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No other e-bike can match the value of the $1,000 Lectric XP 3.0

The Lectric XP 3.0 left side on a brick sidewalk with a sloping front yard and driveway in the background.
Lectric XP 3.0
MSRP $1,000.00
“You'll be hard-pressed to find another e-bike with the XP 3.0's features for less than $1,500.”
  • Best e-bike for the price
  • Hydraulic disc brakes for smooth stops
  • Ships fully assembled
  • Rear rack carries 150 pounds
  • Excellent selection of optional accessories
  • No brake light
  • Harsh ride without rear suspension

If your goal is to find the best quality, most versatile e-bike for the lowest price, you don’t want to decide without considering the Lectric XP 3.0. Selecting the XP 3.0 as the best budget e-bike for the 2023 Best Electric Bikes article was my easiest decision for that roundup.

Because of its relatively low $1,000 price point, the Lectric XP 3.0 is an excellent choice if you are curious and want to try using an e-bike for inexpensive alternative transportation, exercise, or fun. The XP 3.0 also folds to a reasonable size, allowing it to be transported inside an SUV, RV, and even most cars. That means you don’t need to risk it getting dirty, damaged, or stolen on an external rack.

Co-founders Levi Conlow and Robby Deziel launched Phoenix-based Lectric Ebikes in 2019, determined to make e-bikes more accessible by selling quality bikes for prices that were lower than they were at the time. Conlow says the XP 3.0 is the company’s bestselling model.

The most recent Lectric XP 3.0 upgrades

The Lectric XP 3.0 with standard equipment in front of a wood and wire fence is the best current vaue for a full-size, folding e-bike.
Bruce Brown/Digital Trends

The newest Lectric XP 3.0 e-bike has hydraulic brakes for smoother stopping power with less rider effort. The latest model also has an upgraded electric motor and a proprietary algorithm called Lectric Pedal-Assist Wattage Regulation (PWR), which improves power delivery when the rider pedals in one of the five power-assisted pedaling modes.

Lectric XP 3.0 is the second version with the same model designation. Lectric Ebikes upgrades e-bikes when it can add new features or better components without raising prices, rather than holding changes for the next model year. For that reason, a used XP 3.0 may not include the upgraded features.

How fast, how far, and how much?

The Lectric XP 3.0 has plenty of space for accessories on its flat handlebar.
Bruce Brown/Digital Trends

Lectric ships the XP 3.0 configured as a Class II e-bike, which means the top speed is 20 mph using powered pedal assistance or the half-twist throttle on the right handgrip. However, you can increase that limit to 28 mph if you reconfigure it to Class III. Three buttons on the left handlebar let you change power and other settings on the center display.

Lectric rates the XP 3.0’s maximum range at 20 to 45 miles with the standard 48-volt, 10.4Ah lithium-ion battery fully charged, but you’ll need to pedal with minimal power assistance at no more than 10 to 15 mph on flat, dry roads to get close to the maximum range. As with all e-bikes, higher speeds, less pedaling, and even cargo weight can all lower range. Charging the battery with the included 2-amp charger takes five to six hours.

The compact folded size of the Lectric XP 3.0 means it doesn’t require much space in your home, office, or vehicle.

The Lectric XP 3.0 starts at $1,000, but a range of accessories can push that price higher. Even if you add multiple accessories, you’ll still probably pay less for the XP 3.0 than the base price of comparable e-bikes.

Power on demand

The Lectric XP 3.0 folding e-bike with pine trees, rhododendron, and a holly bush.
Bruce Brown/Digital Trends

The Lectric XP 3.0’s upgraded rear hub electric motor delivers 500 watts of continuous power with a peak output of 1,000 watts and 55 newton-meters of torque. The peak power helps when you want an extra boost to get through an intersection or travel up a substantial grade.

The XP 3.0 uses cadence sensors, which are supposed to add more power the faster you pedal, but we’ve sometimes encountered issues with them on competing bikes. Pedaling at any speed sometimes causes a sudden power boost that catches riders off guard, and even experienced riders sometimes complain about a jerky ride. The XP 3.0 addresses this issue with Lectric PWR, an algorithm that smooths out power delivery, adding power more gradually by balancing the pedaling speed and the bike’s current speed. It’s also supposed to increase range and efficiency by eliminating starts and stops of the motor.

