Electric Road E-Bikes Vs E-Dirt Bikes: A Side-by-side Comparison

If you’re in the market for an electric bike, then one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is the type. And while electric road bikes and dirt bikes both run on electricity, they are not the same type of electric bike.

Since these electric bikes serve very different purposes, there are some key differences between electric road bikes and dirt bikes. Let’s get started on breaking down what each type of bike has to offer.


As you can imagine, this is one of the most significant differences between electric road bikes and dirt bikes. And for good reason.

The speed of an average electric pedal assisted road bike typically tops out at about 32 km/h, though it is possible to find some that hit 45 km/h. However, you should research before springing for one with the extra speed, as you may need help to use it in your area.

Since electric road bikes are typically ridden on the road, they must abide by specific requirements. Now, these can vary across the country, but the ebike requirements in Ontario, for example, state that it must have a maximum assisted speed of 32 km/h. That makes it a no-go for the 45 km/h ones, at least if you’re riding it on the road.

So, if you have a need for speed, you’re best to go with an off-road option, like an electric dirt bike. These e dirt bikes have much higher speeds on the trails and track, allowing you to make record time on your favourite runs – and have a lot of fun in the process!

For example, take the 2023 Escape R by Electric Motion. The max speed on this electric dirt bike is a staggering 70 km/h. That’s nearly double the speed of an electric road bike (a road-legal one, anyway)! So, an electric dirt bike will not disappoint for fast-paced off-road adventures.


On an electric bike, torque refers to the ability to rotate the rear wheel. The higher the torque, the easier it is to accelerate, making climbing up hills much more manageable.

Generally, an electric road bike has roughly 50-60 Nm (Newton-meters) of torque, though the higher-powered ones produce closer to 80 Nm. This will assist you with acceleration and hill-climbing, but it’s nothing like you would get from an electric dirt bike.

For example, with the 2023 Escape by Electric Motion, you get 600 Nm of torque. This will undoubtedly get through some of the gnarliest, most remote trails and hills you can run into when exploring the backcountry. It will probably let you tackle some routes you didn’t even think possible.


When it comes to ebikes, the range typically refers to how much distance you can travel on a single charge. And while many e bike manufacturers will give you an exact range number for their particular models, remember that this will simply be their best estimate.

The distance you can travel depends on whether you’re riding an electric road bike, dirt bike, or something in between.

While the average ebike will typically get you somewhere between 32 km to 160km, the following factors will impact how much range you can get out of a ride:

Considering all of these factors together, there’s a good chance you’ll get more range with an electric road bike.

Not only does it typically have less weight to work with, but roads will give you a much smoother ride than the rough terrain you’ll be covered with an electric dirt bike.

But that being said, you’ll often get a more powerful battery with an electric dirt bike to help you cover those off-roading trails most effectively.

And that’s why it’s difficult to compare the range of these two types of ebikes! You’ll need to consider all of these factors together with the manufacturer’s estimate to help determine how much range you’ll get from your experience.


bike suspension

The suspension lets riders absorb both small bumps and large shocks, allowing them to maintain better control over their bike. And this is probably one of the most significant differences between the two types of ebikes we’re comparing today.

Since they spend most of their time on smooth roads, most electric road bikes don’t have much in terms of suspension. It’s unnecessary – you will only run into many bumps and rough terrain.

Electric dirt bikes, on the other hand, are made to get you over all kinds of terrain, from the harshest, bumpiest trails to the smoothest tracks. That’s why looking for excellent suspension performance in an electric dirt bike is so important. And an Electric Motion bike will give you just that.

man performing stunt with electric bike

Models like the 2023 Escape R come with a new linkage ratio for improved rear-suspension performance and a hydraulic clutch, which you won’t necessarily find on your average electric dirt bike.

This clutch allows the rider to load the suspension to tackle big obstacles, allowing you to conquer off-road terrain and tracks like never before. It’s a game changer for those looking to take their electric dirt biking to the next level.

The Bottom Line

As you can see, some significant differences exist between electric road bikes and electric dirt bikes. And since they are designed for different purposes, it makes sense.

Electric road bikes are made for those who will need to abide by the rules of the road, while electric dirt bikes are designed for riders who want to explore the backcountry, tackle hills and off-road terrain, and do it all with a good amount of speed and torque.

Which is the perfect bike for you?