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Gravel e-bikes have taken off in a big way over the last couple of years. 2023 is going to be a great year, with lots of new tech being featured on the best electric gravel bikes. In this article, I’m going to be looking at some of this new technology and sharing with you my top 10 favourites for this years.

Why choose an electric gravel bike?

If you commute by bicycle in the UK, US, or anywhere for that matter, it’s unlikely that your daily commuting route will be free from potholes, road debris and other road surface hazards. Anyone who has every ridden a bike with slick 25mm tyres on the average British road will be aware of the ever present dangers of poorly maintained surfaces.

Gravel bikes first became popular in the United States, this is due in part to the thousands of miles of deserted gravel tracks crisscrossing the vast wilderness, and the fire roads which were designed to allow access to fire trucks in remote forest plantations.

ribble gravel e-bike on Dartmoor UK
Ribble Gravel E-Bike on Dartmoor, UK

The gravel bike is an amalgamation in design from various disciplines – mountain, road and cyclocross bikes.  What designers have done is taken the best design cues from all three and integrated them into one.

Typically a gravel bike will have a much more relaxed frame geometry, more akin to that of a mountain bike, but with the advantage of being much quicker, particularly on compacted gravel surfaces and forest trails. They also have more clearance for wider tyres. – It’s not uncommon to see gravel bikes with 47mm wide tyres.

What are the Best Gravel E-Bikes in 2023?

New Tech for 2023

It seems that things stagnated for a couple of years, but in 2022, things started to happen. A lot of this new tech will be filtering through to e-bikes in 2023. On the motor front, German company TQ, rolled out their new e-bike system which delivers a lighter, smoother and quieter experience. Mahle launched the X20, which has torque sensing assist, plus a cableless motor connection for the rear wheel dropout. And, Shimano introduced a wireless Di2 version of the popular 105 road groupset.

TQ-HPR50 E-Bike Motor

The new TQ-HPR50 crank motor was quickly adopted for e-gravel and e-MTB applications, where lightweight was required. This motor weighs only 1.8kg and fits in an oversized bottom bracket shell. It produces 300-watts of peak power, 50Nm torque, and comes with an integrated 360Wh battery.

tq-hpr50 motor fitted to a BMC gravel e-bike

This new e-bike system has already been adopted by some of the biggest names in cycling – Scott, Trek and BMC to name but a few. Early reports suggest it’s an absolute gem of a motor and takes the gravel e-bike to another level. It is near silent in operation, and offers zero resistance when not in use.

Mahle X20

This new motor from Mahle will eventually replace the older X35. The new X20 motor system is lighter at only 3.2 kg (including battery). Plus, it has other significant improvements like a torque-sensing pedal assist and wireless connector on the dropouts. This system is already being adopted by major manufacturers like BMC.

mahle x20 e-bike motor

More wireless groupset options

Gearing options are now off the chart! With prices coming down significantly on wireless shifting, more and more cheaper gravel e-bike’s are going to have this option. You have SRAM Rival 1 AXS with an option for 10-45 cassette, or you could have a ‘mullet’ drivetrain using the Rival AXS shifters paired with a GX mountain bike mech and 10-52 cassette for a mega low gear.

Shimano GRX Di2 has been around for a little while now, but their new 105 Di2 drivetrain will work with an 11-36 cassette making it suitable for some gravel applications.

sram 10-50 cassette on gravel bike
SRAM 10-50 cassette with GX AXS Mech on a Gravel Bike

Gravel  bike components

As they are designed to be used for road and off-road riding, gravel bikes tend to use components suited to both. Typically gearing will be lower, and the use of sub compact cranksets or 1 x drivetrains is the norm. Hydraulic disc brakes are also fitted as standard to all electric gravel bikes. A lot of gravel-specific e-bikes have the 650b wheel size with tubeless tyres, that can be run at lower pressures.

Gearing

Like their regular counterparts, electric gravel bikes typically use either sub-compact cranksets or 1 x gearing. A typical road bike will have a 50/34 compact crankset with an 11-28 rear cassette, whereas a gravel bike will likely have a 48/32 or 46/30 sub-compact crankset combined with an 11-32 or 11-34 cassette. This gives the rider a much lower gear for tackling steep technical off-road climbs without having to get out of the saddle (and thus loose traction on the rear wheel).

the best electric gravel bikes have 1 x 11 gearing

1 x Drivetrains are also very common on gravel bikes. These typically have a 42t front chainring combined with an 11-42t rear cassette. One of the main benefits of this kind of set-up is simplicity and a small weight saving. 1 x drivetrains are almost universal on higher-end mountain bikes and gravel bikes.

