ADDTECH | Exploring Mid-Drive Motor For E-Bikes

By Addmotor | 29 January 2024 | 0 Comments
Previously, we learned about front hub motors for e-bikes, which are more affordable but often lack the responsiveness and smoothness of a mid-motor e-bike in terms of riding experience.

In this article, we’ll explore how a mid-drive motor works in comparison to a hub motor, the specifications of Bafang 1000W mid-drive motors commonly used in e-bikes, and what factors you need to keep in mind when buying a mid-motor electric bike.

Electric Bike Mid Motors: How Do They Work?

The mid-drive motor is centrally located, not in the wheel but at the bottom bracket area, right between the pedals.

These motors function by directly powering the bike’s chain drive. When you pedal, the motor activates and adds power to the chain, enhancing your pedaling force. In simple words, it is a purely pedal-assist system. It allows for a more natural and intuitive biking experience, as the power assistance feels like an extension of your effort.

Unlike hub motors that power one of the wheels, mid-drive motors leverage the existing gears of the bike for a more efficient transfer of energy. When you shift gears, the motor adjusts its output accordingly, allowing for more effective use of power. This means you can maintain a more constant pedaling speed while the motor adjusts to different terrains and inclines. Moreover, mid-drive motors offer a balanced weight distribution. Since the motor is positioned at the center and low down on the frame, it lowers the bike’s center of gravity. This results in improved handling and stability, making the ride feel more controlled and comfortable, especially on uneven terrain or during sharp turns.

Mid-Drive Motor vs. Hub Motor: A Comparative Analysis

Let’s explore the pros and cons of a mid-drive motor in comparison with a hub motor.

Advantages of a Mid-Drive Motor Over a Hub Motor

Enhanced Natural Riding Experience:

Mid-drive motors, such as the Bafang 1000W mid-drive kit, offer a more natural riding feel due to their instant response to pedaling. This immediate reaction mimics the experience of riding a traditional, non-electric bike, providing a seamless and intuitive biking experience.

Improved Bike Balance and Handling:

The placement of the mid-drive motor near the bike’s center of gravity closely resembles the feel of a regular bike. It makes the bike more fun to ride and significantly improves its balance and handling for optimal control.
Additionally, the mid-drive motor works synergistically with the gearing system, making cycling uphill easy. This is why mid motors are the superior choice for mountain and off-road e-bikes.

Superior Efficiency in Battery Usage:

Mid-drive electric bikes excel in efficiency, using a principle of propulsion similar to the rider’s leg movement. They operate at lower revolutions per minute (RPM) compared to hub motors, leading to less battery consumption. This means you can achieve a longer range with a smaller, lighter battery.

Simplified Tire Fixing:

Tire fixes are the most common maintenance requirement for bikes. Unlike hub motor bikes, which require unplugging power cables during tire repairs, a mid-drive electric bike allows you to fix the tires the same way as on a regular bike.

Downsides of a Mid-Drive Motor

Considerations on Durability and Wear:

While mid-drive motors have several advantages, they do exert more stress on the bike’s chain and drivetrain. This results in a thicker, more robust chain that is prone to quicker wear and breakage.
Consequently, components like the cassette and front cog may need more frequent replacements, typically every few thousand miles.

The Impact of Adding a Throttle:

Introducing a throttle to a mid-drive motor system can significantly increase the stress on the chain and drivetrain. The additional power exerted through the throttle amplifies the strain beyond what is experienced during normal pedaling. This heightened stress can lead to increased maintenance requirements, including more frequent stretches, breaks, and overall upkeep..

Cost and Appearance:

A mid-drive motor system, such as the Bafang mid-drive kit, usually costs more than a hub motor. Additionally, it may be noisier and make the e-bike look bulkier.
Features Mid-drive Motor Hub Motor
Power Delivery  Superior torque and efficiency Adequate power, less efficient
Riding Feel  Natural, connected Can feel disconnected, unnatural
Handling  Stable, agile More susceptible to weight imbalance
Durability  High, less stress on wheels Moderate, potential for wheel strain
Weight  Heavier Lighter

How to Choose the Best Electric Bike w/ Right Mid-Drive Motor?

