Folding electric bike : Compact, lightweight EAB (-15kg)

A folding electric bike has the advantage of being able to be stored at home in a small space, as well as being easy to take on public transport.

Don't miss the bike of your dreams

Folding electric bike or folding electric bike?

Both "folding electric bike" and "folding electric bicycle" are accepted designations for folding e-bikes capable of speeds of up to 25 km/h with little effort. Whatever the case, this type of e-bike has become a must-have for daily commuting. The market for electrically-assisted folding bikes (EABs) has been booming in recent years, as their maneuverability, practicality and flexibility make them an ideal means of transport, especially for city dwellers. With its compact size, it can take you anywhere, just like a conventional electrically-assisted bike, while taking up much less space.

The folding electric bike lets you take the train, metro, bus and all public transport without risking a fine. This makes commuting easier, while on vacation you can use a two-wheeler to take your adventure a step further, getting off a boat, a car or a camper van.

The electric folding bike, ideal for your trips in the city

The folding VAE is first and foremost the perfect partner for city dwellers. Designed for city travel, it's compact, maneuverable and effortless to ride through the urban jungle. If you're into velotafing, this is the bike for you! It's also a great choice for mixed bike/car or bike/public transport journeys.

While a conventional electric bike can be difficult to store, your folding electric bike can easily be tucked under your desk, in a closet, or tucked discreetly into a corner of your workspace.

The most compact electric bike

If the number 1 criterion for your future EAB is its compactness, then an electric folding bike is just what you're looking for. Depending on the brand, there are different types of folding, sometimes allowing you to slip your bike into a backpack! Other models can be slid along the floor, like a wheeled suitcase.

To remain easy to transport, folding bikes are generally very light, weighing on average around 15 kilos, including the battery. An advantage that also means they don't wear out their battery life as quickly.

Which folding electric bike to choose?

There are many folding electric bikes available on the market, at all prices! Here are some criteria to consider to help you choose the model that will satisfy you the most.

Defining the use of your folding VAE

Depending on your intended use, your choice of folding electric bike will differ. For example, for 100% city use over short distances, a compact folding EAB with a front-wheel motor and a range of 35 km is sufficient.

If you want to take your EAB with you on public transport, be sure to consider the time and method of folding. Also check the measurements of the bike when folded.

If you're planning to take your folding ebike on vacation for a few rides in the great outdoors, then look no further than a folding all-terrain electric bike. It may not be as compact, but its wider tires will enable you to take short rides.

Check the folding time

Folding time and ease of execution are very important if you're on a tight schedule. The average folding time ranges from 30 seconds to several minutes. Some top-of-the-range electric folding bikes can even be folded in the space of 10 seconds: very practical for catching the bus at the last minute without fear of it starting up again without you!

The most common types of folding on the current market for folding ebikes are horizontal (or sideways) folding, vertical folding (like an umbrella bed) and accordion folding. It's up to you to determine which one is the most practical for your use and your available space.

Folding type Description
Horizontal folding Side folding
Vertical folding Umbrella bed style
Accordion fold Accordion fold

The size of the wheels on an electric folding bike

The overall size of the bike depends in part on the size of the wheels. On a folding EAB, the frame size varies little: it's generally between 30 and 40 cm. 16 inches is the wheel size of an ultra-compact bike, ideal for the trunk of your car or for transport. But for everyday use, a 20-inch folding electric bike is the preferred size. And just as well, it's the most common size on the market! It represents the right compromise between comfort and compactness.

Wheel size Use
16 inches Ultra-compact, ideal for car trunks
20 inches Daily use, good compromise between comfort and compactness

Choosing a lightweight folding electric bike

What increases the weight of a folding electric bike is, of course, its pedal-assist system, and in particular its motor and battery. So you need to be careful with the bike's composition: aluminum frame, lightweight handlebars... and don't add too many accessories (mudguards, luggage racks...) which, in addition to weighing it down, will be a potential hindrance when folding.

If you're looking for a lightweight folding electric bike (i.e. a folding electric bike weighing less than 15 kg), the market record is currently held by Austrian brand Vello, whose 20" folding electric bike weighs 9.9 kg (including battery). This beats the 6-speed model from Bromptonmodel, long the lightest folding EAB.

The transmission

A gearbox is more robust than a derailleur. What's more, you won't risk upsetting the mechanism when folding and storing the bike. If you're planning to use your bike in town, 1 to 7 speeds are sufficient; a 6-speed model is ideal.