With the new wireless groupsets available, particularly from SRAM, there’s the possibility to mix and match’ with mountain bike components for even bigger gear range. Even Campagnolo have got in on the action with their excellent 13-speed Ekar gravel groupset.

campagnolo ekar gravel groupset

Wheels and Tyres

A lot of the latest gravel bikes will have 650b wheels fitted, although 700c is still in widespread use. The main advantage of 650b is the slightly smaller diameter and wider rim, make for a more robust wheel that is capable of handling the rough and tumble of off-road riding. A typical gravel tyre will be 650b x 47 and most can be run tubeless, meaning they can be used at the preferred lower pressures without worrying about getting pinch flats.

650b x 47c gravel tyre

Gravel tyres will, of course have a greater weight and rolling resistance which will be especially noticeable when riding on tarmac, but I’ve ridden quite a few and I feel that for the every day rider this is negligible. Larger volume tyres with lots of tread are also good for riding an e-bike in the winter.

Finishing kit

Because of the need for greater control (particularly when descending) gravel bikes generally have flared drop handlebars and shorter stems.

Flared  bars have the drop bar portion wider than the maximum bar width at the hoods. This design was first seen on touring bikes back in the 70’s and 80’s. This wider grip allows for greater control on technical descents. Some gravel bars are slightly flared and some will be substantially flared (almost like moustache handlebars).

flared handlebars of a gravel bike

Dropper seat posts are also becoming quite common on high-end gravel bikes. This makes perfect sense, especially useful for technical descents.

Because gravel bikes are designed for off-road adventures most will have provisions for mounting mudguards, front and rear pannier racks and multiple bottle cages.

Can I use an electric gravel bike for touring?

Electric gravel bikes make excellent touring / bike packing bikes. They’re designed to go places regular road bikes can’t, and their robust design makes them particularly suitable for touring and bike packing. The only consideration would be battery range. Read my article on the best electric bikes for bikepacking for more information.

wiler jena hybrid electric gravel bike ready for touring

Most of the electric gravel bikes below have a smaller internal battery to keep weight down. But, because these bikes are so light to start with, they’re very efficient. I have managed to squeeze nearly 100 miles out of a charge on the Ribble Gravel AL e, I’m currently testing.

If you use the e-assist only when you really need it, electric gravel bikes are perfect for touring. Apart from the benefits listed above, you can also fit front and rear pannier racks, mudguards and bottle cages.

riding a gravel e-bike

The best electric gravel bikes are…

So, here goes – my list of the best electric gravel bikes for 2023. I have include some of the latest models, although some have remained largely unchanged from last year. Unfortunately gravel e-bikes aren’t particularly cheap and start at just over £2500, but you do get the latest, lightweight e-assist systems and some very capable machines. The opinions below are based on my own personal experience, prices and availability are subject to change. If you have any more suggestion to add to this list, please leave a message in the comments section below.


Trek Domane+ SLR 7 eTap 🆕

trek domane+ slr 7 etap

The Trek Domane+ SLR 7 sits near the top of the range, in the new 2023 Domane+ range. It’s designed to be a crossover bike that’s suitable for endurance road riding and milder gravel riding. It comes as standard with 40 mm tyres, rolling on Bontrager Aeolus Pro 3V carbon rims, making it a really versatile option.

Featuring the latest in cutting-edge technology, the TQ-HPR50 crank motor with 360Wh internal battery. The Domane+ is the perfect fusion of bike and technology. Plus, this model has the excellent SRAM Force eTap AXS 1 x 12 electronic groupset, with 10-44 cassette and XPLR long-cage mech.

Weighing in at just 12.50 kg, it’s very light, especially when you consider the battery capacity. This is a true, long-distance mile muncher and should be just as easy to ride without the assist. The US version will assist up to 20 mph, and the UK / EU version will be 15.5 mph (25 km/h). I’ll have to see if I can get hold of one of these to review later this year, as it looks like a cracking bike!

Pros

  • TQ-HPR50 motor
  • 360Wh battery
  • Lightweight
  • Full carbon
  • SRAM Force 1 AXS eTap groupset
  • Looks gorgeous!