When choosing the best mid-drive motor for your e-bike, you must keep the following factors in mind.

Motor Power

Motor power determines the motor’s strength. You must choose a motor that suits your riding terrain and style.
Common ranges are 250W, 500W, and 750W. For off-road adventures, invest in a powerful option like the Bafang 1000W mid-drive kit.


Torque indicates the motor’s ability to accelerate and climb hills. Higher torque is beneficial for hilly terrains and inclines.

Battery Compatibility

Check the compatibility with your e-bike’s battery. The voltage and capacity of the battery should match the motor’s requirements.

Noise Level

Some motors operate more quietly than others. If noise is a concern, look for a motor known for its silent operation.

Brand and Warranty

You should opt for reputable brands that offer good warranty terms in case of issues. It’s a good idea to read customer reviews to gauge a brand’s customer service standards.


The motor you choose must fit your bike’s frame and type.

Purpose of Use

Consider whether you need the motor for commuting, mountain biking, or leisure rides.

Legal Regulations

Be aware of local e-bike regulations regarding motor power and speed limits.

Core Specs of the Bafang 1000W Mid-Drive Motor Kit

Motor Model Continuous Rated Power (Watt) Maximum Power (Watt) Max Speed Limit (km/h) Max Torque (Nm) Weight (kg) Compatible with Best for
1000W BBSHD 1000 1,764 48+ 160 5.9 Mountain and road bikes Off-road and private property use
1000W M620 1000 1,500 45 160 6.7 eCargo and eFat bikes Designed for e-bikes with heavy loads

1000W Bafang BBSHD vs. 1000W Bafang M620 Mid-Drive Motor

An electric bike motor can significantly impact how enjoyable your ride is.
The 1000W BBSHD motor and the Bafang M620 are both powerful options for e-bike enthusiasts, but they have some distinct differences.
The BBSHD, with its higher peak power and lighter weight, is well-suited for enthusiasts seeking performance and agility, especially in off-road and hilly terrain. Its compatibility with mountain and road bikes underscores its versatility for adventurous rides.
Another great thing about the 1000W BBSHD motor is that it is compatible with various bottom bracket sizes, including 68/73mm, 100mm, and 120mm, for covering regular, mountain, and fat-tire bikes.
Please note that while this motor is powerful, it’s intended primarily for off-road use. However, you can program it for street-legal operation with a power limit of 750 watts.
On the other hand, the Bafang M620, despite a slightly lower peak power and a heavier build, excels in load-bearing capacities, making it ideal for eCargo and eFat bikes. This motor thrives in urban environments or situations where carrying capacity and stability are paramount.
Both motors share a robust torque, but your choice should align with your riding style, the environment you’ll be navigating, and the load your electric bike will carry.

Addmotor Grandtan Turbo with 1000W Bafang M620: The Most Powerful Electric Trike

The Grandtan Turbo is a remarkable electric trike featuring a 1000W Bafang M620 mid-drive motor. Its solid frame geometry and comfortable suspension focus on providing a comfortable and convenient riding experience.
The trike’s stability and control are enhanced by its step-thru frame and a differential for smooth turning. It also includes a 960Wh battery for long-range travel, reaching over 85 miles on a single charge. Furthermore, the Tektro mechanical Disc brakes ensure all-weather stopping power.

The Grandtan Turbo is also equipped with features such as parking brakes, a Bafang LCD for ride information, and high-quality lighting for safety. It’s ideal for various terrains and uses, including off-road adventures and city commutes.
This electric trike is available in three colors: Neptune Blue, Army Green, and Starry Blue. It is priced at $3,899 only.

For more detailed information, visit the Addmotor Grandtan Turbo product page.



While mid-drive motors come with a higher price tag and might require more frequent maintenance, the advantages of improved balance, efficient battery use, and natural ride feel often outweigh these concerns.
Brands like Bosch, Shimano, and Bafang lead the market with innovative mid-drive motor systems, catering to a range of needs and preferences. When choosing one for your e-bike, you should consider factors such as motor power, torque, battery compatibility, noise levels, and legal regulations. Your choice should align with your riding style, terrain preferences, and the specific requirements of your e-bike.


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