Anecdotally, it works great. I generally prefer e-bikes with throttles due to the lurching effect I often experience with some cadence-sensing systems, but I didn’t encounter issues with the XP 3.0. We have an extremely steep driveway, and I’m careful not to start too fast when heading out for a ride, especially in the fall, with many leaves on the ground. However, with the Lectric XP 3.0, it was easy to control the added power from pedaling.

Rider impressions

If you’ve assembled almost any other e-bike, you’ll be pleased to find that the Lectric XP 3.0 ships fully assembled. Once you lift the folded bike out of its shipping box and remove the protective packing materials, all you need to do is unfold the frame, unfold the handlebar stem, insert the handlebars with cables already attached, adjust the seat height, unfold the pedals, and you’re done. There’s a helpful getting started video on the company website if you have questions, but the process is fast and easy.

The battery fits inside the XP 3.0’s frame, which means you need to fold the bike to access it, but that’s not much of a hassle since you can just charge the battery inside the bike. Folding and unfolding the bike is simple, but I found it easier after the first few times.

The XP 3.0 seat height from the ground adjusts from 32 inches to 42 inches, and the handlebar adjusts from 45 inches to 48 inches high. Lectric rates the e-bike for riders from 4 feet, 10 inches tall to 6 feet, five inches tall. The total payload capacity is 330 pounds, which includes the rear rack’s 150-pound capacity.

At 64 pounds with the battery installed, this isn’t an e-bike you’d probably want to carry up and down flights of stairs often, but it’s about average. Its compact folded size means it doesn’t require much space in your home, office, or vehicle.

The bike has 20-inch diameter by 3-inch wide puncture-resistant tires with a moderately knobby tread and Slime anti-flat tire treatment. The tires are a compromise between heavier 4-inch to 5-inch fat tires that enable all-terrain riding, and thinner and lighter street tires that add agility and less rolling resistance for better battery range.

Options for the XP 3.0 include child seats, coolers, food delivery packages, and a covered pet trailer.

The XP 3.0’s hydraulic disc brakes are a big deal for an e-bike at this price level, especially with 180mm rotors rather than the more standard 160mm. Mechanical disc brakes are fine, but require harder squeezing and typically need more adjusting over time than hydraulic brakes. The brakes work smoothly, but we wish that applying them automatically lit up the rear lights like brake lights on a car — some more expensive models do this.

Ride comfort is a bit mixed. Despite setting the adjustable front forks to the softest setting, I found the ride with the bicycle-style seat harsher than expected. There’s no rear suspension, which isn’t at all unusual. I found relief by dropping tire pressure to 25 psi, which is the lowest Lectric recommends. Another, probably better fix would be upgrading to the thicker comfort seat and suspension post package, which is a $99 option.

Make it your own with accessories and upgrades

Lectric XP 3.0 with optional bar end mirrors and phone mount.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

Lectric Ebikes has an excellent selection of accessories for the XP 3.0. I asked the company to send the accessory mirrors and phone mount you can see in the above photo. Mirrors are essential for any e-bike unless you only ride off-road, and a phone mount is handy. The mirrors performed very well without jittering, and the phone mount solidly holds a large smartphone case.

Other desirable options include a 48-volt, 14Ah Long Range Battery for the XP 3.0 that adds 20 miles to the range estimates, plus a variety of add-on racks, baskets, and bags. Because the rear rack can hold 150 pounds, I requested the Passenger Kit with a passenger seat, foot pegs, and grab handle shown in the photo below.

Lectric XP 3.0 with optional passenger kit including seat, foot pegs, and grab handle.
Bruce Brown / Digital Trends

Additional exciting accessories for the XP 3.0 include Thule child seats, hard and soft coolers, food delivery packages, and even a waterproof, covered pet trailer rated to carry pets up to 50 pounds.

Unbeatable value

I wholeheartedly recommend the Lectric XP 3.0 e-bike. With its $1,000 price, it’s an impressive value. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another e-bike with the XP 3.0’s features for less than $1,500. The Engwe EP-2 Pro is a similar folding bike with less desirable mechanical brakes and a $1,200 price tag. The Himiway Cruiser has comparable power and larger tires, but also has mechanical brakes, and costs $300 more than the XP 3.0. Choosing the value-rich Lectric XP 3.0 is an easy decision, preferably with select options to tailor the ride and capabilities to fit your needs.

Editors' Recommendations

Bruce Brown
Digital Trends Contributing Editor Bruce Brown is a member of the Smart Homes and Commerce teams. Bruce uses smart devices…
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