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Not suitable for rougher terrain


Scott Solace Gravel eRide 20 🆕

scott solace gravel eride 20

The Scott Solace is a completely new gravel e-bike for 2023 and benefits from the same TQ motor and 360Wh battery as the Trek. It features a full carbon frame and fork, and SRAM’s Rival 1 AXS XPLR wireless gravel groupset. The Scott is more of a pure gravel bike (as opposed to the Trek above) and uses 650b wheels wrapped in trail-busting 50mm tyres. The geometry is definitely more off-road friendly with a slack 71 degree head angle and slightly longer wheelbase (than the Trek).

It’s a great looking e-bike and weighs in at just 13.34 kg, which is pretty good, considering the big tyres. Currently priced at £6995, it’s one of the more expensive options here. I have checked, and it’s not currently in stock online but it should be available in time for Spring.

Pros

  • TQ-HPR50 motor
  • Full carbon frame
  • 650b x 50c tyres
  • Suitable for rougher terrain / bikepacking
  • SRAM Rival AXS wireless shifting
  • Great colour scheme

Cons

  • Quite expensive

Visit FitStore24 for more Gravel E-Bikes (EU)


BMC Roadmachine 01 AMP X One 🆕

BMC Roadmachine 01 AMP X gravel e-bike

Another brand new e-bike for 2023, the BMC 01 AMP X, is aimed at the same market as the Trek. It’s more of an endurance bike, with clearance for 38mm tyres. It will be great for long road rides, with some rougher surfaces thrown into the mix.

This is the third bike here to feature the new TQ-HPR50 motor and 360Wh battery. The drivetrain is the same SRAM Force 1 AXS XPLR as used on the Trek. The BMC uses some quality finishing kit, like a D-shaped carbon seat post and Redshift suspension stem to help reduce fatigue on rough surfaces.

Typically, being a quality brand like BMC, it’s very expensive and priced at €8499 or £8100 in the UK. It looks like a fantastic e-bike that’s going to have good road manners, as well as being able to handle a bit of the rough stuff.

Pros

  • TQ-HPR50 motor
  • Full carbon frame
  • SRAM Force 1 AXS wireless shifting
  • Redshift ShockStop stem

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Only suitable for milder off-road riding


Orro Terra E GRX600 🆕

orro terra e grx600 gravel e-bike

The 2023 Orro Terra E GRX600 is the only gravel e-bike on this list that uses the FSA HM 1.0 e-assist system. It’s very similar to the original Mahle X35 in terms of weight (slightly heavier at 3.98kg) and battery capacity (252Wh) but has a torque-sensor. The hub is slightly larger, and the top tube control is also similar in terms of functionality. This system was released in 2021, and has been used by Pinarello on some of their e-bikes.

It features a full carbon frame and fork, with mixture of Shimano GRX components, Vision rims with Continental Terra Trail 40c tyres and quality FSA finishing kit. Costing £3899.99, the Orro Terra E is reasonably priced for a full carbon gravel e-bike. No weight is given, but I’d imagine it’s around the 12-13 kg mark. There’s also a range extender battery available.

Orro have a fine pedigree when it comes to gravel bikes, and If you’re in the market for a lightweight carbon gravel e-bike, it’s well worth considering.

Pros

  • Full carbon frame
  • Shimano GRX components
  • FSA finishing kit
  • 5 assist levels
  • Torque-sensing FSA HM 1.0 motor

Cons

  • Motor is slightly nosier (than X35)


Ribble Gravel AL e

ribble gravel al e

I currently have a Ribble Gravel AL e on loan from Ribble Cycles. It’s a really capable e-bike and is a great all-rounder. Featuring the Mahle X35 ebikemotion Plus motor with 252Wh internal battery. The Gravel AL e is equally at home on tarmac or rock-strewn single track.

I have covered over 300 miles on it over the winter months, including a couple of rides on Dartmoor, and I’m really impressed with how it handles rougher terrain. Another big plus point, is it’s fairly light at 14 kg. That’s about 4 kg heavier than my regular gravel bike, and you really don’t notice the extra weight that much on the road. Another plus, is I found it very comfortable.

My test model has the Shimano GRX 400 groupset with 46/30 crankset and 11-34 cassette – I’ve found this gearing okay for moderate trails, but it does struggle a bit on steep, technical sections. Read the full Ribble Gravel AL e review. If you have deeper pockets, there’s a GRX Di2 version.