Battery options and range of folding electric bikes

Folding electric bikes are generally equipped with a lithium-ion battery: this technology stores more energy than others, giving them greater range. This type of battery can also be recharged at any time, without waiting for a complete discharge. Last but not least, they are designed for regular use, which is ideal for electric bikes.

To meet the constraints of folding and compactness, the batteries on folding EABs generally offer a shorter range than on conventional electric bikes, because they are smaller in size. They will rarely exceed 70 km range on the most efficient models.

Finally, on most folding bikes, the battery is removable, so you can easily recharge it anywhere, but also remove it if your bike is unused for a long time or stored in a place that's too cold or too hot.

The different motors on an electric folding bike

All e-bikes approved for use in Belgium have a 250 W motor capable of speeds of up to 25 km/h, which is also the case for folding e-bikes. What differs from model to model is the torque delivered by the motor, expressed in Nm (Newton-Meter). This is the force of your motor's rotational movement. The higher the torque, the easier it will be to climb hills with your folding electric bike.

Then, depending on the folding bike model, the motor may be positioned differently, which has a significant impact on the ride. For example, a motor located in the front wheel gives you the sensation of being pulled, and is recommended if you're only riding in town, where it's handy for a quick start after a red light. A motor located in the rear wheel gives the opposite sensation: that of being pushed. This is most pleasant if your surroundings are hilly. Finally, a motor integrated into the crankset provides smoother accompaniment and adapts to your pedaling. This is the right choice for use in both town and country, but it's also the most expensive solution.

Motor position Description
Front wheel Traction sensation, ideal for urban use
Rear wheel Pleasant pushing sensation for hilly environments
Pedals Smooth accompaniment, adapts to pedaling

The most popular brands of folding electric bikes

If you're looking for a reliable folding EAB, it might be worth skimming through a selection of the 10 best electric folding bikes which are widely acclaimed for the quality and practicality of their models.

These include Brompton, a pioneering British manufacturer of folding bikes. Handcrafted in London, they are among the most compact ebikes in the world, and feature a unique folding system patented by the manufacturer.

Eovolt is a French brand specializing in electric folding bikes. It is based in Lyon, where it assembles all its compact folding bikes. One of the best-known is the Eovolt Confort, a folding electric bike weighing less than 15 kg that folds up in just 10 seconds!

Finally, Venilu is a Belgian manufacturer of VAEs, whose Urbana range offers a top-of-the-range folding electric bike. Weighing just 15 kg, it can travel up to 60 km and is ideal for everyday use.

How much does a folding electric bike cost?

The price of a folding electric bike varies from 800€ for the cheapest VAEs, to over 5,000€ for top-of-the-range folding electric bikes. The reasons for this big price difference are simple: battery autonomy, motor efficiency and durability, but also the quality of the components used on the bike (disc brakes, saddle comfort...), as well as its place of manufacture.

If you're looking for an inexpensive folding electric bike, Decathlon's Tilt 500 is a 20-inch folding electric bike offering good value for money. But the more you use your folding electric bike on a daily basis, the more varied your usage, and the more you'll want to invest in a durable bike. If you're out in the countryside, you're better off with an all-terrain folding electric bike. And for compact, sturdy folding bikes, you'll also need to spend a pretty penny.

What are the advantages of choosing an electric folding bike from Upway ?

Upway 's aim is to make electric bikes accessible to as many people as possible by offering affordable, home-delivered ebikes with a 1-year warranty. The first advantage of buying a refurbished folding ebike is its price: 20 to 60% less than new.

You can buy an inexpensive folding electric bike, with access to well-known brands such as :

  1. the Moustache electric bikes
  2. the electric bikes Giant
  3. the VanMoof electric bikes

    But also historic manufacturers such as :

    1. Btwin
    2. Riese & Müller
    3. Cowboy
    4. Kalkhoff

      We carefully select the bikes we resell, and our professional mechanics in Gennevilliers, near Paris, check 20 points and replace anything that needs replacing. The result: low-cost electric bikes in near new condition!

      Upway ships its VAEs all over Belgium.

      Reduce your environmental impact with a folding EV refurbished

      Buying a folding electric bicycle refurbished means giving it a second life and prolonging its durability, instead of throwing it away. For example, on a used electric bicycle refurbished, the electrical components and mechanisms are inspected by a professional mechanic, whose job it is to restore everything to its original condition, as close as possible to new.