Decathlon Electric Bike Review - Our Guide 2020 - 2021

By: Steve
Last Updated: 
April 12, 2021

Decathlon is pretty incredible when it comes to making high-quality e-bikes of all types and this excellent value ebike in particular that we are going to talk about today is the Riverside 500 Hybrid Electric Bike model. 

This new electronic bike hybrid model from Decathlon comes with impressive battery life and battery range, along with a unisex design and great electrical assistance from the hub motors which has torque sensors and a brushless design.

To see whether or not this new electric bike Decathlon has made is worth it, we have put together an informative review below that will cover the wide range of features this hybrid bike comes with, its pros and cons and who it is most suitable for. 

So without further ado, let's get into it!

Who Is Decathlon & Are There E-Bikes High Quality?

First, before we discuss some more about the Riverside 500 model from Decathlon, let's go over the brief background about Decathlon so as you can see how reliable the brand is.

Decathlon has been selling commute bikes, mountain bikes such as the Decathlon Rockrider E-ST500 electric bike and hybrid models since 1986 and is most popular for its B'Twin range which came out in 1999, they use a unisex design for most of their riding bikes which allow them to be versatile. 

Although Decathlon bikes do seems to be a little pricier than other bike manufacturers this is because they make their bikes with very high-quality components. 

What Is a Hybrid E-Bike?

A hybrid e-bike is a type of electric bike which is good for road riding as well as mountain biking, instead of having extra weight due to thick mountain bike tyres and suspension, the hybrid design compromises so as it can have a lighter weight difference for commuting too. 

Hybrid electric bikes are the best type to choose if you are after pedal assistance for general purpose riding, not just a particular style of cycling.

Summary Of The Riverside 500 Hybrid Electric Bike Specs

Now we know about Decathlon and who they are, before we start our detailed review of this decathlon bike and its parts, we will summarise exactly what this bike comes with for its price. 

  • 250 watt rear hub motor with active torque sensing. 
  • 42Nm of torque. 
  • 46V 11.6Ah capacity battery. 
  • Four assistance levels. 
  • LCD. 
  • 50-mile battery range. 
  • B'Twin gears & derailleur. 
  • Mechanical disc brakes. 
  • Suntour front suspension. 
  • Alloy light weight riding frame.

Main Features Of The Riverside 500 Decathlon E-Bike

So as you can have an easier browsing experience when it comes to looking at the Riverside 500, we have broken down the specs of this Decathlon electric bikes model and reviewed the individual components in detail. 

Motor Power & Battery

The Riverside 500 decathlon electric bike features a 250W motor, meaning it's legal to use as a regular touring bike or road bike in the UK, this is also sufficient power for most people who want a decent hybrid bike. 

In terms of the battery capacity, this hybrid bike has a range of up to 50 miles, but this does depend on the electric assistance you are using and whether or not you are using your electric bike for road use or mountain bike terrain.

Gearing & Brakes 

For gears, the Riverside 500 model uses a 1x8 speed set-up with a B'Twin branded gear shifter which allows for a smooth experience when changing gears and can be accessed by the handlebars on the bike for quick changes. 

This Riverside 500 hybrid bike is also equipped with Tektro TKD 160 mm hydraulic disc brakes for reliable stopping power on even technical terrains, making the bike a more pleasant experience to ride.

Although we think that these twin bikes gears are pretty basic and the mechanical disc brakes are fairly entry-level, the brake power is not too bad for the bike, but may not suit serious watery mountain terrain or rocky mountain terrain. 

Suspension & Frame 

The suspension on the twin bikes design uses a Suntour NCX SF17 lockout front fork on the alloy frame which is adjustable and has 63mm of travel for more comfort on rocky terrains. 

These forks are great for the bikes price range and you shouldn't need anything more heavy-duty for a hybrid bike. 

Frame-wise, the Decathlon bike has a couple of different weights depending on the size of the bike that you get, the bike however in a large frame size weighs 22kg without pedals.

Its design is made from light weight alloy material and is positioned so as the user will be sitting in an upright position, the frame also has a lifetime warranty which makes the whole Decathlon bike much more reliable. 

Wheels & Tyres 

Wheel size of this hybrid bike has a measurement of 28-inches which is similar to most common electric mountain bikes, the tyres of this bike additionally have double-walled alloy rims for durability and the hybrid tyres have fairly good puncture resistance. 

These wheels and tyres overall allow the hybrid bike to handle technical terrains quite well in addition to flat terrains.