It’s a great gravel e-bike and one of the cheaper options available. This model currently retails for £2799

Pros

  • One of the cheaper options
  • Extensive choice of groupsets
  • Large tyre clearance
  • Sensible weight
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Gearing not low enough (on test model)


Vitus E-Substance Carbon Gravel E-Bike (SRAM Rival)

vitus e-substance carbon gravel e-bike

French company Vitus make quality bikes that are sold exclusively through Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles. For 2023 their gravel e-bike range hasn’t changed, but offers exceptional value for money.

This is their range-topping Vitus E-Substance Carbon, and features a SRAM Rival 1 x 11 drivetrain with Prime Kanza 650b wheelset wrapped in Maxxis Rambler 47c gravel tyres. Power is provided by the latest Fazua Ride 50 Trail, which has 10% more power and 6% less weight than its predecessor.  It’s also more efficient which will marginally improve battery range.

The E-Substance Carbon is one of the best all-round gravel e-bikes available for the price and is currently on offer £3119.99 which is an absolute bargain and well worth considering.

Pros

  • Best all-rounder for the price
  • SRAM Rival 1 Groupst
  • 10-42 XD Cassette
  • Fazua Ride 50 Trail motor
  • Prime Kanza wheelset

Cons

  • A bit on the heavy side

Also available from Chain Reaction


Giant Revolt E+ Pro XR

giant revolt e+ pro xr

The 2023 Giant Revolt E+ Pro XR remains largely unchanged from last years model. It still uses Shimano’s excellent EP8 mid-drive motor, which boasts a maximum of 85Nm and a massive 400% of assist in full power mode – like the Sync Drive motor of old it’s been tuned specifically for this bike. Another great feature is the use of Shimano GRX Di2 wireless shifting which doubles up as a control the electric assist.

There’s no display, but you get the RideControl Go panel which is neatly integrated into the top tube. Electric assist is controlled using the left-hand shifter and there’s ANT+ connectivity so you can pair a compatible bike computer (like a Garmin). The brakes are GRX hydraulics with large 180mm diameter rotors front and back, plus 700 x 40c Maxxis Receptor Evo tyres. Finishing off the package is a 500Wh downtube integrated battery, which should give a realistic range in the region of 60-70 miles.

I really like the look of the Giant Revolt E+ and having that Shimano EP8 motor is a big plus for me. It can be fine tuned using the Shimano e-tube app which allows you to change performance characteristics and other parameters to suit your individual needs.

Pros

  • Shimano Steps EP8 motor
  • 500Wh Battery – Best in Class
  • Shimano GRX Di2
  • Tuneable via Shimano e-Tube App

Cons

  • Heaviest e-bike on this list
  • No display

Visit FitStore24 for more Gravel E-Bikes (EU)


Specialized Turbo Creo SL Comp Carbon Evo

Specialized Creo SL Comp Carbon Evo gravel e-bike

The Specialized Turbo Creo SL comp carbon evo remains unchanged for 2023, but it’s still a cracking e-bike even in the face of new competition. It uses their own SL 1.1 mid-drive electric motor, which has been developed by Brose, specifically for their Turbo Creo range of e-road and gravel bikes. This motor is an absolute gem, and is almost whisper quiet, and produces seamless assist as and when you need it.

The 340Wh battery gives a potential assisted range of up to 80 miles (in the lowest setting) – you can even purchase an additional range extender, making the Turbo Creo SL a potential long distance touring machine. There is also a built-in power meter that will transmit data to an ANT+ head unit like the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. The mission control smartphone app allows you to fine-tune your power settings to suit your riding style.

Apart from the usual Shimano GRX components you have the addition of the excellent Future Shock 2.0 which gives you a small amount of front suspension, that can be easily adjusted via a knob on top of the stem. This really does take the sting out of the lumps and bumps associated with riding rough terrain, and reduces rider fatigue over longer distances. I’ve tried it and it really does the job! Another excellent feature is the addition of a dropper seat post – something you don’t often find on other electric gravel bikes.

The Specialized Turbo Creo SL comp carbon evo is expensive, but the price hasn’t prevented it from being one of their best-selling e-bikes. I see a surprising amount of these on the roads and a couple of riders in my local cycling club use them. It’s a great e-bike that’s equally good on the road or gravel, and well worth considering if your budget allows.

