Thin Tire vs. Fat Tire E-bike: How to Choose the Right One for Your Needs?

A bike is only as great as its tires. When it comes to tires for e-bikes, there are primarily two options: thin tires and fat tires. Both tires are different in size, maintaince needs, weight, price, and even pressure limits. Consequently, the kind of tires you choose will affect not only your speed but also the bike’s maneuverability, suspension, and how far you can ride.  

Essentially, both fat tires e-bikes and thin tire e-bikes have pros and cons. For instance, thin tire bikes are better on solid surfaces for their easy handling. However, fat tires work great on off-road ebikes. Our goal here is to help you decide which electric bike tire types is right for you.

8 Things To Consider When Choosing The Right Electric Bike

What Is Thin Tire e-bike?

Thin tires are narrow, smoothly treaded tires commonly used for city-road cycling, such as racing and commuting. They provide a firm grip that allows for easy handling, especially if you’re a fan of bike racing. Thin tires have always been around for all bike types, including e-bikes. They are known for their speed due to their smoothness and trim shape.

Thin tires are usually between 1.5 to 2.5 inches in width. Their small size makes them easier to ride since they’re usually lightweight. The sheer size of fat tires means they weigh more in comparison to thin tires. However, fat tires are better for rough terrain.

One big plus thin tire e-bike riders enjoy is that the gears are pretty strairtforward to adjust. Also, pedaling is more manageable, especially when shifting gears.

Another edge is has over fat tires is high air pressure. In real-life use, this means that thin tires do not get punctured as easily. Most thin tire e-bike riders can’t afford to spend time fixing tires on their busy commute, so this is a big plus.

Thin tire e-bikes also tend to last longer than other types of e-bike tires. If you need an electric bike that helps you commute easily within a city, you should consider getting a thin tire e-bike.

Gunai MX60 electric bike 

Pros

  • Thin tire e-bikes are usually faster since the tires are designed for speed.
  • They’re usually affordable due to mass production as a result of their popularity.
  • You can trust its excellent grip.
  • Thin tire e-bikes are easier to handle, hence best for new ebike riders.
  • They’re very efficient, especially for covering large distances withlittle effort. 
  • They tolerate more rolling resistance levels thanfat tires
  • Thin tire e-bikes have fewer traction threads that make for easy movement along smooth surfaces
  • You won’t needto replace your tires as much.
  • Thin tire e-bikes are usually durable.

Cons

  • Thin tires are not ideal for rough, uneven road surfaces
  • They’re not suitable for mountaineering or off-road traveling
  • Thin tires do not allow for over throttling as it can cause accidents on busy roads.
  • Brakes need to be applied gently on thin tires to maintain control.

Thin tire electric bikes recommendations

Samebike LO26-II 

GUNAI MX60 

Fafrees KRE

BEZIOR M1

Picture

 

 

 

 

Wheel size

26-inch

27.5-inch

27.5-inch

27.5-inch

Braking system

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Motor power

500W

500W

250W

250W

Max. speed

35km/h

40km/h

25km/h

25km/h

Battery Capacity

10Ah

17Ah

10Ah

12.5Ah

Charging time

5 hours

7 hours

4 hours

5 hours

Gears

Shimano 0 - 7

Shimano 0 - 7

Shimano 0 - 7

Shimano 0 - 7

Shock Absorber

Front fork + rear oil Shock Absorber

Front fork + rear oil Shock Absorber

Lockable front fork Shock Absorber

Front fork Shock Absorber

Cruise Distance

Electric Mode: 35 - 40km

Assistant Mode: 70 -  80km

Electric Mode: 30 - 40km

Assistant Mode: 50 -  80km

Electric Mode: 30 - 40km

Assistant Mode: 50 - 80km

Electric Mode: 30 - 40km

Assistant Mode: 50 - 80km

Weight

24kg

32kg

21.7kg

25kg

Max load

100kg

150kg

120kg

120kg

Full Size

181 x 105 x 64.5cm

186 x 110 x

170 x 105 x 70cm

173 x 83 x 63CM

Folding Size

102 x 96 x 39cm

Non-foldable

Non-foldable

Non-foldable

Saddle Height

82 - 98cm

80 - 100cm

84 - 103cm

83 - 100cm

Suitable Height

160 - 210cm

170 - 210cm

170 - 210cm

170 - 210cm

Certifications

CE, UL, KC, FCC, PSE,  ROHS

CE

CE

CE

What is Fat Tire e-bike?

Fat tires are large bike tires that are better for cruising rough terrain and uneven roads. This edge is why mountain e-bikes and off-road e-bikes have fat tires. Say you were traveling a road with loose sand or gravel, you’d be better off with fat tires on your e-bike.

They remain a favorite among outdoor cyclists and avid mountaineers because fat tire e-bikes have better balance and allow for easy control in those environments. In fact, they are the better option for riding hands-free.

Fat tire e-bikes have a width of about 4 - 5 inches and provide superior traction, making them suitable for any type of surface. They cut through the beach, mud, stony surfaces, and even on snowy roads with ease.

