geometry is modern, with only the long chainstay standing out as old school.

The geometry is modern and progressive, with a 66º head angle for confident descending and four frame sizes with comfortable reach numbers from 428mm to 485mm. The only number that stands out is the chainstay length, which at 460mm is going to make the handling more stable than dynamic.

Providing braking is a set of Tektro M276 hydraulic discs. These are equipped with 180mm rotors for assured stopping. And to propel the bike along, there’s a Microshift drivetrain with 8 gears with a 46t large sprocket at the back and a chain device up front. While not the widest spread of gears, it’s enough for all but the steepest of climbs.

Decathlon Rockrider E-E-EXPL 520 S

For £400 more, the Decathlon Rockrider E-E-EXPL 520 S comes with a raft of upgrades.

One area where Rockrider has had to make sacrifices is the seat post. There’s no dropper post on this model – an essential component for proper mountain biking – but it’s possible to upgrade to one for around £100, or the next model up comes with one as standard. This is called the Rockrider E-Expl 520S and is also on sale at the moment, for a £400 premium. We’ve got this bike on test at the moment and will be publishing a full review very soon.

Rockrider E-Expl 520 S | Save 10% at Decathlon
Was £2,999, now £2,699
This upgraded model comes with the same frame, but a dropper post as standard, a more powerful 70Nm/460W motor, an extra 10mm travel front and rear, and an air-sprung fork.

View Deal at Decathlon

There are some pretty significant upgrades with the 520 S model. Firstly you get a more powerful motor, with torque up to 70Nm and power up to 460w, making it stronger on the climbs and punchier out of corners. There’s more suspension travel, and the fork as well as the shock is air-sprung, so it’s easy to set up the suspension for your body weight. A dropper post comes as standard, and the gearing has a wider range and the brakes come with larger rotors for more power.