Pros

  • SL 1.1 motor is very smooth
  • Decent battery range
  • Shimano GRX gearing
  • Carbon frame
  • Lightweight
  • FutureShock 2.0 stem
  • Built-in power meter

Cons

  • Max 42mm tyre clearance
  • Pricey

Also available from Specialized (USA)

Used Gravel E-Bikes Available from The Pro’s Closet (USA)


GT eGrade AMP Electric Gravel Bike

gt egrade amp gravel e-bike

The GT eGrade AMP is another lightweight gravel e-bike from the iconic mountain bike brand. GT cycles have been making gravel bikes for a good few years now and the regular Grade gravel bike has been one of their best sellers. The eGrade uses the same frame geometry as its non-assisted counterparts and benefits from Shimano GRX 1 x 11 groupset with a gravel-specific wheelset and WTB Resolute 700 x 42c tubeless-ready tyres.

Like many other bikes featured here, the GT eGrade AMP uses the super light x35 ebikemotion which helps keep the total bike weight down to below 14kg. I like the understated styling of the GT and the classic ‘triple triangle’ frame design which increases stiffness, response and durability.

I can see the GT eGrade AMP being a very popular choice when it comes to gravel e-ebikes – it’s very competitively priced and will be a tough workhorse ready to take on forest trails, single track or a spot of bikepacking. There is also a much cheaper flat handlebar version available (£2300) – read the full GT eGrade Current review.

Available from Tredz

Pros

  • GT’s MTB Heratige
  • Shimano GRX components
  • Mahle X35 motor
  • Competitively price at under £3000
  • Trademark ‘Triple Triangle’ Frame design

Cons

  • Getting a bit long in the tooth (released 2020)

Cannondale Topstone Neo SL 2

cannondale topstone neo sl 2 gravel e-bike

The Cannondale Topstone Neo SL 2 hasn’t changed much since 2021, but it’s still a great option for under £3000 / $3000. It’s lightweight, alloy frame and durable Shimano GRX components make it a great entry into the world of gravel e-bikes.

Featuring the tried and tested Mahle X35 system, it’s smooth and quiet and provides just the right amount of assist when you need it. Shimano GRX400 is ideal for a mix of road riding and gravel, top gear is high enough for descending and riding on the flat, and the 30/34 low gear combination is ideal for those steeper climbs. The WTB Resolute 700 x 42 tyres will be great for hardpack gravel and smoother single track.

It’s a very tidy package, and although it doesn’t feature any of the latest tech, at £2950 it’s one of the cheaper options here and well worth considering.

Pros

  • Nice frame
  • Shimano GRX400 groupset
  • Proven Mahle X35 motor
  • Reasonably lightweight
  • Good value for money

Cons

  • Not much has changed since 2021

Also available from Sun & Ski Sports (USA)


The verdict

So what is the best newcomer for 2023? It’s a tough call, but I’d say the Scott Solace wins if for having the best gravel riding credentials. The Trek Domane+ SLR 7 looks amazing, but it’s more of a crossover bike aimed at riders who ride mainly on the road with a bit of milder gravel thrown in. The BMC Roadmachine AMP X One also fits into this category.

I still think the Specialized takes some beating though, and despite the fact it was released a couple of years about, it’s still a great bike and well worth considering. If I here they’ve made any significant upgrades, I’ll update this article accordingly.

Most of the other bikes featured here are 2022 models, and are all still very good options in 2023. My particular favourite is the Ribble Gravel AL e (pictured below) – I’ve got this for a little while longer and will be posting some more photos in the near future.

ribble gravel al e

The GT eGrade AMP and Cannondale Topstone are still both great electric gravel bikes in the sub-£3000 category. The Vitus E-Substance is probably the best-value bike featured here, and at its current price is an absolute steal! Finally, the 2023 Orro Terra E looks like a good lightweight option with some great components and FSA motor.

Thank you for reading this article and if you have any questions or need any advice before making a purchase, please leave a comment below and I will reply usually within 24hrs.

USA online e-bike retailers below

Jenson USA – Good Choice of E-Bikes Covering Multiple Disciplines
The Pro’s Closet – Nearly 300 Quality New and Used E-Bikes
Sun & Ski – Great Choice of New E-Bikes
Online E-Bike Dealers in the USA

Tony

Passionate E-Bike advocate and enthusiast since 2016. Riding an electric bike helped me to lose weight, get fit and reignite my passion for cycling!

Tony has 228 posts and counting. See all posts by Tony

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