Accessories

One of the features we like about this Decathlon hybrid bike has to be its accessories included which allows you to avoid buying extra items.

Some accessories which are worth pointing out are the high comfort B'Twin designed saddle and B'Twin pedals, front and rear mudguards as well as a rear rack and bottle holder are included too among the items.

Should I Buy This Decathlon Electric Bike? 

If you wondering whether or not this Decathlon bike is for you, then you need to consider what you will most likely be using it for. 

Although this e-bike is a hybrid model and can technically be used for mountain biking as well as commuting we would not recommend it for very rough adventures and class it as more of a leisure bike.

Overall, if you have a bigger budget and want a reliable hybrid bike that can cope with multiple terrains, has a decent amount of torque power and great levels of assistance, then this Decathlon Riverside 500 model could be great for you. 

However, this bike has a fair few electrical issues reported since it came out, the B'Twin bike would also not be great for using on serious off-road terrain due to its low battery capacity, you might be better off checking out the Rockrider model if you're after more of a durable model. 

How Expensive Is The Riverside 500 E-Bike?

The Riverside 500 E-Bike is one of the most expensive bikes in the Decathlon range and has a current price of over £1000. 

It is available in numerous different sizes too and is very versatile allowing it to be used by both genders thanks to its unisex frame design. 

How Do I Maintain My Decathlon E-Bike? 

Decathlon bikes are by no means cheap, which means you should be taking care of them in the best way possible so as they can keeping giving you high performance and maximum assistance. 

We have listed out a few essential maintenance tips you should be doing regularly on your electric bike. 

  • Checking the tyre pressure - Having low-pressure tyres can make your bike drag and lead to battery depletion, even on maximum assistance power. You should always be checking the tyre pressure before you take your bike out for a cycle to make sure all is in good order.
  • Taking care of the lithium battery packs - The lithium battery packs on e-bikes can last you up to 5 years if you take care of them properly. For example, you should be storing your battery at the correct temperature and never letting it go completely flat by checking your battery reading often.
  • Inspecting the parts of your bike - Certain parts of your bike may need a little love and attention now and then. Some basic functionalities to be looking at are if your gear shifts smooth, the handlebars and front fork are secure as well as the wheels too. 
  • Cleaning the bike - Now and then it's a great idea to clean your Decathlon bike down with some low-pressure water and a degreaser, especially if you will be using it as a daily commuter bike as parts build up oil and dirt quickly.
  • Lubricating - There is nothing worse than the squeaky sound of a chain on your electric bike, luckily putting oil on this chain regularly will stop this from happening. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Decathlon Electric Bikes

What does a throttle do on a Decathlon bike?

A throttle technically makes your e-bike a motorbike for a minute and can give you a power in boost when you most need it, such as when you are in demand of optimal power to reach the top of steep inclines. 

How many assistance modes does the Riverside 500 have? 

The Riverside 500 electric bike comes with three different riding modes to choose from powered by its high-torque, geared hub motor.

Is a rear-wheel hub motor better than a mid-drive motor?

A mid-drive motor tends to be classed as better for tackling hills when riding out, however, they are expensive, so rear hub motors offer a great alternative for an extra push when cycling and are more affordable.

How much is the Rockrider decathlon bike? 

There is a couple of different Rockrider e-bikes on the market but they all tend to be around £1000 price as a bike from online.

What power should an electric motor be in the UK?

The range of assistance that comes from your motor should not have any more power than 250W to ensure it stays UK legal for the roads.

Does the Riverside 500 have ergonomic grips? 

Yes, the Riverside 500 has an ergonomic design and is fitted mostly with B'Twin parts for the best comfort.

What is a torque-sensing pedal?

A torque-sensing pedal assistance system will adjust the pedal assistance according to how you are pedalling on the bike, a cadence sensor however is preset assistance modes.

Torque sensors tend to be more expensive yet preferred due to this natural feel.

Last Words 

Overall, the Decathlon Riverside 500 hybrid e-bike is a great choice if you are looking for a reliable bike to take out for leisure and commuting thanks to its versatile design, high-quality B'Twin parts and decent battery range. 

However, if you are looking for solely a mountain bike then you might want to go for a Decathlon rock rider model or a bike that is a little more heavy-duty for this kind of riding.

This Decathlon Riverside 500 model, in particular, has additionally been reported to be having quite a lot of electrical issues too from numerous customers, so ensure your model has a warranty before buying the bike from online.  

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Written By: Steve

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