Due to the width of the tires, the pressure of the bike is significantly reduced, which lends the tire its solid traction. Inside it, the air pressure is between 10 - 30 PSI. All that added traction results in better stability and balance for the rider, although they’re slightly harder to pedal.

Also, there’s usually no need to worry about slipping when navigating wet slopes. However, they aren’t just meant for rough or slippery roads. They perform excellently on smooth asphalt surfaces as well, giving them the upper hand over thin tires.  

However, you should also know that a fatty is harder to patch on the go. Unlike thin tires, you’ll need more than one CO2 tank to air it up. Ideally, you’d need an electric pump for convenience, but it only takes 2 minutes to get it up and running again.

Overall, fat tires are practical and highly functional, and they have all the outdoor adventures you can imagine in store.   

Engwe EP-2 Pro Electric Bike

Pros

  • Fat tire e-bikes are great for mountaineers and off-road traveling
  • The fat tires can provide better shock absorption
  • They have a firmer grip than thin tire e-bikes, making them ideal for rough terrains.
  • It’s easier to apply brakes and maneuver with fat tire e-bikes than thin tire e-bikes.
  • With fat tire e-bikes, you can cover more distance at a controlled speed.
  • Fat tires are usually aesthetic and ubiquitous in appearance.
  • Fat tire e-bikes are great for any type of weather because they’re designed for all-weather flexibility.
  • Fat tires are generally considered safer compared to thin tire e-bikes.
  • The air pressure of fat tires can be adjusted accordingly

Cons

  • Fat tire e-bikes are more costly than thin tire e-bikes to buy and maintain, it’s not easy to find a decent fat tire electric bike under 1000.
  • Fat tire ebikes are usually heavy and are harder to pedal.
  • Most fat tires require extra maintenanceif they’re not used for an extended period.
  • Finding fat tire ebikes parts for replacement can be very difficult because they’re often hard to come by.
  • With same wheel dimension, fat tire bikes have larger outer diameter, so 26 inch fat tire ebikes may be too tall for people under 160cm.
  • They’re harder to repair on the go.

Fat tire electric bikes recommendations

Bezior X500 Electric Bike

Bezior XF200 Electric Bike

Bezior X1500 Electric Bike

Engwe EP-2 Pro Ebike

Engwe Engine Pro Ebike

Samebike XWLX09 Ebike

Picture

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wheel size

26 x 4 inch fat tire

20 x 4 inch fat tire

26 x 4 inch fat tire

4” x 20 fat tire

4” x 20 fat tire

4” x 20 fat tire

Braking system

Front & rear

Hydraulic disc braking

Front & rear

Hydraulic disc braking

Front & rear

Hydraulic disc braking

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Front & rear

Hydraulic disc braking

Front & rear

Mechanical disc braking

Motor power

500W

1000W

1500W

750W

750W

500W

Max. speed

35km/h

35km/h

40km/h

35km/h

40km/h

35km/h

Battery Capacity

12.8Ah

15Ah

12.8Ah

12.8Ah

12.8Ah

10Ah

Charging time

6 hours

7 hours

6 hours

About 6 hours

About 6 hours

About 4 hours

Gears

Shimano 0 - 9

Shimano 0 - 7

Shimano 0 - 9

Shimano 7 gears

Shimano 8 gears

Shimano 7 gears

Shock Absorber

Front fork + rear oil Shock Absorber

Front fork + rear oil Shock Absorber

Front fork + rear oil Shock Absorber

Lockable front fork Mechanical Shock Absorber

Lockable front fork hydraulic Shock Absorber + rear Mechanical Shock Absorber

Lockable front fork Mechanical Shock Absorber

Cruise Distance

Electric Mode: 45km

Assistant Mode: 100km

Electric Mode: 50km

Assistant Mode: 130km

Electric Mode: 45km

Assistant Mode: 100km

Electric mode: 40km

Assistant mode: 80km

Electric mode: 40km

Assistant mode: 80km 

Electric Mode: 35km

Assistant Mode: 70km

Weight

28.5kg

27kg

31kg

32kg

37kg

35kg

Max load

200kg

200kg

200kg

150kg

150kg

130kg

Full Size

198 x 110 x 65cm

177 x 120 x 62cm

198 x 110 x 65cm

167 x 118cm

167 x 118cm

176 x 128cm

Folding Size

105 x 100 x 45cm

100 x 80 x 50cm

105 x 100 x 45cm

81 x 76cm

81 x 76cm

102 x 80cm

Saddle Height

85 - 105cm

90 - 100cm

85 - 105cm

81 - 102cm

81 - 102cm

85 - 107cm

Suitable Height

170 - 210cm

165 - 210cm

170 - 210cm

160 - 195cm

160 - 195cm

160 - 195cm

Certifications

CE

CE

CE

CE

CE

CE, MSDS, UN38.3, UL

 

Summary

Fat tire bikes are better for you if you need e-bikes that can move easily on rough surfaces that are either stony, muddy, sandy, or even filled with lots of grass.

Thin tire bikes are better for you if you use your e-bike for commuting on tarred or asphalt surfaces and are also a top choice for racers.


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published