We’ve spoken to a number of people during bike trade shows and asked them what their experience of riding an electric mountain bike was.

Electric assist bikes are something that still causes some debate and stirs some passions within the mountain bike community. They’re often seen by some as a bit of a sore point. They’re seen slightly as cheating.

Sometimes, quite frankly, there’s a lot of vehement hatred for e-bikes. People get annoyed by the idea of e-bikes.

That is, until people get out from behind the keyboards and actually go and experience what an e-bike actually is. And what it isn’t.

Some key quotes

“When the concept of e-bikes came along it annoyed me I must be honest. I like to go up a hill and have a smug feeling that I’ve earned the right to be here. I then rode an e-bike and my world did change. And while I don’t think I’ll ever be an owner of an e-bike, they’re great fun, I can’t deny it. For the right person, people who don’t have time to train, people who just want to smash out multiple runs, yeah, I think they’re a great thing.” – David Flynn, Hotlines.

“I got up a technical climb I probably would;’t have got up on a normal mountain bike. Able to see more, more in the time I had. I think that’s the big thing. Everyone has a window – busy lives – and an e-bike will allow you to do more in that window.” – Sandy Plenty, Trailhead Bicycle Co.

“It just changed a bit of the ride. The hills that you’d normally be a bit put off by – you think “awww, look at that, that’s gonna be a bit of a struggle”… suddenly they become quite fun because you could fly up ’em , you know, if you really put the effort in. It wasn’t exactly easier, you’re still trying as hard as everything like that but it definitely er, yeah, added a different twist to the ride.” – Antonio Fiore, Silverfish UK.

“I’m thinking of getting one, purely seen as an uplift assist. Kn out lunch break rides we’ve got some very steep climbs around where we are in Risca at Mojo so potentially we can get two or three runs of the downhill track in our lunch break rather than just one. So not seeing it as easier way to get to the top, seeing it as a faster way to get to the top and getting some more fun time from it.” – Tim Williams, Mojo Suspension.

Have you ridden one?

What did you think? Are you a convert? Do you still dislike them? As ever, leave a comment below.